Friday, November 25, 2011

Alphabet Day 11: E

My E day: early morning, extra packing, early arrival at the airport due to delayed flight, eggs, Ernie Halter, ear infection (I wanted a cold, but the Alphabet said no), Eric Hutchinson, entire book read on a plane ride east, eternity in traffic to Dallas, and easy sleep in a giant hotel bed.

E song: Emerson Hart - "Generation"

E word: epitaph

Earl, a Dickensian Scholar, had just gotten some terrible news from the doctor. He was dying. The kind of dying when you actually end up dead in a few weeks.

When you know you're going to die, there's a lot of stuff that you get to take care of yourself. If you don't know when you're going to die, and then you end up dead, then all your relatives have to take care of that crap for you. The latter is obviously the better option.

However, Earl knew it was coming, so he started getting things in order - planning his funeral, writing his obituary, and leaving a flaming bag of poop on the doorsteps of people he hated. That's how he chose to live his last few weeks.

Among his preparations, Earl started looking at headstones. The salesman told him that for an extra $500 he could include a two line epitaph on his grave marker. Earl had no heirs, so that was chump change for an almost dead dude.

Still, this meant he had to think long and hard on the few words that he would allow to define him for the rest of his life. For the first week, he couldn't think about it at all because he was dying, and that was sad. Finally, he sat down at his desk, pulled out a sheet of paper, and he dipped his pen in ink. He was weird like that, owning a quill pen, but all Dickensian Scholars are.

He was most proud of his contributions to the literature and scholarship surrounding Charles Dickens, so he chose to highlight that in his epitaph. The pen touched the paper, and the letter began to flow. "H-E-R-E L-I-E-S A D-I-C-K," and then he dropped dead.


- Barbara

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