Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Salesman of Death (as opposed to Death of the Salesman)

I hate it when I'm told to act my age. I've never been this age before, so how would I know how to act. Today I was driving with Linda as passenger. A squirrel was contemplating suicide and was about to dive under my wheels. I quickly pulled the vehicle out of its path. Linda, who did not see the death-hungry rodent, made a snide remark "Do you have to jerk when you drive?" I responded "Can't help it if I'm driving with a jerk." I never could resist a set-up line. Much to my chagrin, Linda scowled "Act your age."

I'm at an age where I'm being targeted by mortuary sales literature. Seems like these people are determined to sell a cemetery vault to me. Before the price goes up! I could save some money if I die soon. That reminds me of the old Jack Benny skit. Jack gets held up and the robber says, "Your money or your life." Jack doesn't respond. The robber says, "Well whats it gonna be?" Jack comes back with "I'm thinking! I'm thinking!"

AARP is also requesting my enrollment. In their literature, they boast of a funeral plan that can save me money. If I had been smart, I would have died years back when it was cheap. I wonder if funeral homes ever have a penny sale. You know, "Die now, and for one penny more, you can take a friend with you."

Who is the least expensive, undertakers or taxidermists? It may be cheaper to be stuffed than to be buried. (Note to self: Price taxidermy over funeral arrangement.)

Do funeral homes have lay-away plans? Thats a pun all by itself.

How can someone remain and be gone at the same time? When a person dies they say the person is gone. But wait, here's his remains. Hmm?

Several years back, a crypt solicitor had weaseled his way into our home with promises of some luxurious gift for listening to his spiel. Linda and I sat at our kitchen table with this salesman. In somber voice he presented a hypothetical situation where I was late coming home from work and the phone would ring. Linda would answer and receive the message that I had been in a car accident and she should come to the hospital. When she got to the hospital, she was placed in small waiting room and awaited word on what was going on with me. The salesman's tone took on what he imagined Linda to be thinking. "Oh please, let John be alright. Oh, what would I do without him?" At this point, I know where the story is going and I'm restraining myself from laughter. I look at Linda, and this guy has brought tears to her eyes. Needless to say, he drags the story out for several minutes before announcing that I have died, and Linda has no place to put my body. Now wouldn't it be nice to already own a crypt? he asks. Linda is a wreck, she would have given away the house in exchange for a crypt. Good thing I was there to pull the plug on this guy. No thank you, sir. Just give us our gift and get out of our house.

It took a while to get this guy out. He kept prattling on with his sales talk. He had an argument for every "No" I gave him. He must have been there for over an hour delivering a speech that was suppose to be five minutes long. At long last, he gave us our gift and left. The free gift was a form for creating a Last Will and Testament. A box of Kleenex would have been better. Linda sure could have used that. We still have the unfilled out form. The only benefit I got out of listening to this guy is this anecdote to put on my blog.

(Note to self: Find Last Will and Testament form. Perhaps in the attic.)

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