12/05/2007

Dying alone

Are you afraid of dying alone?

The fear of dying alone threads its way through the collective conscience. We all fear it, much like that up-skirt shot of Britney Spears...











Golly, that's one ugly cooter. Anyway, everybody fears dying alone. And this fear gives rise to romantic pursuits. Specifically, it expresses itself in an urge to marry. A spouse, we reason, guarantees us we'll have someone to comfort us at our deathbed, a comrade who can escort us to the Great Beyond. Somebody to hold us, somebody to quell our pain. Somebody who hopefully won't defile our corpse with a Sharpie Marker, some shaving cream and a box of condoms, and post a picture of the prank on Google. So we marry (some of us, 2 or 3 times) simply to preempt a lonely death. Do not underestimate how strongly this fear motivates marriage. Consider: many who've escaped the surly bonds of a dysfunctional marriage are the most anxious to remarry. When friends remind them how miserable they were while married, how desperate they were to be single, they respond with, "Yeah, being single is great. But I don't want to die alone." Such is the power the fear of dying alone has on our psyche.

But Marriage doesn't help. The painful truth is, we all die alone -- unless, of course, you enter a murder-suicide pact. Also, airline pilots and bus drivers who happen to die suddenly while on the job will enjoy the company of 100 screaming friends joining them on their final voyage. Barring these rare exceptions, you depart this universe utterly alone. But do not fret. Dying alone affords a luxury that people fail to appreciate. I'd like to highlight it lest you squander peace of mind while anguishing at the thought of dying alone. It may even dissuade you from marrying the wrong person for the wrong reason.

As death claims us, our bodies are going to do things that require a little privacy. To wit, acute lack of bowel and bladder control accompany a dying body. Whatever gas is present in the alimentary canal will whistle past your listless O-ring. Take my word on this. I work in a hospital. Dying people damn near take the lives of those around them, what with all the noxious gas and bio-hazardous waste belching from either end. It's really gross. Dude, I know you're in a lot of pain and dying and whatnot, but pop a couple Bean-o for Christ's sake.

Scientists have attempted to measure the mass of the soul. They placed dying people on scales and recorded their weights before and after passing. Behold, they detected a slight loss in body mass, post-mortem. They accounted the 21-gram discrepancy to the soul leaving the body. However, these scientists failed to compensate for flatulence and defecation. Further experimentation proved the soul is actually weightless, and that the average flatulence discharge accounted for the 21 grams, plus or minus a turd.

Most of us prefer privacy when we're doing the deed. Hell, that's the reason I never joined the Army (Sir, the Private has finished defecating. Permission to pinch off the loaf, Drill Sergeant, sir... Permission granted, Private. And don't forget to double-flush that shitter, maggot!) No stalls in Army base bathrooms. A $300-billion defense budget and Uncle Sugar can't put stalls in the head? I never understood that. Regardless, dying alone spares us what would be the most embarrassing 10 minutes of our lives. Therein lies the virtue.

I hope I've alleviated the fear of dying alone for my readers, and I hope that they will share what they've learned today with friends and family. Pass it along. We need not fear dying alone. It's a blessing. Growing old is one indignity after another. Thank Goodness that when our indignity is at its zenith, when we're gasping our last breaths, regurgitating our Ensure, soiling ourselves like a gin-soaked Kennedy, and shooting Little Debbie Snack Cakes into our adult diapers, that we're utterly, utterly alone.

77 comments:

R.E.H. said...

Also, airline pilots and bus drivers who happen to die suddenly while on the job will enjoy the company of 100 screaming friends joining them on their final voyage.

Thank you. That was one of the funniest sentences I've read in quite a while. LOL! Macabre... but fun.

About the rest of your post... well, I think you now made me want to marry someone I don't like, just to terrorize her when I'm on my death-bed... the fine ladies - guess I'll have to cheat on my wife a lot, huh?

Honest John said...

Finally...I have inspired some form of creativity to be incorporated into your tiresome blog! The subject presentation is even more of an original style. Take that for what it's worth bug. In keeping with my adversarial tone though, I must ask if you have married for the purpose of not dying alone? Have children so someone will be forced to care for you when you begin to lose your memory and control of those odorous bodily functions? Is gay marriage unrecognized in Arizona USA?

All hostility aside, this was a thought provoking post and the image was a definite added pleasure. I took the liberty to recreate the image and include it on my own blog, since your level of Photoshop ability didn't quite measure up to your level of insulting capability. I am a pussy...and a filthy one at that. My mouth will act as a receptacle for all of Britney's future penetrations and deposits. Kudos, loser! I am impressed. Finally. Dickwad.

Becky said...

Yes, it might be a good idea to be alone in such an embarrassing point in our life.

Stacy The Peanut Queen said...

"So we marry (some of us, 2 or 3 times)"

2 or 3 times? Yikes...that's a scary thought. Almost scared me to death with that one...and I'm all alone at my desk.

Hold my hand, will you? ;)

Shoshana said...

If you were my grandpa in the Philippines, you don't get to die alone. You're surrounded by 7 children, and countless grandchildren and a mass of extended relatives even those which are related because their greats are cousins of my gramps. That's quite something.

I was there when he was gasping for his last breath, riddled with bed sores and smelling like death already. Strangely enough, I wasn't gagging, not until after he's dead and the smell was lodge in my brain. I think that should be the way to go. On the other hand, if it's going to be so undignified, I would probably prefer a smaller crowd.

Just Say These Words

Uncle Keith said...

Wow, I do feel better now. Death doesn't seem quite so bad, when I know I won't have to clean up the mess.

Hammer said...

I liked this post.

The problem with dying alone is that eventually someone will find your bloated green corpse and have to scrape you off the linoleum with a putty knife.

Franki said...

My dying hope is to have enough strength to find a nice quiet cave or tree hollow to crawl into to die, all by my little self. The heroic measures used to keep people alive these days strike me as undignified and unnecessary. As for marriage, tried it, hated it. Dying alone is much more palatable than wishing my mate would just go the hell away.

Jack K. said...

Leave it to you to come to us with enlightenment.

Yes we do die alone, even in a crowd of people, unless it is in said airplane or bus.

Dying is a solitary act, even amidst the crowd.

If that is so, and it is inevitable, then we should look forward to it. But, only when our mission is done.

As for the lack of stalls in the barracks, when was the last time you were in the barracks?

In the meantime, have a Merry Christmas. That's an order, puke.

lol

Loving Annie said...

Good Wednesday morning to you, Lightning Bug !

Good to see that the holidays have left you in such a cheery and unsentimental frame of mind :)

B.S. may indeed have an ugly cooter (i couldn't see the picture - a guy's face was over it :) but the white blouse she was wearing was beautiful...

For the last 10 years on and off I have volunteered 3 afternoons a week in an emergency room in a Level One Trauma Center in a large city hospital.

Death isn't pretty. It can be quiet, bloody, sad or, as you say, full of sh**...

I think people who have not made peace with themselves or who, what they have have done with their relationships and their lives are the ones who fear death the most.

A psychological issue as it were, the fear of hell or eternal darkness, an emotional paranoia of self-consciousness or guilt.

As though if they die with a spouse, they don't have to face how they behaved, who they were, how they acted. They don't have to die ALONE AND UNLOVED.

They can have someone with them so they don't have to face that they were assholes while they were alive, and still have people they should hav apologized to for such, amends to make for things they did wrong, etc.

It's a crappy reason to get married, since death only takes a minute and marriage takes years :)

Death itself shouldn't be scary. Dying is worse, I think, especially if you are in great pain and it is mercilessly slow as it is with some cancers, or if you have alzheimer's or dementia, etc., etc.

Okay, I'm rambling here, smugly aware of my existing Will&Testasment including my stated wishes for cremation, my DNR and the fact that my best friend has sworn to give me enough valium to put me in a sound sleep and then put a pillow over my face if I start losing my quality of life...

tornwordo said...

I liked "plus or minus a turd". But then I would, of course. The whole communal defecation thing in the army is really unappealing.

RoxRocks said...

I hope I die in my sleep since I can barely handle farting in public. I suffer from SAS (shy asshole syndrome) but I like to say I'm in recovery.

I clicked on Honest John's blog. Hmmm. Not nearly as charming as you, dear!

Vi vi vi vooom!!!!!!!! said...

Geez, I should have stayed married to my ex, just so he had to change my diapers.

Tequila Mockingbird said...

it's like that old joke,
Dude: yeah, my grandma died.
Chick: oh, how did she die?
Dude: In her Sleep.
Chick: so peacefully... how nice!
Dude: yeah, for her, but not for the other three passengers in her car.

i hope i die in some weird sex game gone wrong. something to make headlines!

random moments said...

This is...disturbing LBB.

I'm going home to read my bible and break up with my boyfriend.

Karen said...

Is there even such a thing as a cooter that's NOT ugly?

Preposterous Ponderings said...

I'm going to live forever!

NWJR said...

Bug, I spent years changing my kids' shitty diapers. I'm counting on them to do it for me at the end.

In fact, I'm PLANNING on it. Revenge is mine.

Enemy of the Republic said...

Apparently you get used to defecating in public when you are in the Army. But as I found out from my ex-infantry husband, you can take the man out of the Army....

Do I fear dying alone? Strange, I've never thought about it. Is that why I married? It might be why I had kids. I've seen people die alone in the hospital without any loved ones around. It's awful.

Susan as herself said...

I have always figured I would be better off dying alone. I know myself well enough that I know I prefer being SICK alone. I don't want people around me when I feel like ass, so I figure if I am dying I will REALLY feel like ass, so get the hell away from me.

That comforts me somehow, in addition to the being alone for the crapping in my undies aspect. (And unlike Britney, I do usually wear undies. Especially with a skirt the length of a postage stamp.)

Oh great One said...

Gee. I feel better now. NOT!

Jahooni said...

So I can get back at my husband, whew never knew this. Can't wait to get old!!!!

Memphis Steve said...

You've made me long for the single life, but for all the wrong reasons. I should be thinking about boinking young hotties, not shitting my diapers as an old raisin.

ADW said...

When I go, I am taking everyone around me along for the ride. Or to party me with me at the final destination.

MsPuddin said...

This post was deep and depressing. Excuse me while I go and drown myself in a bottle of vodka and turn lesbian…can't wait to die!

Jeannie said...

Somehow, knowing I'll be alone at that moment brings me peace. I have nightmares about defecating in public...at least when I die I won't have to wake up to my embarassment.

You must have had a particularly nasty experience recently to decide to share this lovely info. funny the stuff they leave out of most tv shoes, movies and books huh? Making death all romantic and stuff

Makes you wonder how anyone could screw a corpse huh?

*~*Cece*~* said...

Your post hit home a bit for me. We were with my Grandma nearly 24/7 in her final days, this past April, and you're right, the human body does things dying that the living person would never do in the company of others. I never thought I'd live to see the day where I change my 73 year old Grandmother's "diaper", yet I did.

I get your dying alone post, but I have to say that when I go I want to be surrounded by my husband, children, grand and greatgrand children the exact same way my Grandma did. Something about going while physically surrounded by love just appeals to me.

The Kept Woman said...

"Regardless, dying alone spares us what would be the most embarrassing 10 minutes of our lives."

Uh yeah, about that...if you're a man, yeah...otherwise every woman in the world who has pushed a baby out the old hooha has done this in a room full of people usually including one or more person with a medical degree.

It's very classy.

Fantastagirl said...

I'm with TKW - when in labor with Pan - everyone, (Including the maintenance man) saw my everything...so dying alone - not a bad idea, at least then I don't have to see these people again in the produce section of our small small town grocery store. Dying alone sounds great!

Cynic with Flair said...

I have never, ever, coupled Little Debbies with death, but it all makes sense now.

Thanks for giving me yet another thing to worry about! Your clinical eye makes this taboo subject hilariously readable.

snowelf said...

I think I'm pretty use to being single and unmarried. A boyfriend would be nice, though. I just hope he's not sleeping over when I die. ;)

(My mom works in a nursing home, so I know a lot about this unfortunate subject.)

--snow

Rupert said...

"Somebody who hopefully won't defile our corpse with a Sharpie Marker, some shaving cream and a box of condoms, and post a picture of the prank on Google."

Those are some GREAT ideas to defile a corpse! Have you ever done any of those?

The Thinking Man's Babe said...

Loved Snowelf's comment and this post, too. Get it published somewhere else. It deserves a larger audience.

Cameron said...

Thanks for this post.

We DO need to take the mystery, the abhorrence, the denial of death -- especially in this country.

It's time to smell the....

coffee

Yeah that's it!

Mona said...

BIG BUTT! I AM DYING!!!!!

At your creativity! OMG! That picture is killing me!

I haven't 'read' your post yet. That picture is threatening to kill me with so much laughter!!!

Turnbaby said...

Funny--well written--engaging with a taboo subject---spot on.

I'm not afraid of dying--I'm concerned that someone will try to keep it from happening when it's inevitable. To me that is a true horror of our society at this point--the hideous prolonging of 'life'

Mona said...

I am TRANSFORMED!!!

This is a discourse!

This is like the best Art of the essayist I haver come across!

This is like Bacon's and Addison's and Charles Lamb's essays!

Only better!

Honest to John it is!

Hey Big Butt! You need a publisher!!! Honest to God you do!

WOw!~ what innovative ideas. You are great! I love each one of them & they are so true!

I am speechless & wide eyed!

I must share this post with so many!

aCey said...

i think you're right about being alone in this world. we can be surrounded by so many people and yet know that in this life, we are alone in everything.

Little Wing said...

If I have to look at that cootchie of Britneys again I will kill myself, and will not even care WHAT my body goes thru!!!!!!!!

Mona said...

Hey Lightening, you are bugging the Butt John!

I went to check his version of 'creation' & I Like your ORIGINAL better than his COPY!

Honest John Plagarising your Original idea!

Not very Honest eh?

Damsel Underdressed said...

Sometimes, marriage makes you die quicker albeit slow and painful. Make sense?

Breazy said...

Hey! How are you? Doing well here just trying to get back into the normal swing of things!

Have a great weekend!

Laughing through my chardonnay said...

Well, I have to say I am glad to be single now. Thanks for the positive spin on things...I guess.

Ari said...

I have had that very thought before, that when it comes down to it, it's just you and your Maker (or the great nothingness, or however we define or don't whatever is past the last breath). It's interesting that it's so important a journey that we get to practice for it every night.

Standing by powerless while someone else makes the trip sucks unbelievably, however.

Chick said...

I'm not scared anymore.

CarmenSinCity said...

Well, i'm not necessarily afraid that I'll die alone, but I'm an only child and I worry that I won't have a husband to grow old with. I would hate to still be looking for a husband when I'm 60. It's just a sad thing to think about. But, at any rate, nobody wants to live in all that fear and if it's meant to be, it'll happen - right?!

Little Wing said...

I went over and read all of honest john's blog and all I have to say is that I find it incredible that he would dedicate a complete blog to LBB.
It is filled with contempt, and serves no purpose except to try to anger LBB readers and draw them over to his blog.
I will not be returning to his blog, I prefer the upbeat humour I can always get on LBB blog .....I will take positive any day over such negative dribble.

Mona said...

He is an LBB parasite Little wing. He 'exists' because of LBB.

Can there be a bigger 'complement' than that for LBB!

Not very bright eh?

I guess he is already History for most...

Let me sing a Psalm and a dirge...

Mona said...

or a requiem...

Lyvvie said...

I don't really care about the dying thing. I actually expect to die alone - who wants to die with a bunch of crying, upset people watching? Talk about performance anxiety! What if it ends up just being a bad day, and you don't actually die just then?? All those folks, geared up for "the event" and nothing. Soon, they'll turn on you. that's when plugs get pulled and stuff.

Yup, alone is best.

someoneswife said...

I don't care how I die, or who is there to see it.. i just know that when I go, i do not want people crying. I want my friends and family to take a party boat out on the lake, throw my corpse into an old fridge, throw it in the lake, and explode it, then party like there is no tomorrow. Now that is going out with a bang! But if I have to go peacefully, I hope the hubby is there to smell my last "fart".. I just want a little payback for all those nights he drank Guiness! Hugs, Dawn

Bella said...

Too deep for me!

I can't go there right now.

Can you say "DENIAL'???

lol.

Dan O. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dan O. said...

As a firefighter I also sometimes drove ambulance. On more than one occasion I had the unpleasant task of doing chest compressions as the aforementioned sundry gases, liquids and solids exited the dying storage vessel.

Almost gave a Paramedic a pizza shampoo due to the fact I responded from the supper table at home after two huge delicious slices. Somehow managed to clench my teeth, swallow hard and never missed a beat on the compressions.

That particular man and others didn't die alone, but I was unenthusiastic company.

As for the head at Navy bootcamp; there were stalls, just no doors! Try taking a shit with a line of cheerleaders urging you on while waiting their turd...um turn.

(hopefully got all the spelling right this time)

Flea's Thoughts said...

I have never been married, so I don't know if that is a motivating factor or not. I would like to get married someday but not sure it is so I don't die alone (in fact I am one of those please leave me alone when sick people).

That is something to think about though :)

Superstar said...

reason number 2 to get married right behind unwanted pregnacy. Great advocate!

Let me get the divorce attorney on the phone for ya...might save you some legal fee's in the future.

Marriage is supposed to be love, better, worse, sickness, health and death parts us...not I am getting married so I don't have to be alone...
~shakes head~
Where is unconditional love???

just me said...

it's too bad you made Little Debbie Cakes synonymous with poop, because I love Little Debbie Cakes.


...and who's poop has cream in the middle?

EmmaK said...

I'm not afraid of dying alone. I'm just afraid of what happens after death. For those that are afraid of dying alone, it's time to revive the fashion for mass suicides. Organize a date, a time, invite all your friends, have a few shots of tequila, watch some porn, all have sex together and when you are all locked together in a flesh pretzel take suicide pills. Result!

In your ass said...

mona is obsessed with Honest John...

LBBs biggest fan seem to be the dumbest. Mona is #1.

LBB should be complimented that someone is willing to create a blog dedicated to telling him HE SUCKS? I suppose if that was what he was going for, then by all means, take a bow.

Janis said...

You have see all the new stuff I bought. Come look.

Mona said...

Har har..hahahahahaha

This is getting more comic by each passing day :D :D :D

Christopher said...

I've often felt that death is the last great adventure, yet I"m in no rush to get to it... I've too much living to do still!

-C (http://christopherc.wordpress.com/)

R2K said...

Great post :L )

Yo Momma said...

When I'm near death, I'll totally be courteous enough to have wet wipes nearby and maybe some sanitary wipes for the unfortunate people who have to clean up the poop.

"Oh man this is gross.....oooh Dove Sanitizing hand wash and lemon scented disposable wipes!..(sniff)....she was a wonderful lady."

BottleBlonde said...

Please. You think I care about pooting and peeing in front of others when I die? Have you read my blog? My life is just a series of one humiliating experience after another.

P.S. I always appreciate that you use science to make your comedic points, Lady Bug's Bukkake. You tickle me. ;-)

The Stevo in H-Town said...

I never think about having a partner for "fear of dying alone"...It's more like.."Living" WITH someone...

..besides, the only one who doesn't "die alone" is the one who croak's first..

Honest John said...

gutless mona slings her shit from here...such a brave little princess.

Little Wing said...

honest john, can we all just get along?
Can we just agree to disagree and leave it at that?
I went to your blog and read it, but I didn't leave you any nasty comments.
In fact I didn't leave you any comments.
Why must you come over to this blog and call LBB commenters names?
Isn't what you are accusing mona of doing exactly what you are doing?
Merry Christmas and may you find peace.

Mona said...

LLB your blog is SUPER hilarious!! :D

LW its a comedy show, I'm enjoying it!

phishez_rule said...

So your next post is about why we should not have kids? I mean, all those people staring at my 'gina, and accidentally pushing out a turd?

How embarrassment.

Honest John said...

LW...mona is here talking about me...but she allows no comments on her own blog unless she approves of the content. She has chosen to engage me here rather than on my blog or her own. I challenge her; she accepts; she fights from here.

Angela said...

Uh oh...blog war!

Princess Extraordinaire said...

As sick as this sounds this post made me laugh out loud...I sometimes think about who will be around when I die and if I will go before my spouse etc...I have a sick mind.

Sassy Blondie said...

While I did have me a chuckle over this post, LBB, it still made me sad.

Crazy Me said...

I had to skim your post. I can't think about dying. It totally freaks me out.

Mona said...

hehehehe

when someone says "In your ass" the first thought that comes to mind is
" Eat shit!"

Stepping Over the Junk said...

My guy cares for his great aunt who is 95 years old. They live in units next to each other in his house. He does everything, including making sure she wears her depends and just last week, pardon my french, he had to clean up shit that was smeared all across her kitchen floor and in her nightgown and bed and bathroom, because she wouldnt wear her "Depends". I think even worse, to live at an old age like that without someone (and fortunately she has her great nephew who is there 24-7 for the most part), she isnt living alone. As for dying alone, who cares, I won't be conscious when I actually check out.