I am not the chattiest Cathy in my circle of friends. I’m not even a Cathy or Kathy. But with just enough ingestion of the right alcoholic elixir or any alcoholic elixir, I become quite loquacious. I recently spent an evening with a friend and we ingested quite a bit of our favorite elixirs. Somehow our conversation turned to songs we would like played at our funerals.
Me: I would want Gravedigger for my song.
Dex: That’s a terrible song to pick.
Me: It’s a great song for a funeral. What’s wrong with it? I like the sentiment of “when you dig my grave, could you make it shallow so I can feel the rain.” I’d want to feel the rain.
Dex: You’ll be dead. You won’t feel anything. That song is depressing.
Me: It’s a funeral, it’s supposed to be depressing. And I don’t think that song is depressing. Okay, maybe a little. I could go with a classic like Chopin’s Funeral March, but that always makes me think of Bugs Bunny. It probably makes everyone think of Bugs Bunny. Would Bugs Bunny be appropriate for a funeral?
Dex: Why does it make you think of Bugs Bunny?
Me: Because the first time I heard it was on a Bugs Bunny cartoon. Bugs was sitting at a piano and with one bunny finger he plinked out Chopin’s Funeral March, but I didn’t know it was Chopin at the time. Anyone who ever saw that cartoon probably associates that melody with Bugs Bunny.
Dex: Is plinked a verb?
Me: It is now. I don’t think Chopin will work. How about Wish You Were Here?
Dex: The Pink Floyd song?
Me: Yeah, they’re one of my favorite bands, or my favorite. I’m torn between Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin, though they are very different. They could be co-favorites. But that song will work on multiple levels. The audience will wonder if I picked it because I wished they were with me or because they should wish I was still with them.
Dex: That’s awful. You don’t want people wondering that. Funerals don’t have audiences, they have mourners.
Me: Well, a group of mourners is an audience. I don’t think I’ll have a very big audience or group at my funeral.
Dex: Are you planning on outliving everyone you know?
Me: I might. Women on my mother’s side of the family have lived into their 100s, but I take after my father’s side. I might have my mother’s longevity genes. I just don’t think there will be many people there. Kind of like in The Big Chill when the Mary Kay Place character says, “You won’t get this kind of crowd at my funeral,” and Jeff Goldblum says, “Oh, I’ll come and I”ll bring a date.” Maybe we should put that in the funeral notice.
Me: That everyone should bring a date. I’ll get a bigger crowd. I still like Gravedigger for my song.
Dex: Didn’t you once tell me that you wanted to be cremated?
Me: Yeah, I think so. Why?
Dex: Well, Gravedigger won’t work for a cremation.
Me: Oh yeah, you’re right. Well then, I guess I’ll have to go with Dust in the WInd.