"I’m not being buried with my parents! I’m a strong independent whatchamacallit…"
Our monthly columnist, comedian Joanne McNally, has penned her thoughts on mortality and the very important question: Where will I live when I’m dead?
I’ve recently accepted the fact that I am going to die. For a while I wasn’t sure. It just didn’t seem like something I would do. I’d seen family members do it, some uncles, two Labradors, my father, and I was aware that traditionally life has a 100% mortality rate. But there was always this teensy weensy part of me that thought, maybe I’ll be the exception to the rule. I mean, there’s so much going on at the moment, God couldn’t possibly be across everything, he’s flat out with Isis and climate change & Beyonce’s new twins, who are probably already living as oracles in a pool somewhere like those floating bald people in Minority Report. Surely if I just keep the head down, he might forget all about me and I can ‘live forever’.
I feel sure he’s forgotten some people already. I have a theory about rich elderly people. You know the ones who are so shook and wrinkly looking, it’s as if they’ve just woken up from a nap on a crimping iron? Well I’m certain they’re buying themselves extra lives. Like when Mario used to headbut a box and eat whatever flashing legume popped out of it. I’m talking about the super old ones, the ones who’ve lived through numerous wars, nine currency changes and remember a time when Ireland was still attached to Morocco. They’re fond of a fag and they think supplements are a swing band. Yet they’re still here, wandering around garden centres, dodging death like little grey ninjas. It’s fascinating.
I wondered how they pulled it off. After some mental percolation on the matter, I’m satisfied that they’re bribing the grim reaper with bejazzled scythes, exaggerated winks and a catalogue of yachts. They have to be. How else does one explain their incredible endurance?
Now that I’ve accepted my inevitable passing on, I’ve started the morbid business of figuring out where I’m going to live when I’m dead, plots and whatnot. From what I can see, people typically bail in with their partner, but what if I don’t have one? I really don’t fancy buying a single plot, it seems wrong for someone as nosey as I am to be buried alone. I was pondering all this while sprawled out in the garden when my mother who asked me why I looked so ‘constipated with thought’.
“Oh nothing, I’m just wondering where I’ll live when I’m dead…”
“Oh darling don’t worry, you can squeeze in with your father and I, there’s plenty of room, we bought a 3 man plot, just in case. We didn’t know how much space we’d need” She gives me one of those conspiratorial winks and turned back into her Jilly Cooper.
I don’t know what exactly she means by this ‘in case’. I’m assuming she’s referring to my father’s expanding waistline and not my predicted relationship status. He had developed a ferocious obsession with cream in his later years, he had it on everything, cereal, brown bread, Tuc biscuits.
The idea of spending eternity topping and tailing my parents was too much for me. I searched the grass for my cigarettes. How embarrassing! I’m not being buried with my parents! I’m a strong independent whatchamacallit… “No thanks mom you’re grand.”
“Well, who will you RIP with?” I panicked, but then it came to me. “My mates!”
I decided to get buried with my mate Nicola and her husband Gary. Nicola is super organised and very popular. She’s already had two kids and she’s fertile AF so she’ll probably end up having a tonne more which means you’ve more chance of getting regular visitors and a decent hydrangea, none of that petrol station shite. Also they’ve a coupla quid so you’re guaranteed a good location, sea view maybe. I brought my idea to her.
“No Joanne. This feels wrong…”
“Why? Sure you won’t even notice I’m there?”
“Well, what if we fall out between now and then or we lose contact?”
“Yea? And? Are you worried it’ll be awkward in the plot if we’re all in a snot with each other? We’ll be DEAD!”
But seeing as that is no longer an option, I recently went to a talk on transhumanism which is the belief that we can and should have our minds uploaded to a computer and live forever. But where is the craic in life if you know you’ll never die? Where’s your impetus to really live if the worst that can happen to you is some intern in a lab somewhere spills a coffee on your buttons and you’ve to be put in a bag of rice for the afternoon?
I’ve since revisited my afterlife situation so if anyone is looking for me in 60 years time, I’ll be wedged in between my parents somewhere mourning not only my life, but my independence.
This article first appeared in the August issue of STELLAR Magazine. Our September issue is on shelves now.