Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A visit from Kate: O Death

I like to support small business as much as the next joan the plumber, but it's hard when the "Dad Remembered" casket that I want is just so much cheaper... 
Other models include Lady de Guadalupe, American Patriot, Lovely in All Ways, and the uber-depressing Executive Privilege.   Please let me never be encased in a Walmart brand Executive Privilege casket.  Lest you worry that Walmart abandons its fuller-figured customers after a lifetime of patronage, check out the Regal Wide Body.    Four inches wider, "it is the perfect match for the person who lived life to its fullest."  Really?

I checked, but no one has reviewed or even asked any questions about any of these products yet.  
Sidenote- Searching the entire Walmart website for casket brings up only two other items: a Clipse album that drops 12/08/09, and this gem by a little band called Casket Salesman. Who, despite possibly having a painting of Das Racist as their album cover and songs named Art Sandwich, I'll Buy That for a Dollar, and Feeling Ten Feet Tall Parts One and Two, are not so great, with the music.  Was debating whether or not to even bother including them, except I made it to their wikipedia which says... that during Casket Salesmen's recent hibernation, founding member Phil Pirrone started a new band called Välmart!  I just thought that was weird.

Though Walmart's placid attempts at ubiquity creep me out, I can't really get down on somebody trying to save money in tough economic and emotional times.  I will say, as far as over-the-web casket purveyors go, I think I prefer this website.  

FAQs are actually very informative, no joke, I got distracted and read them all.  Here's a non-representative sample though:

33) Do we give credit? 
No.  We tried and it did not work.

34) Are our caskets guaranteed to not leak? 
No one's caskets can be guaranteed to not leak.  The rubber gasket that we have on every metal casket breaks down with the years.  When caskets are placed in a mausoleum the first thing that they do is to break the rubber seal so that the body can dry out naturally.  What happens if you put a piece of decaying matter in a sealed jar? You understand.  

On that note, here's an interview between excellent fellow Krishna Andavolu and the eminently soothing Robert Krulwich (bottom of the page) about promession, an eco-conscious alternative to burial and cremation.  It means that a human body upon death is flash-frozen and "hit with an ultrasound wave that shatters the frozen body into thousands of little pieces, so that it can be scattered wherever the deceased wishes."   Susanne Wiigh-Masak, the Swedish Biologist who patented the process in 2007, sees it as a green alternative to cremation whereby a body is reduced to “granules like instant coffee, but pinkish beige in color.”  In this jaunty little video your family can bury your remains in a biodegradable box, nurturing a tree or shrubbery of your choosing.  I think maybe there is a good shark food plotline somewhere to be found, for some sortof techno-noir thriller that maybe we could all write together, over twitter, to try to push back against the darkness/knowledge that we're all going to die/etc.


Sara'o said...

"18) How will I know if I will need an oversized casket?
We have a staff of 30 people. Only two are big enough to need an oversized casket because they are 25" wide at their widest point. Simply measure the person at their widest point to tell if they will need an oversized casket or not. Our normal caskets have an inside width of 23.5 inches and are 79" long (6 foot 7 inches). Normal guys that are 6 foot tall and 240 pounds can easily fit in a normal casket. The two people in our office that are 25 inches wide and require the oversized casket are: Lady 5 foot 3 inches and 330 pounds and a man 6 foot 3 inches and 300 pounds; both fit in the oversized casket. As a funeral home said, it the guy is over 6 feet 7 inches tall, they make him fit, so height is not a problem. The oversized caskets are 27.5" wide inside. If the person is wider than 27.5", then they will not fit in our caskets. Often the funeral director will say that they need a 28" casket, that is because theirs are normally 24" or 28' wide, so usually the person will fit in ours if they need a 28" casket. Ask how wide the person is."

Mooner said...

Wait, what does happen if you put a piece of decaying matter in a sealed jar??

Im saying this here and now: If I die and you guys are all too sad to cremate me, PLEASE PUT ME IN ONE OF THOSE EXTRA WIDE JOINTS. Look, I aint no fatty, but who wouldn't want a little more wiggle-room? Also, when Bowser goes, please put him next to me. Thx ♥

Dap said...

"As a funeral home said, it the guy is over 6 feet 7 inches tall, they make him fit, so height is not a problem."


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