Happy Death Omens


The Ides of March are come.

Aye, Caesar, but not gone.

~William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar, Act

I hope Caesar's life insurance policy was current

 

There are two kinds of people in this world: those who like Neil Diamond and those who don’t (with sincere apologies to What About Bob?) There are also the kind who think death, sickness and general destruction are around every corner, and the ones, like myself, who believe that we all have to die and it’s one thing over which we have very little control. That being said, I sometimes cling to a few lingering superstitions. We all do.

Today, at work, the wall clock picked the Ides of March to commit suicide. Little fella just hopped off the wall and shattered. Maybe it was schizophrenic after not having sprung forward for Daylight Savings Time, or else it just had a yen to explore the hereafter for timepieces. Whatever the case, the whole thing freaked me out just a bit. (I mean, the Ides of March? Really?)

I remain cautiously optimistic. I’ve known too many people expending way too much energy thinking about when, how, and why they’re going to take the Big Sleep. Others, like the delightfully eccentric Professor Trelawney in the Harry Potter novels, see death omens in sugar cookies and dandelions. Last weekend’s devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan, if nothing else, has reminded me that human life is a precious, but all too fragile thing. Treasure it, honor it, understand that it can be arbitrarily taken away in the blink of an eye.

Live as if today might be your last day. Do something of great beauty. Tell your family and friends you love them.

And what to do about those pesky death omens? As Robert Heinlein’s Lazarus Long once said, “There is no conclusive evidence of life after death. But there is no evidence of any sort against it. Soon enough you will know. So why fret about it?”

I’d say that’s good advice. Now, I just need to pick up the broken glass from this clock.

He might have been sick, but he was funny

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~ by Howlin' Mad Heather on March 16, 2011.

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