Be More Normal-Looking

I don’t know if I’m just lucky or if I got into the funeral industry at the right time, but I’ve never had real trouble finding work…other than that rather unfortunate three-year period when I became sort of confused and joined what turned out to be a couple of criminal organizations and bounced around between…


The One-Person Call

One small matter to address – I totally don’t care if other funeral directors want to take credit for my work. I understand people are trying to do me a favor when they tell me they heard a funeral director claim my embalming job, and I don’t care, because I already got what I wanted….


Happy Birthday Mom

No mother shall be harmed on account of her child, nor shall the father be harmed because of his child. – Quran 2:233 The best thing my mom ever did for me was throw me out of the house when I was seventeen years old. I wasn’t done with school; I wasn’t going. I didn’t…


The Edge of Strange Worlds

I am drawn to the odd, the taboo, the nonsensical, the unfathomable, the edge; I have lived a life that speaks of constant seeking of strange worlds – including the occasional disastrous result – and in the end it will be said I lived many lives that were not like those of other people. Necessarily,…


I Will Patent This

I just found my new signature embalming move, and I’m not talking about those routine six-point injections like when I worked for SCI. Suspend the body! I’ve never seen anyone do this, but this might still be one of those obvious moves that everyone has been doing for years and I just learned about. If…


Twenty Years

He has been gone longer than he was here. I have always been a sentimental person who recognizes the importance of ritual. It’s why I am a funeral director. So I decided, on the 20-year anniversary, I was overdue for a trip to our hometown and where he died. I hadn’t been there since I…


Well, Did You Remove the Face?

I was optimistic when I opened the bag. For jumping off a bridge, it wasn’t too bad. He was in one piece; many jumpers are not. I’ve seen some that look like human gravel; they can’t be dressed and it’s hard enough just to move them. But this kid was in one piece, so I…


What A Depressing Job

For the first time since my brother’s memorial service, I cried at a funeral. I did a really nice job on my friend. He was positively glowing; guests were literally gasping over him and crowding around to take pictures and I came away from it feeling like I had done something nice for a fellow…


Burying Our Own

Once you are settled into your funeral service career, it occurs to you that you will most likely embalm, cremate or otherwise personally handle the remains of your closest family members. So you come to terms with it, maybe even discuss it with them. Yes mom, I will personally come to your house and drive…


It’s Not Stupid At All

I just broke a massive sweat doing a bodyweight workout in my room. I’m old enough to get injured in my sleep now, so I had to cancel my gym membership (temporarily) and swap it for physical therapy, resistance bands and wonderful, wonderful Prednisone. If you’re arranging a funeral, and you have a request that…