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Laurence Inman’s Blog

A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH

26-03-2009

How to laugh at the Grim Reaper. Some philosophical and hopefully consoling stuff from Mr Inman.

Being a follower of Seneca, I laugh at death.

I call him what he is, a bully and a bore. I don’t aggrandise him with names like the Noseless One, or The Great Equaliser. I stand in front of him and I poke him in the chest and I call him a twat and a toe-rag. I say to him: What you threaten will happen anyway and then there’s nothing more you can do, so piss off!

And he is the most boring of bores. Just as you’ve got to know everyone and feel easy at the party, in he comes to drag you home. You have a great idea, you plan to bring it to fruition, you jump out of bed on the first sunny morning of your new project, when you remember......

Face-ache will be here soon to throw a shadow over everything.

Sometimes he just comes without so much as a by-your-leave. Sometimes he’ll give you plenty of warning.

It’s been a bit of a week for him. That flower-seller and her daughter down south somewhere. We know about them only because she sold flowers to some famous people. Nicholas Hughes, son of Ted and Sylvia, committed suicide like his mom, (and his dad’s second wife, who also killed the kid as well.)

Natasha Richardson. Death was especially boring that day. Just a millimetre or two either way and she might have missed the fragment of rock which did the crucial damage. And because she didn’t, all this boring stuff interfering with normal life has to be got through by her rels.

Jade Goody also died. Her life, the event of it, was exactly as important as everyone else’s, without exception. Just as significant as the lives of that Diana woman, Ghandi, Adolf Whatsisname, that Kennedy bloke who was shot, Shakespeare, the man who built all those railways and bridges....all of them.

Still, there are ways of looking on the bright side.

We only ever lose the present moment we are living. At death, it’s just one breath we will be deprived of.

One day, all this will be 30,000 years ago.

And lastly, as the great man said, why cry at one event in life when the whole thing is so tragic?

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