December 19, 2013 — 3 Comments
2013 was the year of death for me. I don’t know if it started that way, but in March, I accepted an on-call job at a funeral home — and shortly after that, naturally I began to think about it. I even decided in June, because of it that I only would read life-affirming books and not watch as much CSI-type TV shows as I had been watching for a week. Then I decided, in honor of my 44th birthday, to extend that for the entire month of June and finally overall to accentuate the positive in my life. I still am trying to do that, although for reasons that might become clearer as you read the rest of this, it’s not always easy.
In September, I reintroduced watching those kind of shows back into my TV diet in small doses, balanced with comedies, such as Raising Hope and New Girl. As I said then: “The key, I guess what I’m trying to articulate, is balance.” Balance also was, and is, what I was, and am, trying to achieve in terms of noise too, I think, as I mentioned in this post from October. In November, I added M*A*S*H to the stable of shows I’m watching, which has its mixture of comedy and tragedy.
Intertwined along with all of this are the deaths of two neighbors: one older (than me) man and one younger (than me) man. The older man’s death came earlier in the year and unfortunately was expected; the younger man’s death, only last week, and just as unfortunately, not expected. This latter one has hit, and still is hitting, me hard. I can’t explain why, because to be honest, I only was acquainted with the young man.
Nonetheless, it is, has been like a strike to the solar plexus over and over again – imagine Agent Smith hitting Neo over and over again in that scene in the subway in The Matrix – which I’m more than certain is even more pronounced for his family and close friends. I can’t put a finger on why. Maybe it’s because it’s yet another pulse that is not there and as Donne penned all those years ago:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind.