In a world where cars are no longer “used” they are “pre-owned”, and people are no longer “fired” they are “downsized” and we no longer wipe our asses with toilet paper, we have to use “bathroom tissue”, we’ve finally moved on to what, in my opinion at least, is the final euphemistic insult.
That’s right; a person can’t “die” any more. Oh heavens no!
These days? You have to “pass”.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I realize when I am told that someone “passed” that the person giving me that information is on some level trying to lessen the harsh reality of the news. But to that I say that dead is dead. And when a person dies, they deserve the full, serious, somber, (and forgive me) grave word to describe their status. They’ve experienced the ultimate adventure; they’ve gone into the void. They are Dead. And to call it something else is to, on some level, lessen the significance of that experience, isn’t it?
Losing a loved one sucks and it’s hard to accept and deal with, but I would argue that “dead” is not a dirty word. And I, for one, am a little sick of everyone acting as if it is.
I would also argue that when a person is in the physical process of approaching the end of life, what are they doing? Are they pre-passing? No. They are dying. And when the end comes? They are dead, plain and simple. Why can’t we say it?
To say someone is dead is sad, for sure, but it leaves no doubt as to their ultimate status. I don’t know about you, but when I’m told someone has “passed”? A multitude of scenarios tend to run through my head. Granted, I’m not quite right; we’ve established that here. But to me, at least, “passed” does not denote the process of having moved on from mortal existence.
No, when I hear someone has “passed”, I can’t help but ask myself…what does that really mean? And then I’m forced to imagine that person having gone through the same process as an inconvenient kidney stone. Because a kidney stone is something that truly is passed .
Worse? Upon further consideration of a person’s “passing” I then have to think (completely against my will) that this poor sod may have actually been farted from this world. Because bio gas—unlike people-- is something that is, without a doubt, “passed”.
I say to you today that people do not pass. They die. And they are dead. And in my opinion? They deserve the correct descriptor be attached to that final experience.
Consider the opposite: birth. We don’t say the baby “emerged” do we? Why? Because we have a word and it’s an okay word because birth is a happy thing. When you hear a baby was born there is absolutely no doubt about what happened. You know for sure that a new person has entered this world. Conversely, when someone dies and you are told that they are, in fact, dead? You know for sure that person has left this world. There should be no shame in it.
And, fyi, in case you’re wondering? I do realize the peril that writing this piece has put me in. I know there is now a fairly good chance that someday, somewhere, in a funeral home far, far away (let’s hope) I may very likely be the guest of honor one day and on that day there may be a program and on that program, maybe on the back cover, this here bit may be reproduced.
But you know what? That’s okay. Because when I die? I want to be dead, plain and simple. I would like all the freedoms and privileges that death implies thankyouverymuch. Feel free to tell everybody.
That I am DEAD.Because I, for one, absolutely refuse to be farted into the Great Beyond.