I saw this over on Wicked Anomie: Sociology Run Amok.
The game: open the nearest book to page 123 and reproduce the 6-8th sentence.
“Her casket must be both comfortable and eternally durable. And-oh yes, do be sure her burial footwear is really practical? Perhaps it does not often happen just like that.”
This excerpt is from The American Way of Death (Revisited) by Jessica Mitford.
This book is a fascinating glimpse into the world of the funeral industry. It is a business, remember, and they sucker people into parting with money when they are at their most vulnerable. Most people don’t realize this because we will (hopefully) seldom have to plan many funerals in our lifetimes. One interesting point the book makes is that America is one of the only countries to practice embalming. Most Americans are under the impression that embalming is necessary for sanitary reasons, preserves the body for a long time, and is required by law. None of those are true. The main reason behind embalming is to temporarily preserve the body for open-casket viewing. Open-casket viewing leads to the heart of the sales, the casket. America is also one of the only countries who view bodies in an open casket.
The author was sarcastic, witty, and funny in this book. The excerpt I quoted is dealing with a (fake) supposed internal monologue that a person would have when considering what to buy for the deceased. Yes, there is a market for burial footwear, specially designed to fit the foot after the body goes into rigor mortis.
I could go on forever about the information I learned but I’ll save that for another post. In the meantime, I am tagging ChocolateOrchid, InstantVintage, Chanel, Desiree, Marlo, Karrie B, Mrs.MaryMack, Lex, LittleMissKnobody, Muze, Vesper, TheJadedNYer, Zombietronics, and anyone else reading this. I want to see your excerpts!