Have been reading a lot (as is my habit in the winter) and came across these very funny epitaphs.

Jebediah Goodwin


Born 1828





I just love that, he must have been really good at his job! Here’s a more sobering one from a grave in Vermon, name not given.

She lived-what more can there be said:

She died-and all we know is she’s dead.

Here is the oposite in stylings for a woman.

Rebecca Freeland

She drank good ale, good punch and wine

And lived to the age of 99.

Or maybe when you die you’ll get political? Here’s a grave from out in Colorado.

I’d rather be here

Than in Texas.

Or here’s another one from Colorado, but the man got a raw deal.

Bill Blake

Was hanged by mistake.

Or maybe after life is finished you’ll get an epitaph like this one:

Here lies the father of 29.

There would have been more

But he didn’t have the time.

I really like the simple nature of this one-

John E. Goembel Attorney

The defense rests.

I guess what I like about epitaphs is their distillation, however crass or powerful, of the person who their are made for. What will my epitaph be? Will I even have one? This raises a lot of questions and whether I would want to create an epitaph now. I think that might be a mistake, my life is not over yet, to my knowledge, so there is much to still learn about who or what I am in this world.

Which brings me to the topic of writing a will. I have thought about this recently. It is sort of funny because I am trying to get rid of much of life’s floatsome and here I am thinking about where the remainder of life’s stuff would go. Japanese peopole generally do not make wills. They prefer to let the family divide up everything evenly instead. I think I will be making a will, and soon too.

I guess epitaphs are a sort of measure of a man (or woman) in the end. Or at their end rather. Making self reflection important. Will it say I was a great writer? A loving husband? A kind father? A caring teacher? I will probably never know. Yet, it can help me to try to be all of those things, to never lose sight and remember there is an end to it all.

Keep writing!

all quotes appear in Uncle Jonh’s 25th Anniversary Fully Loaded Bathroom Reader


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