EppsNet Archive: Death

EppsNet at the Movies: A Man Called Ove

10 Feb 2018 /

A Man Called Ove is about love, death, friendship, aging, hope and heroic decency in the face of disaster. The film was nominated for two Academy Awards and was the highest-grossing foreign language film in the United States in 2016.

Tom Hanks is attached to star in a remake of this movie. I mention that in the hopes of motivating you to watch the original.

The Tom Hanks version will be terrible because the movie, as the title suggests, is about an ordinary man with a common name and the ordinary details that make up his life. Having the role played by a famous movie star is exactly the wrong thing to do.

Highly recommended!

Rating: 5 stars

A Man Called Ove

Ove, an ill-tempered, isolated retiree who spends his days enforcing block association rules and visiting his wife's grave, has finally given up on life just as an unlikely friendship develops with his boisterous new neighbors.

Director: Hannes Holm
Cast: Rolf Lassgård, Bahar Pars, Filip Berg, Ida Engvoll

IMDb rating: 7.7 (30549 votes)


Hitmen Take Credit Cards?

4 Feb 2018 /

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Ghosts

22 Jan 2018 /

You must not think that what I have
accomplished through you

could have been accomplished by any other means.

Each of us is to himself
indelible. I had to become that which could not

be, by time, from human memory, erased.

I had to burn my hungry, unappeasable
furious spirit

so inconsolably into you

you would without cease
write to bring me rest.

Bring us rest. Guilt is fecund. I knew

nothing I made
myself had enough steel in it to survive.

I tried: I made beautiful
paintings, beautiful poems. Fluff. Garbage.

The inextricability of love and hate?

If I had merely made you
love me you could not have saved me.

— Frank Bidart, “The Ghost”
 

By Robert Lowell:
"The Ghost" by Robert Lowell


When Death Is Not Death

15 Jan 2018 /
Coffin

A certain man was believed to have died, and was being prepared for burial, when he revived.

He sat up, but he was so shocked by the scene surrounding him that he fainted.

He was put in a coffin, and the funeral party set off for the cemetery.

Just as they arrived at the grave, he regained consciousness, lifted the coffin lid, and cried out for help.

“It is not possible that he has revived,” said the mourners, “because he has been certified dead by competent experts.”

“But I am alive!” shouted the man.

He appealed to a well-known impartial scientist and jurisprudent who was present.

“Just a moment,” said the expert.

He then turned to the mourners, counting them. “Now we have heard what the alleged deceased has had to say. You fifty witnesses tell me what you regard as the truth.”

“He is dead,” said the witnesses.

“Bury him!” said the expert.

And so he was buried.


When we are dead, seek not our tomb in the earth, but find it in the hearts of men. — Epitaph of Jalaludin Rumi


What Shall I Be?

13 Jan 2018 /

I have again and again grown like grass;
I have experienced seven hundred and seventy moulds.
I died from minerality and became vegetable;
And from vegetativeness I died and became animal.
I died from animality and became man.
Then why fear disappearance through death?
Next time I shall die
Bringing forth wings and feathers like angels:
After that soaring higher than angels —
What you cannot imagine. I shall be that.

— Jalaladin Rumi
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Why Not Enjoy a Snickers?

12 Jan 2018 /

Our being is a being-towards-death, ending, not on the summit of actualization, but over the cliff in the abyss of annihilation . . .

Snickers


Soda Sticker Shock in Seattle

11 Jan 2018 /

Seattle is trying to discourage its citizens from drinking sugary beverages by imposing a 1.75-cent per ounce tax on all sugary drinks sold in the Emerald City.

Seattle soda tax

A $15.99 case of Gatorade at the Seattle Costco now has an added tax of more than $10. A case of Coke is now $7.35 more expensive than the Diet Coke or Coke Zero.

Sticker shock!

What will people drink instead of sugary beverages?

  1. Coffee. Seattle drinks a lot of coffee. Is coffee good for you? What if you put sugar in it?
  2. Beer. At these prices, it’s cheaper than soda.
  3. Diet soda. Are artificial sweeteners better for you than sugar?
  4. Fruit juice. Not taxed but contains a lot of sugar.

Should there be a tax on all-you-can-eat buffets? How about a tax credit for eating a vegetable?

Or maybe — just maybe — the tax code was not designed for and shouldn’t be used to impose nutritional penalties on the citizenry.

Economic question: How high does the sin tax on soda have to be before it becomes profitable to smuggle black market sodas into Seattle?

That’s not a frivolous question. Remember Eric Garner?

He died while being arrested for selling illegal “loosie” cigarettes as part of a black market created by stratospheric New York sin taxes on cigarettes.

Here’s another great health-conscious idea: I’ve heard a lot about the ill effects of sleep deprivation . . . Seattle should have a mandatory bedtime for all residents, with a fine of 1.75 cents per minute for violators.

Bedtime


EppsNet Book Reviews: Death on the Installment Plan by Louis-Ferdinand Céline

7 Jan 2018 /

Death on the Installment Plan is a fictionalized coming-of-age story based on Céline’s youth in pre-World War I France.

Absent are heroism, transcendence, love and the possibility of love. Instead, there is a lot of human action that comes to nothing. Death is not ennobling.

That said, hopelessness has never been described with more wit, energy and imagination or more droll, breathtaking language.

Here’s a sample of the black comedy, as the narrator remembers a local physician (all ellipses in the original):

“The most exquisite deaths, remember that, Ferdinand, are those that attack us in our most sensitive tissues . . .” He had a precious, elaborate, subtle way of talking, like the men of Charcot’s day. His prospecting of the Rolandic, the third ventricle, and the gray nucleus didn’t do him much good . . . in the end he died of a heart attack, under circumstances that were anything but cozy. An attack of angina pectoris that lasted twenty minutes. He held out for a hundred and twenty seconds with his classical memories, his resolutions, the example of Caesar . . . But for eighteen minutes he screamed like a stuck pig . . . his diaphragm was being ripped out, his living guts . . . a thousand open razors had been plunged into his aorta . . . He tried to vomit them out at us . . . I’m not exaggerating. He crawled out into the living room . . . He damn near hammered his chest in . . . He bellowed into the carpet . . . in spite of the morphine . . . You could hear him all over the house and out in the street . . . He ended up under the piano. When the cardiac arterioles burst one by one, it’s quite a harp . . . it’s too bad nobody ever comes back from angina pectoris. There’d be wisdom and genius to spare.

Rating: 5 stars


My Worries Are Few

27 Dec 2017 /

I have the ability to face up to the disturbing facts of life, except pain, sickness, death, poverty, rejection, loneliness, guilt, shame, confusion, doubt, imperfection, meaninglessness, futility and evil.

Also fear of being laughed at and cruelty to animals.


Christmas In New Orleans

25 Dec 2017 /

French Quarter

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French Quarter – Cafe du Monde

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French Quarter – Preservation Hall

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French Quarter – Bourbon Street

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Lafayette Cemetery #1

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VooDoo BBQ

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Beau Rivage Resort & Casino (Biloxi, MS)

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See You in Hell: Cardinal Law

20 Dec 2017 /

Satan

[See You in Hell is a feature by our guest blogger, Satan — PE]

Arrivederci Roma!

This is a tough one . . . hypocrites go in the Eighth Circle with frauds, but rapists go into the Seventh Circle for the violent.

Anyway, Cardinal Law says hi.

How appropriate that he was able to die before the end of 2017, when the Dictionary.com Word of the Year was “complicit.”

See you in Hell!


The script of life is so unspeakably beautiful to read because death looks over our shoulder. — Martin Buber


Is Healthcare a Right or an Entitlement?

18 Dec 2017 /

That’s the title of a lengthy article on LinkedIn in which the author makes the following argument:

  1. I had to spend more than $30,000 on cancer treatment.
  2. Therefore, healthcare is a right, not an entitlement.
Pharmacy

Because having a “right” to something implies that you have the right to force another person to work and pay for that thing.

You can add a level of abstraction, i.e., “the government should pay for my healthcare” sounds more appealing than “another person should pay for my healthcare” but where do you think government gets the money to pay for things?

The article also offers this: Prisoners get free healthcare and shouldn’t we get the same rights as prisoners?

Of course, prisoners give up a lot of rights in exchange for free healthcare but if you think it’s a good tradeoff, commit a crime and go to prison.

If we, as a country, did what they do in countries with “free” healthcare, that is, add up the cost of everyone’s healthcare and then split the bill equally, most of us would pay more than we do now, the reason being that a disproportionate amount of healthcare spending goes to people who are old and/or sick.

We’d overpay most of our lives for the privilege of possibly underpaying if and when we get old.

If you had the bad fortune of getting cancer, you’d pay less than you would with the current system, but if you don’t get cancer you’d pay more, because you’d have to pick up your share of the cost for everyone who does get cancer.

There is at least one potential cost-saving option of putting the government in charge of healthcare spending and that is that if you’re very old or very sick, you’re not going to get all that technology and all those drugs to maybe keep you going for another couple of years. It’s too expensive, so we’re going to let you die.


See You in Hell, Ed Lee

12 Dec 2017 /

Satan

[See You in Hell is a feature by our guest blogger, Satan — PE]

Ed Lee was the mayor of San Francisco, a sanctuary city.

My plan was to have Ed shot to death by an illegal alien but he outsmarted me by dying of a heart attack before I could put all the pieces together.

See you in Hell . . .


Al Franken and Ted Kennedy

6 Dec 2017 /
President Barack Obama and Senator Ted Kennedy

I’m old enough to remember when a U.S. senator could actually kill a woman and not only NOT resign but be considered a legislative luminary, the lion of the Democratic party.

(If you’re not old enough to remember that, google “Ted Kennedy.”)

I’m hearing that Sen. Al Franken will be resigning his seat within the next day.

The last straw was an allegation from a woman who said that Franken, before he was a senator, appeared to be about to kiss her and she moved away:

He was between me and the door and he was coming at me to kiss me. It was very quick and I think my brain had to work really hard to be like ‘Wait, what is happening?’ But I knew whatever was happening was not right and I ducked. I was really startled by it and I just sort of booked it towards the door and he said, ‘It’s my right as an entertainer.’

Her brain “had to work really hard.”

Franken categorically denies the allegation but that hasn’t stopped an avalanche of senators from calling for his resignation, none of whom apparently have ever in their life tried to kiss someone who wasn’t interested.

Satan and Ted Kennedy must be having a good laugh together. Those were the good old days, Ted. Pass the Jameson . . .


The Miser and the Angel of Death

28 Oct 2017 /

A miser had accumulated, by effort, trade, and lending, three hundred thousand dinars. He had lands and buildings, and all kinds of wealth.

Death and the miser

He then decided that he would spend a year in enjoyment, living comfortably, and then decide as to what his future should be.

But, almost as soon as he had stopped amassing money, the Angel of Death appeared before him, to take his life away.

The miser tried, by every argument which he could muster, to dissuade the Angel, who seemed, however, adamant. Then the man said:

“Grant me but three more days, and I will give you one-third of my possessions.”

The Angel refused, and pulled again at the miser’s life, tugging to take it away.

Then the man said:

“If you will only allow me two more days on earth, I will give you two hundred thousand dinars from my store.”

But the Angel would not listen to him. And the Angel even refused to give the man a solitary extra day for all his three hundred thousand pieces.

Then the miser said:

“Please, then, give me just time enough to write one little thing down.”

This time the Angel allowed him this single concession, and the man wrote, with his own blood:

“Man, make use of your life. I could buy not one hour for three hundred thousand dinars. Make sure you realize the value of your time.”

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The Family Nut Tree

26 Oct 2017 /
Nut tree

A brother of Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock was arrested in Los Angeles on child pornography charges.

Their father was a bank robber once on the FBI’s Most Wanted List.

The nuts didn’t fall far from the nut tree in the Paddock family . . .


Fats Domino, 1928-2017

25 Oct 2017 /

Ain’t that a shame . . .


Good News, Bad News

23 Oct 2017 /

Bad News: Americans are retiring later, dying sooner and are sicker in-between.

Good News: I found this video of a rescued raccoon who thinks she’s a dog:


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