blank'/> Liberally Lean From The Land Of Dairy Queen: Courthouse Question Of The Day

8.16.2012

Courthouse Question Of The Day


"If all you knew about the wishes of a recently deceased family member was that she wanted to be cremated, would you take that to mean that she also wanted a burial? Or would you take it to mean she wanted the ashes retained, spread out somewhere, or she didn't care at all?

I voted for no burial with the ashes retained. I think that's the assumed default. But he kind of hinted he wanted me to put the question out to the masses.

Side note: Cremation sure did seem popular in the room when the subject came up.  Heard that the cremation runs about $2,500 with urns priced all over the place.  "Heck, go to some garden supply store and get a vase. Those other places slap the name 'urn' on something and charge you $900 for it."

44 comments:

Baylor Too said...

I think burial would be easiest on the surviving family members--that, or spreading the ashes somewhere. (If the decedent's family has a burial plot in a certain cemetery, then I'd say bury them and keep the family together.)

Sure, it is not hard to keep Grandma's ashes on the mantel of the fireplace, but what about the next generation, and the generation after that, when they never even knew Grandma? One of these days, they're going to throw the ashes in the garbage or spread them in the flower bed.

Uppercase Matt said...

I'd take it as no burial, survivors keep, spread, or otherwise dispose of the ashes as they see fit.

I was at an "inurnment" ceremony at Greenwood in FW a couple months ago -- seemed very odd to me to buy a niche in a wall for the urn. I guess it gives descendants a place to say "here she is" when there isn't a grave.

Anonymous said...

Donate the body to science. then they will return the creamated remains in a heart shaped box that is infused with flower seeds and can be burried directly in the ground, and also may help in the cure of a disease down the road.

Anonymous said...

Throw them out with the kitty
litter.

Anonymous said...

"Jinxy Cat, Jinxy Cat, where are you? I looovvvveeee youuuu!" Meet the Parents is a forever classique.

RE: the urns that are so popular of late. I recently had a past friend pass away unexpectedly, and he was cremated. His "wife" (even though divorce was filed and just pending finalization... still his wife!)and his mom then proceeded to split his ashes. I actually am still friends with his wife, and I respect her decision to keep his ashes. I just hope they are not on the freaking mantle.

I mean- Just put me in the ground already when it's my time. I don't want anyone carting my ashes around! C'mon!!!!... But to each their own, for sure.

If I were in this situation, I would just try to make the best decision I think the decedent and other surviving family members would approve of. I too would have to collaborate with the other heirs on this one.

Tough call, Counselor! Tough call.

Anonymous said...

When God was the funeral director for Moses, it was burial rather than fire that was chosen.
If fire is chosen, then I would take that as a not burial request.

Anonymous said...

I vote for putting the ashes in a vase and hanging on to them.

I know people that will take some of the ashes with them on trips if it was a favorite spot of the deceased, and spread some of the ashes there.

Anonymous said...

Mummify me!!

Anonymous said...

I think this is one of those things where you go with your gut. In the case of family, I would think someone has an inkling of what the deceased would want. As an outsider, it's difficult to speculate. My personal bias acknowledged, I've always thought the mantel/bookshelf/nightstand/whatever means the remains will eventually end up in the garbage (granted, it may be a few decades down the road). For that reason, I'd go with burial or spreading the ashes in a meaningful place.

Remote Controller said...

No Burial, ashes sent to family for keeping or throwing out.

Anonymous said...

She more than likely did not want to place the cost burden of a funeral on the family.

Anonymous said...

Jim Bob's Crematorium, you kill 'em we grill 'em!

Anonymous said...

Just because we're bereaved doesn't mean we're saps! We're scattering the ashes... Is there a Ralph's around here?

DF Walter Sobchak

Anonymous said...

Bury the ashes! "Ashes to ashes/dust to dust."
Return them to the ground.

I knew someone who had the ashes of both of her parents. Each in a separate box. She kept one box under the driver's seat and the other box under the passenger seat in her van. Took them with her everywhere! I think that's just sick.

Was also on vacation years ago in a campground in the mountains. We stayed only 2 nights there. I was pretty young which explains why I was confused about the ring of ash that circled the outside of the firepit! I mean, didn't people know that ashes were to stay IN the firepit so a fire wouldn't flare up and burn down the forest? I scattered that ring of ash with my shoe until it blended in and was no longer visible.
Yeah, well, realizing years later that I had scattered a "whomever" made me a bit sick. It still haunts me today. (Sorry again, whomever!)

So please. BURY your loved one's ashes. If you don't bury them, then please scatter them in a place that is not so public that others will come across them. Please don't cart them around or leave them in your home for some kid to discover and have fun with.

Everyone needs to rest in peace.

Anonymous said...

My mom wants me to scatter her ashes around our place. I'm just not comfortable tracking her into the house in the following weeks though.

Anonymous said...

I have my spot picked out. I don't care if you have to put me in it with a back hoe or post hole diggers, just put me in my spot.

Rage

Anonymous said...


My mother's ashes are buried in the local cemetery - no service there was held. My husband and I tried to dig the hole ourselves. We carried a truckload of 5 gallon buckets filled with water to the burial site; just to get the darned ground wet enough to dig the hole with. We were about to give up and go back home, when the local gravedigger showed up with post-hole diggers and finished digging the hole for us. He was digging another hole for cremains, and was surprised to learn about the state law requiring the hole to be much deeper than he had been digging them, but he did say that cremation was becoming quite popular, due to the lower price and all.

The creepy funeral director conned us out of more money than we originally thought – he claimed he would need to embalm her body because of the time delay in getting Mom down to the burn site since we live in bumfark North Central Texas, and we wouldn’t want to have her get all bloated and smelly, no would we? I won’t fall for that little scam again.

We put Mom’s ashes in a pretty heart-shaped carnival glass container and super glued the lid on. There were more ashes than the box could accommodate, so I just dumped them in the bottom of the hole on top of the pretty heart-shaped box, then we put the dirt back in the hole ourselves, after giving the gravedigger a $20.

Later, we held a memorial service for her at the local community center. I made display boards showing pictures and stuff about her life. We hired a bagpipe player to play Amazing Grace. She said she didn't want "church services" because she had been pissed off at that congregation and it's crazy members for years, and besides, they would not have allowed the bagpipe player in the church because they believed all things should be a cappella.

I blew the minds of two little old ladies from “that” church that came to bring food after Mom passed. They quickly waddled out of the house when I told them we had Mom cremated, at her request. I could hear them talking about Mom burning in hell out in the drive way as they plumped back into their car - fark them. I didn’t eat the crappy pie the two little old ladies brought – I just tossed it in the trash.

Some of my disgusting relatives wanted to split Mom’s ashes up – they even bought their own “little boxes”, and gave me one to put my share of her ashes in. My Dad would not allow that – he said it was sacrilegious – kind of like giving an arm to one niece and a leg to another. He would not allow the spreading of her ashes anywhere, like under the oak trees in the front of his house, where we always bury old dogs, so that’s why I poured Mom’s ashes into the heart-shaped glass box and buried her at the cemetery. We eventually had a marker put up, to document that my mother was born and died. You know, that kind of stuff might be important to family members in the distant future, when they are doing their genealogy research.

We didn’t exactly follow my Mom’s wishes for what to do with her body after she died. She was a big fan of “build a platform high enough off the ground to keep the coyotes from dragging me off somewhere, and let the buzzards and other carrion birds eat me up.” I always wondered what I was supposed to do with her bones if we did follow those wishes.


My brother-in-law is still in the box the crematorium sent his ashes back to us in, in yet another box, in the storage room off the back porch. I hadn’t thought of him in a few years – guess I need to do something about that, but, since I really didn’t like him much, I might let him linger there for another long while.

Denney Crane said...

Irreverence is not an action or attitude of the wise...whether in life or in death...

Anonymous said...

10:43 that is an EXCELLENT suggestion. I think I will do just that.

Anonymous said...

12:20, I hear banjos in the background when I read your story.

Rage

Baylor Too said...

I had a divorce client that had lost a child. (It is not uncommon that marriages are unable to weather great tragedies.) He and the wife split the ashes. I find that a bit creepy.

The good thing about burial or scattering--it seems to me--is that you are forced to let go of the dead. Carry around fond memories, but don't burden yourself with the physical remains of the dead.

Anonymous said...

Damn 12:20, I can see why all your kin are dead. You probably talked them to death!

Anonymous said...

There are laws about what you can do with ashes. If you are planning to rent a boat and toss them somewhere, check in advance. Same with beaches, state parks, etc. Having been there, done that, sneaking those ashes on the plane totally freaked me out.

Anonymous said...

Joe Bobs crematorium, you kill 'em, we grill 'em.

Anonymous said...

Everyone should specify what should be done with their ashes. Some cemeteries charge $800+ to bury though so make sure about the rules of your cemetery.
Didn't know there was a state law as to how deep, know of some holes that were not very deep at all.
One spouse has kept ashes, expecting theirs to be buried together.

Triple Fake... said...

@ 12:20 -
Don't pay any attention to these farking naysayers.
Your narrative was a tad on the long side, but it was coherent and relevant (with lots of correct spelling and punctuation).
My only problem with your story is what your mom said. I think I would prefer being Coyote Chow

Triple Fake Wyle E.

Anonymous said...

Dear 1;09PM: Naw, I'm pretty quiet verbally-speaking, but I'm pretty sure I've typed a few people to death.

DF Keith Richards said...

I snorted me dad.

Anonymous said...

Dear 10:43 and 12:41:

SUBJECT: Donating your dead body to science

Please get all that stuff taken care of and documented before you croak, otherwise, it will turn in to a clusterfark dream of "Oh, and I donated my body to science", but since you didn't actually get all that paperwork done so you can't have "your body donated to science" after all, and you'll just have to be cremated or buried anyway. Then, your relatives will be eternally frustrated because they "didn't follow your wishes".

Best regards,


Death

cc: God

Anonymous said...

Dear Triple Fake, 1:56PM:

Thank you. All that shiate I typed was cathartic. I've been meaning to get that off my chest. I feel better now.

Anonymous said...

used to be either cremation or burial...that was the purpose of cremation-because it was cheaper and not take up the space...

Anonymous said...

You can buy funeral urns at Costco.

http://www.costco.com/Common/Category.aspx?cat=20949&eCat=BC%7C20595%7C20949&lang=en-US&whse=BC&topnav=

Anonymous said...

and Wal-mart:

http://www.walmart.com/search/search-ng.do?search_query=urns

Anonymous said...

And from the local Tupperware person.

Anonymous said...

I want my ashes placed in a used microwave popcorn bag with the top tied closed with a shoestring, double knotted...Chuck

Then I want 100 $1 bills taped to the bag...Chuck

Then I want the bag placed in a chair on pervert row at Silver City Cabaret....Chuck

Double Fake Billy Tubbs

Anonymous said...

And somebody makes plain, wood coffins. He's from Nocona - look him up if you prefer to rot in the ground without shroudly, padded weirdness draped all around you, instead of being burned up.....it's your choice, people. That is, if you let your kin folk know what you want in the first place.

PS: I am assuming the Nocona pine box casket-making person is a guy.....that just seems like manly work to me, but who knows.

Anonymous said...

Flush the ashes , then they can see the world!

Anonymous said...

I have a lock box with my name on it.

Double Fake Al Gore

Uppercase Matt said...

Startlegram just published a related story.
http://www.star-telegram.com/2012/08/15/4184494/columbaria-give-the-faithful-a.html

Baylor Too said...

If you die in Denton County--whether you prefer burial or cremation--make sure someone sees your body and certifies your death. Otherwise, your spouse may get an invitation to the Graybar Hotel.

Anonymous said...

Paper or plastic?

Anonymous said...

5:28

What?

Anonymous said...

I would mix the ashes with douche powder and run him through one more time

Anonymous said...

@12:20 PM. I loved your post and as a member of that denomination I couldn't help but laugh at your reference. Thanks for your heart felt outpouring as it made me commited to getting that Will done where at a minimum I don't let my family get screwed by the vultures at the local funeral homes.