Hello From Here

I remember an episode from a decade or so ago, when my wife and I were making some plans for our estate and we were sitting down with the attorney and discussing our wills and trust situations.

We were going to put it in our documents that we wanted certain procedures followed for disposal of our remains. The attorney looked at us and said quite matter of factly “it doesn’t matter what you put in here, everyone will just do whatever they want with your body anyways”.

That short sentence snapped me into reality a bit. You can wish and hope for things to happen when you die, but if you don’t have someone on your side to effectively run your estate upon your death such as a wife or husband, your wishes pretty much don’t mean squat. And you won’t be around to complain.

An acquaintance of mine lost his father a while ago. His father did not want my friend’s sister to have a certain set of flatware that she always coveted. I don’t know what the falling out was about. To make a long story short, she got the flatware since the other brothers knew that she wanted it since she was a little girl. The dad wasn’t around to complain.

I was reminded of all of this when I saw this story.

A man killed himself, and had put a LOT of thought into it. He left a BIG website up explaining his motives and thinking and prepaid the server costs for five years to hopefully keep it up.

Always being curious about this sort of thing, I read a lot of the site, and there is some interesting info up there. He wasn’t sick, or hurting for money (so he says), but just wanted to end it. I still don’t get why he wanted to shoot himself if he was doing alright, but the website dives into that pretty deeply.

These letters from beyond the grave are always interesting to me. I have often thought about writing a letter to my wife and kids to be found in my safe deposit box someday if I should die suddenly. I have not done that. I think it would just cause more misery.

In the end, the guy who shot himself has lost the narrative, and so does anyone that dies. For the first few days after his death some folks with a morbid curiosity about this sort of thing (like me) will look at the site and read a few things, and shrug their shoulders and move on with life. His name will be forgotten quickly and it will be hard to remember what to google to find the site again if you want to read it.

I imagine that before long, his surviving relatives will contact the service provider and the site will be taken down for whatever reason, and he will fade away into oblivion.

But it is an interesting (if not rambling, at times) look into this guys life, and his postcard from beyond.

Cross posted at LITGM.

10 thoughts on “Hello From Here”

  1. Before I get into the nuts and bolts of this site, I first must say to those whom I have a special bond with, please don’t think that I didn’t consider your feelings.

    Good to know.

  2. Suicide is often felt most keenly by the families. Unfortunately I have had some experience with it in my semi-direct family. They talked about the suicide so many times and it was just wasted talk of different ways it could have been avoided. Most suicides aren’t like this guys’ where he’s planned it all out and put up a web site – it is often impulsive and then everyone else deals with it.

    I am not a psychologist but this guy really put a lot of thought into it. He obviously had a high sense of his own importance to the world, as if anyone would care 5 minutes after he was dead. And he has actual names in there of his ex wives so if someone googles them (does anyone do that anymore, or is it all facebook?) then they will be tied with a suicidal ex husband.

  3. I skimmed the first few paragraphs – seems to me that it was all about him –

    I suppose nothing would anger Martin more than to know that he wanted someone to read the first “X Sections” and at least 1 didn’t even have the interest.

    I would think – more likely – the site will just fade into oblivion. If one isn’t the owner of the domain what can you do? (Unless someone has a power of attorney)

    I was involved in a trust for which the trustor, other than saying that she wanted to be cremated, left no other instructions.

    I found a cemetery for her. It depends on the trustee I guess to sort this stuff out – and a good trustee will try to invoke the “what would he/she want?”

    The bad ones….

  4. I read some of it and what struck me was the absence of children. I, too, have been married twice and am pretty good friends with both ex-wives. I would never consider what he did, although it has crossed my mind a couple of times, because of the devastating effect on children, even adult children. He really sounds self-centered as though he were an only child.

  5. In the 1800s many people belonged to special clubs that made sure that when they died that certain things were done. For example a club member would be buried in a nice coffin with a coin in his mouth to pay the ferry man. There would be a wake and certain people would attend. Stuff like that.

    Other people belonged to churches and the priest/rabbi/minister would make sure the body was properly treated and widows and orphans were protected. Autopsies were very rare.

    Progressive government has crowded out these arrangements.

    One thing is certain, once you are dead the NSA will stop reading your emails, the Affordable Care death panel will close your case, the IRS will take your money, your body will be dismembered in autopsy and various parts may vanish. You may be remembered until Alzheimers dims rememberance or until the NSA erases your records.

  6. I always told the boss and the kids to just put my carcass in a garbage bag and sneak me into a dumpster, then use the money saved for a nice big drunken party with my surviving friends and family, but, of course, she vetoed the idea.

    So I told them to donate me to a medical school or some research lab. Maybe they can figure out why I’ve lived this long.

    It’s a mystery to me.

  7. You can wish and hope for things to happen when you die, but if you don’t have someone on your side to effectively run your Constitution, your wishes pretty much don’t mean squat.

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