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damn I'm dense

I've had something bothering me for a week and it just now occured to me what that is.
Dear jujubah, but I'm dense.
It'll be good to say this I think...
Robert, Tom's father, who has been here in town to talk with me has decided that he wants me to decide what to do with Tom's ashes.
Robert came to me for help in knowing his son.
They were never close. Tom's mother died when Tom was five, and there was just this... rift between father and son after that. Tom turned 18, left.. they didn't talk much after that.
But Tom wrote him letters. Allll the time. And what I found out recently was that Tom wrote him letters about me. He couldn't really talk to his father. So, he related to his father his own life by talking about *my* life, because me and Tom were horribly close.
So, when Tom died, and his father sensed that he lost not only his son, but all of the life his son had had up until that point, he sought out several people who claimed to be close to him. One of them was Cheryl.. Tom's girlfriend. He soon found out that she was with Tom for the social cool points. (Tom was the coolest mutha you *ever* met) and didn't really know too much about him... what he thought, how he thought.. how he felt..
He tracked me down.
Found out that I actually really cared about Tom and that was that.
He attached himself to me and has been taking me around trying to learn about Tom through me. He's become a friend, and in a lot of ways, the dad I never had.
(I didn't have a dad. I had a father. BIG difference)


But for the past week, I've had Tom's ashes.
They're sitting in a blue ceramic jar with a vaguelly aztec pattern picked out in white on the lid. Perched on top of my cd player in my room.
I kept moving them at first. Trying to find just the right spot.
Half the times the right spot was hidden.. under a blanket, behind the chair, with a big pillow on top, as if I could smother them out of existence. But they've been on top of the CD player for several days. So the lil jar has been treated to the good vibrations of my booty shakin music.
Robert wants me to decide what to do with them.
He doesn't think he knew Tom well enough to decide.
He doesn't understand that Tom's ashes are just that... ashes...
As my friend Chuck said to me just a lil bit ago:


"The whole problem is with so much of how we act being dictated. Now that
you have something that once was a person but now isn't, who is to say what
is proper to do with this new... thing. What *is* a corpse? Who is to say
that wanting to take it into your body is wrong? Who is to say that to dump
it into the toilet and flush it is wrong? We act towards this non-sentient
lump of matter as if it were still a person. Why? It most obviously is
not. It looks very much like something we were very attached to, but is so
fundamentally different that we just don't know how to act. So we go along
with what we are told, at the moment when we have the greatest freedom.
Here is this thing that, generally, no one wants. So now what?"


So now what indeed.
Tom is not in that lil jar. That's just some ashes to me. It's important to Robert. Veterans don't handle flags this carefully, first time mothers don't handle their newborns this carefully.
He's... reverant almost when it comes to this jar of just... ashes... just light grey ashes with some lil chunks of bone that didn't burn completely.
Probably a bunch of other people's ashes in there too... no way of telling how well they clean it out between people...


yes, I know, morbid, probably in bad taste for some of you.
Well, bite me.
really.
bite my big round ass.
I can be in bad taste all I like. These are the things I think. These are the things that I've dealt with for months now with no one really to talk to and no clue really what to say.
I'm either told that they're "sorry for my loss" when they get told or that I "handle it remarkably well"
Fuck both opinions.
You don't know SHIT about my loss. You never ever will.
And yes, I DO handle it remarkably well as far as you can see.. but you don't SEE anything. You think I actually let this out? You think I actually talk about this? You think I really tell people how I feel about this... PIT?


Tom isn't in that little jar.
He's with me.
Having to decide what to do with what is in that little jar is going to break my shoulders.
It's too much to handle on top of everything else.
I've attempted to deal with it seriously. I don't want to let Robert down.
But I just can't deal with it that way...
So ...
help me out here with your own suggestions...


Rhett suggested taking the ashes, on a windy day, to where Tom fell and pouring them out, so that this time, he'll fly.


Frank suggested mixing up the smaller powdery stuff into an ounce, rolling some blunts and me and manburger smoking it up.
(I happen to think that burning the burnt is getting into overkill, but it sounds interesting)


And everyone has suggested a burial marker next to his mother's grave in Arizona and an interment there.


I don't know.. there's all the trite things... like the ocean .. or the mountains..
I even thought about taking pictures of things that I know Tom would have liked and developing them... with a lil Tom mixed into the stopper...
(he was a photographer) But I don't know if that would screw it up or not...
And for all I know I could be fucking with some fundamental law of the universe (there are no laws, only habits and habits can be broken) and wind up with some bad juju on my hands.
I don't know.
I really don't.
Utterly clueless.
So, I'm asking..
really.
Comment to your hearts content. I need some feedback. Be as silly, vulgar or serious as you like... you can't offend me..
I was seriously considering smoking him, fer jujubah's sake.
I just really need feedback on this.
Help me out here.

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
mjfgates
May. 3rd, 2001 07:59 am (UTC)
Two things.
When my mother-in-law died, she was cremated, and we ended up with her ashes in a lil' box, too. We had *no* clue what to do with them, and no real interest; like you say, the ashes are just ashes.

One day, Quincy took the box, dumped the ashes in the back yard, and made mudpies.

--

The ashes aren't the important thing here, because they're STILL just ashes. So, what *is* important? Robert, of course. Find something to do with them that *he* will think is a good idea. And, yeah, it'll probably be one of the trite things-- but don't worry about it, being trite once in your life won't totally ruin your reputation.
maddening
May. 3rd, 2001 10:33 am (UTC)
Re: Two things.
See... a water gun fight would be the perfect thing.
But he'd clog the guns.


And you know, it *might* ruin my reputation, you never know..
mjfgates
May. 3rd, 2001 11:44 am (UTC)
Re: Two things.
Even if it does, I'll still love ya, baby.
maddening
May. 3rd, 2001 12:27 pm (UTC)
Re: Two things.
awwwwww...
now sing "I'll be there for you"


just... just picturing that... is.. wow.
ragdoll13
May. 3rd, 2001 10:09 am (UTC)
hmmm. Having never had a dead body in any form in my posession before, I really have no idea what people do with these kinds of things. All I know is that I really really don't want to be in the ground when I'm dead. I would probably sprinkle the ashes instead of burrying them anywhere... from what you've told me about Tom, he's not really the sort to give much of a rat's ass about gravestones or gravesites. In fact... he was probably not one to care about his own ashes. You don't really care... you don't need them to remember him. That much is obvious. My advice is to offer a portion of the ashes (in a vial or locket or teeny metal box or someting) to whichever of his friends/relatives might want some, and take the rest and go do something kitschy and dumb with Robert... it would probably be satisfying emotionally for him to see off the son that he wishes he had been closer to.

So, yeah. Get those ashes out of the house, and help ol' Robert grieve.
maddening
May. 3rd, 2001 10:31 am (UTC)
Everyone I've asked seems dumbfounded.
They either don't get my lack of reverence for what used to be the body of someone I was so incredibly entwined with, or they just don't get why I said "okay" to the whole thing in the first place.
Tom... I can't imagine him giving a shit, really.
Of course, I try not to imagine what HE would want, given that I don't think he wants much of anything anymore...
Someone else suggested taking them out to the joint me and Tom used to hang out (it's an abandonded building now) and putting the ashes inside, or outside or something. But I don't think that will satisfy Robert.


guh.
Too much
(Deleted comment)
maddening
May. 3rd, 2001 01:54 pm (UTC)
Re: Hmm...
You think I can convince that many chicks to eat some of the ashes?
(Deleted comment)
maddening
May. 3rd, 2001 06:23 pm (UTC)
Re: Hmm...
Nah, getting a girl when she was at less than her optimal functioning was tantamount to rape for him.
He hated that whole, get um drunk and convince them thing.


GAH... I dunno.

I DON"T KNOW WHAT TO DO GADDAMITT
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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