Raise a glass, don’t pour it out

Posted: October 13, 2004 in Uncategorized

Yesterday I was handed a card that had been going around the office. Anyone who’s worked in any kind of office has been passed one of these; the kind of attempt at “team as family” that ranges from sincere to never having heard of the person having a birthday.

This one however wasn’t your standard Happy Birthday or “We appreciate you” secretary’s day card, it was a condolences card for a supervisor who’s father had died the week before. I’ve worked with this particular supervisor for years, and know him fairly well; we’d had beers, shot the shit, and been part of the company when it was more rogue, working like a tight team of special ops rather than a huge, slow-moving army. But I didn’t know what to do with this card.

Reading over all the inscriptions, passage after passage was one of sadness and sympathy. Offers of prayers and help. I left the card open on my desk for the better part of an hour trying to come up with something. But I couldn’t follow suit. Death to me, while sad, should not be something to emphasize with sadness; it should be a celebration of everything that person did. It should emphasize that for the blink of time that is a lifespan, this person achieved something, and meant something. But I knew nothing of this man, and had nothing to write to reinforce this idea that would not seem like a trite Zen quote. Loss is personal, and should be kept so; remembering what made that life worthwhile, not why that death is tragic.

So I passed on the card, my name absent. I’ll leave the prayers to those that need them.

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Comments
  1. Excellent post… thought-provoking view.
    Thanks for sharing, R.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Excellent post… thought-provoking view.

    Thanks for sharing, R.

  3. ntnrmlgirl says:

    i’m glad you shared this, it’s so true. thanks.

  4. Anonymous says:

    i’m glad you shared this, it’s so true. thanks.

  5. muffster says:

    I most certinly agree. Death to me any way is not so much an end. Having been to a wake(of sorts) for a family memeber, there was more laughing than there was crying. More Story telling then lamenting. death comes to each of us. i hope when it is my turn my loved ones celibrate my colourful spirit and interesting life.
    I have to say personaly that I am impressed at your personal honesty. You did what you felt was right instead of just doing what everyone else did for the sake of aperances :-X

  6. Anonymous says:

    I most certinly agree. Death to me any way is not so much an end. Having been to a wake(of sorts) for a family memeber, there was more laughing than there was crying. More Story telling then lamenting. death comes to each of us. i hope when it is my turn my loved ones celibrate my colourful spirit and interesting life.

    I have to say personaly that I am impressed at your personal honesty. You did what you felt was right instead of just doing what everyone else did for the sake of aperances :-X

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