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Death is Permanent

Thinking About and Planning for Death

Death is one of those things a lot of people seem to avoid thinking about, leaving the whole mess for someone else to clean up. Since I don’t have anyone to leave the mess to, I’m trying to be proactive by researching various scenarios. First and foremost, the old stick the stiff into a hole and be done with it is a definite “No-Go.” Just on the surface, it seems like such gross misuse and waste of perfectly usable real estate.

My ideal scenario would be to have all usable organs and parts harvested and the remainder composted. That in itself presents some problems. First off the cost of sticking a stiff in the ground is prohibitively expensive, by some estimates the mean is $7900 depending on whether you have a casket and what type of casket. Just a cremation is about $1,000 to $2,200 according to the same study. Of course, you knew the urn is extra, right? Otherwise, you get the cremains in a paper or plastic bag (gives new meaning to (paper or plastic?”). Some are even returned in a Walmart bag. Classy!  And, trust me, they don’t give you a discount even if parts and pieces have been donated. You still pay for the whole enchilada.

If you want to get fancy, here’s a whole potful of urns. I’m sure prices are all over the place but, bottom line, to me, a fancy urn is not a high priority. Even if I had someone who wanted my cremains, they’d probably soon get tired of lugging around 5 pounds of crispy critter every time they moved. Eventually, it would end up in a dumpster so why waste the time, money and effort?

My next preferred scenario after all usable parts are donated is to have the body composted. This is still a fairly new process wherein the stiff is loaded into a composting bin which closely resembles containers for compositing organic garbage at home. After a few months, the body has turned into soil and can be used like any other soil supplement. So, my old terrestrial self could be used as nutrient for plants and trees. Unfortunately, not all states yet allow this. Here’s a list of states that have passed laws allowing human composting. For me, the closest facility would be in Colorado. Getting to the CO facility would require some sort of transportation. It’s doubtful an Uber will do.

Colorado also has a cool natural burial option where a stiff can be buried au naturel in a dedicated green space. It’s unclear if anyone can be buried there or just CO residents but it would be neat to have my body composted in CO and the soil spread in the green space area. Costs can get expensive quickly since I won’t be able to drive a the pickup bed full of composted me to the green space by myself. Wouldn’t it be great to be part of the nutrients that help more green grass cover the preserve?

Like many people, I have volunteered to donate my organs via the ADOT program. I have a DONOR❤️ symbol on my license so they’ll harvest as much as possible when the time comes (hopefully, not before.) I have an e-mail into the program asking how the rest of the body is disposed of. I hope they have a low cost option to simply cremate it or, maybe, toss it into the dumpster out back. ?

Lots to think about but, thankfully, there are options to a legacy funeral where only the funeral home owner makes out.

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