Then, just when you think it might be safe to dip a toe back into the media water in search of some light titillation, you click a link and come across this piece in the Washington Post. People so desperate for cash they're selling their burial plots in cemeteries across the nation—a pastime that apparently used to be reserved only for people who couldn't stand the sight of each other. No, really; check out this quote from the piece:
"We usually hear, 'I'm selling because I hate that son of a gun and the only thing we've got together is burial plots, and I'll be damned if I'm going to be buried next to that so-and-so,' " said Bob Ward cemetery property specialist with the Cemetery Registry. "Or, 'Grandpa bought these plots in 1932 , and I'll be damned if I'm going back to New Jersey to be buried. I live in Arizona.' Now we're hearing, 'I'm losing my house.' Or, 'I'm out of work.'"
Throughout the piece, litanies of misery proliferate as the journalist digs deep (their pun from the headline) to unearth (OK, that's mine) the reasons that have led people to such dire circumstances that they'd consider selling their eternal resting place. (The question of why people had them in the first place is, sadly, somewhat overlooked.)
Still, despite the inherent misery in the piece, there are a couple of positive things for any Pink Slipped reader to take away from the article. First, that regardless of the current state of the economy we're all headed for the same place. Or, as Fairfax Memorial Park vice president Mike Doherty puts it in a thinly veiled sales pitch in the piece: "Death is not optional."
Not cheerful enough for you? OK, how about this as a positive takeaway: you're not selling gravesites for a living a la the two sources excerpted here. That's something to be thankful for at any time—and especially at a time when it would appear that there's a glut of available real estate.
Posted by Phil Stott, Vault Staff Writer
Associated Press/Plinio Leprio
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