It’s shocking to me how many industries are still kicking around intact despite generations of rapid evolution. Look at the funeral business for example. We should have murdered it off twenty years ago.
Yes, yes, there have been some small moments of enlightenment with regards to the ridiculously dust-bound ritual, however, it has achieved nowhere near its potential for redesign. Why if I had some venture capital and three months, I’d turn the whole dammed industry on its cadaverous head.
Let us examine the facts:
The wearing of black to funerals arose from a myth centuries ago that made people think one could be invisible to ghosts lingering around the deceased. Black was a protective cloak for survivors.
Personally, I think it’s depressing. I prefer people where brighter, cheerier colors and save the black for their next cocktail party.
Why would anyone want to see their loved one cold, dead, and stiff? Is that really the picture you want in your head of someone you care deeply about? Okay, if the immediate family needs to view the body for “closure” why not let them do it at the hospital and be done with it. It really is a private thing and not everyone is prepared for such a horrific scene. From what I understand, the open casket was originally conceived to ensure the deceased was in fact dead. There was a three day waiting period. Pretty sure this is not relevant today.
Funeral Homes: My God/Goddess! I can’t think of a more depressing venue. The idea of having the grieving, exhausted family standing around for three days in a row in the most morbid environment imaginable talking to a steady stream of people who say, “I’m sorry for you loss,” is barbaric. In my opinion, it’s cruel. Let them stay home in the pajamas crying in each others arms and throwing back a few martinis. Then honor the dead with their favorite things in one final celebration of a life well-lived. Host the event in an uplifting, beautiful setting reflecting their personality.
When I die, I say whip out some great food, fabulous wine, put my playlist on, look at some photos, and talk about all the funny things I did. No black required. My sweetheart wants a bonfire under the stars, blue jeans, maple whiskey shots, and his favorite tunage in the background. Flowers? Hell no. Give the money to the humane society and save a few animals.
And the body? It’s cremation for us then into the ocean. Real estate is for the living. Forget the tombstone and casket. Instead, I want my kids to take some money from my inheritance, buy a piece of art, and hang it on the wall in my memory. No black, of course, only sweet, inspiring living colors.