Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Books You Should Be Reading Number 42 Of A Bunch

Apathy Jack writes:

Sleeping Arrangements by Laura Shaine Cunningham

There is much precedent in the family for pretending that the dead have not died but are living in other cities. Practicing a form of emotional etiquette, it is considered good form to spare elderly relatives sad news. Whenever we attend family reunions, the uncles give me a quick refresher course in who’s officially dead and who’s not. It would be helpful to maintain a cross-index, because some elderly aunts know while others don’t know. Great-aunt Becky believes she has a nephew in Alaska, while her sister, Berta, knows that nephew died of heart failure three years ago. Entire sections of the family (the Kroll branch) have expired, but their surviving sister, my grandmother, has been told the whole group “moved to California.” (When a cousin actually did move to California, no one believed it – the other cousins all believed this was a euphemism for the much-longer journey.)

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