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We Sort Of Hope That Lady Gets Haunted

, , , , | Friendly | October 15, 2021

I grew up in the southern United States, where you are still likely to see the remains of family graveyards. It used to be very common for families to bury deceased loved ones on their own property. No matter where you are, though, tampering with any gravesite without appropriate approval or permission by the family or landowner is a felony. That means it’s punishable by jail time and/or a large fine, depending on your state’s laws.

One of these family graveyards was in the lot next to my childhood home. It was so old we couldn’t read the headstones anymore, but it still had the original iron fence around it. When the neighborhood was developed, the realtor who plotted out the lots bought that one, since it couldn’t be built on anyway. He was also our neighbor down the street. 

I also grew up in one of those small southern towns that frowns upon anyone going outside of what is considered “normal” behavior. We saw it firsthand when my parents got divorced in the early 1990s. On top of the gossip about getting divorced, my mom also chose to live alone and never date or remarry again, which was “unusual”. Both my parents were much happier being divorced, which in turn made me happier, so I never saw anything wrong with it.

Now, I am a freshman in college, living a few hours away. I get a call from my mom and she’s laughing her a** off. 

There is this woman who lives on the other end of my mom’s neighborhood. No one likes her because she goes out of her way to be mean; she’s just a miserable person. Her own husband once said to my dad that it was “easier to put up with her than to try to divorce her.” She’s THAT kind of person.

My mom was looking out her window and saw a guy in his twenties walking around the old graveyard with a set of post-hole diggers and bolt cutters. She called the neighbor who owned the lot and he asked her to drive over and see if the guy worked for the city or something until he got there. Turns out, the guy was doing yard work for extra money, and he said [Miserable Lady] had given him “permission” to DIG UP part of the fence and bring it to her. She wanted it for her TOMATO PLANTS. When my mom told him it was a felony to tamper with a graveyard, no matter how old, the kid started to panic. 

Luckily, the owner arrived and started handling the situation. But I guess someone else had tipped off [Miserable Lady] because here she came in her own car. She screeched to a stop next to my mom’s car and started screaming out the window at her. After letting her go for a few minutes, my mom rolled down the window and calmly told her that she had no legal right to mess with the graveyard.

Miserable Lady: “Why don’t you mind your own business, b****? You know, I always heard you were crazy! Now I know it’s true!”

And my mom — my sweet, little, kill-them-with-kindness mom — smiled at her.

Mom: “That’s funny, I’ve heard the same thing about you.”

What Do You Want On Your Tombstone?

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: jcstan05 | July 8, 2021

I am a headstone designer. Years ago, a gentleman came to the shop looking to buy a grave marker for himself. He was in good health; he was just getting his affairs in order. Ordering a headstone pre-need is a good decision for a few reasons, including the fact that you can choose what goes on it.

Our client wanted us to engrave something pretty crude. I can’t remember the exact phrasing, but it included an F-word and would definitely cause some backlash in my small town. The cemetery, not surprisingly, rejected our proposal. I’m willing to engrave whatever my client wants on a stone, but we’re constrained by the graveyard’s regulation: no inappropriate images or wording should appear on the memorial. Bummer.

We found a workaround: we engraved the scandalous epitaph on the bottom side of the stone. That way, nobody had to know what was under there, and my customer “could read it and laugh for all eternity.”

A Fee-ble Attempt At Avoiding The Fees, Part 2

, , , , , | Right | March 11, 2021

We rent out our chapel for funerals with a slight discount if they’re using the crematorium, as well. One family requested a three-hour service using both but started to balk at the price, so they chopped the first hour off the service and seemed happier with the price.

Fast forward to the day of the service. I’m doing some other work when I see that the family has arrived an hour early to start. I pop my head into our office to see if they’d changed their minds about paying the larger price and it hadn’t gotten to me. Immediately, our administrator stalks off to find the family.

After some discussion with them, it turned out they’d just figured it would be fine if they came early. They were quite unhappy when they found out that they would have to pay the three-hour fee if they wanted in our chapel early. We’ve allowed leeway before with other families, but never by that much, and certainly not when it comes across as skirting our fees. 

Related:
A Fee-ble Attempt At Avoiding The Fees

You Know What They Say About Birds Of A Feather

, , , , , , | Related | April 22, 2020

My grandmother passed away, we had her funeral, and we went to entomb her with my grandfather. I hate social gatherings in general, so I tend to avoid talking to people unless they’re in my immediate family. However, this one nice elderly lady comes up and talks to me, telling me how much I look like my grandma when she was young. We have a lovely chat and when we leave, my mom says:

Mom: “It was so nice of you to talk to Crazy Aunt [Aunt].”

Me: “Huh? Why is she called that?”

I figured she must have had a wild youth or something.

Mom: “Because she’s crazy. Literally. She lives in an insane asylum and got a day pass for the funeral.”

It just figures that the one person I would get along with is certifiably insane.

Paying For Real Estate Will Follow Us Into Death

, , , , , , , | Related | November 14, 2019

My grandfather recently passed away. Known for his frugality, he bought his burial plot in the cemetery at his summer home’s church when they were having some sort of sale, and he got a “super deal.” His brother-in-law and sister also bought a plot at the same time, and his brother-in-law passed six years prior to my grandfather’s death. My grandfather was a businessman and dabbled in many trades and industries and owned most of his own businesses. His most prominent one — and the one that lasted the longest and was his passion — was real estate.

We gathered around the gravesite for the burial service. Afterward, we wanted to walk to my great-uncle’s gravesite, which we could make out in the distance, but was still in view of my grandfather’s gravesite. In an effort to lighten the mood, my cousin said the following:

“Corner plot, direct line of sight from Old Uncle Jack, plenty of parking on both sides, beautiful greenery, location at his favorite church on the Cape… He really was a real estate man. Location, location, location!”

We all laughed and appreciated his humor after an emotional and somber week.