File Under ‘Things Widows Don’t Need’
Still jet-lagged but determined to not sleep all day, I begin unpacking luggage, downloading trip photos, sorting through a few weeks of mail.
Like last year, the Tiffany catalog addressed to Alberto makes me wince.
Ditto for the Patagonia mailer.
Unlike last year, there is no holiday correspondence from Greenwich Village Funeral Home.
Apparently, they did get the message.
Dec. 16, 2009: Tre Miller Rodriguez blithely opens mail in the elevator, pulls out a 2010 calendar…from the FUNERAL HOME? As in, what, ‘time marches on: here’s proof?’ (11:02pm via Twitter)
I decide to call the phone number on the calendar and tell them just how heartwarming this holiday mailer is.
Greenwich Village Funeral Home, how may I help you?
Hi, I’m Tré. You carried out the viewing services for my husband nine months ago and I just received a mailer from you that I just can only describe as insensitive and insulting.
I’m a widow. This is my first Christmas without my husband. Why would I want to be reminded by a funeral home that time is marching on?
Maybe if I’d had a civilized experience with your company, maybe this wouldn’t be so tacky. But the director of your funeral home is the same man who left cookies ‘with his compliments’ in the limo that took us to my husband’s service—cookies! who eats dessert on their way to a funeral?
Uh, could you give me your name again, miss?
I’m sure you didn’t sign off on it, but have you seen this stupid calendar?
I haven’t, no. I’m offsite. I’m just with the answering company.
Of course you are. If you could leave Peter a message from Tré Rodriguez, a former client. Tell him this calendar is one of the most hard-boiled things a funeral home could ever send to a person in mourning. Tell him, next year, maybe try a toothbrush. Or an extra set of house keys. Something that people like me keep losing track of. Because time, time is one fucking thing I do not need a funeral home reminding me to remember.
Well, Tré, thank you for calling. I’ll pass on your message.
His dignified voice.
Have I become that girl?
The one ranting about a free calendar at midnight on a Wednesday?
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