“The Maestro of Moribundity” by Ernestus Jiminy Chald

I live every day as though it were my last . . . .

My mornings are spent on the telephone settling my affairs — canceling credit cards, putting a halt on mail being delivered to my box, working out the particularities of my funeral arrangements, and bidding tearful farewells to my family and friends (many of whom, inexplicably, refuse to answer their phones when I call any more).

My afternoons are spent editing the latest draft of my “Last Will & Testament”, and poring over old personal scrapbooks and family photo albums . . . reminiscing about my past and the rich life I’ve led.

I’ve heard it said before that, when a person dies, their entire life flashes before them. They relive everything — all of the experiences they’d had, people they’d known, places they’d been — in the blink of an eye.

Well, I’d rather relive my life at my own pace and on my own terms, choosing which memories I’d most like to recall and discarding the dross as I see fit. So I thumb through the story of my life one page at a time rather than being forced to digest it all in a single monumental instant.

My evenings are spent receiving the last rites. Father McClafferty arrives in his 1954 Silver Wraith and offers me the Eucharist as Viaticum. After he’s left, I stretch recumbently in my satin-lined coffin and reflect again upon the life I’ve led, the people I’ve known, the places I’ve been, the experiences I’ve had . . . then I close my eyes and cross my hands upon my chest, clutching an opal-beaded rosary in preparation for the blinding light that surely must be drawing near.

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