It is hard to understand how a cemetery can raise its burial costs and then blame it on the cost of living.
When I was a boy, my uncle John told me a tale about a trick that he played in a cemetery. One night my uncle spotted his friend Eddie wending his way home from the pub. As he watched, Eddie took the shortcut through the cemetery, rather than the longer way via the round ring.
There was no doubt that Eddie was the worse for wear, and appeared disoriented. Then he cried out to nobody in particular, 'Where am I'.
John whispered from the graveyard, 'Amongst the living'.
'Where are you', cried Eddie. To which John replied in his most sepulchral voice, 'Amongst the dead'.
Eddie sobered up instantly, and would never again take the short cut though the churchyard after dark.
Will and Guy think that this parking meter epitaph sums up this page. Graveyard humour needs to be handled carefully, with style and with dignity; people's feelings must be considered, in this case the parking meter is what the deceased asked for.
This is the site of an actual grave in Okemah, Oklahoma, USA. The deceased had an active sense of humour when alive and had wanted a parking meter on the site of her burial. Her daughter supplied the parking meter with 'Time Expired' notice - see inset below.
On the memorial stone is written: Her Humor Lives On.
What's in a Name?
A hairdressing salon opened next to the local graveyard. It was named, rather distastefully, "Curl Up and Dye."
Please join Will and Guy in remembering a great icon of the entertainment community.
The Pillsbury Doughboy died yesterday of a yeast infection and complications from repeated pokes in the belly. He was 73. Doughboy was buried in a lightly greased coffin.
Dozens of celebrities turned out to pay their respects at his funeral, including Mrs Butterworth, Hungry Jack, the California Raisins, Betty Crocker, the Hostess Twinkies. Captain Crunch sent his apologies. The gravesite was piled high with flours.
Aunt Jemima delivered the eulogy in the graveyard and lovingly described Doughboy as a man who did not realize how much he was kneaded. Doughboy rose quickly in show business, but his later life was filled with turnovers. He was not considered a very 'smart' cookie, wasting much of his dough on half-baked schemes. Despite being a little flaky at times, he still, even as a crusty old man, was considered a roll model for millions.
Doughboy is survived by his wife, Playa Dough; two children, John Dough and Jane Dough; plus they have one in the oven. He is also survived by his elderly father, Pop Tart. The funeral was held at 2:50 for about 20 minutes.
Obituary kindly sent in by Johnny.
Albert Hammond was visiting the cemetery near Hamble in England and he couldn't help noticing a man kneeling in front of a gravestone, clasping his hands and sobbing. Albert went a bit closer and could hear what the man was saying. 'Why did you have to die?' he was repeating, 'Why did you have to die?'
Feeling he ought to do something to alleviate the man's obvious distress Albert laid his hand on the his shoulder saying gently, 'Was it someone you loved very much?'
The man looked up at him and said, 'No, I never met him, he was my wife's first husband.'
Short Irish Cemetery Jokes
As Will and Guy often say to each other, 'You just couldn't make it up.' Our latest tale of humour is in that genre and is about a gravedigger who, having dug the grave, then fell into it and had to be rescued by firefighters.
Stefan Faerber, 55, from Deutschlandsberg, Austria had to be rescued by firefighters when he stood back to admire his handiwork and fell straight down the six-foot deep hole he'd just dug. Luckily he managed to dial 999 from the bottom of the grave despite and injured back and fractured skull.
A police spokesman confirmed to us that, 'It was his last job of the day so he's lucky he had his phone with him to call for help - or he might have spent a very uncomfortable night next to some of his previous customers.'
I always wondered if Karl Marx's grave was a Communist plot.
One popular general
knowledge questions is: Where was Karl Marx buried?
Another popular spoof is that Karl Marx was Groucho's 5th Marx Brother.
The minute we hit on a name for our son my wife's labour started, and for that reason I'll not be choosing any funeral music for the next 40 years.
Thanks to Chris Addison in The Observer magazine.
Everyone was dismayed that Peter had died. A popular man, he had left Moira, his wife, strict instructions in his will for his wake to be a jolly and happy affair: a celebration of his life. To this end Peter had left $50,000 USD in his will for the party.
As the guests caught their taxis at the end of the wake, Moira was asked by her close friend, Alice, if she thought that Peter would have been pleased. 'Well, I'm sure Peter would have been delighted,' Moira murmured.
'I'm sure you're right,' replied her friend, Alice, who lowered her voice and leaned in close. 'How much did all this really cost?'
'All of it,' opined Moira, 'every penny of twenty-five thousand pounds.'
'What!' exclaimed Alice in a higher than normal voice, 'I mean, it was very nice, but £25,000?'
Moira took a deep breath and answered, 'Look, Alice, let me explain: the funeral cost £4,500. I donated £500 to the church. The wake, food and drinks were another £2,500. The rest went on the memorial stone.'
Alice worked out the arithmetic in her head, 'Eh?' she exploded for a second time, '£17,500 for a memorial stone? My goodness, how big is it?'
Moira shows Alice her ring finger, 'Oh about 30 carats,' she smiled.
From our research it seems that the odds of any two people having identical fingerprints is enormous: in fact, Will and Guy have discovered, probably close to 1 in 64 million.
This grave story therefore is very interesting.
In June 2002, a corpse turned up near Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. A fingerprint taken from the body matched one from Kathleen Hatfield of Sonoma County, California.
Her family and the next of kin were duly informed that their loved one was dead. The family went ahead with the funeral arrangement and her grave in the local cemetery was dug.
However, before the body could be laid to rest in the prepared grave, Kathleen Hatfield turned up alive and well. Kathleen Hatfield had been living on the streets of Santa Rosa five weeks after Las Vegas police identified her as the victim of an apparent homicide.
Hatfield's mother was a day away from burying an urn containing what she believed were the ashes of her 46-year-old daughter when she was told it was all a mistake; a veritable shocking experience for the whole family.
The scientific study of fingerprints is called dermatoglyphics, a word which has the distinction of being the longest in English with no repeated letters.
The only other such word is uncopyrightable.
One morning, Mary Roberts, a door to door saleswoman, selling particular household products knocked on Allan's door and asked to see his wife. Allan, a quiet man of few words, responded succinctly that his wife wasn't home.
'Well,' continued Mary Roberts, 'could I please wait for her then?'
'She went to the cemetery,' he replied.
'I don't really know,' Allan said and then he added. 'She's been there eleven years now.'
Sean and Wayne were walking home after a party and decided to take a shortcut through the cemetery.
When they were right in the middle of the cemetery they were startled by a tap-tap-tapping noise coming from the misty shadows. Catching their breath and trembling with fear, they found an old man with a hammer and chisel, chipping away at one of the headstones.
'Great grief, Mister,' said Sean, his voice quivering, 'You scared us half to death. We thought you were a ghost! What on earth are you doing working here so late at night?'
'Those fools,' the old chiseller grumbled, 'they've misspelled my name.'
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