Decorative Flower
Her Realm, Personal website and blog of Cole
Jul 03

Death Becomes Her

I’ve been thinking a lot about death lately and not in a way that’s morbid  — at least, not in the way that would consider morbid. I recently finished reading Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, which I may or may not get around to reviewing on Reviews by Cole, but it’s certainly gotten me thinking.

Here’s what I’m thinking; the two most viable options for human remains are among the worst. In fact, many people don’t realize that any other options exist and, in some locations, they’re so difficult that you might as not well consider them options at all. And that’s pretty awful.

I don’t want an expensive casket to entomb my decomposing body while I take up precious space that’s better left for the dead nor do I want to be incinerated in a process that’s not environmentally-friendly or contributory to science.

So what do I want? First, for my organs to be donated. There’s not a single reason not to do that. There are about ten options from there, however, and the following is my personal ranking of what I’d like done with my body from most to least desired.

  • Scientific research – A local university is the most viable option for corpse donation, but it’s certainly time-sensitive. I like this option and take no issue with any type of research. If it’s helpful, I am down. I would especially like to be used for studies done in labs dedicated to ballistics and car accident research, however, because it’s so necessary and exactly the type of thing that others shun. If the service allowed me to leave a note to those who might be working on my body, I think a pun or a bad joke would fit the bill. Ideally, any remains would be composted. Realistically, they’ll be cremated, and I would be just fine if my cremains wound up in an unmarked grave with other cremains.
  • Composting – composting isn’t a thing yet, but it could be by the time I die. Composting is posed to be economical, practical and ecological; although, it doesn’t have a scientific purpose. One proposed method relies on freezing the body, using vibration to break it up, removing liquid and turning the rest into compost. Cool!
  • Natural burial – a natural, above-ground burial doesn’t advance the scientific community, but it does seem like a pleasant way to go. Skip the embalming and fancy packaging and let nature do its part in due time. Caskets aren’t actually a requirement in the state of Wisconsin, so it may be a viable option if I know someone who has the land!
  • Body Farm – You might think that someone who is writing a blog post about her preferred methods of corporeal dispensement who seems to have an affinity for science would like her body being delivered to a body farm and, you know, it’s far from the worst option to consider. It serves a purpose: teaching people more about the decomposition process of human bodies. But it’s just not very appetizing. It’s not practical for me personally, either, because there are no body farms near me.
  • Burial at sea – I imagine this to be a costly final destination that is incongruent with who I am as a person. But sleeping with the fishes is more eco-friendly than some of the other options. At least it’s EPA-regulated.
  • Necrophilia – Look, it’s weird. As a living person, I am not at all attracted to the bodies of people who have already passed, but it’s more productive than some of the other options, right?
  • Cremation – Cremation is the lesser of two evils when it comes to the big two. It’s more affordable and requires less space, but I’m not too keen on what it does to the environment. If someone wanted to keep my cremains close by, however, I would be okay with that. And there are so many cool things you can do with cremains. Being inturned with seeds is one option; although, it’s really of no benefit to the tree.
  • Mummification –  This option isn’t my favorite. It requires my body to take up space while it decomposes more slowly than a natural burial because of the embalming process. But in several thousand years, the process will complete.
  • Cryonically frozen – Listen, I like science fiction as much as the next person, but cryonics just isn’t scientifically viable. It’s a demanding use of resources that neither I nor the world should spend. I also have no desire to beat death even were it possible.
  • Casket Burial – Literally the worst possible thing that could happen to my body. It’s not economical, and it doesn’t serve any purpose. I love spending time in cemeteries as long as my body is animated, but they won’t do me a damned thing of good when I’m dead.

So this might be a weird post for some of you — or not. You know that I’m not exactly traditional in many ways!


Apr 29

A Sentimental Saturday Morning

I guess it’s not often that I post anything really personal, but I’m feeling sentimental, introspective and morose, so here I am.

I spent some time with friends tonight. It was fun. Different. During the process, someone said something that jogged a hazy memory of an inside joke. I muttered the words, and Ashe knew it immediately. Soon, we had laughed ourselves to tears. I needed that, I think. It was so unexpected. Wonderful. Truly.

I couldn’t recall who we had shared the joke with or when. My brain brought up a person and a time that didn’t jive. I think, perhaps, that we had thought about this a few years ago, and that’s the connection that my brain made.

But, no. It didn’t start then. In fact, this joke had started in high school if you can believe it. It was a commentary on A Streetcar Named Desire. Yep. In the lunchroom, a friend that I had long forgotten donned a faux southern accent and motioned while making a joke that could only happen once. A joke that would have us laughing yourself to tears some 15 years later. I mean, damn.

I found myself reminiscing and in a good mood as I walked home. I wanted to look up this friend. We haven’t talked for a few good years. The last time I saw him, we were in a bar, drunk. We were excited to see one another, but he was so drunk that he kept telling me how cool his friend Cole from high school was. A weird experience but talk about flattering!

I looked him up on Facebook, excited to reconnect. But my hopes were dashed when I saw that his page was a memorial page. He passed away in January. I was three months too late to tell him that I love him, miss him, wish we talked more.

I spent a good chunk of time trying to figure out how (diabetes). In the process, I saw how loved he was. People remembered his wit (yup!) and love of music.

I went back further than this year. I wanted to see what he talked about (politics, HRC, puns) and how. At one point, I saw him reply to something with “lololol,” the response I use instead of “lmfao” more often than not. I couldn’t help but see our similarities, and that made the hurt all the more real.

So, I’m feeling pretty sad right now. I wish I had made more of an effort to be his friend as an adult. I think we would have gotten along swimmingly. I would have enjoyed him and hope he would have felt the same.

But, you know, judging from our last interaction, I impacted him pretty strongly. That’s something that I appreciate immensely as I remember him.

I wonder if he ever thought of me, remembered our good times. Perhaps he didn’t even remember the inside joke. That’s okay.

I did for a minute, and it made my life better. I think I can only laugh and smile at the memories, no matter how foggy.

Because no matter how much I look at his profile and his photos or try to piece together his life from posts on social media, it can’t bring him back. It won’t make us closer.

But it does teach me a lesson about my time here and how I need to use it. So I’m going to wrap up this post and send a few messages to people who are here to see them.

Oh, by the way. I love you, dear reader.


Feb 25

Two Weeks in the Life

As I typed this, my laptop keeps flickering from battery to AC power. My cable is slowly dying because the port is positioned strangely and the cord bends at an angle. I have a spare, but I like to use things until they die. In related news, my laptop battery is also dying. It’s been 3 years, though, so I feel as though I’ve gotten my money’s worth.

My new cell phone is still better than sex.

I’m also pretty excited about my living room rearrangement, which happened at 6:00 in the morning the other weekend when Dave was over. It feels much cozier and more inviting. The space is generally used better, and my sort of open layout apartment is better compartmentalized — in a good way. The cats also like how accessible how all their furniture has become because, you know, I’m a crazy cat lady complete with cat furniture.

Two weekends ago, I attended the second funeral I’ve ever been to in my life for the mother of a close friend. It was in a funeral home so that was different. Many people showed to express their love, and we had a dinner afterward that managed to be fun despite loss. The first few days after her death were harder for me than I expected. Parents don’t typically like me, but she did. She fed me with love. She was a kind person, the kind of person who deserved better than she got, you might say. It’s hard to look at smiling photos and realize that she is gone. Death is permanence that is hard for me to accept. Permanence is hard for me to accept to begin with.

But things have been good. I’ve been in a good place for a while now. The soul-sucking cold of winter just has be being forgetful. I managed to get a terrible cold that came on oh-so-suddenly but sleeping 16 hours a day for the first three days has gotten me over the hump. For this, I am grateful.

February has been a month full of makeup. Most of it has sucked. The stuff that hasn’t will go up on Reviews by Cole, simply because I purchased most of it and, god damn, am I sick of writing negative reviews.

I discovered and watched Weeds in its entirety over the last week. I cannot help but draw parallels with Breaking Bad. However, Breaking Bad is by far the better series. About halfway through Weeds, the writing staff must have changed. It lost its special something, but I was already invested by then. So, now, I need more recommendations because TV is doing this weird winter break thing.

My friends and I are already excitedly planning Wizard World Chicago (James O’barr! The Walking Dead!). I hope to add another trip to Minneapolis. No conventions this time. Just burlesque shows and concerts if I have it my way.

And now I am listening you YouTube artist Jasmine Thompson:

I’ve gotta run.


Dec 28

The Center of the Tornado

Things have been happening.. around me, not to me, just around me.

I enjoyed a drama-free Christmas. It wasn’t quite like when I was younger but it was nice. No fighting, no big problems. I was pleasantly surprised. We exchanged presents and enjoyed food and played games. I stayed at my uncle’s well after everyone else had left, chatting with him and his wife. There was some definite low-key awesomesauce going on.

On Christmas Eve, my sister’s grandmother was admitted to the hospital. This isn’t out of the normal as her health has been failing because of her diabetes for some time. She’s in and out of the hospital all of the time. Things weren’t looking good but I didn’t think it was any worse. Last night, my sister called me in tears about how sick her grandma was and Mom said her husband had gone to the hospital. Samantha quickly cheered up, as kids do, and I hung up.

I texted Mom a little bit later to ask her something unrelated. Her reply said her mother in law seemed to be doing better but, apparently, she died a short time later. I woke up to several texts from Samantha about her grandma dying but, by the time I woke up, they were already at the hospital with my mom who underwent a hysterectomy today. That went well, as we had reassured her and she’s spending the night.

I went up to the hospital today to see Mom and Samantha and Mom was incredibly funny because of her drugs. She was enjoying her alone time and being able to sleep, however. I took some time to talk to Samantha who seems to be doing incredibly well with this all. I don’t know how.

So, as you can see, I’m surrounded by activity that doesn’t directly affect me. I’m just trying my best to be there for everyone right now and hopefully I’m not failing.


Aug 09

Why Bother?

life.. pointless.. on the surface and perhaps everywhere else but our curiosity as humans leads us on and on, when perhaps we should just be letting go, cause i dont know anyone who’s truly alive anyway, and in the end we die. our curiosity led us to death. curiosity killed the cat, or in this case, the human.
either way you die. death is the inevitable.


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