Wednesday, December 20, 2017

sage and uncle stuffing and granberry sauce

A couple of examples, as if further proof were necessary, that Electric Halibut surfs the very bleeding edge of the Zeitgeist, protected only by a stout pair of comfortable shoes. It's all about death, but then, isn't everything, ultimately?

Firstly, I heard a bit on the Jeremy Vine Show on BBC Radio 2 the other day about an attempt to set up a facility in Sandwell in the West Midlands to do what's now apparently being euphemistically referred to as "liquid cremation" or "water cremation" but is basically the same alkaline hydrolysis process that was referred to here (the people doing it seem to have settled on "resomation" as a nicely incomprehensible brand identity). Given the objections that were raised to the ridiculously benign and environmentally-friendly proposal to use the heat generated by a crematorium to heat a swimming pool (not far away, in Redditch, so maybe this is a West Midlands thing) you can imagine the sort of bullshit complaints that people will have raised here, and sure enough the project has been indefinitely delayed because people didn't like the idea of the harmless liquid residue being flushed down the drain, and thereby indirectly into the drinking water system.

No-one raising this objection could offer any logical reasoning for objecting, just an ill-thought-out "yuck" response and some annoyance at being obliged to think about death, something most people are intensely weird and irrational about. What they imagine happens to all the decomposing liquid goop that drains out of bodies buried in cemeteries I have no idea, let alone all the actual shit that gets flushed down people's toilets every day.

Secondly, anyone considering the standard salt and pepper shakers at the dinner table might want to consider a third cruet option to jazz up their Christmas roasties and sprouts a bit: the cremated ashes of a loved one! That's what Debra Parsons from Folkestone is going to do this year, and why not? Well, I mean, I can think of a few reasons, but maybe that's just me being up-tight and conventional about post-death rituals. And there I was laughing at people who think death can be transmitted into a swimming pool by heat in some way!

Just to be half-serious for a minute, I'm not convinced that either laughing at or uncritically nodding approval of what are clearly some deep-seated and Complex Issues is really serving Debra Parsons' best interests (her mother's best interests are pretty much irrelevant at this stage), but presumably the various newspapers paid her for her time, so I suppose it's all good. I imagine the inevitable gargantuan Boxing Day morning shit will have an extra poignancy to it for her as well. Anyway, the important point, as always, is that I thought of it first! As it happens I do think my method is better - if you must do it on Christmas Day then wash the capsule down with some celebratory bubbly or something, rather than ruin a perfectly good Christmas dinner by sprinkling grit all over it.

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