Gordon P. Bois

Shake Hands With Death 

He lives way too close to the funeral home.

He’s so close, that he can practically shake hands with death.

What does this mean for him?  Ease of access for when he finally dies.  It’s like a really disturbing, makeshift convenience store for the terminally ill, the dying and the dead.  All he needs now is a shopping cart for when they wheel his dead ass across the street. 

One would think that the realtor would have said something about this before finalizing the sale, but no.  He figures that the shopping cart should’ve been included, when he bought the house, but it wasn’t.  Anything for a sale, he reckons.  He supposes that it’s too late now.  The cheap bastards! 

“How do I go about getting myself a shopping cart now?  Do I ask the owners of the local grocery stores?  Do I have to buy it outright?  Probably not.  I’ll bet there’s leasing options though.  It’s a sad world we’re living in.  All anyone is concerned about is making the mighty dollar!” 

He swears that they’re all in on it.  “Opportunists, every one of them: the realtors, the grocery store owners, and you guessed it, the funeral directors.  Bunch of scammers is what they are!”

Hyperventilating, he decides to take a seat and catch his breath.  “I better sit this one out and relax.  If I’m not careful, I’m going to give myself a heart attack.  I’m sure they’d just love that.  I can see it now, me, dead as a doornail, minus the shopping cart.  How then, do you figure they’re going get my dead ass over to the funeral home?  Drag me there?” 

“If it was winter, they could slide me across the street in a toboggan.  Wait a minute, I don’t own a toboggan.  I haven’t had one of those contraptions since my childhood.  I suppose I’ll have to go pick one up at the local crappy tire store.  See, what did I tell you.  Another store owner who’s in on the take.  Pathetic!”

“It’s no wonder that the community is always preaching to its townsfolk about shopping local. And do you want to know how everyone hears about this?  Well, I’ll tell you, it’s in the local paper and heard on the local radio station.  That’s two more businesses in on this money-making racket. 

Everyone seems to be in on it.  It’s greed that drives them, every damn one of them.  Shop local, they say.  Not for me.  You can count me out!”

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