Quote of the day

Charles Cowling



“At the funeral, people turned up who the family didn’t even know, presumably workmates of my dad’s or people he’d played rugby with. It didn’t matter that they didn’t try to talk to us, but it mattered a lot that they’d cared enough to turn up. I can still see, in my mind’s eye, those blokes no-one knew leaving after the funeral, turning up their coat collars because it was raining.”










6 thoughts on “Quote of the day

  1. Charles Cowling
    Kathryn Edwards

    You’re right, that was a tangent.

    Actually, I think the beauty of the perspective expressed in the quotation is that it recognises the autonomy of folks. That the family didn’t ‘own’ their dad. And that people can attend a funeral in many ways.

    Charles Cowling
  2. Charles Cowling
    Charles Cowling

    But hang on, everyone’s missing the point here. These guys knew the dead man, but ‘the family’ wotted not of them, which was why ‘la famille’ thought it was so darn nice of them to come.

    Charles Cowling
  3. Charles Cowling
    Kathryn Edwards

    I’m with Harold and Maud, up for a stranger’s funeral, but wouldn’t want to miss the one I was aiming for . . .

    Charles Cowling
  4. Charles Cowling

    It’s rather lovely when it happens, in my experience. I’m a great believer in wonky moments at funerals. Seamless is soulless.

    Charles Cowling
  5. Charles Cowling

    Doesn’t happen at a good funeral anywhere; one reason a tutor of mine gave for announcing the name of the person who died in the first sentence was to give a chance for those on the wrong platform time to shuffle out quietly and catch the right train.

    Charles Cowling
  6. Charles Cowling
    James Leedam

    Whilst manning our Hundy Mundy Wood natural burials stand at last year’s Border Union Show, I was told more than once about funerals at Morningside Crematorium in Edinburgh (which has more than one chapel) where people have sat through an entire service in the wrong chapel because they hadn’t realised their mistake before the service was underway and were too shy to interrupt.
    (Doesn’t happen at a natural burial ground…)

    Charles Cowling

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