Funeral Advertising Norwegian style

Charles Cowling

Posted by Evelyn

This advert appeared in the Norwegian Saturday papers

It’s for a funeral director – well ahead of the game in my opinion.

See more here under ‘Our Ads’

(There’s an English button in the top right corner of the website if your Norwegian’s a bit rusty!)

How to close a door?

The smell of you.
The coat in the hallway.
The cup you drank from.
The food you put in the freezer.
The papers with your handwriting.
A plant that no longer gets watered.
The room you filled with your voice.

You are not coming back here.
The door shall be closed behind you.

In a vacuum of grief, your story will be told.
Just you. The person we loved.

The thoughts will come, maybe.
Can anything be different?
Perhaps a small detail,
a piece of music, a speech,
something out of the ordinary?

Closing a door is not easy.
We know, because we have been closing doors since 1956.

Nobody is the same. Why should funerals be?






9 thoughts on “Funeral Advertising Norwegian style

  1. Charles Cowling

    Lovely idea, GM. I hope Tim Clark reads this. It’d make a great addition to the repertoire of his Threnody choir.

    Charles Cowling
  2. Charles Cowling
    gloria mundi

    Claire, wonderful image of your by now truly battered old hearse slding round the bends and clouting mere Fords out of the way. Do you think the driver sings “I’m getting buried in the morning, ding dong the bells are gonna chime, let’s have a whopper, don’t come a cropper, just get me to the crem on time..”?

    Charles Cowling
  3. Charles Cowling

    How very refreshing – I love their words – do you think nicking some of them might cause an international incident? Those nordics can be very pillagey

    Charles Cowling
  4. Charles Cowling
    claire callender

    So simple so perfect.

    We used to have a (not very) shiny black Daimler hearse Gloria, I’m led to believe it’s doing very well on the stock car circuit now.

    Charles Cowling
    1. Charles Cowling
      Charles Cowling

      All funeral directors/undertakers should take their cars/vehicles out for a jolly from time to time so they can enjoy a change from the griefgrind — a bit like letting pit ponies out into the paddock. How lovely to take the funeral fleet stock car racing. They’d be fresh and ready for Monday morning after a hectic weekend of that. Go Team Binz!

      Charles Cowling
  5. Charles Cowling
    Belinda Forbes

    Thank you for posting this Evelyn. Interesting too that this is a large chain. The cost of living in Norway is relatively high – do you know if this applies to funerals?

    Charles Cowling
    1. Charles Cowling

      Hi Belinda, average cost of a funeral is £2500-£3500 for a straightforward fitting funeral ( not the ‘basic’ or ‘simple’ ones offered under NAFD guidelines here) and anything upwards depending on individual choices. A more realistic figure might be £5,000 – £6,000 but this includes a catered wake – an expected extra. The cost of living is probably twice as high as in the uk. ( The cost of dying, however….) Other points to note are that burial is still the most popular option, the funeral expenses are tax deductible, anyone who was christened in the Norwegian state church doesn’t pay fees for the minister, church or organist, everyone has the right to a burial plot in their commune (council), the council is obliged to provide a free funeral venue and a burial plot to residents who are not members of the state church. (Interesting aside is that a council funeral in Norway includes a simple headstone!) There is also a grant system to cover the costs of transporting the deceased person back to their place of residence, if they die while away from home. It’s all about community there it seems. There is a means tested grant towards funeral costs for people in the national insurance scheme.

      Charles Cowling
      1. Charles Cowling
        Belinda Forbes

        Evelyn – your comprehensive reply is greatly appreciated! Thank you! It’s always interesting to find out how other countries do things.

        Charles Cowling
  6. Charles Cowling
    gloria mundi

    How sad that the Norwegians are so far behind – a poem about the feelings of bereaved people, and a brief and simple mention of the undertakers’ function, in the shape of a metaphor? What next?

    Where’s the rows of black cars, the black toppers, the row of glum-looking chaps, the white lilies alongside the website strap-line? This sort of thing is very risky – it could catch on here, and then we’d all be more emotionally truthful and direct about funerals. Just think then what all those obsolete black limos would do to the luxury second-hand car market.

    (Please forgive my easy and clumsy irony. It comes from the bruises one gets after banging the ageing head against various walls…)

    And apologies to those (few?) undertakers around here whose approach to advertising their work are nothing like my caricature.

    Charles Cowling

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