My troublesome father passed away…

| Father is critically ill |

  His father was hospitalized after a stroke and fell, and ten days later, he passed away. Of course, it is also possible that he suffered a stroke after a fall. In either case, I am amazed whenever someone asks about the cause of my father’s death. He is 98 years old! Isn’t that age alone enough to be convincing?
  Not long after my father fell, I rushed to see him. Amy and I flew over from New York with my partner Hugh, and Gretchen and Paul joined us at Springmore. When we arrived, the others were already dying. There was a large dark blue scar on his forehead. He leaned against the head of the bed, and the whole person was thin and out of shape, a bit like a small doll sold in a store. He closed his eyes and opened his mouth, and a layer of foam could be seen between his lips.
  ”Dad?” Amy asked.
  The nurse came in and pushed his leg. “Mr. Sedaris? Lou? Your family is coming to see you.” The nurse looked at us, then turned to our father. “That’s probably what happened behind him.” She pushed his leg again. “Mr. Sedaris?”
  His father’s only response was to gasp.
  ”He looks fine,” Amy said, moving a chair to the side of the bed.

The Sedaris: Lisa, David and Lou (front row); Paul, Amy, Sharon and Gretchen (back row)

  I murmured in my heart: “Who is this compared to? Who else is he in better condition than? If you google ‘old man dying’, I’m sure you will see the same photo as my father lying on the hospital bed. He’s skinny and skinny, with no consciousness and only moaning.”
  I always felt that if I sat on the edge of the bed and focused all my attention on the critically ill, he would be gone in a short time. I even think there is a bright side to scenes like this. Thinking of this, I sat aside with a dignified expression, watching my father’s chest bob up and down irregularly. Occasionally, his hands shook slightly, as if to deliver the final message. His oxygen tube fell off. I thought of putting it back in, but I didn’t. After all, there was snot on it, so let the nurse come. 20 minutes later, Gretchen walked out of the ward, and not long after, Hugh and Paul went out one after another. I went out to find them and found them lying and chatting on rocking chairs in the outdoor courtyard. Halfway through the conversation, Gretchen took out a palm-sized black book from her pouch. “Here.” She handed me the book, “I found it at my father’s house a few days ago, and I left it for you.”
  I thought it was a super-cut pocket Bible, but I left The editor considers important parts. After I got it, I realized that I was wrong, this is actually an address book. I thought to myself, “This must have been what he used before he moved to Syracuse. You can tell by looking at the handwriting. After he moved to Syracuse, he wrote all capital letters, but this one has only the first letter.”
  I opened the address book, It was found that the names, addresses and phone numbers of about 50 people were recorded, most of them were women, and many women had their characteristics noted beside their names.
  Faith Ellie – so serious!
  Beryl Davis – The Ideal Type!
  Dorothy Castle – Brain Short Circuit.
  Edna Hallenbeck – Wow!
  Helen Vasto – Gorgeous!
  Pat Smith – in great shape! ! !
  Mary Hobart – Senior!
  Helen Sampson – superb! !
  Arlene Knickelburke – Appearances can be deceiving.
  Frederica Montagu – Lovely!
  Patty O’Day – Beauty! ! ! Have a personality.
  Ann Quinlan – Nothing but body! ! The brain is empty.
  I went back to the ward and looked at my father, who was still sleeping. I can’t help but wonder what happened between him and these women. What does he mean by “advanced”? A few hours later, I chatted with Hugh about it in the car. I asked, “Do you think Patty O’Day and Dorothy Castle would remember him if they were still alive?”
  ”It depends on what happened between them.” Hugh said, “Okay. Come on, next time you see Dad face to face and ask him.”
  ”There is no next time.”
  Xio frowned, “How do you know? He survived last time.”
| Father passed away |

  Six days later, the hospital called and said my father had lost the ability to eat and the doctor had started on morphine. At the time, my sister Lisa and her husband Bob were staying at my house, along with my friend Ronnie and Hugh’s friend Carol. That night, we went to the restaurant for dinner together. “Dad might die while we eat,” I said as I walked out the door. It was a hot and humid night, even though it was spring, it was hotter than summer.
  ”David!” Hugh rebuked.
  ”I wasn’t expecting him to go,” I told him. “I was just predicting.”
  It turned out I was right. We had just finished our hors d’oeuvres when Lisa got a call. The restaurant environment was noisy, and she went out to answer the phone. After a few minutes, I walked out of the restaurant to ask her what was going on. She saw me and said, “Dad died.”
  Lisa was in charge of contacting Paul, and I was in charge of contacting everyone else. We may spend our entire lives wondering when we will receive a call like this, and where we will be at the moment we receive the call. I know it’s not a small responsibility to call someone to inform you of something like this, but you know it when you call, and the more you call and the more voicemails you get, the harder it is for you to remain solemn. To be honest, I got really bored by the end.
  I couldn’t get in touch with Gretchen at all, and it was the next morning by the time I got in touch with her. We chatted for a while and then hung up. She called me back a few hours later and she sounded in a trance. “I’ve been fooling around for hours,” she said.
  ”I’ve heard this reaction is normal,” I told her.
  ”…I might get a small inheritance!” she continued.
  For her, what I brought with me turned out to be good news.
  When my mother, Sharon, passed away, it was very sad for several of our siblings. Those days were the saddest days of our lives. But it was different when our father died. When the waiter brought the bill, we were all chatting and chatting about an interesting variety show. Why can we talk about other topics so easily? Maybe it’s because my father is getting older and everyone is mentally prepared. Moreover, he is still Lou Sedaris in the end. He is quite gentle after 97 and a half years old, but unfortunately it has been so many years before that.

 A month before my father had a stroke, Amy and I had pre-selected photos for the obituary to avoid future fuss. Our favorite was a shot of him at his 50th birthday party, where he was wearing a headscarf, which was probably a large dishcloth, but the headband on it made it look like that. , coupled with his tanned skin and cross-fingered posture, other people don’t understand the situation, maybe they will treat him as a Saudi diplomat. We’re pretty happy with the other one, too, where he’s wearing a Willie Nelson-style fake braid. He is much more interesting in these two photos than he is in everyday life.
  When it was time to contact the newspaper, Lisa rejected our proposal, “No, I want to find a picture that will make people recognize him at a glance.” She finally chose a picture taken by her father when she was 96 years old. It looks a bit like an ID photo of an elderly university. The final obituary was also written with no features, to put it bluntly, it was similar to a resume.
| Die once, toss three times |

  There are so many things going on, contacting the funeral home, cleaning my father’s room, contacting his bank and lawyer, everything is very troublesome. Not to mention that we had to hold his funeral in a Greek Orthodox church as he wished, which meant we had to buy a coffin to put him in, and couldn’t be cremated.
  Most people I know choose funeral briefings, my British friend Andrew chose body donation. He said: “I read a report before that a medical student used the intestines of an elderly woman as a jump rope. I was shocked at first, but then I thought, when the body was donated, I was gone, and there was another What’s there to worry about?” My father was the exact opposite, he not only had to do it, but he had to torment us three times.
  We’re going to have a funeral in Raleigh first, and a week later we’re going to take his body to his hometown of Kirtland for burial. 40 days after that, we will have a memorial service to remember him, and the purpose of this memorial service may be to tell us: “You don’t want to forget me, not for a minute.”
  Paul lives in Raleigh, Gretchen Working in Raleigh, it was very convenient for them to go to a funeral in Raleigh, but they stayed with us in a luxury hotel. On the day we went to church for the funeral, the hotel staff thought we were going to a wedding when they saw how happy we were. “Can you take a group photo for us?” Amy handed the phone to the doorman.
  Amy looked as if she was going to Satan’s ball. Her skirt was black, but the hem was short and the sleeves were ridiculously loose. Such an outfit certainly has nothing to do with words like “grief”. Paul is not much better, looking at his clothes, people who don’t know think he works in an ice cream shop.
  ”Dad’s coffin is cherry wood,” Lisa told us as we sat in the front row of the church. “By the way, I’m wearing underwear for him today, not a diaper. Of course, there are pants on the outside of the underwear. .”
  ”Well…very good,” we replied. We were all thinking that she might have chosen one of the ugliest coffins in the world. Two staff members in formal attire pushed the coffin lid halfway open and we could see the part above the father’s chest. We were surprised to find that he was surprisingly thin, his hands resting on his chest, and his hair and complexion were horribly white, reminding me of white Agaricus bisporus.
  “The tradition of opening coffins at funerals is so weird,” I told them after the ceremony. “If I were to be shown this way after I die, I would at least ask myself to face down. That way I only have to worry about mine. The back of my head.” Honestly, I’d much rather be cremated after death and put in a simple pine urn, with Hugh helping me simply draw some patterns on the outside of the box.
  There is a state park near the hotel, and Amy, Gretchen, and I plan to go to the park together. It was a hot day, and the sun was unbearably hot. After entering the park, we could finally catch our breath, with the lush foliage above our heads, and the scorching sun couldn’t get in at all. When people stay in the forest, the temperature seems to be ten degrees cooler than outside, and the funeral held not long ago seems to have passed a long time. We were walking and chatting when Amy’s phone suddenly rang, she picked it up and the first thing she said was, “Hey, Dad!”
  Her tone was very natural, and for a moment I really thought this funeral was a prank , what was in the coffin was nothing but a double, our father was still alive, and my inner response to that was, “I’m going!”
  Many people at the funeral that morning said “Sedaris does have a personality.” Once a very difficult person is over 85, people will say that he has a personality, and Hitler and Idi Amin would have been described as such if they had lived to that age. However, as a son of man, I always have to pretend, so every time I say, “Yes, he is really unique.”
  In the past, parents mostly died in their 60s and 70s, and their children were around 45 years old. Now that people are living longer and longer, a person may be a grandparent, but his parents are still alive. I know an old grandmother whose mother died when she was 80. 80 years old! This is so scary in my opinion. It is too awkward for a person to be a child for so long. This sentence may be too heavy, but we can at least say that this sentence holds true in the context of the discordant relationship between the two generations.
| Fathers who like to provoke their children |

  My father would go out of his way to hurt me as long as he had the energy. I could only endure it when I was young. Later, I wrote about my experience and I could make money with it, which was a real consolation to me. Of course, on my talk show, I was happier when the audience was laughing backwards and forwards because of his shyness and arrogance.

  ”I think it’s not easy for him.” Hugh once told me, “No one is born like this. He’s so mean, it must be because of what he’s been through.” Hugh makes a lot of sense, but we simply can’t understand In his past, when we asked him about his youth, he would just say, “What’s the use of you asking?” Between the
  funerals, I remembered my invitation to speak at Princeton’s undergraduate commencement. I find this kind of speech difficult to write, at least for me. Most of the time, the audience was already dead tired, the weather was so hot, and they had to wear heavy black academic uniforms and big cushion-like hats. I wanted to say no, but on second thought, I called my dad and I said if he wanted to go with me, I would go. He agreed, and it seemed that the Ivy League was still very attractive to him. To be fair, though, Ivy League also appeals to me. Harvard, Princeton, and Yale graduates are always reluctant to mention their alma mater directly, turning around and saying things like “I went to Boston” or “I spent time in New Jersey.” If I were a graduate of this top school, I would definitely find a way to mention my alma mater in every chat. When someone asks, “Would you like hot coffee or iced coffee?” I’d say, “I always liked hot coffee when I was at Columbia, but let’s change it up today.”
  Before graduation, we had dinner with the president. My father said to the principal, “It’s my son you’re inviting today, but it’s my daughter that you should be inviting. I promise you, the audience will love her a lot. I have a video of her, and if you’re interested, I’ll It can be mailed to you. You’ll know when you see it! You should have asked for Amy, not David.” On
  our drive back to New York, I asked, “That’s what you came with me for? ”
  Never mind that kind of thing,” he said. “The principal has a right to know that Amy is the better person.”
  I was fifty years old and immune to that kind of talk, but it shows that until At that time, he would still belittle me. I never blame Amy, and it’s not her fault. When I do art shows, he’ll say things like, “It’s Gretchen who’s really talented, not David.” And I certainly don’t blame Gretchen for something like that.
  Father has been playing this way all his life with us, never understanding the bond between his children. Of course, without his father, there would be no ties to us. As long as he is alive, our ties will be there. It is often said that once a parent dies, the family will be separated, a small dispute will become an irreconcilable conflict, and the children may be stricken with blood because of disputes over inheritance.
  As American author Saul Bellow wrote: “The experience of losing a parent is like hitting a car with a flat glass. The glass is smashed, and you realize that there was a glass there. For many years after that, you have been picking up Shards of glass.” I think I have already picked up a large piece of glass that is easy to pick up, but I am afraid that the glass slag will not be picked up in a while, and I may have to spend the rest of my life doing this. Amy, Gretchen, and I stood cool in the shade of the park, and at that moment, I could feel these little bits hiding under my skin.