I’ve never been much on open-casket funerals. Call me a killjoy but I’d rather see loved ones when they’re alive. If they’re not still alive – which is why I am at their funeral – I can quite easily remember them from their vital days.
I have attended a few of the aforementioned and the one thing that always struck me about them is that the dead really do look, well, dead. Slap on the pancake and lipstick, but they still look dead.
Also, as a former reporter, I have seen dead people who have died tragically in accidents and the like. Never pleasant but again, the dead people really do look dead. Dead people on TV shows never do. They are always rosy-cheeked and the dead girls, for example, still look rather darn pretty. Dead people don’t look pretty. They don’t look ugly, either. They mainly look dead.
As a consequence of my feelings on the matter, I just don’t get mummification. I have seen some of the Egyptian mummies in the British Museum. They not only look dead, they also look pretty much the worse for wear down the millennia since, due to their perceived holiness, they were not destined to be interred in a respectful manner, but instead had to spend their eternity being gawked at by common Egyptians, and then later by boring Egyptologists and fat tourists from Dubuque. Actually, a lot of Egyptian mummies bear a remarkable resemblance to the late John D. Rockefeller.
But, in the mummification biz there is something that has always struck me as curious. OK, the dead Egyptian guys were deemed holy and to be worshipped. But why do commies gravitate towards mummification?
They ostensibly believe in a classless society, and they aren’t big on the God thing. So why do they try to turn their dead leaders into demigods that will attract pilgrims to their shrines for eternity. By the dictates of Marx we’re all the same. So, why isn’t every schmo entitled to mummification? Well, it was Orwell who suggested some pigs are more equal than others, but that was his cynical view of Marxian hypocrisy.
Latest contender to soon be enshrined is Venezuelan dictator Cesar Chavez. Those left-of-centre may object to my usage of ‘dictator’ to describe a guy some venerate as an icon, but I call dictators as I sees ‘em. It’s a bit like people who vacation in Cuba and convince themselves they aren’t having fun-in-the-sun in a police state. Anyway, those are my views and this is my blog.
In that Chavez joins other notable mummified commies like Lenin, Stalin (until he fell into deserved disfavor and got relegated to the underground), Mao, Ho Chi Minh, and probably Fidel ere long.
I might want to visit Venezuela someday, but I don’t think Cesar’s corpse will be high on my agenda’s must-sees.
And I prefer to get my doses of Marx from Groucho.