Saturday, August 18, 2007

My Brother's Grave is the Shit

See those flowers? There he is.

I visited my brother's grave today with my dad. Isn't it beautiful? It's in an old section of the Hollywood Hills Forest Lawn Cemetery, at the top of the same hill my friend Julie and I would go have picnics on when we worked this shitty telemarketing job nearby at the Hollywood Bowl. Normally, it's hard to get space in the older parts of the cemetery because everything's been sold. But there are these people who call themselves plot brokers, and they can make shit happen.

Yes, you heard me. There's an actual job in this world where you broker a deal between someone who has an extra grave on their hands and someone else who is graveless. I don't quite understand it myself - how many people are walking around out there with extra graves? How do you end up with too many graves to begin with? Are there really so many unwanted graves that they can support a whole profession? - but after meeting with two plot brokers (grave slingers? tomb agents? crypt keepers?), we found the absolutely most perfect spot in the whole wide world. It's quiet and peaceful and back against these wild LA hills, and today I laid down in the grass and the sun shone and I felt my brother's body there through the earth.

Here I am sitting next to Kyle. There's no plaque yet, so his grave is just marked by flowers:

And here's the view from his grave. That's my dad in his Panama hat. And that's his Prius:

The best - and weirdest - thing about all of this is that the plot we bought is called a companion plot. Which means it's 12 ft deep and someone else can be buried there, too. It's like a duplex. So my mother's going in. And yes, asking your mother if we can buy two graves, instead of one, so that she can buried on top of her son is just as uncomfortable as you'd think. Luckily, she was receptive.


ShannonO said...

My good friend went plot-hunting with her parents the other day. They bought three duplex plots, one for her and her husband, one for her parents, and one for her unmarried sister. Sister may or may not be married, and may or may not choose to be laid to rest there, so they could have anywhere from 0 to 2 plots left over to be brokered.

I discovered that plots could be brokered within weeks of reading this post. :-/

Meandering Mel said...

Wow, that's kind of weird.

When I was born, my grandmother gave my parents a plot next to the rest of the family. (My grandmother was a bit... strange...)

Sorry for your loss.