Friday, August 1, 2008

Disco Hearse


Late one evening I had to drive to the big city (about 90 miles) to pick up a body at the VA Hospital. Everything went smoothly and I was soon on the Interstate headed home about 1:30 AM. Did I mention that it was a pitch black night with no hint of a moon or any other light? That I was facing about 45 minutes tooling down the highway with only my headlights and dashboard lights to keep me company?

It didn’t take long before a still, quiet voice was talking to me. Is he really dead? Is he alive and trying to get up! Is he dead and trying to get up? Are you feeling lucky? Want to turn on the overhead light and take a look? My mind is a sadistic bastard and loves practical jokes as much as I do. I held out for a little while, telling myself that I was just being stupid. Nobody in the back of the hearse was going anywhere. Well, I could check just once, quiet my fears and get it all out of my system. I flipped on the light, turned to look in the back and saw that the body was right where I left it. I laughed at myself for being so stupid.

The voice in my head started back at it again. You have to admire persistence. I reckoned that I could crank up the radio and drown it out. Didn’t work; the voice kept at it. Since I had already turned the light on once, it was much easier to do it a second time. There was still no movement in the back. A few minutes later I had the radio blaring, voices in my head (my mind has lots of friends) and a crack addiction-like need to turn on the light and look. What had started as a single thought had turned into a overwhelming need to flip on the light and look. To someone standing beside the highway I, in my hearse, had to look like some freakish DJ in a mobile discothèque from hell barreling down the road with only one dancer laid out on the dance floor. Lights flashing, music blaring and a DJ frantically trying to coerce the dancer off his cot to get up and boogey.

I have never been so freaking happy to see the lights of a city in my life. I still have nightmares.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I've never had to go on a long distance removal (i'm sure my time will come), but my co-worker has had to travel the 3 hour drive to Chicago to make pick ups from the airport. I'm sure it is creepy riding alone with a body for that long. I recently went to pick up ashes from the crematory and one was of a baby and I was compelled to hold it on my lap because it was so light I didnt want it to slide around the back of the van.

Anna

Karen said...

Why not just set him up in the front seat with you like regular Joe, arm up resting along the back of the seat kind of turned a little towards you as if to make conversation.... oh wait... do they have clothes on at this point.... uummm, nevermind.

RhabbKnotte' said...

Karen, I like the way You Think!

RhabbKnotte'

Jak Manson said...

What kind of funeral home provides disco hearses? That is very interesting and I have never seen something that is quiet like that. Not something that I have seen in the years that I have been alive. Just this is something that is very uncommon.
Jak Manson | http://www.prittsfuneralhome.com/what-we-do/funeral-services

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