Monday, March 16, 2009

From The Life's So Short Department...

What age do you have to get before you start scanning the obituaries with more than casual interest?

Whatever it is, I'm there.

Not that I peruse the entire alphabetized know, the freebie section. But I DO check out the ones set apart by pictures and column-length copy framed by heavy borders.

So on this particular Sunday, it was a photo that initially caught my eye. I gave the face only momentary attention, not registering a connection with the dark curly hair, the horn-rimmed glasses, nor the smiling moustached man staring back at me.

Next, I read the name--not a particularly unusual one--and the age: 70. In other words, obviously not in the realm of someone I'd have known.

But, wait.

I studied the photo again...combined it with the name...let the subconscious do its thing...and CRAP.

Sure enough.

An old boyfriend. Someone I'd dated back when I was about 28 to his 43. Yikes. How'd he get to be 70? Worse, how'd he get to dead?

I was curious about how his life had unfolded over the years. Had he married? Had children? Been happy?

In order to gather pieces of the puzzle, I put Google on the case. Bottom line: yes, no, and yes. Most fascinating of all? He'd become a thoroughbred horse owner--to the point where he went back to school in his mid-sixties to obtain formal training. I even came across a post of his on a site devoted to Seabiscuit--the passion in his words were both inspiring and sweet.

Anyway, a life well-lived, I think. Good for him.

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