Cremate

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Cremate: (v) to reduce a dead body to ashes by fire

I grew up with a “Kellogg’s” approach to death and burial.

This was more or less taking your loved one, sticking him or her in a box, sealing the lid and tucking the flake away.

All the funerals I went to had gorgeous cereal boxes. They all ended up at a gravesite where the container was lowered into the ground, covered over and marked with a stone that insisted in granite that this individual once lived.

So when my thirteen-year-old son passed away from complications due to a hit-and-run accident, I was far from any home we had, traveling on the road. I immediately discovered that those boxes ain’t cheap.

Not only are they expensive, but they demand that you buy a plot of land—which is also extremely costly—and place your loved one in an area where you must to drive to visit.

Well, I realized I was not going to live in the community where my boy died, so I was offered the option of cremation. It was considerably less money. Also, at the end of the process, they handed over a box containing a sealed, plastic bag of dusty and ashy remains.

It was rather shocking. Opening the lid, I took a peek at the contents. It reminded me of when I was a kid and was given the job in late October of cleaning the fireplace out so we would be able to make a nice, cozy flame on cold, winter nights.

… Ashen, clingy powder that wanted to stick to your skin—or if you got it too close to your face and inhaled, could make you cough.

This was not my son. This didn’t represent his brief journey.

I thought to myself, maybe it’s a good thing. Instead of painting up something that’s dead and gone, burn it up, confirming that it will no longer be here.

I picked up the carton, put it in the back of our van, and we traveled with it for years—stuck in the corner near the wheel well.

At times I considered scattering the ashes, but there was no particular place that had more significance than another. Absent finding a resting ground for his soot, I felt more inclined to just keep him nearby.

Matter of fact, he’s still with us.

My younger son has taken him and lifted him up in honor … in a corner of the attic.


Subscribe to Jonathan’s Weekly Podcast

Good News and Better News

 

Crackle

Crackle: (v) to make slight, sudden, sharp noises, rapidly repeated

Long, long ago, when rock and roll was a baby boom and bellbottoms were considered normal wear, there was a cereal named Rice Krispies which lacked an identity. After all, it was just puffy rice, which, when sitting in a bowl of milk for more than twenty-eight seconds, turned into slush.

Something needed to be done.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

A young executive at the Kellogg’s Corporation noticed that when milk was first spilled onto the cereal, it made slight sounds, as the fluid gradually smothered the rice particles and drowned them, leaving them lifeless.

He believed he heard snap—and saw one of the rice particles leap from the bowl momentarily, giving the appearance of pop.

So he went to the ad executives and explained that the product could be marketed by referring to it as the “snap-pop cereal.”

The room frowned. What did “snap-pop” mean? How could this be personified? Who was going to eat a cereal that was going to snap at you, or pop off its opinion? The whole thing seemed doomed, until one young, female intern said, “They just need a third friend.”

This time the room scowled. No one had suggested there was a “they” involved, and certainly had not intimated that a friendship had been formed. Yet the man who had the original idea for “snap and pop” was so desperate to salvage his ego that he grabbed onto the notion and started looking for a third “sounder” to complete his trio.

The first ten ideas were horrible.

Snap, bubble and pop.

Snap, drip and pop.

Snap, sizzle and pop.

Snap, sneeze and pop.

Snap, whisper and pop.

Snap, clap and pop.

Snap, moan and pop.

Snap, giggle and pop.

Snap, wink and pop.

Snap, argue and pop.

Each possibility seemed to have the fragrance of failure.

Going home at the end of the day, the young executive was explaining his dilemma with the Rice Krispies to his family over dinner.

He was deflated.

He was discouraged.

He was ready to give up on the whole campaign.

Then his four-year-old daughter, who had opted not to eat liver and onions, but instead had grabbed a bowl of Rice Krispies, leaned her ear down to listen, and said, “Daddy? I hear a crackle.

The man nearly fainted. He had no idea his little daughter was even listening to the conversation, and he certainly was unaware that she knew the word “crackle.”

Or perhaps it was Divine Revelation, brought to him from the Mount of Advertising.

He didn’t care.

He took it to work the next day and the rest is cereal promotion history.

It became “Snap, Crackle and Pop.”

It was a Rice Krispies treat.

W-a-i-t…

 Donate Button


Subscribe to Jonathan’s Weekly Podcast

Good News and Better News