Friday, February 15, 2013

A Face for a Funeral

As it was, I was cruising through the Brisbane CBD when I happened to perceive an immense curiosity. Personally I was too mortified to even think of capturing a digital image to show you, so you're actually just going to utilise some brain tissue and IMAGINE IT. It was an amply sized billboard advertising a funeral service. Upon the left of it, was an elderly lady posed with both hands underneath in an angel pose, with a transcendent smile paused on her lips, and her eyes closed as if she was dreaming of better days.

Usually, along with the rest of the human population I would think nothing of it and continue on through my day. Yet it just so happened that the particular photo they used of the eerily tranquil woman provoked my brain into multiple question mode. What was she thinking when she posed for it? How did this company sell the position to her? Was she a past client of theirs? What are the legal and moral ethics of utilising the image of a potentially deceased person for a billboard? Would that mean that they would not owe her any funds for her modelling services due to her untimely death? Holy fuck, was she even alive when the photograph was captured?

What is simply an image of a sleepy elderly lady had potentially disturbed me for life. Assuming that she consented to the use of the image, what would make the poor old dear agree to the whole situation? Yes please, I would like to represent a satisfied corpse, who was entirely placated by my excellent funeral services. I mean, yes please I would like to represent a service for dead people and alive people who knew dead people. It's not completely jocular is it? Imagine this person disclosing to her friends over some dry Arnotts biccies and cups of Earl Grey about how she was a model.

"Oh yes Marjorie, I saw you on the billboard in front of St. Stephens"-
"Yes Gladys. I'm a model now."
"How marvellous!"

Yes how bloody brilliant, Marjorie is now a model of those who passed on to God knows where. It frightens me that someone would be so openly accepting to include their face onto an entity such as this. I keep striving to resolve it in my mind, but all that results are more questions, that refuse to peacefully fade away (much unlike Marjorie). And then, there in bold is the disdainful question of why do I care so much. Perhaps, I would like to think that none of this is foreseeable in my own future. That I will never become a dreary angel of death. All the same, maybe it is the most reckless and audacious thing that I could do as an elder. Messing with death- isn't that something that young people defiantly do whilst they still feel invincible? I guess that this is just a way to present both society and the Grim Reaper with the middle finger, before finally departing off into the sunset that is the afterlife. I honestly do think I could elatedly rest in peace with that in mind.


  1. I wonder if Marjorie got any future modeling gigs post this billboard?

    1. I wonder why I assumed her name was Marjorie? So many questions keep materialising, and yet I don't think we'll ever know the answers.