The last ride

And when I die, and when I’m gone, there’ll be no chance that anyone will actually think of this:

It’s not that I don’t like funeral processions, it’s I don’t like the inconvenience to everyone else that’s not part of the procession, the danger of traffic and the fact there are people with crummy attitudes, bad vision and distracted that are driving without paying attention to traffic lights. Even with a cop, it’s still dangerous; especially for the cop.

So, lets have them at 3:00 am. Traffic is light, most of the drunks have gone home and there’s not a great need for a special escort.

The person putatively being honored certainly wouldn’t care one way or another. And I know the sight of a funeral procession has a dispiriting effect on me as a driver: all that there-but-for-the-grace-of-God stuff, plus the fact that I’m suddenly ten minutes late for wherever I was going.

At least it’s better than the usual political motorcade, where you know that you’re being inconvenienced for the sake of pomp and/or circumstance.


  1. Jeffro »

    3 September 2013 · 8:28 pm

    In the end, I’ve never minded giving someone’s mourning family some respect by giving them the road for a few seconds.

  2. mysterian »

    3 September 2013 · 8:31 pm

    > And when I die, and when I’m gone

  3. CGHill »

    3 September 2013 · 8:57 pm

    And Laura Nyro before them.

  4. mysterian »

    3 September 2013 · 9:57 pm

    I should have known it was a trick allusion!

  5. fillyjonk »

    4 September 2013 · 7:09 am

    What Jeffro said. I try to say a little prayer for the family, even when it’s not someone I know.

    And as someone who has been a mourner who had to do the ride-in-the-procession thing in the past, well, if it was someone close to me, it would make it so much worse to have to be up and dressed in the cold (or sticky and too-warm, if it’s an Oklahoma summer) dark night just to see them off one last time. Just so other folks aren’t inconvenienced….

  6. McGehee »

    4 September 2013 · 8:24 am

    There have been funeral processions that irritated me, such as the one that occupied a middle lane on I-85 and effectively eliminated both that lane and the two on its left from being usable until it passed — which it was doing at well under the posted limit. At the time I was insufficiently familiar with alternate routes thereabouts to know how to escape. As you might imagine, I have addressed that shortcoming.

    Then there was the non-procession driver who stopped dead in traffic in front of me because the funeral procession going the other way was stopped for a traffic light. The best part? I was hauling smelly garbage to the dump and was halted right next to the guest of honor.

  7. McGehee »

    4 September 2013 · 8:26 am

    Just to be clear about the second event described above: the showstopper in my lane had an empty and stoplight-free highway in front of him. The procession was on the other side of the double-yellow.

  8. canadienne »

    4 September 2013 · 9:48 am

    What Jeffro and Fillyjonk said. Come on, people, it’s just a little respect. Funeral processions seem to be getting less common anyway now that many are opting for cremation.

    Didn’t know about the Laura Nyro (you must have an encyclopaedia of popular music in your head) version of “When I Die” but I now have all of Blood Sweat and Tears’ earworms (including “Spinning Wheel” and “Lucretia McEvil” running through my mind, and am slightly cursing you.

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