The story goes that the above quote is what W.C. Fields wanted for his epitaph. Alas, humorless folk left him stuck with the mere legend of ‘1880 – 1946.’ That’s entirely too dreary and prosaic for a man who epitomized anarchic humor in his work. BTW, if you have never seen The Bank Dick, go thou forth and have some good belly laughs.
I’ve long had a fondness for a good epitaph, or even a particularly ironic one. For instance, Bonnie Parker’s headstone reads:
As the flowers are all made sweeter
by the sunshine and the dew,
so this old world is made brighter
by the lives
of folks like you.
That’s right. Bonnie of Bonnie and Clyde is memorialized on her grave as someone who made the world a brighter, happier place. Well okay, then.
Then there are the ones that are unquestionably appropriate. For instance, George Carlin’s headstone reads:
“#$%& @!&% #?!$% @?*&!@^#!* @*$! &!%?”
What could possibly be a better way to remember the man who taught us about the seven dirty words you cannot say on television?
It’s also impossible to argue with Jack Lemmon’s epitaph:
As for me, well, if someone ever wants to erect a monument to my existence, I can think of few more fitting words than those on a pin a friend of mine gave me a couple years back: Come to the dark side. We have cookies.
Either that or Douglas Adams’ words about Earth: Mostly Harmless.
As per usual, I can’t decide. I like them both.
So what about all of you? How would you like to be remembered in the great hereafter? What words would you like future generations to puzzle over concerning you? Is there an epitaph you’ve seen or heard of that makes you laugh or makes you think? Share with the class!