I was driving along I-95 in Connecticut when I spotted the billboard for “Direct Cremation”.

cremation with confidenceTraffic was just slow enough for me to read a few lines of the pitch. It promised no fuss, no delays, no middle men, red tape … and a money back guarantee if unhappy with service. I wasn’t sure who’d get the money back.

I started laughing over Marty Robbins and “El Paso” playing on the oldies CD. I was still laughing when Marty’s gunfighter died in the arms of his young sweetheart. Instead of a tearful funeral and the strains of “Streets of Laredo”, maybe the gunfighter should have had direct cremation. No muss, no fuss, no mournful boot hill goodbye.

Direct cremation may be the latest answer to a world of violence. Mob hits, drive by killings, gang bang slayings with collateral damage. Stressed out serial killers and contract button men doing “jobs.” The bodies just keep piling up. Medical Examiners are overworked and cemeteries are running out of room. What to do?

Direct cremation!

Speaking of overworked medical examiners, I’m reminded of a story I covered in Boston.


Goes back 40 plus years. The county medical examiner was, if you’ll excuse me, “under the gun” with some of his findings. He didn’t look like Quincy, Ducky, or even the sexy Lacey from the “Castle” series. He was a sad, tired, bleary-eyed man in the autumn of his years.

Your intrepid reporter was on the scene. The M.E. was momentarily diverted so I could check the autopsy lab and the morgue. I found the controversial corpse and made a cursory examination.

I confronted the M.E. about his findings on the case. He insisted the victim was stabbed to death. I asked him about the several large bullet holes I’d just found. He was speechless.

Direct cremation would have avoided a lot of controversy and embarrassing questions. It’s an idea whose time has come.

Categories: Anecdote, Boston, Garry Armstrong, Humor

Tags: , , , , , ,

46 replies

  1. That’s the best laugh of the day.Thank you!


  2. What a great post. I laughed so much – nearly died laughing actually.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is a hot topic.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Interesting prospect and I enjoyed your ‘murder mystery in the morgue’: case solved! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sounds great, better than a stone slab with just the name and dates. It is just what we need, a guarantee that the job is done perfectly. Any rebates involved?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Definitely the way to go. I can’t be having with all this “indirect cremation” nonsense. Presumably they just take a flame thrower and a can of petrol to the crime scene. No muss, no fuss.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. How does this work? Do you need to die first, or just line up? Can you put other people on the list?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I nearly died laughing over this. Have you heard about composting? It’s the latest thing. It’s done professionally and leaves no cabon foot print. (sorry but I’m still laughing profusely)

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I actually had not heard the term Direct Cremation before most of the funerals I’ve been to in the last couple of decades have been cremations and it is my departure of choice. Neglected cemetery plots are sad. Now that I understand and have seen that we do these here in Australia too it sound like not a bad idea at all. I don’t want a lot of fuss over my passing but I would like someone to make sure I’m really dead. It could all be a bit Monty Python otherwise.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Direct cremation is the solution for the future I suppose. I always thought funeral costs and wedding costs were ridiculously high. A trip through the wedding chapel or justice of peace solved this and is the perfect solution for folks with not too much money. Same goes for cremations now. I bet the percentage of cremations compared to old fashioned funerals is up by a mile since the economy took a nose dive. I do wonder about the money back guarantee 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Spontaneous combustion? Kinda like the Rapture is ‘sposed to be, but with a big POOF of flames and smoke… and perhaps mirrors? 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I’m ready. Do they take credit cards?

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Do they have a drive thru as well for busy people who’d like to get cremation on the go?

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Direct cremation: and perhaps – all in the comfort of your own home??? Love it, Garry.

    Liked by 1 person

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