Tuesday, June 30, 2015

It's official...I'm an idiot

There are times in life when something happens which calls into question the actual level of your intelligence. After a while you get to the point where you develope a sense of how smart you are or at least how smart you think you are. You do this primarily by comparing yourself to those around you. While I may not be as smart as Steve Jobs, I'm pretty sure I'm a little sharper than the guy who rings up my toiletries purchase at CVS. I may not have the cognitive capabilities of Stephen Hawking, but I could probably win a battle of wits with the tattooed woman who cuts my hair at Sports Clips.

But then last night happens and you're just not sure anymore. 

As many of you know, yesterday...the 29th of June...was the third anniversary of my Mother's death. I was naturally feeling a bit down when I settled in to my recliner to read last night. I decided to find the picture of my parent's headstone/grave plaque on my cell phone that my sister Paula had sent me a while back. It had taken forever for us to get the thing finalized, and the cemetery people had finally installed it a couple of months ago. We had to order Dad's from the Veterans Administration because of his military service, so it had been a long, drawn out affair. But it had turned out well. I actually went over and looked at it on the first anniversary of Dad's death a few weeks ago, my first ever solo visit to the place. I remember thinking that it was quite beautiful. 

When I pulled the picture up on my phone, I was stunned. It was like an outer body experience. I looked closer, enlarging the picture to its maximum size to be sure I hadn't lost my mind. But there was no escaping the fact that I am an idiot. For there on my iPhone was the unmistakable evidence for all to see:

                                          Betty Dixon Dunnevant
                                      Sep 3 1930                  June 20 2012

Surely, I couldn't possibly have told them the wrong date of death. It's got to be their fault for writing it down wrong. I tried to recall the meeting with the strange woman at the cemetery. I remember how difficult it was deciding what four words we would chose to eulogized her. I remember the computer screen where the woman was typing in everything into a template to make sure it would fit. There's no way I could have told her the 20th when it was the 29th, right? Nobody is that stupid.

So, I will go over there today and find out if it was me or the pros at Westhampton Memorial Park. Meanwhile, somewhere in heaven, I would like to think that Mom is getting a good laugh out of this. She never liked cemeteries anyway. The nerve of those people trying to cheat her out of nine days! The weird thing about all of this is that I have looked at the picture of this thing at least twenty times, even went to see it in person and stared at it for fifteen minutes...and never noticed the mistake until last night. How could I have missed it?