Tag Archives: condoleances

Inappropriate strangers; mourning in a small town.

It is hard for me to decribe just how angry I get when strangers approach me about my father’s death. And by strangers I mean people that know of me, but they have yet to have a proper conversation with me. The kind of people that you meet at the grocery store and at work all the time and you feel a need to smile and nod at them just for that reason, but really, you have no clue as to who those people really are. And then my dad dies in this freak accident while he was horsebackriding out in the countryside. Four months later I find myself in line at the register of the local supermarket when one of these strangers feels the need to turn around and actually start talking, or I should say monologing, about my dad’s death to me. So now, all people around me know that my dad died recently and they get these looks on their faces like they don’t really know how to behave anymore. They certainly do not want to get involved in this entirely awkward moment, so they opt to try and avoid any eye-contact with me or the monologuer. This woman just goes on and on about how she, sort of really but not really, grew up with my dad, which was entirely impossible as she was at least a decade younger then him. I just could not stop fake smiling. And all I really wanted to do was bash her head against something just to make the talking stop. It was ruining my one day of the week off by being reminded of this horrible loss in my life, yet again. Meanwhile she kept going, trying to make me believe that there was a connection between us that validated this annoyance from her towards me.

And then the cassier suddenly greets this talking woman, prompting her to shift her entire focus, mid-sentence, back on doing groceries. The talking woman pays and takes off, not even saying goodbye. And just like that, you’re back to being strangers, and I’m left with this miserable memory of my dad’s passing lingering in my head again.

All I wanted of this day was a little bit of peace and quiet, nothing more, nothing less.Instead, I have had to endure another day of being tormented by the memory of my father’s death which in turn remind me of my mom’s death and all related misery that came with both of them.

So I urge all those people who don’t really know me to just keep on smiling and saying absolutely nothing to me. I really do prefer that over the fake condoleances because I am fully aware of the fact that we really don’t have a connection that necessitates, or validates for that matter, any condoleances from you to me and vice versa.

Have a good day and just move the fuck on.

My beloved father Jan Vermeulen † 20th april 2011


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