Doomstead Diner Menu => Collapse Narratives => Topic started by: azozeo on February 19, 2020, 09:25:48 AM

Title: What Happens To Your Stuff When You Die?
Post by: azozeo on February 19, 2020, 09:25:48 AM

Inside the poignant, bizarre, and necessary world of tending to the belongings of the deceased.


We park the box truck in the dead man’s yard like a six-ton hearse and knock on the front door. A disheveled middle-aged woman answers, still in her pajamas.

“I forgot you were coming,” she says, leaning out the door to see the truck. Emblazoned on the side: William J. Jenack: Estate Appraisers & Auctioneers.

“I’m a mess,” she says. “My mother’s dying.”

We ask if she wants us to come back another time.

“No, please come in.”

She’s been living in the dead man’s house for the last two years, a white Victorian-style home with blue shutters and ivy reaching up the side. She’d known the dead man, Stanley, her whole life. He was on Broadway and she used to sit in the garden as a little girl and watch him sing show tunes. Before he passed, she promised to take care of his home, which is decorated like Stanley’s still around. His photos hang on the wall; open songbooks are displayed on the piano.

You learn a lot about a dead man rifling through his house – lifting his furniture, clearing his walls, going through his closets, finding out which psalms are dog-eared in his Bible – searching for anything that might be worth selling at auction. It feels like trespassing.


https://getpocket.com/explore/item/when-you-die-i-ll-be-there-to-take-your-stuff?utm_source=pocket-newtab