How did we come to this point? A funeral? Wasn’t life all hunky-dory? And just like that…we choose to end it. Let’s take a few steps back before we can come back to this point. I don’t understand this… Why the devil do you corporate fellows take a bunch of people, fly them down from all over the world, take them to a 5 star spa resort on the outskirts of town, only to have them locked up in a conference room discussing company strategy for 11-12 hours a day? Why? Can’t you do that over a video conferencing tool? And it’s not just my company….it’s almost every darn corporate entity.
“We’re having a strategy meeting in Barcelona” (Not my company….this is some fictitious company) New employee, probably fresh out of B-school thinks, “ Oh wow, we’re going to Barcelona for a strategy meeting. Think of all the Spanish women there. And I’m actually being considered to give an opinion. But I can go sightseeing later. Maybe get some flamenco dancing classes too” Employee flies down there with floral shirts, shorts, sandals and a single suit, only to discover that the suit is all he would be wearing all day while sitting in a board room listening to more ‘experienced’ men talk. And that could not have been done here at the company board room because???? Simple….it sounds cool. We don’t want our employees feeling unhappy.
While it’s great to be in these meetings because you do get to learn a lot from experienced people talking about issues regarding the company, and also it’s great to see so many different points of view on the matter. But the point I want to make is, why do it in a fancy spa resort if you’re not going to give me the time use the spa???? And after an entire day of staring at ppts made by fellow MBA grads who love to put up tables with entries of font size 8, just so that no one really bothers to read the numbers and instead concentrate on the fancy graph, one does tend to get a little tired. And it was through the end of the day of one of these sessions where the presenter was talking about something (not allowed to tell you….corporate stuff) that my mind thought,’ Death must be like this…and the glare from the screen must be that white light that everyone imagines’. Jump to next station, ‘ If I died today…like right now…maybe because of a seizure or something…what would people say at my funeral?’
So…what would people say at my funeral? I imagine the pall-bearers would say,’ Why couldn’t he have lost some weight?’. Or some very smart friend, who is there because it’s socially correct, saying, ‘ Now there will be more food in the world for the children of Somalia’. Besides that, I really have not a clue to what anyone would have to say at my funeral. I don’t think I bear that much of an importance to anyone’s life that one would have anything to say, no real dependencies on me…except for the guys at Corner House and Purple Haze who’ve lost a good customer. So what am I leaving behind? And imagining what one’s funeral would be like is probably a good way to evaluate one’s life. What is it really worth to anyone?
I know some schools, as part of an exercise makes you write your own eulogy. I remember very sincerely writing my eulogy, which I won’t share obviously. And to be very honest life has not quite turned out one bit the way I imagined it. So what does one do now? This is all too depressing. Thankfully, before my head could explode, they announced the one part I was looking forward to during the sessions, “Ladies and Gentlemen….the bar is open!”
What would you say about me if you had to attend my funeral today?