Friday, January 26, 2007

THE ONE LINE OBITS OF THE WEEK: Regular Programming resumes?


sixth ave., originally uploaded by patryfrancis.

I did not know these people. Aside from Art Buchwald, I never heard of them in their lifetimes. But like the others I've written about before in the one-line obits, they spoke to me in the final summary of their lives.

Robert Anton Wilson, Writer: "To Bob, everything was interesting."

Richard Boston: "The seven ages of Richard boston encompassed being a journalist, marathon runner, biographer, artist, movie extra, peacenik, and all round eccentric."

Peter Pendergrast, Artist: "He painted with an exuberance that was breathtaking, as if he was determined to reveal how the very planet was born.

Gracie Cole, Cornetist, Trumpeter and Bandleader: "She continued to play music in the nursing home until a few weeks before her death."

Art Buchwald: "Whether it's the best of times or the worst of times, it's the only time you've got."



Now can I just say how happy I'll be to open my blog tomorrow and see something other than that dismal kitchen scene?

50 comments:

zhoen said...

Having read much of Robert Anton Wilson's work, I'd have to say that was ridulously accurate.

gerry rosser said...

No more sink!? I was getting used to it.
I made you "family" on Flickr, so you can, if it pleases you, see pix of my little granddaughter (and maybe other pics not open to the public).

LitPark said...

I love that you do this. A single line says so much about a person's legacy.

paris parfait said...

These are always so interesting - that obit writer has style! As for Art Buchwald, what a great character he was! I was in a bookstore in Paris yesterday and noticing how many of his books are available here (they remember him fondly, from his years here).

Patry Francis said...

zhoen: I'm intrigued. My next stop: the library.

gerry: Family? I'm honored. Thanks, Gerry. Can't wait to see the little granddaughter.

litpark: I'm amazed how inspiring a well-written obit can be.

tara: There were so many great quotes from Buchwald, I had a hard time choosing one. I may have to repeat his name next week!

gary said...

This was in the Washington Post on Friday...
Liz Renay, 80, who died Jan. 22 at a Las Vegas hospital from gastric bleeding, was a gangster's moll, ex-con, author, painter, stripper, Hollywood Boulevard streaker, actress and charm school instructor.
(By Adam Bernstein, The Washington Post)
What a life in one sentence...

Jane Poe (aka Deborah) said...

All of these one-liners remind me that life is to be lived - full out and full on. Much peace, JP

Avus said...

Glad you have moved on from the sink - it was depressing me! (Although obits might not be a laughing matter)

chiefbiscuit said...

I never knew obits could be so funny - or succinct. (Sorry to mention a word so close to the word 'sink'.)

RetroBerry said...

"To Bob, everything was interesting."

May we all be Bobs.

Patry Francis said...

gary: Great one! Thanks for adding it.

deb: I think that's what attracts me most to them. They're not about death at all; they're about life.

avus: That sink was depressing me, too!

chiefbiscuit: It seems the sink was getting to everyone--especially following so close after the Tupperware.

retroberry: Yes!!

Anonymous said...

Yours is a great blog. Glad to have found it. I'm the founder of a non-profit website called The Remembering Site. We make it easy for anyone, anywhere to write their life stories. I'm posting comments on blogs that talk about Art Buchwald who - of course - recently died and recently published a great memoir, To Soon To Say Goodbye. Grateful if you could profile us on your blog to encourage your readers to write their biography/memoir at The Remembering Site.

steve said...

I'm glad not to have to see the sink as well. But it did persuade me to clean my own sink, so the effort wasn't wasted.

Patry Francis said...

The remembering site is an interesting project, and nicely related to the post. Thanks for dropping by.

steve: No depressing domestic scenes for at least a month. I promise.

Terri /Tinker said...

I'll miss Art Buchwald's wit and wisdom. At least I can look forward to reading his last book. Wish I'd had the pleasure of meeting him - or any of these other interesting people - they all sound as though they lived life to the fullest.

Patry Francis said...

terri: For a man who battled depression for much of his life, Buchwald managed to convey an extraordinary joie de vivre. That's courage!

zhoen said...

Robert Anton Wilson

robin andrea said...

I absolutely love the line about being "determined to reveal how the very planet was born." Makes me want to see his paintings. What would that look like?

Robin said...

At first I thought, "Obits are less depressing than dirty sinks?" but these really are inspiring and uplifting. It's therapeutic to try to learn to view death as a time to celebrate the good things of one's life. It's freeing. Thanks.

Patry Francis said...

zhoen: What a fascinating man! Now, of course, I must read the novels...See what happens when you read the obits?

robin andrea: I would love to see them, too. They said he painted the same quarry over and over for seven years, developing a kind of mystical relationship with it.

robin: Yeah, it's pretty bad when the obits are a step up from the state of the kitchen sink!

Alexandra S said...

I don't know any of these people besides Buchwald and I find these quotes really inspiring, reminding me to actuall infuse my days with living as it will all be over far too soon.

Patry Francis said...

Alexandra: To anyone who's read your blog, it's obvious that your life is INFUSED to the max!

Sara said...

Though it contains few such poignantly worded lines, a website you might enjoy is one I recently discovered called "Corpus Obscurum." It's a staff blog from Minneapolis/St. Paul's City Pages website, and it's devoted to noting as they pass "those whose accomplishments vastly exceeded their fame."

KG said...

Refreshing. I love hearing about how well people lived.

Patry Francis said...

sara: Thanks for the link. I especially appreciated the one about the shortstop from the "girl's baseball league".

kg: Who would think the obits could be so inspiring?

colleenR said...

I love a fresh new page too. If I have the same post up for more than couple of days it becomes as boring as wearing the same clothes day after day.

You should see the old time Southern names I've collected since last time I posted on them. I get them from the obits. Post coming sometime soon...after the teapoets tea party.

Patry Francis said...

colleen: I'll be there for the virtual teapoets tea party!

Fred Garber said...

Robert Anton Wilson...who else could write about the Dealy Llama, Jojn Dillinger's role in JFK's murder and the importance of 23.

G.G. said...

Wow, great impact for such few words.

The sink? Well, it could make those of us buried in the throes of deadlines feel a little bit of relief that ours is not yet that bad...*snicker*

BTW Congrats on all the buzz. I put your book up on the Fawnskin Flyer and the newsletter will go out in a couple of days.

Becca said...

I like the one that refers to the man's "seven ages"...makes me think a little about my own "ages"!

BTW, congrats on the super review in the latest issue of More magazine. Now I'm even more excited to get my advanced copy or your book!

Lorna said...

I've been thinking of you a lot lately, and delighted to hear you got a super review...

Patry Francis said...

fred: Ah, another fan of Wilson. Wondering why he had to die before I heard of him.

diana: Thanks so much, and so true about the sink! Even as crazy as my life feels this week, my sink doesn't look that bad...

becca: You saw the review in More! I was so thrilled with it.

lorna: Been thinking of you, too, though I know I haven't been around much.

sarala said...

Glad to see you back too.
I've read Secret Smile and need to get my act together to write a review now.
Certainly different than the last two novels.
How is the book launch going?

Patry Francis said...

sarala: Yes, we'll be blogging Secret Smile on Saturday! I finished it, too.
For me, it was the perfect choice in this busy month--the kind of book you have no choice but to finish, and RIGHT NOW. Looking forward to reading your thoughts.

Meanwhile the book launches in just two days! Yowsa!

elsie said...

I know this has nothing to do with this post, but I got my shipping notice from Amazon for Liar's Diary! Yippee!!!!

Holly Kennedy said...

What a fun post re: one liner obits. I usually steer clear of reading the obits because they bring me down!

BTW, good luck with Liar's Party from a fellow author. I'm looking forward to reading it as I wait for Amazon to deliver...

Patry Francis said...

elsie: Anyone who wants to veer off-topic to say they ordered by book is most welcome to do so. Thanks so much! I hope you'll come back and tell me what you think...

Holly: Thanks for all your good wishes and support! Wish you were closer so I could ask you what to expect!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Richard Lawrence Cohen said...

What a beautiful idea for a feature, Patry! And yet how sobering to think that a life's meaning can be summed up (for others, not for the one living it) in a single sentence.

I also like the comment from The Remembering Site, because it didn't link to the site. That kind of unworldliness must be a sign of honesty.

Great good luck to you with the book launching -- we'll all be eager for it.

Devon Ellington said...

Hey, your book has a nice mention in the February issue of MORE magazine (p. 44)

Devon
Ink in My Coffee
http://devonellington.wordpress.com

Patry Francis said...

richard: One really good sentence can be so powerful, don't you think I think of all the people in the World Trade's Center, who called their families, and left one final message: I love you. Just that, but it said everything.

Thanks for remembering my "day" and stopping by to leave such good wishes.

devon: Thanks for noticing that! I'm surprised how much impact a magazine like More can have!

ORION said...

I adore obits.
I think I will start mine now.
Just in case...

Sky said...

oh, patry! liar's diary is on its way to our house according to the notification amazon sent today! yessssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss!

MB said...

These are wonderful, Patry. Astounding how much can be packed into one sentence. And daunting to think what a sentence about my own life might one day be. May all our sentences be full!

Wendy said...

Good morning Patry! I am tagging you to participate in a writers' meme and create a contract with yourself. You can read more about it and see my contract here:

http://creativeworkathome.blogspot.com/2007/01/self-contract-meme-for-writers-ive-been.html

Wendy

Patry Francis said...

orion: I think the obits would be much more meaningful (and interesting) if we all wrote our own.

sky: I'm so excited! The book will soon be in your hands! See what the blogosphere has done!

mb: Your sentence will be VERY full. It will include poetry and rivers and salmon and stars and lots of love. And hopefully, it will be far, far away.

wendy: I don't do a lot of memes, but this one is very cool. And rather perfect for the day my novel is released!

Irene said...

I can't believe how inspiring those few lines are. thank you for sharing them.

Patry Francis said...

Thanks, Irene!

Manikandan said...

Hi nice blog .I need to post resumes .can anybody send links of that sites.
Thank you.........

Anonymous said...

^^ nice blog!! ^@^

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