Cyber Farewells

How inane. How blithely optimist. Do dead people really read social media posts? Are you really saying “farewell buddy” via the Internet or are you simply telling everyone else that you bid your friend a good trip into the mystic?
Gah, maybe I am just a cynical bastard. Yes, fair enough.
Then something happened. The screen was drawn and the fresh scent of roses, daisies and lilies drifted into our little viewing chamber and Dr. Carol Benton said Austin isn’t gone, he’s everywhere.
Yes, how true! How could I forget my own words, the ones I wrote for my own father’s funeral? I wrote that spiders fly by letting out a piece of web and catch a passing breeze. Maybe, like the spider, we too streak across the heavens, trailing a white hot filament for our loved ones to follow.
Who really knows what happens? We do know there’s a sort of transformation and energy is downloaded cosmically. So, why isn’t it possible that the departed is alerted to your thoughts? Thus, “posting” farewells make perfect sense – especially for Austin. I certainly spent more time with him online, as many people could identify with.
Social media is tremendously powerful. I can look back at our posts and relive those moments and laugh just as hard as I did originally.
Last summer, I ran down the street past his house in flip-flops. I paused when I saw him and Don on the front porch, keenly observing the moron running down the street in flip-flops.
“I can’t keep up,” I puffed, and then picked up jogging to catch up to my two boys who peeled away from me on their bikes.
Later, I posted on his wall.
“Sure is hard to run in flip-flops.”
“Apparently so.”
And I could hear his characteristic matter-of-factness in those simple words. He didn’t have to say it, but he was clearly putting an arm around my neck to console the lame.

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