... issues and tissues with a touch of the spicy from the spirit hag ...
... aka 'so, what are you doing after you die ?'
Published on December 5, 2004 By mignuna In Pure Technology


The majority of us have some vague idea what will organically occur after our demise, but the rest of it seems to be a bit of a no-no, conversation wise. I know this is a strange question, but have you ever given any thought to what will become of your remains when you die ?.


Chances are, even if you have given it careful thought, based on typical western thinking, you will have arrived at one of two conclusions: burial or cremation.


To be honest, I find neither appealing. (Although this is only because I’m studying those options as a live person, rather than a corpse). Being buried under the ground or burned are things I have, quite naturally, avoided in life, and I am contemplating perhaps avoiding them in death too.


A dead human body is no different from any other dead organism. It must be either disposed of or left to break down organically. Yet the fact that this dead organism had a face and a family makes it very difficult to see it as anything other than the ‘person’ it used to be.


So, what choices can you make while you’re still healthy and sane ?. What options do you have for your corpse ?. What will you be doing after you die ?.


There are a number of ways to turn the ‘stiff’ that used to be you into something other than the contents of a pine box or decorative urn for the mantelpiece, and one of them is to turn yourself into human compost.


Simply have a scientist freeze-dry your cadaver in liquid nitrogen and then flatten it. The result is a fine, dry, odourless powder that is rich in trace minerals. This powder can be placed under shallow soil in a biodegradable container with a tree to mark the spot and to feed on the nutrients you supply.


Or, if you’d rather achieve some posthumous fame, you could help solve a murder (hopefully not your own, though) by donating your remains to ‘The Body Farm’. Located in the University of Tennessee Medical Centre, this land plot has up to 20 bodies in various states of decay in an open-air environment.


Using this ‘body farm’, trainee forensic psychologists are able to study the rate and type of human decomposition in a way never before available to science. Over 100 murders have been so far solved using this unique venture, and there are plans to expand the research to further sites in 2006.


If neither of those options tickle your fancy, you could always take 'the action hero route' and donate your body to motor vehicle safety research as a ‘stunt cadaver’. Just imagine ... you could be strapped into a car that gets driven off a cliff. Or impaled on a steering column. Or be dropped head first through a windscreen. Woo hoo !. Stunt driver !.


Still not for you ?. Well how about something a bit more glamourous ?. If you don’t have any family jewels to bequeath to your loved ones, you could always try becoming one yourself. Simply design and have made a ring or pendant with a space for a gem, and leave this to a loved one.


After your death, a laboratory can extract the carbon from your body and, using high pressure and high temperatures, can turn you into a diamond in about 4-5 months. The average human body yields enough carbon to produce a diamond of anything between .25 to a full 1 carat, which a jeweler can then fit to the item you left behind.


See ?. You can actually have heaps of fun and be very active after you die. Don’t buy into that ‘traditional’ death palaver !. Shine on, you crazy diamonds





Comments (Page 1)
on Dec 05, 2004
He he he. Great article migs. I'm going the science route all the way. Some first year med students can ruthlessly and violently tear my body to pieces in order to learn their trade. I mean, I don't need it anymore, do I? What would your favourite option be?
on Dec 05, 2004

being transmuted into a diamond is pretty cool (evokes memories of superman squeezing coal into gems).

i had been toying with another approach altho it could get expensive cuz ill need one of the machines they use for making freeze-dried coffee...only big enuff to accomodate me.  i havent checked this out much but im thinkin the next step is being smashed up into what the coffee company calls 'crystals'.  then ill need to be vacuum-packed into small jars.  it's a lotta work but this way if someone needs to ask me something later on or theres somethin gonna be on tv they know id like, all they gotta do is measure out a few tablespoons, add some water and boom....im back!

on Dec 05, 2004

Some first year med students can ruthlessly and violently tear my body to pieces in order to learn their trade.

i dunno bout the ruthlessly and violently tearing to pieces part of it, but at least youll be able to brag that the last person who really touched you was someone who considered the act a real learning experience.

on Dec 05, 2004
I am hoping to die a violent explosive death so that no one will have to bother disposing of my corpse. Maybe Hamas should start a side business in euthanasia bomb belts?
on Dec 05, 2004
Like LW, I'm going to donate any useful organs to anyone who needs them...except my eyes, I don't know why but for some reason I couldn't tick the 'donate your corneas' box on the donation sheet when I got my licence... Stange I know, but that's me, anything else is open for taking.

Actually I was just thinking about this last night, as while Chrissy shopping I got asked if I wanted to join Boots (chemist chain) for advantage points and on their application form they have a 'would you like to be put on the NHS organ donation list', so I thought sure why not...

I've already decided that any parts that are 'left-over' (or not needed) are to be cremated and sprinkled over somewhere I love, at the moment it's the ski slopes of Falls Creek (Victoria, Australia), but this may change. Failing that I suppose I would settle with a great pyramid being erected and my remains being forever stored within...but we'll see...
on Dec 05, 2004

I'm donating whatever parts can be utilized, then I've told D to bury me in a cardboard box and plant a couple of trees on top of me. No embalming, no preseving, no viewing..... I want to be fertilizer.

I like the idea of being a diamond though....

on Dec 05, 2004
I'm also an organ donor so they will take whatever "useful" parts they can to help someone else in need. The rest of my body can be donated to science fiction...
on Dec 05, 2004
Oh yeah - I forgot about that whole organ donation thing. I'm a donor as well, so that will be dealt with first. But if I happen to be useless in that regards due to many years of heavy drinking, partying and smoking, then I'll go the science route.

Although over here, it's only £2,500 to be changed into a diamond!
on Dec 05, 2004
Me again - check this out - www.lifegem-uk.com
on Dec 05, 2004
on Dec 05, 2004
I saw one I liked at Ripley's believe it or not. There was a monk in spain, that wanted to be of service after his death, so they had him embalmed, waxed, and stood in a corner and used as a candle holder for about 400 years.

However as to myself? Three words. Tastes. Like. Chicken..................
on Dec 05, 2004
You could also spend a life time on the noble eightfold path of the Buddha, transcend everything to become an enlightened being and become radiant light when you die.

There have been reported cases, but then again, what hasn't been reported.
on Dec 05, 2004

You could also spend a life time on the noble eightfold path of the Buddha, transcend everything to become an enlightened being and become radiant light when you die.

works for me.  much less expensive and messy than that freezedried nonsense

on Dec 05, 2004
I have already left instructions in my will that specify a traditional Irish Wake, followed by cremation and sprinkling of my ashes into the Pacific off the coast of Santa Cruz, CA.
on Dec 05, 2004

sprinkling of my ashes into the Pacific off the coast of Santa Cruz, CA

eeewww what if some of you is blown aloft by an onshore updraft and carried into a nearby forested area where you wind up being eaten by banana slugs?