All the Really Cool Dead People

One of my favourite Frasier episodes was on recently.

(Spoiler alert).

Eddie the dog was depressed, so they called in a pet psychiatrist, (“a charlatan,” said Frasier), who suggested that dogs are very sensitive and Eddie had probably picked up the mood of one of the humans. At first the people in the house laughed scornfully, then they gathered together and admitted they had their individual reasons for being down in the mouth. Martin said he lay awake at night and brooded about death and loneliness, and the loss of everyone he loved. Frasier said “we all have those thoughts, Dad.”
His dad said, “do you also lie very still and pretend you’re already in the ground?” and Frasier said “nope, that’s just you.”

The subject of the afterlife came up, and Niles said he just knew that all the really cool dead people would refuse to hang out with him. “Mozart would say he’s too busy, then I’d see him out with Shakespeare.”

Somebody found an old doll down the back of the sofa, and realized it was Eddie’s dog toy, so they cast it aside… of course Eddie came to life and tossed it about delightedly. “Oh,” they said, “so that’s why he was depressed!”
“How shallow,” they said. “Dogs are not like us. WE know for whom the bell tolls.”
A bell rang and Daphne disappeared into the kitchen, then came back and said the cookies were ready. Everybody jumped up and hurried to the kitchen, their glum mood cast aside.

The bit that made me laugh the loudest was Niles and his gloomy prediction that he would be spurned by cool people even in the afterlife. I always rather wanted the future to be something like Star Trek, but I just know if I was one of the members on the Starship Enterprise or the Starship Voyager, the crew would treat me how they treated Lieutenant Barclay… times 20.

I’ve just found this: Death and the Dog. It’s interesting that the quotation given there is: “Mozart’ll tell me he’s busy but then later I’ll see him out with Shakespeare and Lincoln!” I might just have misremembered, but I don’t think ‘and Lincoln’ showed up in the subtitles. Maybe I did forget, though.

No, they would never have let me anywhere near the Starship Enterprise.

Available as wallpaper here.

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4 responses

  1. I used to daydream about waking up in the future on a ship like the enterprise…but now I realise it would probably be more like on firefly…everyone sort of fending for themselves and trying to get by. I’d daydream of being a science officer exploring new places, but in the future I’d be so far behind, I’d likely only be allowed on the missions if I was the cook.

  2. I fantasize about speaking to Emily Dickensen, how, now that she’s freed of earthly constraints, she might even answer a few of my questions. Or, Anne Sexton with her deep gravely voice and deeper passions. I would like to discuss all sorts of things with great writers and poets who have passed on. Thank you for giving me some food for thought.

  3. Geo: I was going to pretend I knew what ‘Firefly’ was, but actually I didn’t! I looked it up and it says it premiered in the US and Canada, and though there were 14 shows scheduled, it was cancelled after 11 had been shown.

    Why do they DO things like that?? Couldn’t they have just shown the remaining 3 and then forgot about it? I don’t know if it ever made it here to the UK.

    And I don’t think I would be allowed on space missions even as cook, so you’ve got one over on me, there. They might (at a pinchy pinch) take me on board if I was the last artist on the home planet, and then I could illustrate things for them… but I don’t really see it. Diddums, Chief Artist for the Starship Wannabe. They would prefer Data.

    Elizabeth: I wonder what Emily D. would have to say; I’ve been quite curious about her too. I might be rather selfish, though, and go back and see what my ancestors were like! At least they would hang out with me… I think.

  4. That thought crossed my mind as I was typing out the comment. I have specific anscestors in mind and specific questions for each of them. Most of all, I would like to see how they think, now that they have seen the other side.

    Elizabeth

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