Courtesy of Dose.com | By Andy Kushnir | Posted 12.09.2016 | Published 09.12.2017
I used to work at a retirement home. I was a waiter and yes, it was a very glamorous job, thank you for asking. All the little old ladies gave me hugs and we’d dance when they came down for dinner. I used to tell people it was like being a professional grandson. I was 23 years old and I was having a ball.
The thing is, a retirement home is often the last place someone lives before they pass. So people tend to die. And during my third month of work, one of the residents, Cheryl*, passed away. I was pretty upset. I hadn’t thought about the ramifications of working at a senior living community. (Remember: I was 23, so, you know, dumb.)
Over time, I realized the concealment of death was by design. When a resident died, management made a point to hold the memorial in a side room, away from foot traffic. They also placed a small picture in a side hallway, out of the way, with a tasteful sign that read “In Memory of Cheryl.” When I asked my manager why the picture wasn’t placed near the dining hall, or at least in a spot where more residents could see it, I was told, “Oh, we don’t want to remind the residents of death.”
Remind them of death?! Da fuq??! Have they never heard of it? Do they know where Cheryl went? Are we telling the residents she’s on a farm with all her childhood pets? Can I go to the farm? No? I have to know somebody who works AT the farm? What kind of farm IS THIS?! Continue reading “My Day At A Death Cafe”