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Okay, so you've never heard of this guy. I hadn't either until I read his obituary that he wrote himself before he died of throat cancer. It was published a couple of days ago in the local newspapers, and has been getting quite a bit of attention.
Definitely worth the two or three minutes it takes to read through it: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/saltlaketribune/obituary.aspx?n=val-patterson&pid=158526785
Red Kittie Kat
07-18-2012, 03:19 AM
wow ... that was so great and so sad at the same time.
It's definitely an interesting piece. For me, it's a very 'raw' capture of values, thoughts, and philosophy of an America that is now (for the most part) an America that once was.
I found his confession list... startling! So... he confessed to stealing a safe, getting a great job with false academic credentials, vandalizing a national park attraction, getting banned from some major amusement parks... all while living a life where he "always tried to have as much fun as possible without doing harm to anybody".
The story has a spooky underchill to it. It almost reads like an obituary for the 'American Dream'.
Maybe I'm too Canadian to see the inspiration others are seeing in this. I certainly feel for the man's suffering, and the loss to his family. And I admire the courage to go through with this 'warts and all' auto-obituarial/confessional (could this be the start of a new trend? Is the concept of 'going to your grave' with anything truly private now too quaint to sustain?).
Maybe that kind of courage is enough to be a hero these days. I still don't get it, but then, I just can't seem to follow a lot of the trends of popularity-based morality.
And "Anything for a laugh" would definitely make a very interesting gravestone engraving.
07-18-2012, 01:50 PM
Nothing like getting your 15 minutes after you're gone.
Did someone really roll rocks into Old Faithful...?
07-18-2012, 02:05 PM
I took it as one last prank and not that he necessarily did those things. Either way, the fact that it has people wondering is part of the joke.
**edit** What I read yesterday was evidently a bastardized version of the full thing that made it more jokey and ambiguous. Thanks Yahoo news. This one seems more earnest.
07-19-2012, 02:27 PM
Interesting read. I wish I had known the guy. He sounds like we would have gotten along very well.
RIP...I hope your family can find the peace that they need.