I arrive two days before she dies. With my father, it was a handful of hours. My mother went to the doctor and was told he wanted to remove her leg. She asked for a taxi and split. She would die with all limbs intact. They set her up in a bed in her living room, where her family could come for uncomfortable reminders of what is coming in all our futures. Hospice came and played Mozart, which she hated. Force fed her until she couldn't go to the bathroom any more because of the state of her leg. She didn't eat another bite, and didn't go to the bathroom again. No more potty, no more norurishment. Men with a funeral car came and zipped her up into a body bag. I helped them carry her out to the car and they drove away. I helped my aunt write a laughable obit for the newspapers. Seems like my mother founded the Sorbonne and brought peace to the Middle East and I didn't even know it. Controversy started soon afterward, and my brother-in-law came up with the best quip: "This is her way of getting more attention from her family." I have to admit I thought she would take a lot longer, and drag everyone with her, but I was wrong. I apologise. She left the world the same way she came in, with no grand plans and not at all eager to make the place any better than she found it. But I suppose we can say this about most parents if we stop to think about it. My parents were both humorous, extravagant people, but not heroic in the slightest. Mikey Cormier calls me and says I can join his Orphans Club, and from the sound of it, a few beers on his tongue and sadness in his tone -- he and my mother respected each other quite a bit -- he is calling me from that Club. I will have to go and see what it's like.