The pope and me

Claiming acquaintance
It’s easy to find weird epitaphs in old graveyards, in books of quotations or via the Internet. Samples that come up on a quick Internet search—I don’t claim they are actual epitaphs—include: “Here lies Johnny Yeast / Pardon me for not rising.” And “Sir John Strange / Here Lies an Honest Lawyer / And that is Strange.” And “Harry Edsel Smith: / Looked up the elevator shaft to see if / The car was on the way down. It was.”

Those are intended to be funny and weird. I am more impressed by the unfunny but weird. My prize for the weirdest fairly recent one goes to egotist Robyn Astaire, who put on Fred Astaire’s tombstone (as reported in the Wall Street Journal, April 7): “Fred Astaire. I will always love you, my darling. Thank you.”

The “my darling” was a reference to Robyn herself, whom Astaire married when he was 81 and she was 35.


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