Thursday, December 11, 2008

The joys of obit watching

There was a great editorial in yesterday's Times called "A Curious Convergence" that pointed out that Jim Morrison, who died 30-some-odd years ago (and who would be 65 now, imagine that!), appeared this week in two different obituaries: that of his father, and of the owner of an L.A. club where the Doors got their break.

It's a wonderful piece, and explains well some of the reasons why I, at any rate, read obituaries. I read them for the light they shed, the illumination, which comes (as this writer points out) in "strobelike flashes." For the taste of other places and times and spheres of influence. And because people are so darned interesting and so varied.

And then this line, which I love: "But life is too elusive for the record." Yes, indeed. It's just a glimpse, these obituaries, but I'm glad to have it.

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