I read somewhere (maybe In Style Magazine) that the meek shall inherit the earth. I don’t recall if this statement was intended as a proclamation or as a suggestion, but I do know that the meek may want to consider the tax implications of such an inheritance before they blindly accept this gift. At the very least, they’d need to sell off most of Europe and Asia to pay the federal government (I’m pretty sure the land bank would want a piece of the action, so maybe Canada should be liquidated too).
Hopefully though, by the time we’re deeding our residence to whatever special interest group, I will be long gone (except for my head, which will have been cryogenically frozen on a shelf between the noggins of Tom Cruise and Hilary Duff). So the who and the what and the how of the whole transaction matter little to me. If, however, you care about the fate of our children (I understand that some people believe that the children are the future), then you might want to start to do some serious estate planning sooner than later.
Personally, I’m all for giving what I have to the meek; I’ve always found their laid back style more palatable than the aggressive forward lean of the movers and shakers. There’s something about a confident and assured posture that frankly creeps me out. Where I come from, if you don’t want yourself stuffed in a dingy snowbank, you slump in your bus seat and keep your opinions to yourself. But, assuming that the meek are indeed the intended heirs, we should think about appointing some sort of more assertive guardian to make sure that stuff gets done in a timely fashion.
The next step I suppose, having agreed upon the meek as our intended, would be to put our house in order. Never a pleasant task (who really wants to think about people sifting through your stuff after you’ve died), the enormity of the project makes the process all the more daunting. Someone (not me) will need to figure out how to stop stuff from melting and flooding and cooking and blowing, while someone else (again, not me) will need to start working on the eradication of various plagues and such. In addition, do not assume that simply because the heirs are meek that there won’t be distribution issues. I’ve known too many people who’ve barely peeped their entire lives who roar like lions when it comes down to who gets Aunt Ethel’s cloisonne lamp. So it would behoove the responsible parties to commence planning some sort of partitioning of assets. On our Island alone, we have many desirable points of interest.
Again, I’m not overly invested in the process but I wouldn’t want stuff just handed out willy nilly. In truth, I’m probably more interested in ensuring that certain people (rude drivers) don’t get certain things (Chappy, for instance), than I am in the more mundane parsing out of doodads. All that I ask then is that whoever is in charge, consult with me (or my head) before making any foolish decisions.
Just who will be entrusted with this task is yet to be determined. There are a few names that come to mind but, as with any careful examination of a person, the enthusiasm for the people attached with the names tends to fade the more one learns of them. We may find ourselves needing to settle however, as there probably will be few names in the hat from which to choose. Still, I bet some disillusioned soul will step forward, and as long as he or she doesn’t have a full archeological dig site in their closet, I say have at it!
For my part, I will: bike to the Chappy Ferry when the weather allows, shut off my kitchen lights when I’m not around, hold a discouraged friend’s hand and be tolerant of the bombast of others. I’m certain that there are more things that I could do to ease the transition, but at present they elude me.
For your part, if you are among the meek, start planning your future as earth caretakers. To everybody else, I suggest you begin being a whole lot nicer to the meek.
Brad Woodger lives on Chappaquiddick and contributes regularly to this space in the Gazette.