My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Saturday, October 30, 2010

A very "grave" post

I've had plans brewing for this year's Halloween post since last year. Alas, my old computer gave up the ghost last month and I lost all my bookmarks (where the goodies I'd intended to share were stashed). I remembered and was able to find a few of them, but the rest are lost to the mists of time and my foggy memory. I spent so much time trying to remember and find my lost web sites, as well as scout out a few new ones, I didn't have as much time as I'd like to compose this post. So I fear it might not be

but it's the best I can do for now! :-)

If you've been following my blog for more than a few weeks, you know I love exploring cemeteries and have since I was a little kid (and this should come as no surprise since my blog's name was inspired by a tombstone!) I find cemeteries peaceful, lovely and contemplative places, not depressing nor frightening ~ despite the eerie graphic I chose for the top of this post. :-) I especially love exploring historic cemeteries, and ones with beautiful sculptures.

In other words, I love cemeteries, history, sculpture... and, of course, photography. If you enjoy any or all of these too, you might enjoy joining me in a little online cemetery exploration on this eve of All Hallows' Eve. :-)


Stunning photos, mostly of New England cemeteries

Haunting photos of cemetery art from around the world
(Olansky Cemetery in Prague is my favorite so far.)

"Celebrating the beauty of cemetery art since 2006"
Beautiful photos of North American Cemeteries
as well as a collection of epitaphs and reflections on death.
And don't miss their slideshows set to ethereal music!

I visited this one, but before the days of digital cameras.
Amazing sculptures by talented Italian stone carvers
memorialize the departed in interesting ways.

The photos are small, but there are far more of them.

This web site's name says it all.


I wish I could post the video here but their web site changed.
Scroll to the bottom of the film list, just before the comments,
and click on the image to watch this achingly beautiful video.


The author, Pythia Peay, is definitely a kindred spirit!


So cemeteries can be places of peace, beauty and inspiration, but who says they can't also be amusing?

I found this on many web sites and though it made me chuckle,
I wasn't going to include it till BW practically insisted.
(It's a guy thing, I figure.) ;-)

These folks were Austrian. I'm sure that's a lovely name there,
but it's pretty bloody unfortunate once you get over here!

Here's a chipper greeting from beyond the veil...

For an even more amusing take on this,

I hope you did, too! :-)

Have a Happy Halloween!

And remember, don't eat too many goodies
or drink too much pumpkin ale! ;-)

P.S. For some spirited Halloween entertainment, visit my post from last year with its links to some wicked fun Halloween web sites!

P.P.S. I took the photo of the TOOGOOD headstone in the UMWA cemetery near tiny Klein, MT on my way home from Mom's in August. I just loved the name. I mean, how could you ever be naughty or grow up with self-esteem issues if that's your last name? :-)

P.P.P.S. As much as I love visiting cemeteries, I have no intention of spending eternity in one. My plan is to be cremated and have my ashes scattered ("scattered in death, as she was in life," they can say about me afterward, *snork*), to feed and become part of the soil and plants. I believe in living green and think dying is no excuse to quit! :-) And apparently this Aussie chap thought so too...


  1. Laurie,

    So much to explore in this post! I have to go back and look through all the links...a perfect way to spend the eve of All Hallowed's Eve!

    Great job at pumpkin carving! That is so totally creative and awesome. My husband loved that! Too bad he had already carved his, or I think he would have copied it.

    Bummer you lost all that data; the kind of cool thing about posting stuff on the blogs is that the data is retrieve-able even if your own 'puter meets its end.

    I can't say I'm as big of a fan of cemeteries as you are, but I've always been intrigued by old ones, esp if they're in a church yard. I agree they are peaceful.

    Total LOL about the Dumfart guy.

    I think I want to be buried instead of cremated (touch wood).

    As I say, I'm going to have a look through all the links (with relish)...I'll be baaaack. ~)~

  2. Rose ~ Happy Halloween! :-)

    Yes, this is a linkapalooza post. LOL Have fun, I think you'll really enjoy some of the web sites, especially today! ;-)

    I wish I could credit for the artfully carved puking pumpkin, but alas it's just a funny photo I found online many years ago. (I've also seen a version where the pumpkin is actually gripping the sides of a toilet bowl, lol) Tell John he can carve a vomiting Jack O'Lantern next year! :-)

    Having a blog really helped me save a lot of goodies, and I had all my photos and iTunes backed up on CDs, and most other stuff backed up on my external hard drive. But I'm unable to find all my bookmarks and email folders, which means my vast collection of saved quotes is gone (among other things). :-( Jo went through a computer crash a few years ago, and says the bookmarks are there on the external hard drive, but buried and hidden and it will take a tech support person to help us find them (that's stupid!) So that's on the to do list for BW's vacation in another week! We also plan to have a local computer guy look at the iMac. It's not totally dead, we just can't interact with it at all. Maybe everything on it will turn out to be retrievable. One can hope!

    It's the old cemeteries I really enjoy, not the contemporary ones. I absolutely loved exploring cemeteries on our trips to the UK. Only trouble is, the tombstones are so old and so weathered, you can't read most of them. That's often the case in old New England cemeteries too (which are also among my favorites). Have you ever noticed how a community's cemetery usually sits on the prettiest piece of real estate? Another reason I love to visit them! Mom lives across the street from the cemetery, a location I'd love to have one day. (Quiet neighbors, for one thing. LOL)

    Glad you got a kick out of the Dumfarts! :-D

    I'll be curious to know what links you enjoyed best (though I don't expect you to have time to visit all of them!)

  3. Very cool post, Laurie! I love the dumfart headstone, too. lol Poor guy, indeed!

    Biodegradable body bags where you're buried standing up? That's a great concept, but like you, I plan on being cremated and scattered back to nature (and I love the quote you have for your scattering- haha!).

    I received that pumpkin vomiting picture in an email last year amongst several other really cool pumpkins that were carved. I wish I would have saved that now.

  4. Happy Halloween, Molly! Thanks, I'm glad you liked this post (and thanks to you and Rose, BW will feel vindicated about convincing me to include the Dumfart headstone! LOL)

    Wasn't that Australian eco-burial article interesting? As for my "scattered" quote, that's a paraphrase of an Ebenezer Scrooge line about Jacob Marley ("mistaken in death as you were in life, old friend.") Though a Christmas story, it's also germane to today, especially since in British tradition Christmas Eve was a night when spirits walked the earth and telling ghost stories was a tradition! :-)

    Hey, feel free to pluck that puking pumpkin picture from my post! :-) Or if you want, I can email it to you!

  5. Happy Halloween!! You sure have found some great websites, and I've always been interested in the unusual/funny last names like Toogood and Dumfart! I especially liked the link to the Hauntingly Beautiful photos, which they certainly are!

  6. Beautiful pics of cemeteries. I think my favorite one was the 40 beautifully haunting photos one. There are some really beautiful shots in there. I specifically like one where there is a light coating of snow. I think I'll have to make a special excursion someday to see on old graveyard covered in a light snow someday...must be so beautiful and even more quiet, as snow has a muffling effect.

    I tried to find Willow on that mega Halloween site you linked to in last year's Halloween post: any hints? I'm thinking about playing some of those spooky sounds for the Trick or Treaters computer is right by the door, so I'm sure they'll be able to hear it.

    The eco burial article was good; I've always thought I'd prefer to be buried w/o a coffin...don't like the idea of being in one of those! (touch wood, again).

    I hope you have some luck with the iMac, sounds sort of promising.

    Happy Halloween!

  7. Daphne ~ Happy Halloween to you, too! :-) I'm glad you've been enjoying some of those web sites! I really like them too (well, obviously! lol) Thanks for letting me know which one was your favorite, I always love to hear.

    And those offbeat names have always intrigued me, as well. It's one of the things I look for when I'm exploring a cemetery. Odd names, people born on my birthday, or gravestones that tell a story (or at least part of a story, usually a lot is left to my busy little imagination!) :-)

    Rose ~ I'm really pleased you've been exploring and enjoying the links too! I agree that cemeteries in snow are especially stirring and deeply hushed.

    By the way, if you aren't totally "cemeteried out" yet, Northstar Gallery is a web site I almost included but felt like my list was long enough. It's got some really intriguing statuary photos, especially.

    I probably should have mentioned where to go to find Miss Willow's photo on Countess Blood's web site, since it's not exactly obvious! Down near the bottom of the page, not far above her guest book link, there's an image of a framed photo of a dog wearing a black cape. If you click on that, you'll see photos of dogs dressed up for Halloween, and Willow is about the 3rd one down, I think. :-)

    I never wanted to be put in a box in the ground. As a kid, I thought I would prefer a mausoleum - at least is seemed less claustrophobic, with a better chance of escape if someone had blundered and buried me prematurely! (And to think I only read Poe later in life ~ the man had a profound horror of the possibility of being buried alive). In more recent years I thought the Native Americans had a great system with their "Sky Burials." Did you know you can also have your earthly remains turned into diamonds (should you want your loved ones to wear you as earrings or something!)

    I hope we have luck with the old iMac too!

    Must run, we were going to watch our Lemony Snicket movie about an hour ago, but got delayed. Now I must get to the theater if I want a good seat! ;-)

    Try not to frighten the children too much with those chilling sound effects, and have fun!

  8. I'm a bit late for your halloween posts but they were alot of fun anyway. I was in at lunch but got kicked out and couldn't get back in.
    I am so glad BW made you put in the Dumfart because I loved it! The entrances and exits in Germany are "farts" too and that just cracked me up so image a person with "fart" and "dum" too. I would definitely change my name.
    Thank goodness for the P.P.S. because I hadn't realized TOOGOOD was his name. I thought it was a commentary on his life!!! That was really funny!

  9. Jo ~ Yay, I've missed you! :-) I'm sorry you got kicked out and couldn't get back in... I had problems with my blog yesterday too. Guess those Halloween goblins decided to make themselves comfy and hang around a while! >:-(

    Anyway, another fan of the poor unfortunate Dumfarts, I see! :-) BW called that one right! Entrances and exits in Germany are farts? I don't mean to sound childish, but teeheehee!

    As for Toogood, well... maybe it was a commentary on their life! Perhaps the other side of the marker says, "to be true!" :-)


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  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

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