Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A True Story From One Of My Jobs

One of my jobs involved handling deceased clients. That is, when our organization found out that someone with whom we had dealings had passed away, I was the guy that took care of getting all the loose ends tied up and the client's file closed. I saw a lot of death certificates, and got even more informal notes or phone calls stating that somebody was dead, which meant I had to investigate further.

In a revelation that will surprise no one who either knows me or has read this blog's archives, I frequently encountered things in these duties that I found funny. As I've said before, you can either laugh at life or cry about it, and I made my choice a long time ago.

Today's story came about when I received notification that one of our clients who we hadn't heard from in a while had passed away. Specifically, he was killed by an animal. More specifically, the notification I received said, and I quote because I must, that "he was stampled by a bull."

That's right. "Stampled."

I take this to mean "half stomped, half trampled." I hope that the bull was merciful in deciding which half to stomp and which half to trample, but deep down inside I know he probably wasn't.

Most people who heard about this assumed that the unfortunate fellow was some sort of farmer or rancher. Oddly enough, he was an accountant. The bull came in for help with an audit, and lost his temper when he heard that some of his receipts weren't deductible.

The person who notified us seemed a bit too certain about the cause of death. Was anyone around when it happened? If I were a bull planning to "stample" somebody, I'd try to make sure there were no witnesses. Then when the investigators showed up, if they so much as glanced at me, I'd accuse them of unfair profiling. "Oh, sure. Every time somebody turns up stomped into a puddle in my neighbourhood, and I happen to have a little blood on my hooves, it's the same old story: blame the bull." This is the classic defense strategy known as "playing the bull card."

For a while after we got that notice, whenever one of my colleagues announced that they were going out and added the standard "I'll be back (whenever)", I replied, "Unless, of course, you get stampled by a bull. There's a lot of that going around. It's a full-fledged bull-stampling epidemic. Or half-fledged, at the very least."

The person was usually long gone before I finished. Sometimes they were already back.

Enough rambling. Here's a picture of my son in Minnie Mouse's fireplace.

1 comment:

RebelAngel said...

When you said stampled I just has this interesting vision of a poor man out in a pasture with the word OVERDUE all over his body in red ink...or perhaps the day's date in blue, angled every which way as the poor accountant tried to escape the stampling.