Don’t ask me why, but I’m fascinated with the subject of ironic deaths. My prototypical example is the passing of Jim Fixx. In the 70’s, he was a celebrated advocate of good health promoted by running, and he authored a book titled The Complete Book of Running. He died from a heart attack suffered while running. More recently, I spotted a slightly different but equally absurd example of the genre in an Atlanta Journal Constitution article, titled: “Undersea documentarian killed in helicopter crash.” I’ve often tried to imagine my own ironic expiration as well, but I’ve never been able to conceive a suitable scenario, until last night.
After reading the AJC story a couple of weeks ago, I’d revisited my efforts to construct an appropriate headline for my own extinction. I failed, again, but the exercise did not prove fruitless. While musing on the topic, I discovered that my wife had cleared space from our DVR – for more of her beloved “Real Housewives” episodes – by erasing my as-yet-unviewed, five-hour, Super Bowl pregame show! I headed straight for my computer and vented my displeasure with the creation of a newspaper-style piece inspired by the incident. I titled it: “Real housewife in Georgia beaten to death by enraged husband, while watching recorded episode of ‘Real Housewives of Atlanta.’” After printing the article, I left it on my desk and promptly forgot about it.
I hate guns, but I do believe in protecting myself from home invasions. Consequently, in every residence I’ve lived in, except for our present abode, I’ve always kept a golf club within reach for self-defense. Last night, while restocking our toilet paper from the basement supply, I passed my golf bag. I realized I’d never pulled out a club for defense in this house. Despite my wife’s possession of a loaded pistol in her bedside dresser, I thought it high time to secure my own means of protection. So I grabbed a two iron and headed upstairs with it.
While I visited the basement, Sophia lay in bed watching, what else, one of the “Real Housewives” shows. She spied my return when I reached the top of the staircase, with the two iron resting atop my shoulder. That’s when I learned my wife had come across the fake news article on my desk, inconveniently dated for the following morning’s edition. At the same time, I at last received inspiration for an appropriately ironic headline detailing my demise, titled: “Wise-ass firearm hater shot to death by overly cautious wife … who failed to get the joke.”