Be wary of burials at sea

There are the two things sages say are inevitable: death and taxes.
The trick is to spend all the money before death, but not too much before.
Of course, this saying only holds true for people. Pets don’t pay taxes as far as I know.
But they do die.
Herman the Hamster wasn’t moving one morning. Mom was not going to administer CPR and Dad was away so he couldn’t help, either. On top of that, it was in the dead of winter so a quick outdoor burial was out of the question, as well.
The kids were devastated. It was the first time death had been visited on them.
“Will he go to Heaven, Mommy?” asked the oldest as a tear rolled down his cheek.
“Well, I suppose so. After all, Hermie is one of God’s creatures,” answered Mom, consoling her first-born.
“Can we start a fire and cremate him like we do when we’re roasting marshmallows?” queried the ever-practical and adventurous younger sibling.
“No, I don’t think so!” shot back a shocked Mom.
So what to do? Here was the opportunity for a life lesson, so Mom did her best to explain that death must come to us all, and about funerals and other proper procedure.
Since it was bitter cold outdoors, and the thought of the aroma of roast hamster wafting through the house was a bit more than Mom could stomach, alternate arrangements would have to be made.
Burial at sea. A recent TV program the boys had watched had depicted just such an event and they had demonstrated more than a passing interest in the whole ceremony.
Pomp and circumstance and funeral music were played. Mom solemnly led the prayer and the boys bid Hermie a tearful adieu.
Holding Hermie aloft by the tail, Mom tripped the flush. As the vortex in the bowl reached its most violent, Hermie’s body was committed to the deep.
When Hermie hit the cold water, however, he came back to life and began kicking and swimming desperately.
“It’s a miracle. Quick, save him, Mom!” screamed two desperate voices in unison.
Mom grabbed but that vortex was in full flush mode. After all, this was one of those old-fashioned five-gallon flush toilets, not one of those new wimpy six-litre, environmentally-conscious jobs.
With one last desperate kick, Hermie disappeared into the underworld.
“Mommy, you killed Hermie,” wailed the two voices again.
Tears were shed, but immediately dried when the popcorn and s’mores on the fireplace were suggested as a memorial lunch.
There were no more burials at sea.

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