Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

For old quotes, look here.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Where There's a Will (Part Two)

Mum has, for some time, been trying to get T and I to write our wills.

I am an advocate for wills - I think everyone who's out on their own or who has property should have one. I send out a reminder every November First to all my friends - if you don't have a will, write one, and if you have one...update it. Don't leave it to the State to decide who gets the model car collection, the set of thimbles from nations starting with "W", or the Franklin Mint commemorative plate collection featuring artists who died tragic, chopstick related deaths. Write it down, file it, and let a few people know that you've done so.

I had a will, but it was old and I needed to update it. In a fit of productivity that I later medicated away with liberal applications of Fig Newtons and Quaaludes Earl Grey tea, I finally wrote a will for both T and I. Mum read it, laughed until she almost wet herself, and told me it wouldn't fly. Apparently, I have to have it all done up in dry (you know, like the turkey your mother-in-law cooks every year that's practically powdered and even your rich, brown gravy can't help it) legalese. Sigh. I promptly lost the lovely legal, tidy and boring papers she gave me to base the new will on, only recently uncovering them. I plan to get to them sometime next century weekend, but I told mum I want my original one stapled to the top, and I want it read first.

Want to see it? I don't think it's that funny; you be the judge. Some details (OK, names) have been altered to keep them, you know, private and stuff.
Our Will (or Won't, depending whether you're the glass-half-full or glass-half-empty type)

Being of sound mind (hah!!)(quit laughing, Mr. Lawyerpants, we know we aren't supposed to fib in legal documents, but really, who's to say we weren't briefly lucid when we wrote this thing?) and body (unless you ask our physician, which we hope you won't do, because it's not nice to speak ill of the dead), K and T have determined the following, should they suddenly be crushed to death in a freak Orangutan stampeded, or more likely, should they explode like Mr. Creosote in The Meaning of Life because they couldn't be rude and turn down the wafer thin mint, no matter how full they were, because their mamas raised them right and they didn't want to hurt the hostess' feelings, or if they should, you know, generally have done with life in any manner:

What to do with our remains:

K – cremate me and scatter me somewhere nature is still wild, or make me into a rude statue (preferably one that has a remarkable figure and absolutely no resemblance to my current state)(especially don't give the statue my fifty-acre ass, because I really don't like pigeons enough to give them that much perch) and park me somewhere that I'll irritate some stuck up bitches or pompous jack-asses on a regular basis. Oh, I know - make me a fountain where the water shoots out my nose or my navel or somewhere else that's interesting!

T – cremate me and pour me into Jeff Gordon’s gas tank…I'll put a stop to his evil one way or another!

If T goes first and K is still kicking: K gets everything, and if anyone has a problem with that, they can go pound sand.

If T goes after K has snuffed it: Everything goes to Bird, and if anyone has a problem with that, they can go spit in the wind.

If K goes first and T is still rolling along: T gets everything but whatever K inherited from Mum or Dad (providing Mum or Dad are actually pushing up daisies and not vacationing in Guam or something). Whatever K inherited from Mum or Dad (whew, typing that three times was exhausting, and now I need a nap) goes to Bird to be held in trust until he’s 21. Since Mum is alive and well (and watching Peter Pan with her grandson) at the typing of this document, it may all be moot, anyway. We are fairly certain that Dad is still on this planet, but won't be held to that.

If K and T both go together, say in a freak double parachute failure on their anniversary sky-diving expedition: Well, pooh! Everything goes to Bird, poor little orphaned mite, all alone in the world (sniff, sniff). So the poor motherless boy doesn't wander around in the woods wondering where everyone went, T and K would like Mum (aka Gramlin) to keep him cleaned, fed, and generally guardianed until he’s fit for society or the law springs him from her diabolical grasp. If Gramlin doesn't want him (What?? Not want him?? What’s wrong with the woman???), or is dead (boo!), or can't raise him on account of she’s been kidnapped by aliens (or, at least her brain has), or she’s been deemed far too mentally interesting to be responsible for a child as precocious and clever as Bird, then J (T's sister) has grudgingly agreed to keep an eye on him, with the understanding that K weird friends may come kidnap him for weeks on end to go frolic with the pagans and learn about his mother’s spiritual bent whenever they like, with reasonable (say, more than an hour) notice. If J can't be bothered (What? Can't be bothered?? What’s wrong with the woman???) Then Michelle R. will do nicely, if only she would. If she can't or won't, then we have to wonder what’s wrong with Bird, or if there’s a funky curse going on here.

If one parent dies and the other escapes Death’s bony grip for a while longer, the surviving parent gets to muddle through as a single-parent…but hey, kids are babe magnets, aren't they??
Meanwhile, back at the body…

Oh, yeah, we need an executioner…er…executor…executrix…managerial type; we choose Gramlin, on account of she’s zany enough to know how we think (poor woman).
Now really, wouldn't you rather hear that than a bunch of "The party of the first part..." blathering??


Bob Cleveland said...

Well it was interesting, but consider what happens if someone protests the will. Remote? Maybe. But why dump a mess on someone under any circumstances?

Take just the first part: what happens if you A) die in a freak orangutan accident, or B) via a freak internal explosion, is crystal clear. If you go any other way, then a bunch of lawyers get to decide what it means to "have done with life".

You want a bunch of lawyers getting involved and trading their yachts in for bigger ones, all courtesy of your will?

Or worse yet, the STATE deciding how to get rid of your stuff?

RachelW said...


But wait... didn't I hear once that the executioner of your will can't be a beneficiary?

And your mum is named as the beneficiary, er, caretaker of Bird?

Doesn't that get muddled?

xox :)

Bob Cleveland said...

Rachel, I don't believe there's any prohibition of a beneficiary being the administrator of an estate, or the executor of a will. I was one of two beneficiaries of my mom's will, and I was the Executor.

Kyddryn said...

Bob, I know it has to be nice and legal, formalized in triplicate - mum was a lawyer, after all, and heaven knows I've seen enough messes made by folks who didn't want to think about it...but I still want the original attached to it!

Rachel - you can't be a Trustee if you are a beneficiary, but it is usually a member of the family who is executor - either a sibling or a child, and hopefully someone who knows what the decedent wanted and who will facilitate carrying those wishes out rather than drag their feet (it's more complicated - that's the nutshell). Since mum isn't benefiting from our deaths except to have her grandson driving her mad until he's legal, we're fine.

Kyddryn said...

Hmm...I may be wrong, too, about the Trustee thing - it could be that you can't be a witness to the will if you are a beneficiary. I'd blame the fig newtons, but there aren't any.

RachelW said...

It's all a fog to me... I guess that's why lawyers get paid the big bucks, eh? But then again, they'll never have your creativity, Kyddryn! ;)