"How much money do you think I would need to bequeath to the University of Georgia in order for them to honor the stipulation that to receive my generous donation they must allow my heirs to bury my remains between the hedges of Sanford Stadium?"
I posed this question to my husband as we cruised down Highway 78 in our teal minivan full of forgotten french fries in the back seat and melted orange crayon residue on the dashboard. Not a good sign that I have the means to bestow any monetary amount of significance to my academic institution.
"Would the spreading of your ashes on the field suffice?" he asked.
"No," I said, "they might blow away, and I would spend eternity in the cemetery across the street. Not to mention how cremation would ruin my red and black burial attire. I demand interment between the forties. It will add new meaning to the phrase 'team spirit'.
"Ideally the AD, university president, and football coach will ceremoniously dig a six-foot hole into which the funeral director will lower my coffin, emblazoned with the university emblem of the arches. As the Redcoat Band plays Glory, Glory to Old Georgia in the background, everyone present will give their last regards and toss game day pom-poms on top of my casket."
"Hmm, that's asking a lot. You'd have to offer a hefty sum." He followed that response with "would you eat a bowl of worms for a $1 million?"
It seems he missed the sincerity of my inquiry. I hadn't simply solicited advice about a hypothetical unknown. I really want to enjoy postmortem rest on the gridiron. It appeals to my senses:
1) Posthumously, I could twist the bureaucratic arm of a vastly powerful institution; a very satisfying prospect.
2)My mor-tal remains would fertilize a field of dreams.
3) My descendants could pay their respects to me and the Silver Britches on Saturday afternoons every fall. A guarantee, really, that I would neither be gone nor forgotten.
"So would you eat them," he persisted, breaking my reverie.
"No," I said.
"You would eat them for $2 million," he hopefully stated. Again, I denied that I would, even for $3 million.
My mild mannered husband became furious, as if men are lined up at my doorstep with black briefcases, filled with millions of dollars, in one hand and a bowl of slimy, writhing worms in the other. He demanded an explanation for how I could, in my right mind (which he clearly thought I wasn't), turn down such lucrative offers.
I curtly told him "I don't eat worms. I wouldn't eat them with a goat. I couldn't eat them in a boat. I will not eat them here or there. I won't eat them anywhere."
"I'll make you," he threatened.
I'm confused. How did a conversation about my burial wishes turn into my beloved force feeding me worms for imaginary sums of money? We rode in silence after his outburst.
Again I pondered the right sum to confer on my alma mater in order to obtain my final request. I arrived at a heretofore undisclosed exorbitant amount. Taking stock of my current income, assets and investments, I realized I am financially off track for bribing the Bulldogs.
My daddy always told me that if I went to church every Sunday, said my prayers, studied hard and led a good life, when I died they would lay me to rest between the hedges. But I think I'm going to have to eat a lot of bowls of worms.