When I was home recently in central Illinois, a house down the street from my parent’s home was up for auction. The elderly owners had both passed away leaving everything in their home exactly as they had left it. Like my parents, they had lived in their home for 50 years. When you are in one place that long, you accumulate a lot of stuff.
In spite of having lived there for so long, few people had seen the inside of the home and there was a lot of curiosity.
On the day of the auction, my mom walked down the street to view the spectacle. Some people were there seeking a bargain, others were simply driven by the morbid curiosity of watching the accumulation of two lives being distributed among strangers.
My mom said she expected that the house, the car and the furniture would be sold off, but that she was surprised at the personal things that were being auctioned, particularly the shoes. She said that there is just something so very personal about someone’s shoes.
“I was a bit surprised that they sold their dad and mom’s shoes and a lot of other personal items,” she lamented. “That doesn’t seem right to sell them at auction.” Then she quickly added, “Will you please give our stuff to Goodwill rather than have someone hold up my panties for a bid!”
I promised her that I would spare her post-mortem humiliation in front of the entire neighborhood — even though she blew kisses to me from the car window embarrassing me in front of my entire 4th grade class.
Life is embarrassing and then you die. And then they auction off your panties.