From burials in pyramids to scattering ashes and even plastination, there has been no shortage of ideas about how to deal with human corpses.
But with graveyards and crematoria almost full in Britain, the conundrum of what to do with the dead has resurfaced with new urgency. Now a leading public health expert has suggested...Oooh, wait, wait!
OK, pray continue.
...the sides of motorways, cycle paths and even brownfield or former industrial sites could be transformed to house the dead.Wait, what?
That's...going to make laying flowers on the grave a touch problematic, isn't it?
“We need to challenge local authorities and county councils and say as part of their greening strategy – which we must do as part of [mitigating] global warming – let’s put the burial situation into the thinking,” said John Ashton, former president of the Faculty of Public Health.Have you ever been to a cemetery or crematorium, John? They tend to be pretty green places already.
The upshot, he said, would be the creation of new woodlands and green spaces that would aid greening, help the climate, improve access to the countryside and tackle the graveyard crisis in one stroke.And presumably bring peace in Palestine, solve the energy crisis and cure the common cold too?
As the world gets more congested, more innovative ideas have to be found. As arable and grazing land come under pressure, protein sources become more expensive. As real estate for burials becomes scarce and the polluting effects of cremation attracts criticism, we have to consider more radical ideas. Soilient Green anyone?
I wonder what colour the sky is in the world these people inhabit? Let us show respect for our recently deceased loved ones by digging a hole beside the A19 and chucking them in there. However, I would consider it if they start the ball rolling with their dead rellys.
Bury everybody vertically
'...the sides of motorways...'
I thought that sort of thing was the preserve of the criminal underworld...
In any case, how would the ceremony be accomplished with suitable dignity? Surely the spectacle of a full-dress interment just off the hard shoulder of the M25 would be highly likely to cause a mass pile-up and further increase the ranks of the departed, to say nothing of the difficulty of driving there at a suitably solemn speed (although I was once overtaken on the Turin orbital motorway by a loaded hearse and cortege all doing at least 80 ...).
"...we have to consider more radical ideas. Soilient Green anyone?"
What's a little kuru (cannibalism related BSE) compared to that?
"I wonder what colour the sky is in the world these people inhabit?"
Ironically, they call this stuff 'blue sky thinking'...
"Bury everybody vertically"
Practical! I like it!
"I thought that sort of thing was the preserve of the criminal underworld..."
We're going to need a lot more flyovers!
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