Nelson Mandela: June 30, 1990

The world will remember and celebrate the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela at his funeral today. But for me, that celebration took place on June 30, 1990 at the Oakland Coliseum when I had the amazing opportunity to hear Mr. Mandela speak live, just months after his release from prison.

My original ticket.

My original ticket.

When my best friend Matt and I heard that Mandela would be visiting the Bay Area on his “Thank You” tour, we knew we had to attend. The event sold out pretty much right away but we somehow managed to snag two tickets and on that beautiful Saturday morning, we drove from Santa Cruz to Oakland in Matt’s VW bus to be a part of history. We may have just been young and stupid teenagers, but we knew that this would be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Nelson and Winnie Mandela enter the Oakland Coliseum.

Nelson and Winnie Mandela enter the Oakland Coliseum.

And it was. Here’s a video of that day:

Be nice to Whitney Houston.. she’s dead.

Girl was hot in her day!

I’m sitting in a hotel in San Antonio, TX. I’ve been flying for 6 hours (thanks Work for always getting me the worst flights so that you keep your costs down!) and I’m trying to unwind by eating my $14.00 airport Waldorf salad while watching some kind of episode of Teen Mom 2 on MTV. (I don’t own a television in real life, so when I get a chance to boob tube it, I find it quite foreign and exhilarating.) And what’s that scrolling across the bottom? Whitney Houston…R and B superstar… is found DEAD?!?!?!

You’ve got to be flippin’ kidding!

Why do I feel so sad?

Romantic or Creepy? Thai Man Marries His Dead Girlfriend

Saw this news report earlier today and was curious as to what our readers thought:

A Thai man named Chadil Deffy (apparently also known as Deff Yingyuen) lost his girlfriend of 10 years in a car accident on January 3. The couple had plans to get married at the time of the woman’s death.

On January 4, Deffy sent a message out on his Facebook that he would be holding a joint funeral/wedding for his beloved deceased girlfriend at a local temple in the Surin Province. No word yet on whether the wedding/funeral has taken place yet.

If You’re Invited to a Funeral, Go.

My aunt Dawn passed away last Wednesday – suddenly, unexpectedly, but painlessly – while undergoing a heart procedure. The memorial was held in south Los Angeles on Saturday. When I first heard the news, I waffled for a moment about attending, since I didn’t know Aunt Dawn all that well. She was my mom’s brother’s second wife, who I saw maybe twice a year growing up at family events. But I changed my mind, made the drive down. So glad I did. In that hour long service, I learned more about my aunt and the rest of my family than I have in the past 20 years.

$25 For Your Funeral, Death Not Required

Leave it to Koreans to find creative and innovative ways to make a buck. According to this LA Times article, there are businesses popping up all over South Korea that are “designed to teach clients how to better appreciate life by simulating death.” And how do they do that? By staging your own “mock” funeral.

For just $25, you can attend a four-hour seminar where you can write your own letters of good-bye and tombstone epitaphs before being locked up in a casket for 10 minutes. As one of the businessmen running these forums says, “It’s a way to let go of certain things. Afterward, you feel refreshed. You’re ready to start your life all over again, this time with a clean slate.”