This is “The Place.” Yes it is. Well if not “The Place” then one of the places.
I know you are probably thinking just what the hell is Kevin talking about. I am talking about Table Rock Lake. You know the Great Bambino of all Missouri lakes.
I am not going to debate which of the Missouri lakes is best. Each has its own pluses and minuses. Some would vote Lake of the Ozarks. I can see that. Table Rock does not have a party cove quite like the Party Cove at Lake of the Ozarks. Well except maybe our cove at Table Rock, but we keep our clothes on. Well at least most of the time. Right, Erin and Megan?
I have chosen Table Rock as the best because of our yearly family vacation there. We have spent a week of vacation there every summer for the past 23 or 24 years…I think? Hell I do not know how long we have been doing this, but it has been a long, long time.
The Brown Family along with the Anderson Family and the Moehring Family have gotten together each year at the lake. There were 23 of us there this year. We keep growing.
Now I will not say that over the years we have not had issues during our time together. I have said in the past that family can be like fish. You know after a few days they start to stink.
Even taking that into consideration I can honestly say that it is a vacation that I look forward to each year. If or when the tradition stops then I will miss this family time together. We have had so much fun and have so many stories.
I have a story about Uncle Barry’s boat sinking in the slip at the dock. I think it was sabotage.
There is the story of Erin and Megan going skinny dipping and a swim suit being washed out into the lake. That was an interesting situation.
There have been a few ER visits over the years. Many fish caught and many stories told about the one that got away.
Many beers drunk, many card games played, many heartfelt conversations had over the years, and many pieces of advice given to nephews and nieces.
My nephew Hayden will be a junior in college this fall. We were talking about his future career plans and he told Erin and I that he planned on being a stay at home dad. Erin explained that he probably should not share that when dating. I kinda like his career choice. Good work if you can get it.
Later we were floating in the lake doing our blue bobber thing. I was drinking my Bud Light and all of a sudden we were talking about my party. My end of life party, or also called my Celebration of Life. NOT A FUNERAL.
Before I go into the details let me explain how we got on this conversation in the first place. The answer to that is that I really do not know. It just happened.
I am sure I brought it up in some way. How I was able to sneak it into the conversation I do not remember. I probably had too many beers. It was a brief conversation, but it is a start.
Christy and I have had this conversation. She is not in complete agreement with my wishes. Okay, okay, that is an understatement. She told me that if she is planning it then I will be having a church funeral. Noooo not a church!! She said that a funeral is for the living and not the dead. I am not going to like it, but if that is what happens I guess I will be there. Damn.
But if I can put a plan in place maybe I can get what I want. It has worked before so maybe one more time. Christy hinted that if I put everything together I might get what I want. With that in mind I brought the topic up at the lake. Maybe I was looking for Team Kev support.
It is a topic that people do not want to talk about. I understand that. But it is a conversation that I need to have.
When should I have this conversation with family? If you wait too long you never really get to have it, and things just happen. I do not want things to just happen. I want my desires known so people can get comfortable with the idea of playing “Dead Man Trivia” at my party.
No matter how much people wish to avoid having this conversation it has to happen. This is the part of my disease process that no one wants to talk about. No one wishes to talk about death. I need to face it. I need to talk about it.
I am going to share something I have not shared before. July is my cancer anniversary month so to speak. For four years we have lived under this cloud. That worries me a little. You see 70 percent of men who have similar disease characteristics as mine die within five years of diagnoses. I am a little concerned.
I remember a conversation I had with one of my doctors and he told me basically to enjoy the days when I felt good, because those days would not last. I hope he is wrong.
I keep telling myself that I am going to be one of the 30 percenters. I keep telling myself that the poisons have become more effective over the years and that these new treatments are giving men like me more time. I do believe that. I have to believe that. But what if it doesn’t? This shit does not work for everyone.
Well if the shit does not work then I better have my bags packed so to speak. I need to be prepared for the worst while hoping for the best. That means I better have this Celebration of Life party figured out. On to the details, but remember that it is a work in progress.
So I envision a meal being served. Like a last supper with Kev sort of thing. So you better get there early before we run out of food. Who knows maybe by then I will be able to turn water into wine etc.
Most likely I will not have that wine thing down yet so I anticipate it being a BYOB party. I am not paying for your alcohol. I have seen many of you drink. Wait a minute, yes go ahead and put it on my tab. Let’s see how they plan on collecting that.
Now who is going to be the host of the festivities? Well it has to be me don’t you think. Yes I will be very dead, but through the power of modern technology I can still host. I will video myself and it can be played at the party.
Did you really think I was going to miss my own party? You know better than that. I might need a little help so I will name a co-host at a later time.
Now one of the things I will be doing there is hosting a game I call “Dead Man Trivia!”
Yes I will be asking the audience questions about myself. Such as: Can you name the greatest Rock & Roll band according to Kevin? One of my kid’s better win Dead Man Trivia or I will be pissed. If that is possible.
Other things will be happening, but more about that later. This essay is getting rather long and I have other thoughts I want to discuss.
Where to be buried? That is a good question. I own a cemetery plot here in Wichita. I bought it years ago. I read a book that said that I could get rich buying land so I bought a cemetery plot. You know one day we will run out of those. I will have cornered the market. HaHaHa.
The problem I have is that if I am buried there then I cannot sell it. I obviously did not think this through.
I guess I was feeling a little cemetery plot market irrational exuberance. Thank you Alan Greenspan.
I also have a few other problems with my investment. The biggest one I guess is the fact that I do not want to be buried there. Hell I do not even want to be buried. I plan on being cremated. What to do with my ashes? That is another good question.
Do I want my remains in Kansas? I thought since my kids were born here and we raised our family here and actually I have now lived in Kansas longer than Missouri then Kansas would be where I would stay. I have decided that even though Kansas has become my adopted home so to speak it is still not home. That is Missouri. I am even torn about going back to Missouri. I have been gone for so long.
Since I am planning on being cremated I think that the solution to the problem is to have a little of me here and a little of me there, a little of me everywhere.
Now I am use to telling the ladies to stop fighting. I tell them that there is enough of me to go around. I am not sure after cremation that there will be enough of me to go around. So I will most likely keep the sprinkle spots to a minimum, or even change them as I think of a better place. I have a few places in mind that I do not think will change.
Busch Stadium! Yes Busch Stadium. Justin has been instructed to plant a small amount of me in the flower beds in front of the outfield bleachers. It will be like having season tickets, but cheaper. I think I will like it there.
I am going to tell Justin not to put too much of me there. Who knows in 30 years they might tear the stadium down. Where would I end up then? So Justin, sprinkle Kev lightly in Busch Stadium.
Wrigley Field! Yes, Wrigley Field. I hate the little bears. They think that the Curse of the Billie Goat was bad or the guy who caught the foul ball. I like Steve Bartman. What happened to him should not have happened.
The cubs will not ever win another series in Wrigley when playing the Cards. With a little of me in the ivy I plan on haunting those sons of a bitches for the rest of eternity. The Curse of Kevin MF Brown! I like that idea. Not too much Justin. A little of cub hating Kevin is all that is needed.
Those are two solid places on my list. I figured some of me will be kept with Christy and we will be planted together in the far, far, distant future. Maybe even in Kansas. Damn!!
I really do not want to be in a cemetery, but I do want to have a place where the kids can feel like this is where I am. I do not want them to come to a cemetery to visit. I want them to come to Table Rock Lake.
Yes, I think Table Rock Lake would be a nice place for me to spend more time. I am thinking that a little of me could be in a nice urn or even an empty Bud Light bottle. A glass bottle, it has to be a glass bottle. You know a long neck ice cold Bud Light never broke my heart. HaHaHa.
Anyway looking out into the lake east of the cabins off the dock near the no wake buoy might be a good place to drop me down. If you are using a beer bottle make sure the cap is on tight, and use some weights. Or even put a little Bud Light in the bottle with me. I might get thirsty. Double check the cap. I do not want to become fish food.
Erin I know you are asking yourself how I know that area is east of the cabin. That is where the sun rises little girl. Erin has always been directionally challenged.
Every year when my family vacations at Table Rock I will be there. You will not need to go to a sad place to visit. I will be at one of our Happy Places. A place where we have great memories that brings smiles to our faces. That is where I want to be. You can take a boat or a bobber out to where I will be and drop down a Bud Light. I would like that.
I have spent over two thousand words making light of what is a tough subject. What I have written are my wishes. Having these ideas will help with the plan.
Indian Hills Resort at Table Rock Lake will never become “The Place.” It will just be one of the places.
The main place I want to be is in your heart. No matter where my children go I will be with them. It will not matter where I am buried or where I am sprinkled. In their hearts is “The Place” I wish to be.
I am confident that future treatments will work and my plan will not be put into place for a few years. But at least you know my wishes if things do not work out.
Hey, anyone interested in buying some land? I have some property.