Sunday, January 23, 2005

“Braaains… BRAIIINS…”

The Movie: Night of the Living Dead, 1968 (John A. Russo and George A. Romero, screenwriters; George A. Romero, dir.)
Who says it: The zombies, risen from the dead
The context: The zombies, desperate to feed on humans, try to break into a farmhouse full of refugees.
How to use it: To express a powerful, irrational desire, or maybe just when you’re hungry.

When I announced my plans to move to Maine, my friend Dan Freedman said something like, "What about all the serial killers?" He, like many people, knows Maine only through popular literature, which can be a little dark.

I laughed at this, but the truth is that you don't need to live here very long to understand why Maine lends itself to the macabre. After all, my dog's favorite playground is the cemetery. I live across the street from an enormous abandoned paper factory, and we've already discussed the Source of Light Mailbox Club.

But in case you doubted, here's an excerpt from yesterday’s Kennebec Journal:

Policy expected on organ donation
By KEVIN WACK, Portland Press Herald Writer
Copyright © 2005 Blethen Maine Newspapers Inc.

The Maine Attorney General's Office is close to finalizing a policy on organ and tissue donation at the state office where autopsies are performed.

The changes - a response to problems with a brain-harvesting program at the Medical Examiner's Office in Augusta - are expected to establish rules for obtaining consent.


The flurry of activity in Augusta follows a Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram investigation that showed the state's one-time funeral inspector was paid more than $150,000 over several years to collect brains for a research lab in Bethesda, Md.

Earlier this month, the Stanley Medical Research Institute agreed to pay $47,500 to settle a lawsuit in which a Gorham couple alleged their late son's brain was taken without anyone's consent.

Additional families are now making similar allegations, and federal and state prosecutors are investigating the suspended brain-harvesting program.

Just to get it on record: once I'm finished with my brain, I couldn't care less what happens to it. Get some money for it, if you can.


Anna said...

And to further prove how commonplace the macabre is in Maine, when you mentioned this to me yesterday I simply said, "Oh, right. That."

Robert Lindsay said...

I recently blogged on NOTLD. Feel free to check it out. Lots of pics.