There we are cruising down the county highway. I’m thinking ahead to Lysol-ing the soles of my favorite travel boots after they come back from a week in Ireland. I envision benzalkonium chloride hitting 99.99% of the unicellular prokaryotes thus causing a little invisible genocide. The cell is dead, the creature is dead. It’s different for us.
Me: “When we die, do our cells cease functioning immediately?”
D: “No. Next question?”
Me: “How long do cells continue to function after?”
D: “A few hours.”
Me: “So, if your cells are still alive, are you really dead?”
D: “It depends on how you define death. You can’t drive a car. Clinically, death is defined as the cessation of brain activity.”
Me: “Then, why do doctors call death on the flatline of the ECG and not the EEG?”
D started a response, but NPR mentioned Dubya’s memoir AGAIN, which immediately turned the mood in the car from scientific curiosity to private stewing. Eight years of American history that will always have that effect on us.
I will have to get Herr Doktor Brother’s opinion on When Death Occurs.
In morbid news you can actually use, it is deer mating season in these here parts and a lawyer friend informed us last night that if your car and a deer happen to collide, always remember: You didn’t hit the deer, the deer ran into you. And, if you happen to be in Pennsylvania, do not for the love of God cut the head off an already dead deer. Or you will end up in the pokey with Ben Roethlisberger.