The potential danger of my circumstances is not lost on me, particularly as I tried write a headline about it.
I was sleeping in a house where the furnace slowly leaked carbon monoxide. I don't know how much nor do I know why I didn't sense anything wrong. Finally, I'm not sure what happened with the detector, which I didn't even know it was there.
One of (the few things) I know is the old adage for newspaper editors: Don't be a headline in your own newspaper.
Granted that's for arrests.
But this would have been nominally worse.
The working headline is "Bloated body of fat editor found dead."
Or is it "Fat body of bloated editor found dead"?
As I like to tell colleagues, words matter.
Maybe it would be, "Crane used to extract body of large, dead editor."
"Body of large, deceased editor used as bear bait." Subhed: "Brian Urlacher seen in area."
In a more complex story, someone just throws my carcass into the Chippewa Flowage. The the headline could be "Louis Spray catches world-record largest dead editor." (That's an insider's joke in the area. Louis Spray famously -- or infamously -- caught three record muskies over a 20-year period. Then never again.)
Inevitably, the story would do into gross detail, the worst of which would be, "the fat editor was found in the nude." On the upside, Elton John would write a nice song about me called, "Fart in the Wind."
"And it seems to me you lived your life/
Like a fart in the wind/
Not turning down sauerkraut/
'Til the gas set in."
The report would note my two plastic yard chairs in an otherwise empty living room, one mattress in one bedroom and one in another.
"Whether miser, monk or mook, the big fella had a sad end to a sadder life."
The report also will include the deceased only had foods with a funk, sauerkraut, blue cheese and durian -- suggesting I aided in my own demise. For the uninitiated, durian is a tropical fruit that tastes like rotting flesh.
Peace and life unto all of you my brothers and sisters.