{Empty title} | The Nation

I recall waking up one night, 12, 13 years of age, in the full knowledge my parents were going to be dead before me, that is, before my own time had come. So I went downstairs, crying. They were watching Once Upon a Time in the West, and I coincidentally entered the living room during the scene where the young boy tries to stay on his feet, because his dad is standing on his neck, about to die as soon as the boy would fall.

Writing about this event, well over thirty years ago brings the echo of Enrico Morricone's music with that mouth harp, haunting me like a ghost: eerie yet beautiful music!

My parents aren't dead yet, but I know for fact I tried hard enough to die a little sooner then the both of them; joyriding, motorcycles, what not. I think our wish to live on and on has a firm connection with the love for our dearest ones, our children, our parents, intertwined products and makers.

Another thing I recall is I told them they weren't allowed to die sooner, crying and screaming, screaming and crying. Funny, no? Of course they couldn't promise me that, so I cried some more, Enrico's music going on and on on the background.

Some thirty years later I read about the concept of a "death-gene" switching on during early adolescence. What is the use of growing insanely old without loved ones around, really?