Once upon a time, I was in love with an undertaker, who ultimately shattered my life. Oh, Lord, an undertaker. I hardly believe it myself. But it's a true story. It was his family's business, and of course, like most careers, it didn't define him. What did define him was a charismatic magnetism, a warmth, a vibrancy, a joie de vivre, that I hadn't encountered before, albeit at the ripe age of 25. Ironically, but not accidentally, he embraced life, and as it turned out, too much. By embracing love, sex, drugs, highs, lows, cruelty, passion, joy (his), pain (mine), he carved out his antidote to the death that pervaded his everyday life. In effect, this shaped who I became, who I've become. My heart died a little then, and even though it was later resurrected, I'm not sure it ever forgot that Death could be waiting just around the corner.