To be opened in the event of our untimely death

December 13, 2007

The missus & I made a lot of decisions when we first had the LBC, not the least of which was forming a trust to handle all our assets & naming the LBC the beneficiary.  Unfortunately, when it came time to pick a successor for us (in terms of raising Emerson) if we both died in an accident, we chose with our hearts rather than our minds, and based the choice on “sweetness” rather than actual ability to raise a small child, which is how we ended up picking Emerson’s grandmother as the person we wanted in charge of raising her if we both died. 

The choice doesn’t make a lot of sense on paper, as Grandma is pretty old currently, and raising a small child isn’t something you start in your sixties unless you’re in the Rolling Stones, or maybe one of those Guiness World Record holding “oldest crone to give birth” types.  So, upon reflection we decided to change things up & leave Emma to my brother & his wife, who have done pretty well on their children so far.  Unfortunately, this means not only the legal headache of changing the Trust/Will, but also the emotional minefield of telling Grandma that she’s out. 

The missus & I were discussing the best way to broach the subject, and I suggested just sending Grandma a sealed envelope entitled “To be opened in the event of our untimely death,” which would bluntly state what the deal was.  It works flawlessly, in that we would no longer be there for the awkwardness, but the missus pointed out that Grandma might violate the rules, to which I would say we just need to amend the letter to read “Nana Ellen, if you’re reading this & we’re still alive, then clearly you can’t follow simple instructions & we can’t trust you with the Cupcake.  If, on the other hand we’re dead, this is just to let you know that we went with someone else for the position of child rearing.  Thanks for the sugar cookies!!”



  1. I would just let the lawyer be responsible for telling Grammy.

    We actually have the same situation. I have no siblings, so it was either my mom, my dad & his goofy wife (5 years older than me)and Wife’s side of the family.

    While my mom being an investment banker was an excellent choice from a financial responsibility perspective. She too is old. So out as guardian but in as administer of our estate.

    Dad & Goofy wife. No way! Dad dies and goofy wife becomes gaurdian. I rather have the kids die with me.

    So that left wife’s side. This entry is so long, so I’ll just say pretty much they’re all crazy! So it was a choice of least crazy. We went with the nurse and the FedEX pilot. They have two teenage kids both brilliant. And fairly well adjusted.

    It is a horrible thought but can’t imagine not having defined this prior. ahorrible fight over custody would be terrifying.

  2. Would the blog die with Jonson? I think you need a successor.

  3. Good point, Chuck. I hope the successor wouldn’t be funnier than me. It would suck if it was like The Daily Show where Craig Kilborne hosts it moderately well for a few years & then Jon Stewart comes along & SO outshines him as to obliterate any memore of a pre-Stewart version of the show. I’ll have to find some hack and name him my apprentice.

    And JK, I’m sure you made the right choice, but let’s hope it never comes to that regardless.

  4. Jackass. I may be old, but even I knew you had one of these bloog do-hickies. So much for your ‘superpower’… and your Christmas present.

  5. Gimme Grandma’s email address. I’ll be happy to bring her up to date.

  6. Awesome! Grandma knows!

  7. Cheri: “[The Missus] called me this week and asked if we’d be [the Cupcake’s] guardians in the event of their deaths.”

    Tom [pauses briefly to consider]: “Okay.”

    Cheri: “Good, because I already said yes. Now go read Jonathan’s latest blog post.”

  8. When I die someone just needs to tell my kids they’re finally cut off. And this time I mean it.

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