I’d like to begin by expressing my deepest condolences for your recent death.

I imagine this is quite unexpected, to find yourself here. They say that moving house, having children, and dealing with a loved one’s death are life’s three most stressful experiences, and given that the transition into the afterlife rolls two of those incidents into one, it can be a challenging and overwhelming time. The fact that your Facebook profile says ‘prove it’ beneath the ‘religious views’ subheading would also suggest you expected some kind of eternal, Socratic oblivion. But instead you’ve found yourself before this panel.

So I’m sure this comes as quite a shock. As evidenced by your tendency to send Messenger invites for Candy Crush, it’s also clear that you didn’t anticipate your status in the afterlife to be determined by your social media personality. But here we are, and the panel must do as duty demands.

Of course, there are many points in your favor. The panel appreciates your use of sepia filters and the Iphone’s underappreciated ‘straighten image’ function, especially with respect to your artfully-composed Instagram posts of avocado-based Sunday brunches. Your continued online friendship with Grandma, despite her consistent stream of ‘unlikely animal friend’ videos in which she unnecessarily tags you, is also highly commendable.

However, the panel is also obliged to consider your unironic use of absurdly long hashtags, compulsive email-sharing of chain letters, and frequent re-posting of antiquated ‘keep calm’ memes. Your contemplation, at one point, of the creation of a joint Facebook account for your infant is also a disturbing blight upon your social media reputation. The panel is vastly relieved said plans did not go ahead.

Having collated the evidence as described above, the panel therefore finds you ineligible to enter ‘closed group’ #heaven. With particular attention to your propensity to use mobile devices at the dinner table, you are consigned to the third circle of hell; that reserved for moderately-inept social media gluttons. There you will wallow in the great storm of putrefaction, also known as MySpace.

The decision of the panel is final, and no further correspondence will be entered into.

CategoryFlash Fiction

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