The Harold and Maude Hearse

It's cold, and I'm procrastinating, and I noticed that in a recent post Anne praised the whole idea of owning a hearse as your family vehicle. That reminds me of a brief story: I grew up on the San Francisco peninsula, in a town whose neighbors were used as settings for Harold and Maude, a classic of the cult film circuit. Not surprisingly for a film that was entirely about death, there was a hearse, and after the film wrapped the hearse got sold. The hearse ended up in the hands of a kid at Palo Alto High School, and at a party in Palo Alto one night in the mid-1970s, that kid and I showed up at the same party. I ended up as one member of a gang of teenagers that rode around Stanford and the streets of Palo Alto that night, in the back of the hearse that Harold and Maude made famous, cracking jokes and making the kind of mayhem that teenagers think they make when they invade the local college campus.


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Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at] Mike also blogs at, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

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