“You Could Be Hit By A Bus!”

Hey there!

Any idea what the phrase “memento mori” or “ars moriendi” mean?

It’s a bit morbid, but knowing about these concepts can help us live in the moment, and free us from worrying about all the time we don’t have.

I found it fascinating…and oddly comforting…when I was introduced to it a few days ago.

(Click/tap ↑↑↑↑↑↑ that red YouTube button to subscribe to my channel. You’ll get notified when I release new videos.)

Hope this helps!


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Raw YouTube Captioning

hey there it’s David H Lawrence the 17th
and I’m gonna be talking about something
fairly morbid today the headline of this
this daily video of ours we’re doing one
a day for the 365 days of the year is
you could be hit by a bus god my
grandfather used to say that all the
time and I didn’t realize what he meant
by that I mean obviously I got the
basics of it you know do things now or
you could be dead and not be able to do
it but it also lent to his love of life
clearly it was important and the other
day I learned about the phrase memento
mori’ meam ENT o new word mor I memento
mori and basically a what a memento mori
is is you know I don’t have one
let’s just say this throat lozenge is a
memento mori and I would keep it on my
desk as a memento about death but more
importantly the fact that we’re all
going to eventually die and how to enjoy
life the warning that you’ll die the
very same day I learned about memento
mori which you know kind of sounds like
a guy that sells mementos out in the
valley memento mori higham memento mori
but it’s mo RI it’s not Mau ry a memento
mori I also learned about this concept
called ARS moriendi which is latin for
roughly translated the art of dying well
and I’m telling you all these things
because we’ve talked about time
management and being productive and
getting the most you can out of the time
that you have and rest and relaxation
and recharging and the ability for the
brain to be elastic about learning
things and then recovering from all that
learning so that it can be and
coated and enveloped in what we know and
all of this is with kind of this you
know Specter off in the distance of you
could be hit by a bus so what I’ve been
thinking about for the last week or so
off and on is this whole idea of my
mortality I started thinking about it in
my mid-40s but it’s it’s you know kind
of raised its head every so often here
and there not oddly enough when I’m
having some sort of a health issue but
just in general I’m very very fortunate
that I’ve lived the kind of life that
I’ve lived and I hope that you’re
fortunate living the life that you’re
living and my question for you is do you
live your life with the warning hanging
over your head
that it could end at any time and have
you lived a life well-lived ARS moriendi
is associated with memento mori z– in
the way that you know it’s something to
think about when it comes to death but
the art of dying well in medieval times
the Catholic Church came up with this as
a way to deal with people’s concerns
about dying what happens when we die
heaven and hell and all that sort of
thing and there was a group of I think
seven different things that they taught
people about dying well you know what
not to be afraid of how to comfort
someone who is passing and it’s where
last rites was sort of refined it’s been
around since the beginning of the
Catholic Church but last rites were kind
of codified you know what to do when a
catholic is dying and so on and i’m not
a particularly religious person i have
my own personal thoughts about how
religion is not very organized religion
and the the hierarchy of religion isn’t
very useful but i do think about death
and i do think about living a life
well-lived and i do think about getting
the most out of the time that we have
here on earth and I look forward to
dying well I don’t look forward to dying
but I look forward to the moment when I
sort of realized that that’s what I had
that’s the time that I had and I lived
it well and I helped others and I did
what I needed to do but my overarching
question here today is do you worry
about death and if you do what causes
you to worry about it and how can you
not worry about it I believe that
understanding as much about it as you
can knowing that it’s inevitable and
just sort of accepting the fact that if
you do things constantly trying to
refine things definition of success do
more of what works and less of what
doesn’t you could extend that to do more
of what works and less of what doesn’t
while you’re here on earth but the idea
of all of these things that we’ve been
talking about in terms of growth mindset
and the definition of success and honing
and refining and all of the the
relaxation things that we’ve been
talking about is that leading you to a
point where you worry less about death
where you take the time to give yourself
kudos a bit of a break and and some
credit for having a life that you’re
living well that you’re you’re having
fun at and yeah there’s some struggles
here and there but overall you know
they’re manageable
I wonder how you think about your
mortality for me it’s been something
that made me come to Los Angeles I
wanted to become an on-camera actor
before I passed away and I wanted to do
a lot of things I still have things that
I want to do but what I’m finding is the
more I learned about how to live life
well the less I’m concerned about dying
the less I’m concerned about dying
poorly I think I’m going to die when I
do die I’m gonna die well I just needed
to get that off my chest today I I don’t
think there was any big major point that
I wanted to stress other than the the
more skill you have in living life the
less likely it is that you’ll be fearful
of death
I think that’s what that’s what it all
boils down to I got I got sort of these
these tokens being sent at me about life
versus death or life and death and I
just wanted to share with share with you
I think that the peace that comes with a
life that you can you know build and
rely on and enjoy is really interesting
it’s really interesting what are your
thoughts about this what do you feel
like when you think about death I know
that some of the people that watch these
videos are very young and some of the
people that watch these videos are
closer to death then the young people
that watch the videos then I think to
myself you know you young people you
could get hit by a bus let me know in
the comments below what your thoughts
are about what I’ve said if you’d like
to subscribe to my channel I promise you
the next video won’t be nearly as morbid
if morbid at all go ahead and click on
my head there and you can subscribe or
you can click a subscribe button
somewhere on the page that you’re
watching this on if you want to see the
latest latest episode that I put out go
ahead and click on that frame right
there and YouTube will play it for you
I’m David H Lawrence xvii I so
appreciate you watching these daily
videos I thank you for helping me meet
this challenge and I will talk to you

13 Responses to “You Could Be Hit By A Bus!”

  1. Steve Krupnik February 27, 2019 at 7:37 am #

    GREAT subject David, albeit one that most are uncomfortable with. Personally, I welcome death. No hurry for it, yet I look forward to that eventual last breath after a life well lived. This is because I believe that my physical passing is the only route to receiving my much deserved spiritual promotion. Again, no rush for this inevitable event, yet, because of this belief I choose to spend this time here doing everything I can to richly deserve what is coming next.

    Pace e Amore,

    Steve Krupnik

  2. Tamara Wexler February 27, 2019 at 9:25 am #

    Wow. Not three minutes before watching this video, I was reflecting on the passing Sunday of an old friend, my first agent in LA, and the fact that I’m becoming more and more aware that people I knew rather well are passing away. I don’t feel old, even though I’m now considered a “Senior” by many standards. This last year has been a huge struggle for me, as we (my hubs and I) navigate the waters of change and anticipate what the next phase will be. Will our move be to our last stop on the highway of life? Or is there more to come? In the midst of the considerable stress I’ve been feeling I’ve tried to remind myself that really, all I’ve got is today, and no matter how long this transition ends up taking, it’s foolish to let the stress of it rule my thinking. It’s a struggle in itself to change my mindset, but I so agree with your feeling that we all need to live the moments and enjoy the fruits of today’s labors. Some call it gratitude, but I think more contentment. I know I’m good right now, today. And who knows… tomorrow I could get hit by a bus!

  3. ed waldorph February 27, 2019 at 9:34 am #

    Memento Maury! HA! Brilliant.

    Facing one’s mortality is a trepidus subject; more for some than others.

    Everyone has Eureka moments in their lives—that instant when a surprising (for them) realization of life, or crystallization of of a particularly troublesome conundrum suddenly becomes conscious. The more modern take is an “Ah ha!” moment. But a true Epiphany or epiphany may never come.

    Epiphanies used to be exclusively religious—a particular biblical one survives to this day in religious rites. Later Epiphanies were those life-changing events the religious point to as the personal intervention of God in their lives. But non-believers and even unbelievers have epiphanies—some never have them and some never acknowledge them.

    I have been fortunate to have had two. One as a preteen which changed the shape of my life and formed the foundation to build the man I am today with a lifetime of public service to show for it. The other laughingly showed me my mortality (slapped me in my face with it to assure my attention, actually) at a rather young age, then whisked it away; leaving the very clear impression I would have it later at an undisclosed time along with its no return, no exchange guarantee.

    You might even be able to imagine hitting a muffler, on the freeway, on a motorcycle, at over 60MPH, in heavy traffic.

    They say that at the moment of realization of certain death, one’s entire life is replayed in an instant. I can tell you that it is true and it’s all well and good. The problem comes when your brain returns to the moment and has several seconds to gain full understanding: you are no longer in control of your existence. Then another five to ten inexorable, interminable seconds to savor what’s left of it.

    Most of us have thought that or felt that at one time or another in their lives—there is a mental health industry built on it. But I can tell you that it is a bit different when it is real. Fatalists will say that we are all along for the ride. They have no freaking idea.

    I could describe the ride; there isn’t enough space. I could describe the feeling; there are no words.

    So, David and dear readers, I raise my glass to you and toast: I missed my bus but caught the message. I have done and will continue to do my best as we all continue our long (or short) slide into oblivion. Make it good or make it bad; just make it memorable.

  4. Kevin Scott Allen February 27, 2019 at 10:10 am #

    Very interesting, thoughtful video, David, and fascinating despite the “morbid” topic. Bravo, thoroughly enjoyed it.

  5. Chris Buckner February 27, 2019 at 12:27 pm #

    I appreciate your candor David. I’m in my mid-forties and I think about death more than I used to, sometime too much. I think about all that I haven’t done, but then I start thinking about all I have done. I remind myself of my victories and the wonderful state my life is in now, and then I feel more positive. I think about all that is to come and it makes me smile. When I get all worked up about something that upsets me I sometimes calm myself down by reminding myself how fortunate I am to have all the great things that I have. I sometimes think to myself that I could be gone tomorrow so enjoy every day and really appreciate each day. Thanks for the video David.

  6. Paula Leinweber February 27, 2019 at 12:46 pm #

    Thank you David. An interesting subject that gets a very bad rap. I am not at all afraid of death, and actually look forward to it (though not today, thank you!) because I am confident about what comes next. The older I get, the more I want to accomplish before that day, because I see that the time is shorter than ever. Like you, there is so much I still want to try, though living in LA is definitely not one of them… :) Life is so much fun when you can see the potential, and living each day as if it might be your last can be rather exciting for adventure-lovers (yes, I am one).

  7. Nikki Bryce February 27, 2019 at 1:49 pm #

    Wow. Tears flowed.
    I first got present to my mortality when I was my MIL’s person / advocate for a few years. It scared the shed out of me. As time passed that experience receded quietly into the background, only coming out for a quick check-in every now and then. More recently though, it’s moved back in for an indeterminate visit. Health situations spurred it. Plus for decades I have been the helpful one, putting the majority of my time, talent and effort on to others (my therapist has helped sort that out) and it was me trying to grasp on to every piece of life (in desperation), to enjoy, no, to experience life as much as possible, before I could no longer. I just have a broken foot and a shoulder that requires surgery later this year, I am not critical.
    I have taken on a LOT of training in the past few years and have been clearly overcommitted. But my justification has been – if I don’t do it now…

    I used to say “relaxing is a learned thing for me”; well, it still is. So what would work for me is to truly have balance. Yes, more work to get there, but it would provide me more fun, enjoyment, and satisfaction.

    I have recently been rattled by, to my core as they say, a recent suicide of a young man. So I look at what it is to enjoy life, and do my best to do that, more of what works.

    I’ve stopped crying now, and I’m not even going to reread this before I submit…

    All there is: good topic choice today, David, attaboy.

    NB in CA (the northern one)

  8. Veleka February 27, 2019 at 4:46 pm #

    Ars Vivendi or the Art of Living, and Ars Bene Moriendi or the Art of Dying Well.

  9. Sheila Friedman February 27, 2019 at 5:12 pm #

    I do not worry about death. I try to enjoy each day regardless of what obstacles appear, I handle them and move on..I have handled a lot in my life, and I don’t dwell on the past…just move toward the future.I am 73 and don’t think about death.

  10. Patricia Napolitano February 27, 2019 at 5:58 pm #

    Like you, David, I do not find religion much use. And as a (try to be) rational person, I do not find any evidence for life after death. I am fascinated by near death experience stories, but they are far from convincing or even consistent. However I still instinctively feel , “There has got to be more than this”. Since we do not know everything about the universe, or alternate universes, I think there is a slim possibility that life goes on after death in some unimagined way.
    It’s a bit like believing in life on other worlds. No evidence, but just realizing how big and unknown the universe is makes one think that there must be life of some sort out there somewhere. Of course the difference is we may someday learn the answer to Life On Other Worlds, but currently no way to ever find the answer to Life After Death.
    I guess the best we can do is lead the best life we can and hope for a “good” death and maybe beyond death. I hope for an afterlife, but if not I get comfort from a quote from the Roman poet Horace. ” Vita brevis, Ars longa.” Life is brief, Art is lasting.

  11. Judy Blackshear February 27, 2019 at 6:21 pm #

    Wow. So many thoughts on this.

    First, an anecdote. For some reason on this particular day in the past I said “hit by a truck”. “Unless I’m hit by a truck, I’ll be here for lunch with you tomorrow.” Guess what – I was hit by a truck. I got better. It was just a bad bump, but the car was messed up and I was shaken, and I was not at that lunch meeting. I don’t say that any more. Except when I forget, and say it anyway.

    Second, a couple of years ago I produced a one-off Improv show “It’s Your Funeral”. Turns out I was the only one who “got” my idea. My friends joined in to support me, but didn’t really get what I was trying to do. That’s how it goes, sometimes. See, I have had occasional fantasies about dying well. My life didn’t go in the direction of the particular fantasies I had long ago, but I still like the idea of it. So the show was that one of us would tell a little about how we would like our end to be, and then the others would enact scenes of our funeral, inspired by our monologue.

    Last point and then I’ll leave it here for today. Topics like this make me think I would like to have a nice long conversation over drinks with you someday.

  12. Paul H Rothfuss February 28, 2019 at 1:27 pm #

    Hi David. I’m in my 79th year so…the last, what – ten/twelve percent of my predicted time here on terra
    firma? Can’t say for sure but I do know one thing: there’s lots I want to do before that day comes, most
    of which revolves around spending time with my children, grands and great-grands and especially with
    my still-beautiful bride of sixty years. What a life I’ve had. Lots of big ‘Attaboys’ and yes, a couple of large
    ‘Oh Poops.’ That’s life! Interesting that you’d choose today to bring up this topic. Just yesterday I adopted
    a new mantra aimed at keeping me thinking young. “Don’t let the Old Man in.’ Stole it from none other
    than Clint Eastwood. It’s all explainjed in this video:
    Have a great day!

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