1.30.2009

Introducing My New (FREE) Product!
The Widow Card!

One night in my support group, S. said casually that he’d “left work early… I just pulled a widower card.” I thought about how often I’d done this in the months since LH died, but more about how I could make good use of some little advantage. All the handicaps I was living with… single (really, double) parenting, how impossible it was to go grocery shopping with a toddler, and how no one could see that anything was wrong. The side of me that is tempted to shoplift (but only cashmere or chocolate) was aroused.

I was always comfortable as an underachiever, but could I have some legitimate “cover” after surviving catastrophe? Something versatile? Something I could use every day?

And so the concept was born: Not as useful as a “get out of jail free” card, more powerful than a hall pass… it’s… it’s… The Widow Card!

How to create your own REAL LIFE Widow (or Widower) Cards:

1. Download the PDF

Womenfolk – Download the Widow Card Set A here (PDF)
Menfolk – Download the Widower Card Set A here (PDF)

2. Purchase Avery 5871 pre-perforated business card stock at your local office supply store.

3. Print the PDFs out on your stock. They are double sided; you’ll have to figure out how to run the paper stock through your machine twice.

Also, please note that you WILL get error messages saying you’re printing outside the print area, and so on. Just IGNORE it, and don’t let it automatically adjust the margins, or your widow cards will look a whole lot less slick.

4. Didn’t buy the special paper? No problemo. Print your Widow Cards out on heavyweight paper or card stock and cut them out by hand. The stripy border will hide mistakes if your scissors get shaky because you are laughing.

When can I use The Widow Card?
Pull The Widow Card on someone at work, at home, or in line at the grocery store… heck, take more than one, we’ve got nearly a dozen* here for you. You’ll be amazed at how often these little babies come in handy!

What good will it do me now?
Let The Widow Card simplify your life … avoid long awkward conversations (or silences) … evade minor niceties like being polite, remembering people’s names, and participating in adult society in a normal fashion.

But, dude, I’m a guy.
Chill – there are widower versions as well. Since there are seven widowed women to every widower, I think I can be forgiven for favoring the gals linguistically.

Okay, I get it. I can’t wait to start using my Widow Cards!
Slow down, cowpoke. There are three steps – well, four. Did you read the instructions yet? If not, there is one more – so that’s five. Number 0: read the instructions above! Then follow steps 1 to 4 in order.

How long can I use The Widow Card?
Use The Widow Card until it stops working.
UPDATE 06/09:
Keep a couple handy. They work great around anniversaries, even years later!

But I need an excuse for something and you don’t have a Widow Card that fits!
Relax. You can send in your requests for new situations that deserve a Widow Card. Don’t like the suggestions for men? Find the women’s ones inappropriate? Your wish is my command. Let me know what you want, and I will issue a new set B, C, etc. Write to supa.dupa.fresh AT gmail.com. (I don’t promise to be prompt.)

About the design
The font is Mrs. Eaves by Zuzana Licko and published by Émigré. Of course, I thought the character Mrs. Eaves was fictional, and I’m a bit disappointed to find out she was real (or, I am delighted that this fictional character has been accepted as real, as the font and its hyperactive, sometimes shizoid ligatures have gained legitimacy).

Either way, however, Mrs. Eaves was a widow, so my point stands.

Full disclosure: In this project, I owe a significant debt to the work of conceptual artist Adrian Piper.

* Hey, that’s a new expression: widow’s dozen – ten of something. Huh!


* * * Some comments * * *





17 comments:

Mike said...

:-/ but kudos to you for your strength. Don't know what else to say.

Kate said...

I have LONG thought Matt Logelin needed something like this. With more cursing. LOL

Men out alone with their young'uns seem to get alot more questions in general than women do... So odd.

Anonymous said...

Great idea! I know just how I will use them. Wish I'd had them when John died, he would have gotten a real laugh out of them -- and made me promise to use them on some certain people.

Supa Dupa Fresh said...

The discussion of my widow cards continues at Boing Boing

hahamommy said...

LOL!! Thank you Thank you Thank you...
even 8 years on, I'll still find need for these, 'specially around the inlaws. Now if they'd just come up with a word for parents with dead *kids* I'd need me a BIG stack of them cards -- "Be Nice to Your Kid, Mine's Dead" -- like that.

DivaLea said...

Found you via BoingBoing! I've never made cards for the fucked-up shit that's happened in my life in the past 29 months, or for people being dipshits about/around my autistic son, but I've sure used 'em.

You're awesome.

Anonymous said...

I was looking at your widow cards earlier today and I thought, "Wow, whoever she is, she must be a tough, cool woman." Now I know it's an old friend. I just showed them to Kim and her reaction was, "I really like her."

Abrazos,
Chris

Gail Rae said...

GREAT IDEA! I am recovering from my mother's death. I was her constant companion for 15 years, her intense needs caregiver for twelve. We became extremely intertwined. I thought I was prepared for her death (she was 91 when she died, last December) by virtue of our time together and our closeness but, much to my surprise, was knocked out of the park by it.
I've been using an oral version of The Widow Card since the day she died. At first, I did it accidentally. A few hours after she died I decided I needed some coffee to bolster myself before family arrived in the evening. I found myself blurting to the barista, when she asked if I was taking a break from work, that I'd just lost my job because my mother died that morning. I was aghast. So was the barista. I ended up with a free latte.
Through the intervening weeks I discovered that grief often had a hand in suddenly producing bizarre behavior from me. I learned, quickly, that a verbal "Widow's Card" not only excused me but immediately crafted compassionate bonds between me and those privy to my behaviors, since, you know, most people's experiences include "Widow Card" experiences.
Bravo for turning verbal cards into actual cards!

Gretch said...

i love this

Sonja said...

Ha! I love this! I just found your blog and love it. These widow cards are the best...I will be sure to follow you!

Supa Dupa Fresh said...

Thanks, everyone!
Wonder if a second edition of the cards is due?
X
Supa

MizzCrow said...

Highly amused, and likely to use them ASAP. Many thanks from a sistah widow. ~Ro

hourbeforedawn said...

Love it. Definitely can use some of these...

gayle said...

I am printing these as I write and seriously plan on using them when the time comes. Thank you

MizzCrow said...

Widow cards still available? Can't seem to access the PDF. Thanks!

Supa Dupa Fresh said...

MizzCrow, the files "go down" sporadically, but they are okay now. Please try again. Sorry for the inconvenience! It seems to happen just twice a year so I haven't worried about "fixing" it.
You DO have the click on the LONG LINK that comes up after your first click.
Hope this helps!
X
Supa

Sunny said...

I freakin' LOVE this! Thank you!

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