At some point in 2012, a mysterious Twitter account called @sosadtoday appeared. Not long after, thousands were following its deadpan journey through anxiety, despair, relationships, and miscellaneous existential crises. By the end of 2014, So Sad Today was publishing a column for VICE. Katy Perry aligned herself with the account in 2015, and in May of that same year, Melissa Broder, a Los Angeles-based poet and writer, revealed herself to be the brain behind the viral account.
This March, Broder will be releasing a book of essays called So Sad Today (via Grand Central Publishing). It will explore the same themes her Twitter account does, and as she explained to Rolling Stone, include “some manuals about attempting to exist in the world when you don’t really feel like you’re part of it.” Her writing is deeply personal, sophisticated in its wit, and at the same time, devastating. So Sad Today is a portrait of modern day existence told with provocative, irreverent honesty.
In the new trailer for the book, Broder takes us coffin shopping, because it’s never too early to prepare for the afterlife. “I really feel very at peace,” Broder says. Indeed, there is a sense of tranquility to the video. It’s not complacency; it just is. Life is just the crisis before death—might as well make it a somewhat humorous time. Take some notes on how to below.
What inspired you to shop for your coffin now?
I feel like I’m dying every day. Each time I have a panic attack, I assume that I am dying. My biggest fear is death by suffocation: the sensation that I can’t get any air. So my hope was that if I could make peace with my death container, I could maybe have less fear around dying itself.
Did you try to nap in the coffin? Where did your mind go if you did?
I love a good nap. Like, I am deep in the nap game. While I didn’t take a nap in the coffin, I felt shockingly at peace in there. I think this is because of the presence of Shmul Ikhart, the director of the funeral home. Shmul is a very kind and spiritual man. He believes that the purpose of life is simply to help others. When I asked him if he was afraid of dying, he definitively said “no.” I believed him when he said no. I think I borrowed his calm.
Describe your perfect tombstone. What material is it? Where is it located? What does it say?
Shmul told me that in the Jewish tradition, the soul is not at rest until the body is buried under the ground. I don’t want my soul roaming around the planet any longer than it has to, tbh. But I still think I want to be cremated.
I want one third of my ashes mixed with the ashes of someone I love, one third of them scattered to the wind (monogamy is terrifying, even in death) and one third of them in a sexy cremation urn with Wi-Fi.
Do the same shopping tips apply to urns, too?
Def. Like, obviously I’d want my cremation urn to have Sephora in it. I’d want it to have cute dick pics, maybe even some hot nude boys, and Cheesecake Factory. Probably. But guess what? You’re dead! And the good news and bad news is: You don’t have to contend with the desires of the body anymore. So why not just keep it very simple?
In your new book of essays, will you give tips on how to be you in death?
No, but definitely tips on how to escape yourself when being you means you feel like you are dying every day.