Ask her anything

From grief to decay to funerary traditions, Caitlin Doughty’s popular web video series tackles the tough questions about death.

Ask A Mortician, Episode 1

In the series’ inaugural video, Doughty explains the cause and length of rigor mortis and dispels several ghoulish myths about cremation.

Ask a Mortician, Episode 2

In four words, Doughty reveals what she wants done with her own remains. The Meow, her retired-from-competition Siamese cat, makes her first cameo.

Ask A Mortician, Traditional vs. Natural Burial

Doughty explains the primary differences between today’s traditional burial and natural burial, which for centuries was just called burial. She also shrouds the cat.  

Ask A Mortician, Grief Talk

Addressing other people’s grief is hard. In this video, Doughty reviews some of the tacky, saccharine, and awkward ways we try; advises that silence is worst of all; and offers three things that are always safe to say to the grieving.

Ask A Mortician, Exploding Caskets

With oxygen, the “magic of decomposition” leads to dehydration, Doughty explains. Without it, the body becomes a gaseous bog—thus the grisly, explosive downside to putting a protective casket in a mausoleum.

Ecstasy of Decay: The American Corpse

In a video outside the Ask a Mortician series, Doughty and friends provide a historical overview of the changing ways Americans have managed death.