I used to wonder why newspapers ran obituaries. That was when I was young, and I hadn't lived in Norwalk very long. I didn't know many people at all let alone people who had died.
The years passed. We bought a house here. We had children. I did not move up to the New York Times or the Boston Globe. I stayed here. And I met more and more people Huron County people.
I still didn't know a lot of people in the obituaries, but I occasionally read them. More and more often, they were people I had met, or the parents or grandparents of people I had met, or neighbors I once had.
Mostly time goes by one second at a time, and it is gradual; it doesn't jar us with its passage. We can stand back and look at old pictures and see that we once looked different, and had four children under 6 years old running around the house. But gray hairs appear one at a time, and children graduate and leave the house one at a time, and the pounds come on ounce by ounce, and we don't change overnight.