Tuesday, September 11, 2007

because they made you from the light

This has not been a great week, especially for blogging. Lately, when I think of blogging, in my head, I hear blahgging, and then a recent Cracked article hit such a nerve with me that I really started thinking about how I am using technology and how I should be using technology. But don't worry. This post is not about any of that, though its topic is equally grumpy, I suppose.

I don't have anything profound or optimistic to say about today. Somehow, this day is tied up with so many thoughts and events and changes to me that I don't know how to ever start to unravel them into anything coherent. I can say this. I haven't stood on solid ground since that day, six years ago. Some of that has been bad and some of that has been good. But most of it has to do with illusion. Most of it has to do with sensing, suddenly and with great certainty, that life is not a permanent condition. Some things are always inarguably true; it's just a matter of choosing to be aware of them or not.

It's somehow fitting to me, today, to have not turned on the television today. Sure, television provides some fantastic escapism. But this marks the 6th anniversary of me swearing off the televised news. I know. Maybe some of you will tell me Anderson Cooper is lovely and Keith Olbermann is the cherries and Brian Williams is not such a bad guy. Maybe all of that is true. But that was it for me, that day, 6 years ago. It's a strange reaction, and yet one that has endured. Tsunamis, Katrina, Virginia Tech shootings, always the same effect- the more horrific the tragedy, the more quickly I turned the television off, or rather refused to turn the television on. Maybe some of you will find that apathetic. I can't perhaps explain what goes on in my head. But let me just say this, with no pretense whatsoever (because, come on, this is coming from someone who has admitted to watching The Hills): television cheapens everything.

And so, I feel like the best way to honor all tragedies is not to cheapen them, and not to watch them be cheapened.

But I guess there is something else about today, something else that there will always be for me from now on, something that is maybe optimistic, if not profound. W lost one of his closest friends from childhood six years ago today. His daughter's middle name is that lost friend's name. So that he will always be with W. I don't think W gave her the name so that he would not forget. He was never in danger of forgetting. I think he gave her the name to lessen the blow. If he gave her the name, he keeps a piece of his friend alive with him always. And if that name is associated with a smiling baby girl with an infectious giggle, it must hurt just slightly less every time he hears the name uttered. And that baby girl of his- she is my recently dubbed goddaughter.

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