Yesterday was my grandfather's birthday. Bigdaddy would have been 105 yesterday if he were still alive; he died 16 years ago.
I think of the world he was born into: Apalachicola and Tallahassee, Florida at the turn of the 20th century. I think of the world he left in 1991.
Before Oklahoma City, Waco, 9/11, Columbine, Virginia Tech.
(One of the first news reports I heard about the Virginia Tech murders yesterday referred to "the first nine eleven call," and at first I couldn't understand what September 11 had to do with anything. Then I remembered...9-1-1 was the emergency number long before 9/11/01. Still is. We called it "nine one one.")
On one hand, I'm so grateful that Bigdaddy is not here to see what the world has come to. On the other, I wonder if he might have some wisdom to share. I'm grasping at straws, I know.
I've decided I have to fast from TV news today. It's an orgy of saying the same things over and over, continuously, interviewing the same young people in deep shock and marveling at their composure. Duh! They're in shock!
My watching the news will not make it any better or different, and will only cause me to "sit in the shit" as the 12-steppers say.
I will instead be praying for the victims and their friends and families, and the students, faculty, staff and community of Virginia Tech. I'll be praying for colleges and universities everywhere as they struggle to take care of their communities.