Inappropriate Response


And here is a photo of a puddle shaped like Elvis that has nothing to do with anything.

And here is a photo of a puddle shaped like Elvis that has nothing to do with anything.

So there were these bomb blasts yesterday at the Boston Marathon.

I know because I saw it on TV. And the Internet. And in the newspapers. And on the radio. And on Facebook. It hasn’t been 24 hours and already I have been completely saturated with details about the event as it unfolded.

It goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyway) that this is a terrible event and that people were really hurt and shaken by it. Security will probably tighten down everywhere for a while and people will feel afraid and angry. Tensions will rise. Action will be demanded whether we have all the facts or not. The left will blame the right, the right will blame the left, the media will blame anyone, and there will be a few people who blame everyone. And all these responses will be deemed appropriate.

And me?

I want to tell jokes about it.

Yesterday was my sister’s birthday and I wanted to tell her “Happy Birthday! Hope it’s a blast! You’re Da Bomb: Go blow up the party and have a great time!”

But I didn’t. Because this is an inappropriate response.

Then again, isn’t the whole thing inappropriate? Bombing a marathon? What does this accomplish? The kind of people who run marathons are not the kind of people who, as a whole, hold a lot of influence. You don’t hear about The Runner’s Party vying for political power. You don’t hear about The Runner’s Corporation posting enormous profits by gouging the customer, environment, or government subsidies. You don’t hear about The Runner’s Church taking a vocal and angry stance on women/family/abortion/war/gay marriage.

Runners just run.

I want to make jokes because when terrible things happen for pointless reasons there is nothing I can do about it but to be afraid. It could happen anywhere, to anyone, for no other reason than to make people afraid.

And I resent that.

You should not underestimate how much I resent that.

Life is short and dangerous enough: I don’t need to be wasting my time being afraid of stupid shit. I can’t make the threat go away, because it will always be there, but I can laugh at it and call it names and ridicule it until it looks as stupid as it is.

I can stop worrying and love the bomb.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on April 16, 2013.

4 Responses to “Inappropriate Response”

  1. My friend was running in the second blast, minor cut and nails in his shoes from the bomb…he’s coming back to work tomorrow and my boss asked what we should do for him.

    I said “We could get him a sign that says ‘Congrats on surviving the Marathon”. She laughed then almost cried. So…I’m right there with you on the inappropriateness.

  2. The only reason I clicked on this post, in all honesty, is because I thought that puddle looked like Johnny Bravo. Also, I’ve been telling the “You know, I heard the Boston Marathon was a blast” joke all day.

  3. I feel you. My friend’s Grandma died on xmas eve, and I was dying to ask “were there any reindeer involved?” I held back but it was difficult.
    BTW sorry for the mass influx of comments. I just got back to the world of internet after two months of not having good access. So, I am catching up on reading.

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