The timing certainly isn't the best, and completely apropos of nothing, tonight I find myself poking google for material on another urban disaster in Boston, separated from the events of yesterday by both intent, location and 97 years. The selection is sparing and surprising - so far I've only turned up two books about the Great Molasses Flood of 1919, one of which is considered the definitive work on the subject, the other, bizarrely enough, is a children's book.
I can't really do proto-research on this without also poking another disaster that occurred just three months before the Molasses flood, but in New York. Not all that far from where I grew up is a street named Empire Boulevard. No, it does not exactly warrant or live up to such a lofty moniker, but considering the street's old name (Malbone Street) and its association the horrifying subway accident that happened just beneath its western end, one could excuse the overreaching upgrade in terms of its name.
Funny how things become linked in my head. Being the extreme subway nerd that I am and the location, it's kind of a no brainer that the Malbone Street Wreck became sort of my pet disaster. It became linked to the Molasses Flood because the first time I brought cell23 down to Brooklyn to meet Dad & Co., we'd taken a walk through Prospect Park and for some reason ended up at the intersection of Ocean Ave, Empire and Flatbush Ave, where the Franklin Ave Shuttle tracks enter the Prospect Park station. So of course, I had to nerd out about exactly why all the trains entering and exiting the station were only using one of the two tracks. After I'd gotten that out of my system and we'd walked back into the park to head home, cell23 saw my pet disaster and raised it with his own: a 15 foot wave of molasses.
I don't know, it's one of those moments in a relationship that you remember at a random moment, shake your head and smile.
*sigh* maybe the timing isn't all that random honestly. Yesterday's bombing of the Marathon is punching me in some unexpected places, with also unexpected degrees of hardness. I am heartsick for my adopted state and its capital right now. I am horrified at the latest casualty counts, and at the deaths reported. I am saddened for the people who train so hard to run these races only to have their triumph tainted by something so senseless. I wince at the crackpots that came marching out of the woodwork ready to point fingers based on nothing and the people who have been and will be victimized because some people are racist shits. And I'm not going to lie, the coverage and the experiences of my friends trying to contact friends and family in Boston in the hours immediately following the bombing massively twigged me in my 9/11s. But I'm also heartened by some things in the aftermath, and honestly most of the response from my hometown in particular has very nearly brought me to tears a time or two in the past 24hrs, and I'll admit to losing it a little when cell23
retweeted the message of support for the Red Sox from the fucking Yankees. They're even gonna play "Sweet Caroline" during tonights game. Y'all. Y'all, what the fuck. I can't even with that, thinking about it makes me choke up again.
It's so easy to be cynical when something like this happens, to bark at the Internet that you've given up on humanity, drop the mic, and exit stage left. This morning Patton Oswalt wrote far more eloquently than I ever could
about why that's an abysmal attitude to have. Long ago the late great Mr. Rogers addressed how to deal with seeing scary things on the news: "Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping." Wise, that man was, or perhaps more accurately, his mother was. But yeah, the immediate aftermath of a terrible event is no time to be cynical; rather it's a time to help, or at least be kind. The time for cynicism will come later. And boy howdy, will it ever come. But not yet.
Before I sign off, I did want to note what happened last night: inle_rah
is moving, and on Sunday? morning I got a message on Facebook asking if I wanted to take the clothes she was getting rid of for various reasons, seeing as a good chunk of it was about my current size. Not realizing what I was setting in motion, I said sure. I fucking love it when friends give away clothing because it saves me the trouble of getting off my ass and going shopping for myself, a much loathed activity.
I was expecting a few items, not three giant garbage bags
crowding out all available space in extrajoker
's trunk. O_O We started unpacking and sorting it all in my living room and it quickly became clear that there was more there than I could possibly deal with (and 90% of it was cute!) so I put a cattle call out to the Squire ladies to come help themselves. Less than 20 minutes later my living room contained six (later seven) giggling women in various states of undress trying on and shrieking delightedly over various items and how they all looked. We stayed there and played dress-up for a couple of hours, terrifying cats, husbands and the section of Squire facing our living room window with the cackling, squeeing and giggling. In the end, 5 out of 7 of us, myself included, left with a pile of things and a spontaneous evening well enjoyed. It was a nice distraction at least from earlier events, which I think all present needed. And I have new, cute clothes that actually fit, including some work appropriate stuff, some hang around the house stuff, and my first ever pair of Tripp pants, which I've coveted lustily for, gods, almost two decades? and never had the nerve to buy. Cannot wait to bring the 1997 goth realness, maybe to Burlesque? (Meanwhile my husband is HORRIFIED by them, teehee.)
And now back to my stories and beads...