< Piro >
Saturday - February 1, 2003
I imagine most of you who have seen the TV this morning have heard about the apparent disintegration of the Space Shuttle Columbia over Texas. I don't normally react to news items in my rantspace, but I just felt like typing, for some reason...
In life, depending on your age, there are always events that people remember: disasters or historic events that also become personal points in history. Many older people remember where they where when President Kennedy was assassinated. Most of us remember where we were when the attacks on September 11th happened. When I look back at my own life, the first event of this type that I remember was the Challenger disaster in 1986. I was a senior in high school. I only had classes in the morning that day, so I was on my way home when I heard the news on the radio. The news this morning, heard from the TV which just happened to be on as I went to get a cup of coffee, eerily reminded me of that day so many years ago.
Humans are emotional creatures. We are defined as much by the emotive events in our lives as we are by our own actions. Many times, we have no way of controlling these events, and they can come out of nowhere. Depending on your focus, you can wallow in the sadness that is life, or you can reflect happily in the joy that also is life. It's an odd paradox.
We sit here looking at proceeding into a war based on preemptive principals and 'high moral' goals (I don't think i want to get into my opinion on this potential conflict). We watch this morning as something that normally isn't even newsworthy, the return to earth of a Space Shuttle, as it suddenly bursts into our consciousness as it disintegrated over the clear skies of Texas. We watch the apparent disintegration of the lives of seven people a craft that has symbolism in its own right. Fears of our own mortality that arise when others die within the view of our conscience radars.
Somber thoughts for a quiet, grey, snowy day here in lower Michigan. I could go further with these lines of thought, but for some reason i want to just let them set. My condolences go out not only to the families of those lost in this disaster, but to those who also mourn for things that may not reach so high on the public consciousness.
Maybe thats one of the reasons people need the ability to express themselves in words, music and art. It helps you deal with all shades of things, from the joyous to the tragic.