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miércoles, marzo 16, 2011

A Beautiful Day To Die

The World In 2011

The earthquake and the tsunami and the nuclear event have finally shut me up. I haven't been able to write. I don't have anything clear or witty or insightful to say about these events. I am avoiding the talking heads on TV, and I'm reading as little as possible about the event on the Internet, and I've been absent from this blog. Why? Because I have no confidence at all that what I'd hear or read would be the truth. And I have the dreadful thought that the situation in Japan is far, far worse than what we are being told. I have no proof for the last sentence other than the plethora of contradictions I find in the news stories. And a tight feeling in my heart and chest and stomach that warns of impending, large scale disaster. I hope I'm wrong about this, but alas, I don't think I am.

I don't like to think of myself as a dead fish that won't rot because it's been thoroughly irradiated.

I don't like to think of myself as sporting a wonderful and fatal radiation burn all over my body until I die, and then lying in my coffin for decades, if not centuries without decomposing. I hope this won't happen. I expect to be cremated. I would like to wait until I am dead for that.

I don't like to think of my children and relatives and friends and acquaintances and even people I detest as charbroiled by radiation and suffering from malignant tumors for long periods of time before they prematurely die. Old guys like me have had our day. If we die, it's all right. Younger people who haven't yet had their chance deserve something far better.

I don't like to think of the tens of thousands of Japanese people who are now dead or will be shortly. I don't want to think of their widows and orphans and friends. I don't want to think about those who were buried alive or swept into the sea or trapped under water. I don't even want to think about their pets. And I hate thinking about the missing, those who disappeared who will never be accounted for.

I don't like to think about the inadequacy of my insights, my thoughts, my writing, my prayers in the face of this tragedy.

I don't like to listen to the radio because I don't want to hear shills for energy companies talk about how nuclear power is safe and how nuclear reactors that can be built now are so much better than those they built 40 years ago. And I don't want to hear how this is a good time to invest in uranium or nuclear power. Or the stock market. Or commodity futures. Or gold. And I don't want to hear the many offered distractions, so I would ignore these events. I can't stand the radio.

I don't like to think about how many people live within 10 kilometers or 20 kilometers or 30 kilometers or 50 miles of where I am now sitting. I don't like to think about an evacuation that would empty most of three counties of people.

There is now so much suffering, and there is so much more to come. The suffering will soon be everywhere. I fear that what is coming will make the sufferings foretold by biblical prophets seem a quaint, historical understatement.

So I have not been writing. What could I write in these circumstances?

It's a time when there is new meaning in the phrase, "It's a beautiful day to die." It's a time when having a smile on my face is particularly important.

May all beings be happy, and may all beings be free of suffering.

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