There are few days in a person’s life that will leave them totally speechless. For a loquacious jackass like me there are even fewer. One can always hope that these will be days of joy. Yet in my short life there have been two that will always be tied to tragedy and heartache, September 11, 2001 and April 15, 2013. But after time and processing, I feel the need to get some thoughts out.
There will be lots of words in the coming weeks about the events of yesterday. Some of the words will be poignant, thoughtful, and measured. Some are sure to be idiotic. Indeed some already have been. These words will shape how we act, how we react, in the coming days. It will be a test of exactly who we are, not as Bostonians, not as Americans, but as human beings.
There are already countless stories emerging of runners who kept running to the hospitals to donate blood, of finishers pulling IVs out of their arms to make them available for the injured, of countless people running toward the danger to help. I truly hope that if I had been on Boylston Street yesterday that I would have had the character to be one of those people, but who knows.
What I do know is that I refuse to be cowed by what ever gutless, asshole bastard set those bombs. I am an overweight 29 year old who has been saying for years that I want to start running. I don’t know if I will ever run in the Boston Marathon, but I am going to step out my front door in a little bit and go for a run. I am going to donate blood in the coming days (the Red Cross is asking people to hold off for a few days). I am going to make sure that I get re-certified in CPR and First Aid.
As has been pointed on countless times, yesterday was Patriots Day in Massachusetts, a day that commemorates the events of Lexington and Concord in 1775. It is a day that commemorates the birth of this crazy, messed up, foolish endeavor known as the United States of America. I am lucky enough to live in another place that is closely tied to the birth of that Great Dream.
And so later today I am going to pull on my Red Sox hat and walk the mile of Duke of Gloucester Street from the Wren Building to the old Colonial Capitol here in Williamsburg, a section of street that was walked by Jefferson, Washington, Randolph, and Henry. And I will hold my head high. And I will not be afraid. And I will be proud. Not simply because I am an American but because I am a human being and these bastards will never, ever break the human spirit.