My Response? Lace up
Written by: Dan Empfield
Date: Tue Apr 16 2013
After shock came revulsion, then came grief. Then concern for those in my immediate and extended set of friends and family. And then, of course, anger.
Let’s talk about the anger for a moment, because I recognized my own need to deal with and process that. Get it done. Get it out of the way. Not so that I won’t be angry at whomever perpetrated this, or that my anger will wholly abate. Rather, so that my anger is not my prime mover. So that I can function, and expend my energy in a helpful and sober way.
I’d like to point out the New York Post, a fit proxy for every natural instinct I have. All the behaviors to which I am naturally prone in situations like this are precisely those I should take great pains to avoid. It occurred to me that the New York Post knows my predilections, and rather than warn me against them, it sees its job to feed them. When I saw the attached front page, I knew that it was probably a good idea to take a screenshot, because it would make for a proper show-and-tell piece later.
I also felt the ad running on the NY Post's website apropos. Yes, Mr. Murdoch, we are talking about the reputation of your business today.
Some of us are writing, reading and thinking today that what visited us yesterday is what we routinely visit on innocents in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen. I understand that view. I’m deeply ambivalent, because drones represent a new paradigm in warfare against an enemy who does not show himself. We have a lot of bad options from which to choose in defending this country. I vacillate deeply between the wholly unpalatable and the deeply abhorrent, and this is my binary choice. There is no good, third option I know of. At least not yet.
A lot of us I’m sure had the same thoughts: How cruelly ironic that so many of yesterday’s bombing victims lost legs and feet. We imagined — as we have before — what it would be like to lose limbs. We imagine this as we read stories of those who’ve lost limbs in combat, and imagine, “What if it was me? Would I have the strength to go on? Let alone try to run again!”
Beyond supporting CAF, what is it I can actually do? I can’t find the perps. I can’t fight a war. I can’t change geopolitics, or gun politics, or religious mania, or whatever it is that is behind the unfathomable act committed. But I can run. I can enter. I can show up. We aren’t going to have fewer people at our marathons and triathlons as a result of yesterday. We’re going to have more. Because that’s our show of defiance. Once we, as a nation, recover from our shock, we’re going to lace up. And, if I still have some anger to burn off, I cannot imagine a more appropriate way.
The world celebrated the peaceful return of the Boston Marathon; Meb Keflezighi broke the U.S men’s losing streak, Kenya’s Rita Jeptoo broke the women’s race record, triathlon’s Lisa Bentley was 5th master’s woman. 4.21.14
A pair of powerful bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon killed at least 2 and injured 2 dozen. Several reports say at least one more device did not detonate. 4.15.13
A horrific shipboard accident led a member of the Canadian Navy into a downward spiral of PTSD and addiction. Stephen Moreau credits triathlon and the Slowtwitch community with a role in bringing him back to health. 2.25.13