We are Hookies 4/16/2007 Virginia Tech

Thursday, April 19, 2007

It poured all night last night. I thought the wind was going to knock our house down. And today the sky was uglier than I have ever seen it; I felt as if I didn’t want to look up because I knew that the sky was frowning. If the sky were a person, she would see everything. Every backstab, every nose pick, every time you cheat on a test or lie to your mother. Is there anyone in your life that knows those things about you? You probably don’t even know those things about yourself, because sometimes we lie to ourselves so wholeheartedly that truth and lie is truly fuzzy. Last night I found an old “nightly to- do list.” Pray was the last item on it. It came after whitening my teeth, doing crunches and moisturizing. I took the old list, rewrote it on some pretty paper, added a few more unnecessary tasks, and deliberately left Praying out of my nightly routine. Who has time for reflecting on your soul, reflecting on your day, or on your well being in general? Maybe even on the well being of those around us? No- The only important one is the reflection in the mirror, right?

Yesterday conversation somehow happened to lead to the sniper attacks…to feeling unsafe in your own town, to an unspoken anxiety upon leaving your own house or even standing in front of a window. People never just want to break even while they’re living this life. Material possessions probably won’t do us much good six feet below the earth’s surface, and we can’t physically do much for anyone alive in that position. But you can leave pieces of yourself behind starting right now. I don’t mean those keepsakes you’ve been saving to give your daughter or the baseball cards you’re saving in case you have a son one day. I mean: we need to leave something for the WORLD.

Today a human being looked at other living, breathing, blinking human beings in the eyes and took life from their bodies. People like you and me and that kid that sits next to you in math class, and his girlfriend whose name you know he secretly doodles in his notebook—We could all be dead. This could have happened anywhere. We don’t take the time out to say hello to the person right in front of us. Maybe you just assume that they have friends because you have friends. Just because you don’t need another person to say hello to, doesn’t mean he or she doesn’t. The point is that we’re all connected to each other somehow. The ripple effect that our society’s apathy is having upon every aspect of our lives is becoming more and more apparent under the crumbling weight of the hands that control our time.

After the day’s events sunk in for a while, a friend of mine casually asked me what my plans were. 'I plan on saving the world' I told him. 'I just can’t figure out how yet.' We both asked each other: “I mean, what could I do? I’m ONLY one person.” Then I realized that we should be saying: What CAN we do? We’re two whole people... Sometimes when I hold the door for a person, or let someone in front of me, or compliment somebody, they seem shocked. Like its such a strange and uncommon phenomenon... So when the person behind one of us is in a big rush, let's grab the door, stand back, and let him haul ass to whatever he’s late for. Hopefully he’ll pass it on. Hopefully the next time you’ve got to catch that train, someone will at least stick out an arm to get you those extra three little seconds.

Giving isn’t always a sacrifice, and although receiving is always nice, the best feeling is seeing the other person sink down into the train seat just in time and a smile is flashed your way in gratitude. A thank-you, a smile, a hug, a compliment, or just common courtesy… they don’t cost anything to give out, but you get something back. Whatever you can- just give.

May Virginia Technology University 33 victim rest in peace......

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"Not all those who wander are lost."
- J. R. R. Tolkien

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