I'm sitting here sniffling. I just finished watching an episode of Ally McBeal. The two things are not related; I just have a cold. I blame some contagious friends for the cold. The Ally McBeal I'm not going to excuse - its just an indulgence; if I was watching it alone maybe it would feel more "shameful" but its a way to hang out with a friend; and, please, some people fill their nights watching Wrestlemania or reality TV - compared to which Ally is almost.... intellectual?
Anyhow, these past few days have been a little unusual. Last week I went to check my email and found a security bulletin my school had just sent out; it was to be the first of six (so far, anyhow). It seems a threat was found graffitied on one of the men's bathroom walls and the university has decided to take it seriously. You can read about it here and here, if you want to.
I've been trying to figure out what I think about all of this. Its hard to do with a cold; I really do feel like the cold muddles my thinking abilities (or at least my ability to write coherently) - all that stuffiness, ugh. Anyhow, I'm sure my reactions have been pretty much the same as everyone else's - angry at the person who wrote the threat, angry at the little we can do about it, afraid that something terrible will happen, horribly sad that some people want so badly to destroy. I think above all I hate feeling like, when it all comes down to it, in so many cases we're completely helpless, unable to prevent terrible things from occurring. Sure, in this case we have been given warning (if you can call it that). And we can boost security for a while - the police will certainly be on site all day tomorrow. But what about next week? And the week after? We can't always be on "red alert." Even if nothing happens tomorrow, it feels like the possibility is suddenly so much more real now that something could. (Even though the possibility hasn't really changed; its always been the same, hasn't it?)
I don't want to be afraid to go to my own school. I want to trust my neighbours, my fellow students. I want to be able to stop when someone's standing on the street asking for help (or even a ride!). I want to give people the benefit of the doubt, to assume they're good until something proves me wrong. I don't want to have to hesitate, to be afraid to intervene. I don't want fear to keep me from reacting the way I know I should, to keep me from stepping out the door. (Of course, all that's easier said than done, and this has really only brought to light one fear out of many.)
I hadn't come to a decision on whether to go to class tomorrow night. And as it turns out, I don't have to since my class - among many others - has been canceled by the prof.
I don't think I want to write anything else until after tomorrow. I feel like anything I can write (have written already) is totally inadequate and the stupidly superstitious part of me is telling me to just... stop.