Tuesday, April 16, 2013

We are all Bostonians

I'd intended to make a typical food-and-medical-angst post last night, and then while at work I heard the news about Boston.

Boston is a tranquil place, as far as cities go. It's not without violence in its history, but there's a calm camaraderie to it that lacks the edge of New York. It seems more earnest, the scrappy heart-of-gold underdog of the northeast. Somehow, this makes the disaster all the worse.

Life today did not stop like it did after 9/11. We certainly discussed the news at work and weighed in on the theories bouncing around the Internet, but the sense of nationwide paralysis is not there. It makes it harder to believe that the square where I attended a mass public pillowfight is the current site of mass public mourning. I'm not there anymore to share the grief and the recovery, so all I can do for the moment is hope the (often paranoid) speculation and wild theories give way to facts and knowledge about who did this and why... and that unlike after 9/11, there is no backlash against members of the community who don't happen to be thin, blonde, American-born white women.

Side note: from what I've read, the medical response was fantastic. Several attendings who worked through 9/11 have described the chaos that follows a disaster, the terrible choices that must be made, and the emotional and physical fatigue of high-volume triage. To manage a sudden influx of patients with mangled limbs and other devastating injuries, not to mention the slew of people with more minor but still concerning trauma... The composure and organization are to be commended.

All my best to Beantown. May your runners and your streets and your citizens make a speedy recovery.


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  2. I can only concur. If you haven't visited that city, you can't know that city. It isn't easy to describe. As a visitor, folks were eager to help you. When they offered help, you got a feeling that they were reaching across to an equal.

    That doesn't quite say it. You were never a stranger, just someone who needed help. And they gave it knowing that they too need help at times.