Friday, April 17, 2009

Life and Death

I had one of those mornings where you wake up and try to sort out which day it is. I convinced myself it was Thursday and got up and got on with the day. A pleasant surprise when I got to work and realised it was Friday! I've been stock piling perennials for the last week, hoping for sunshine this weekend to get in the garden and get busy. Weather forecast is iffy, well see.

I had lunch with a girlfriend last weekend and we were talking about a 3rd mutual friend who has had a tragedy in their families life. A younger brother (an adult) is being charged with attempted murder for an incident late last year that happened outside of a dance club downtown. The victim was his girlfriend and mother of his child. Other parties were involved and lots of finger pointing everywhere. 'Kids' with guns. This guy isn't a thug or hoodlum. We know this young man and his GF. They've been to party's at our house. People I believe to be 'good kids' Good kids who thought it was necessary to carry a gun when going to a club.

During the course of our conversation my friend told me that her three sons (all in their 20's) also carry guns and concealed weapons permits. I've known these boys their entire lives. Again they're not thugs or hoodlums either. Their rational is everyone is carrying them and they need to as well to be safe. My friend is as anti-guns as I am but beyond ensuring they have permits there's nothing she can do as they're adults.

I've never liked guns. I don't talk about it much here but when I was a very young man my first lover was a private investigator. He ran a company that provided security and investigative services for a variety of clients. He carried a gun. I never liked it but I got used to it. He was a very safety conscious person and took gun ownership responsibilities very seriously. Unfortunately that didn't help him when he was jumped on the street by three guys. His gun fell out of his holster in the struggle and one of them picked it up and shot him. He died then and there. Had there not been a gun involved in that situation...

I'd like to say I don't understand it but I kinda do. To these kids we're the older generation and we just don't "get it". They're used to it. There were guns in the high schools they went to. It so common to them they think it foolish to not carry one. I was discussing this with another friend and her comment was "Why would you want to go some place (dance clubs) where people carried guns" Why indeed. I guess that's how out of control the whole thing is. To them it's just an accepted part of life. I guess dying young is too.

Seattle is for all it's posturing, still a small city. To call it 'urban' would be laughable to people from real big cities. What I mean is it's not like these kids were raised on "The Mean Streets Of..." They're just normal kids. With guns.

I've been mulling this over in my mind trying to figure out what I feel about it. What can any one person do to fight against this? So far I've got scratch. It makes my blood run cold. Thoughts?

OK, sorry for being so heavy, it's just what's been on my mind. It's nice to be at an age where working in the garden is all the excitement you need.

Here's a bit of random-ness for you. I got this pic in an email from the Ex last night. It's our first apartment. Either the building hasn't fared well over the 20+ years, or my memories of it are filtered through the golden light of time. We had the top left unit. I planted the ivy hoping to have the effect of an old ivy covered building. Who knew it took ivy that long to grow. Seriously it's been like 25 years. I swear I can watch the stuff grow up the trees at my place now. Oh well, it seemed like a good idea at the time. It was a cool old 1920's building with insulated iceboxes opening to the hall and your apt. for your grocery deliveries. I always thought that was pretty cool. Could that tree have grown in the past 25 years? I have no memory of it.

I haven't been much of a blogger lately. So many folks are taking breaks or just not blogging much these days. Well, I am going to take myself in hand and re-commit to blogging here. I get so much out of it, I need to just get back in the habit and stop PROCRASTINATING. A word I hate, probably because I'm SO good at it!


fiwa said...

What a tragic story about the guns. I grew up in Texas and never knew anyone who had a gun other than a hunting rifle. I can't imagine how scary that must be for kids/people today.

I hope you get to dig in the dirt this weekend.

Maybe someone cut the ivy way back at some point? It's hard to imagine that a tree could grow up that tall and that's all the ivy managed.

Love you

happyone said...

There are way too many sad gun stories!!
I didn't realize that so many people actually carry guns around with them every day. That is scary!!

We finally some sunny warm weather after a bunch of rainy days. Hope you get nice weather so you can plant your garden.
I have to agree with fiwa someone must have cut back that ivy.

meno said...

OMG! I know that building!

I am conflicted about guns too. So many tragedies.

But, if someone were threatening me, i think i would want to be able to buy a gun. I think.

It all scares me.

Boxer said...

Nicely written post and I think you did a good job expressing your thoughts/reasons for your beliefs in gun control. I don't have guns, but if I lived alone I might think differently. I know if I lived out in the middle of no where, I'd have something under my pillow at night. And I'm so sorry about your first love. :-(

I lived in a building that looks just like this in the UDistrict. It was called The Roberta, but we called it "The Bobby". It doesn't look so bad to me. I love these old gems.

I'm glad to hear you'll be back blogging more often. I've missed your posts. Have a great weekend in the sunshine. I have a HUGE list of things to do around my neglected house.

Donna said...

I have noticed I have considerably fewer blog entries to read lately. I just figure it's spring, and people are out and about.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I'm not in favor of guns either. I'd rather be shot myself than take a chance of my gun hurting someone else.

I'm very sorry to hear of your first lover's death. Losing someone to violent death leaves a lasting scar, doesn't it?

Cheryl said...

What a thoughtful and well-written post. Guns are something I never think about. I don't know anyone who owns one. I just assumed they didn't, but you've given me reason for thought. I can't imagine ever owning one. Ever.

What tragic stories of your friends, and your former mate. I'm really so sorry.

Hope your weather is nice enough to be out planting. I'll be cutting and coloring :)

Grit said...

from here in the uk land of the green shires the idea of folks walking about the streets carrying guns is a truly alien one. we need to export that feeling to you.

which i suppose is as much to say there are some features of american life i'd rather we didn't import... but i rather do like your american colonial interior design style (should i duck?! x)

Dear Liza said...

You are such a kind and gentle man...we just can't help but love you.

Happy weekend, I hope the weather cooperates.


Summer said...

My sister told me just recently that her oldest son got a permit to carry and concealed weapon. And this is why...right wing talk radio. This is what I've been told they say... The recession/depression is going to get so bad that people are going to start robbing their neighbors, looting their homes, burning, pillaging, etc. That it's going to be an all out free for all war of sorts between the haves and have nots. This is not the first time I've heard it. Three other educated men have told me the same thing. They also feel that the dems are going to take their guns away even though the constitution protects your right to bear arms. I say you can have all the guns you want, you just can't have any bullets. I would like to know though why some feel they need assault rifles. Oh wait, so their kids can take them to school....

zirelda said...

I'm good at procrastinating too.

And yes, I am one who hasn't been blogging much lately. I've had so much going on but not much to tell and not much time to tell it.

I am thankful that we live in a small town where guns aren't that popular. At least not yet. I hear that gang members from Pueblo and Springs come down here to recruit though. Ick.

I'm so not into guns.


I am not for guns.
Unless you are in law enforcement or are hunting..and you leave them when the hunt is over.

Sorry about your first love..that's awful my friend!

Very cool apt...Do you miss Chicago at all?

I'm glad you're back..
maybe you'll follow me on my blog and AND, I'll see more of you here in your world. :) XOXOX

happy weekend!! :)


Scarlet said...

Well, you came back with a killer post (no pun intended). I don't like guns! I'm sorry to hear about what happened to your first lover and I can understand why you feel the way you do about owning a gun or going to places where the majority of folks are carrying them. I'd feel uncomfortable going to a club such as the one you described, but living in Miami, just being inside a restaurant or at a gas station (or ANYWHERE really) you run the same risks of being part of a shooting. Sad, isn't it??

desert dirt diva said...

gosh , what an awful story, and i'm sorry about your friend....I too hate guns, my kids are not even aloud to play with squirt guns, i know maybe a little extreme, but these days there are so many play guns that look real, its better to be safe than sorry....

I love that me it does not look run down, rustic...not run down....
have a great day and i too will try to blog more...

Leann said...

I have missed your blogging Brad and it's nice to see you back at it.

Guns....I was raised around them living in the country and all, but for totally different reasons than these days I suppose. It is frightening to think that they are so prominent among our young people. It is indeed a different world.

My ex was a police officer and of course had a weapon. He was very conciensious about keeping it out of sight and the ammo in a different area. We had small children in the house. They were shown what it could do. It dispelled the 'mystic' and the curiousity for them. They were disinterested.

Hope you've been out planting and enjoying the beautiful weather.

Kathy said...

Wow! You did well, Kiddo -- what a great post! And your line "dying young is too" is so very, very powerful! Not much has changed since the time of ROMEO AND JULIET, has it?