Marathon Day – 2016

Spoiled! Oblivious! Lucky!

Those are three words the come to mind when I think of the Boston Marathon.

It was three years ago the bombing took place. Three were murdered by terrorist bombs  – hundreds injured and maimed – some quite badly losing limbs. Ah, the tragedy of it all.

Remember the response — the “shelter in” – the tons of police parading up and down stairways in full armored gear or pointing their machine guns at roof  tops —  the press briefings with the politicians and law people elbowing each other out of the way to get some “air time” for themselves. All expressing the outrage that some fiends would do such a thing to us on one of our holidays.

Lost in all this is the obliviousness of what is happening in the rest of the world especially those places in the Muslim world where they have become routine. I know Paris and Brussels have been attacked by Muslim terrorists since that time. As bad as they are they pale in comparison to the ongoing events in the Muslim world.

I think of how spoiled we are to react with such outrage that someone would dare do this to us without giving a second thought to the thousands of others whose lives are continuously being shattered by such bombings elsewhere.

Spoiled and I guess lucky to be living in this country where such attacks are so infrequent that the memory of the most recent one is three years old rather than three days old.

It is not that we are being well protected by our protectors; for such things as the Marathon Terrorist Attack is something that cannot be prevented without some type of foreknowledge. Some will suggest we had that in this case. True. If the FBI handled it better and let the other members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) in on the information that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was suspected by the Russian of being involved in terrorism  something different might have happened. But that’s not the way the FBI operates — the idea behind the JTTFs is not to share information but to make sure the FBI knows what information others have so that it can get the credit if something good is done.

There’s also that mystery, a real big mystery, about what were the teams of FBI agents doing in Cambridge according to the Cambridge police the night the Tsarnaev’s took flight. The FBI explained they were doing something other than the Tsarnaev case even though the president had declared this a national emergency and agents had poured into town to help in the investigation.

Whether the FBI is culpable or not is something that will never be learned since it controls the records and the investigation. But that is all aside from the point that other people of the same mind as the Tsarnaev’s or someone intent on being a suicide bomber with access to an explosive maker really cannot be stopped. Given that, imagine how lucky we are in this country of 320 million people so little horror has been perpetuated upon us.

Rosie Ruiz:

That’s a name I associate with the Boston marathon.

Katherine Switzer.

She’s shown above.  That’s the woman who Jock Semple tried to bodily extract from the race because she was a woman in 1967. The BAA now give an award in his honor but don’t tell any of the women’s groups.

Bill Rodgers

He’s the only person who won the race whose name I recall.

Top of Heartbreak Hill

That’s where I’ve stood for many years with members of my family as runners zipped by. Bill holding a sign against the U.S. involvement in Kosovo. Sammy explaining through complicated mathematics how he could have won the race had he trained harder. Jim struggling on by just before we all went home. Did he pull a Rosie Ruiz someone asked?

Most of us are still there. There have been added over time children, nephews and nieces; grand nephews and grand nieces and grand kids.  I assume today if you run past there you’ll be heartily cheered on by some of us in our usual places.

No signs anymore. We’ve become inured to wars. Times have changed.

 

 

8 thoughts on “Marathon Day – 2016

  1. Yeah, Jim…What do we really know about Jim?

    Sammy probably knows all the winners, where they went to high school and their times in the race.

    Bill carrying a sign? All you have to do is read his face. He can give you every international agreement going back to WWI to buttress his case. Forget about rebuttal.

  2. ” Ah, the tragedy of it all ” … An offhanded sarcasm belittling the suffering of those who truly suffered that day makes for a sensational bit of bomb throwing with a built in dopamine reward when you attract some cheaply won attention with ir, but shows no good sense of what happened.

    Boston is not Paris. Boston is not Brussels. This is axiomatic. Spoiled, oblivious and lucky does not describe the members of Martin Richard’s family.

    Tommy Menino, rallying out of a hospital bed to sit reassuringly in a wheelchair as a symbol of fortitude and leadership was not elbowing either Press or Law people out of the way to get ” air time ” for himself.

    Sure, the Shelter In Place edict and the paramilitary police cluster F*** in Watertown was overbearing and played too much to the cameras. But this is the hyper-surveilled electronic hall of mirrors we live in. The Marathon Bombings was kaleidoscopic action. Once events were set in motion the physics of what unfolded were an unpredictable quantum reality. This is Life. The Feds struggled to keep up. The Boston Police struggled to keep up. Ancillary Police departments struggled to keep up. It is indeed a conspiracy. It was the conspiracy of those thrown unluckily into a blasted race, and then busting guts to just try and keep up.

    It is not standing on top of Heartbreak Hill. It is running up and past it. Ths rest is left to the lucky savants . 🙂

  3. Hi Matt — This is “struggling Jim” reporting. I finished my first Boston in under 4 hours. What was your time ?

    Brother Jim

  4. REALLLLLYYY … Well, I let you lie then where you are . Some people just. do not get it until they get it . The Point, that is 🙂

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