I shot the t.v. this morning (to this day, claiming that “I shot the tv” still reminds me of the time when “Shoot your tv!” meant ‘get rid of your tv’) hoping to have something interesting to show you. Well, heh, I shot the tv when Good Morning America was blathering on about today’s earthquake in Italy. By my ruminations upon this, I’ve concluded that humankind allow ourselves to be transfixed upon the misfortunes of others so that we may vicariously feel better about our own relative lack of the very same misfortunes. I reckon that whosoever was the first person to utter “There but for the grace of God go I” did not foresee that the repetition of that platitude over time would be in the aggregate a disservice to…well…humankind.
Do you suppose that even a person for whom, say, death-by-Guinea-worm-disease is imminent might consider himself better off than one who minutes earlier had died of the same affliction. And yet where does his smug self-satisfaction take him. We all die, one way or another.