Proximity

There's nothing novel in saying this, but I'm still shocked by the degree to which your proximity to a tragedy affects your reaction to it. Last night, there was a fire in San Francisco's Mission district which might have, but didn't, affect my employer. One person died; several were injured, and a brilliant old building was utterly destroyed. I don't know what I "should" have felt (and man, I dislike the word "should" in a context like this) but my reaction was strictly academic. I was slightly saddened and slightly relieved that it wasn't worse and it didn't impact anyone I knew personally.

On the other hand, while waiting for the train this morning, I saw a cat on the tracks. The cat had obviously tried and failed to cross in front of the train and the result was precisely what one would expect of such an encounter. I didn't recognize the cat and I'm not even sure if the cat had a home, but I was, and remain, absolutely gutted by the scene. 

I don't imagine this was any more fun to read than it was to write, this I'm writing this to get it out of my head, so thank you for your patience with my self-therapy.  Carry on, and if you get the opportunity, give a cat a pet or two.