Print Edition: January 14, 2015
Dear observers of human tragedy
It is not my intent to add a gloomy stain on this page, but I have an ethical question: Since when did life become a game of survivors and the fallen? In the early afternoon of January 6, a fellow human may have attempted to take his own life by jumping off the high-rise parking block at Seven Oaks Mall. Although I didn’t witness this event, I did see the many flashing lights of emergency vehicles and pedestrians solemnly standing sentinel around the scene. What truly struck me were the aloof comments of passersby: some teasing on the process of attempting resuscitation, others laughing about the folly of the person about to jump. Even the bus driver with whom I was travelling took a moment to pull over beside a friend and joke about pushing the victim off the highest floor. Whether or not their laughter was some kind of sadistic coping, I found it repulsive. An individual who is trapped in their own reality and truly feels the solution to their issues is taking their own life should not meet with such disrespect or contempt. That is not to say suicide is noble, but it does not take a great measure of empathy to humbly respect another human’s struggle.
A world of me
In a world of over 7 billion there’s a lot going on, and a lot we don’t know about. Yet when the news is full of horrible things we turn it off, because ignorance is bliss, right? But that shouldn’t be the way we operate. If we want to make the world a better place, we need to educate ourselves on what needs fixing. Unlike our Twitter and Facebook pages, the whole world doesn’t revolve around us. Getting the most likes, the most followers: it’s a useless popularity contest. The world is not a “world of me”; there are other people in it who need help. Think back to past natural disasters that have struck our world, or even the recent Ebola virus. They dominate news stations for weeks and suddenly fade away as if they never happened. Yet people’s lives are still being affected — it’s not a memory. Education makes the world a better place. Ignorance keeps us in the past.
Bad books are bad
I’d say one of the biggest disappointments in life would be after you’ve sold your soul to get a new edition of a book that’s apparently really good, and then you realize it’s complete crap. But you’re determined that it will get better, that it will redeem itself. You’ve just got to put some effort in. And so you spend an entire day dedicated to this book — but guess what? It never gets better. You’re left sitting there cursing the book, cursing the author, and vowing to return the book and get your refund. A poorly written book that sucks out your soul and leaves you feeling defeated (and not in a good way) deserves to be burned at the stake, and sent back to the depths from whence it came.
I went out this past weekend to downtown Vancouver because my girlfriends and I wanted to have a cheap meal and do some dancing. When we got into the nightclub (free cover for students, yay!), I couldn’t help but notice that there were way more men than women. I realize that some guys are there to have a good time and some are obviously there to meet a nice girl to take home to mom, but there was one in particular that reminded me of a lion stalking his prey. He would stand off to the side, making his choice du jour, and then would swoop in for the kill.
Some girls were all over it, but most were clearly disgusted by the thought. Guys, all we want is for you to try and strike up a conversation first, even if it’s too loud to hear anything over the music!