Meredith and I were walking along the beach at the boardwalk today, and just as we were passing this particularly awesome sand castle, this party frat-boy about fifty feet out in the water started screaming. Meredith and I stopped, because you know, screaming people. Those are always fun for a lark.
His girlfriend, cousin, daughter, person he was swimming next to--went under and he couldn't find her. The life guards were so out of it, they took a good two minutes to arrive as people are shouting at them "OH MY GOD! SHE'S DROWNING!" and gesticulating madly. The boardwalk is always packed, so it was crowds shouting at these damn life guards, which only five minutes ago were getting their pictures taken by jerky tourists.
Life Guards un-forthcoming, half the young male population came streaking down the beach to go help frat-boy in the search, some of the older dudes too. Finally the life guards showed up. By the time Meredith and I decided we couldn't bear to watch anymore the girl had been under for at least ten minutes. There's still no word on if they found the body.
When Meredith and I stepped on that that girl was still alive. And isn't that funny? As I'm typing this, each key click, at least three people all over the world are dying. And yet it only hits me when some girl accompanied by a stupid frat-boy in an orange bathing-suit gets it snuffed out on a happy day at the beach.
What scares me is that I feel more grief for this girl I don't even know who cast an unwanted pall on my day, than when they tell me my own grandfather is dying. I'm a horrible person.