Such a Drastic Contrast in Manchester

My heart sank when I saw the news yesterday. It seemed so surreal. The effect of the images that accompanied the story felt like they cut me off at the knees.

New York Times homepage May 23, 2017 Manchester suicide bombing

The consequences of this attack are profoundly sad on so many levels .. that they seem impossible to fathom. This is why there is mind-blowing aspect to such things.

» Truly Remarkable Responses

Denise Evans wrote a wonderful piece on » Manchester's Resilience

And Natalie Shutler wrote another titled » What an Attack at an Ariana Grande Show Means for Teen Girls.

» Hard-Pressed to Find

James Corden said about Manchester that "A more tight-knit group of people you would be hard-pressed to find. Strong, proud, caring people."

James Corden's message to Manchester

Who does not want to grow up in, and call home, a place like that?

This article contains a telling statement:

As graffiti on a disused rail depot not far from Piccadilly train station has it, Manchester sees itself as "a haven for heathens, hoodies and hipsters, hijabis and Hebrews, highbrow intellectuals and however-you-sexuals ... it's home to all."

That sounds like my kind of town .. where they live and let live .. absent the mental illnesses typically associated with repression.

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••• today's entry continues here below •••

Here is a title that no one ever wants to write » Explosion, Panic and Death at Ariana Grande Concert in England.

» Truly Devoted Fans

Here is a nice piece about what you mean to your fans. Here is another titled » The Power of Ariana Grande.

Ariana at Madison Square Garden

I have seen a few of these fan videos .. where your fans are going to see one of your concerts.

These girls all get so excited to go see you .. that they were actually getting me a little freaked out, too .. just watching them freak out .. as if their excitement were rubbing off on me.

One Connecticut girl named Gabriella started jumping up-n-down and screaming when she found out that her mom had bought tickets to your show for the following day.

Another girl said that, "After my wedding day, this is the best day of my life."

» What Does Such Adoration Feel Like?

What does that feel like? Such devotion? The term 'adoring' is most often used to describe your fans. I dont think that such a term is hyperbole .. from what I have seen.

When you go through such traumatic experiences with people, it only drives you closer together. You feel each other on a deeper level .. because of the common experiences you share.

Margot knows what I am talking about here.

» Believing the Truth Resident in Your Private Heart

After perusing a few of these vlogs, I can see that I like you for a different reason .. than they like you.

I mean, this is intuitively obvious on a certain level. But it became clear while I was watching them react to you and your art.

It was somewhere around here that I thought of that quote by Emerson, which says »

"To believe your own thought, to believe that what is true for you in your private heart is true for all men .. that is genius."

Is this not exactly what you are doing? With your art? With your craft? With your gift? (Tho you would probably have to change the word 'men' used here to » girly-girls.)

I dont know if it shows, or if it is obvious from my writing .. but I have long felt a special kind of resonance with, and an affinity for, that quote .. and many others by Ralph Waldo.

If I were stranded on, or exiled to, a deserted island for an extended stay, and I could bring along quotes from only one person .. I would probably bring quotes by Ralph Waldo.

Because he has so many of them that speak to me at such a deep level. I find a natural resonance with him .. which feels very satisfying. (And also inspiring.)

» Look Who's Here

Hey, look .. it's the Queen .. visiting victims at the Royal Children's hospital.

The Queen visiting victims of the Manchester bombing at the children's hospital May 25, 2017

This girl here is wearing your shirt. In the hospital. That's true devotion.

(The only people who have been that devoted to me .. were not trying to do anything nice to me. Au contraire. They were devoted in a different sort of way.)

» You Cannot Make Sense of Such Insanity

Whenever I hear news of these horrific types of tragedies, I always think back to what Nana said about those 20 first-graders who got shot at school in Connecticut.

Nana said, "These things make no sense. You cant make sense of this."

» How Much Insanity Can People Handle?

It is a challenge for anyone to attempt to put into words such insanity, and things that dont make sense.

For the writer, who must present a coherent script for his reader .. a key question is, "How much of the insanity should I include?"

» From the Satanic to the Divine

Seeing how such innocent, young girls became targets .. of a suicide bomber with a nail-bomb, no less. This is the thing that makes this attack so disturbing.

Saffie Rose Roussos | age 8

And also the timing of it .. coming right at the end of the concert .. when everybody is going home in such a buoyant and festive mood after the show.

The contrast between these young, innocent girls and a suicide bomber wearing a bomb that is intended to inflict the cruelest kind of harm to those who deserve it least .. and who had never done anything to wrong their killer.

This is what makes for such a drastic contrast there in Manchester .. between the satanic and the divine.

» Answering the Question on Everybody's Mind » What the Fuck?

Regarding what Nana said .. that you cannot make sense of this insanity .. this article, titled » The Jihadi State of Mind by Kenan Malik is most interesting .. in which he actually brings up Dylann Roof.

And also this one by Bret Stephens, titled » Carnage, Memory and Manchester. Mr. Stephens writes with firsthand experience. Tho this is not the kind of experience that anybody wants firsthand.

Both articles contain interesting insights. But the thing I found most interesting was this paragraph:

Any analysis of the Islamic State's motives and strategy, however tactically intriguing, has limited utility. Its murder sprees are incidentally instrumental but fundamentally self-justifying. It kills to kill.

It kills to kill .. not for any political objective. Which contrasts with the "standard definition of terrorism" that he gives » "The unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims."

» Powerful Explosions Close Enough to be Heard and Felt

We live not far from Camp Pendleton .. close enough to feel the house shake and hear the garage doors rattle .. when they are practicing shooting off their artillery and whatnot.

As coincidence would have it, they are blowing up shit right now. Whatever it is .. it must be pretty big. Or closer than usual. Much closer.

It can be unsettling when things are blowing up not far from you .. and when these explosions cause the ground beneath you to shake, and your walls to rattle.

» Feeling Broken

I saw your tweet. I have felt broken myself. More than once, unfortunately. As you know, it sucks pretty badly.

[ Dec 7, 2017 » Oh, look .. at t=1:00 in this video, Drew says that your tweet here was the #2 most-liked tweet of the year ..

Ariana twitter post May 22, 2017 following suicide bombing in Manchester

.. following one of Obama quoting Mandela. Another tweet by Obama came in third.

I thought of the Modern Library ranking of the 100 Best Novels .. where novels by Joyce came in first and third on the list.

While Gatsby by Fitzgerald came in second. So, in this sense, you are like the Fitzgerald of tweets for 2017 with Gatsby.

Is it just me .. or is that ranking not a curious thing .. in light of what I wrote to you here?

Girly, do you happen to know how old Fitzgerald was when he wrote Gatsby? An American Masterpiece. (No pressure.)

Do you remember when I told you, "Dont make me get all Fitzgerald on your ass." ?

Speaking of lists .. what do you think of this list .. of the greatest albums made by women?

Happy Pearl Harbor day.

< end insertion from Dec 7, 2017 > ]

TMZ said that you were 'in hysterics.' "That would be a completely appropriate response," I thought .. given such circumstances.

I sent a thing your way last night, girly. (To the whole city.) You will recognize this thing that I sent by its distinctive signature.

Manchester on Google maps

» Handing Out Flowers in Albert Square

Here is a photo of a girl handing out flowers in Albert Square earlier today.

Handing out flowers in Albert Square in Manchester May 23, 2017

» More Flowers in Manchester

Here is a whole sea of flowers .. a visual representation of the outpouring of emotion from a grieving city.

More flowers in Manchester May 24, 2017

» Twenty-Two Pink Balloons

And here are 22 pink balloons from Camley the cartoonist.

22 Pink Balloons #Manchester

So very sad.

» Lighting Candles in Manchester

Lighting candles in Manchester May 24, 2017

» A Poem

And here is a poem from the poet Tony Walsh, titled This is the Place. Everybody knows the place that Tony here is talking about.

The poet Tony Walsh reads his poem 'This is the Place' about Manchester May 23, 2017

When James Corden talks about the pride of Manchester, you can actually hear that pride in Tony's voice and coming from his poem.

» A Good Start

Poems and prayers, flowers and balloons and candles .. that's a good start, girly. A good start on the healing.

Public gathering in Manchester, England May 25, 2017

And here is Brian May offering his insights.

» Who Can Really Understand?

I tried to imagine how you must be feeling .. but I couldnt get there. (I did try.)

We love you

Who can really understand how you must be feeling?

I forget the exact terminology, but I read something that said your psychological state was not good.

I can say that such a response would be completely understandable.

Because your name was there at the top of the homepage for the NY Times .. and it wasnt there because of your singing. It wasnt there for anything good.

And the Times' homepage wasnt the only place where your name was found sitting at the top. This naturally speaks to the size of the impact.

» Missing the Obvious

This article says that the suicide bomber had been reported to the British authorities "at least three times" before the attack .. but that they dismissed him as being "not dangerous." More such missing here.

» Going for a Walk in the Woods

I should probably go for a walk. But I think that I am feeling depressed .. because I dont really feel like it.

» World-Class Huggers

Oh, this is very cool. Look at the look on this girl's face. Priceless.

Ariana with 8-year-old Lily Harrison at Manchester Children's hospital June 3, 2017

You are obviously a good hugger, girly. World-class.

This page continues here » One Love Comes to Manchester on Short Notice (June 3, 2017).

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This page contains a single entry by Rad published on May 23, 2017 5:23 PM.

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