Friday, January 05, 2007

Doot doot doot

I am waiting for my cable installation professional. I imagine he's going to offer to hook me up with some extraordinary package on the QT. The ethical dilemma this might present is blunted somewhat by the knowledge that I have no money at all right now with which to bribe him.

Having a bit of trouble getting paid for some work I did recently. I have a history with the client, so I'm not worried they're gonna stiff me, but it's agonizing nonetheless. I still haven't been able to do much of my Xmas shopping, and the smart money says I shouldn't bother starting anytime soon.

I saw a guy on Letterman last night, Wes Autrey. He had risked his life to save a stranger in the subway, hoping at first to pull the man to safety off of the tracks, and then deciding that he didn't have time and throwing himself on top of the man to hold him still as the train moved over the both of them. He told his story well, and touched on something when he pointed out that the first time the man had needed help, there were some 80 people on the platform, and yet only 3 of them stopped to offer assistance.

I'm sure this is old news to most of you, but I keep thinking about it. If the gap between the track and the train were just a couple of inches off, Mr. Autrey would almost certainly have been killed right there in front of his children. And my thought is still mostly about why the 77 other people on the platform ignored the events taking place and rushed off to work. I'm sure there are people all over New York who are saying "Oh, yeah. I was there in the subway. I saw that guy," thinking of the proximity to fame that they had and not about how they ignored someone who needed help.

He said that the main thing that had gone poorly for him in all this was that his hat got dirty. I wish I could send him a new hat.

I imagine the news outlets are going somewhat overboard with their coverage of this event. Can you blame them? Not only is this story not about a celebrity breakup, a war, bitterly divided political or religious factions: it's a great story with a positive outcome. They don't get many of those these days.

Anyway, enough about all that.

My novel is still in the region of Nowhere. I have to figure out the initial expository/introductory text and then I imagine things'll start to chug along. I know the plot well enough, I'm just having some trouble with the tone I want to establish.


Nikki Neurotic said...

It's sad that in group settings like that, if you need help, your usually screwed cuz people are too hesitant to help in big crowds. However, if there was only one or two people in the subway station at the time they would be more willing to step in. It doesn't make sense, but that's human psychology for you.

Ms Melancholy said...

You're absolutely right - its called the bystander effect. I don't know why some of us feel compelled to act, whilst some of us remain entirely passive though. What a brave man he is. Hello Mr Moon, by the way. Nice blog ;o)

The Moon Topples said...

Silver/Ms Melancholy: Is it possible that some of us are more likely to think that someone more qualified exists in a large group? And that we should stay out of the way? Or is it just the "it's none of my concern" mentality one learns in a large city.

Either way, I hope I would react rather than watching or moving along to work.

And thanks, Melancholy. I try to keep it tidy in case I should have visitors.

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of the sad tale of Kitty Genovese.