Thursday, December 27, 2007

29 Year Streak

So I made it 29 whole years without seeing someone get shot. I really wish I could have made it longer.

Last night my friends from school and I were out to a nice dinner at Mi Piache in Old Town Pasadena (one of my favorite places to be) and we were having a grand time, toasting our graduated selves and feeling all hip and eating-in-an-awesomely-decorated-window front-gourmet-Italian restaurant in Pasadena. Our food took much longer than we were anticipating and we were a bit annoyed but still happy. The bread was good and so was my mint tea. It was a fabulous night.

Then across the street we heard 3 pops. Now, Pasadena's big gig is New Years - people celebrate for like 3 weeks so I thought it was a fire cracker or three but I saw this guy book it down Colorado Blvd and this other guy kind of stagger out into the street looking like a loose marionette.

The whole restaurant stopped. Every buzz of across the room conversation and clanking pan froze. Nearly every guy in the place stood up (not the women though - I found that interesting). The LA Times reported this morning that apparently there was an argument between the two and a possible racial slur slipped. I don't know. No one does apparently- But he shot a man. Three times. At 7:30 in the evening. On a crowded street. In a shopping district. The day after Christmas. Right in front of me.

After the first two minutes of realization the silence left and was replaced with the worried murmurs instead of happy well fed chatter. I kept wanting the restaurant's manager to get up and say something, recognize that something had happened and that the authorities had it under control but no one appeared. One server next to our table said something like "this thing never happens here" and shes right. Old Town Pasadena is one of the most patrolled and guarded places in Pasadena. There is a Tiffany's there for crying out loud.

We left as soon as we could manage to get a check and as we were walking back to the car we passed by this delicious natural oil, soap, and lotion store called Lather that's next door to Mi Piache and the whole window front was shattered by a stray bullet. No one was in the store when it came through the window but if that gunman had been so mad and had moved that gun an inch further back that bullet would have gone right into the restaurant.

How sad.
How horrible.
How... completely out of my realm of normalcy

And strangely, I feel fine. I felt fine then. Everyone stood up but I put my head down. That was not an image I wanted to be burned into my head any more than it was and I was grateful for the bundle of people already standing up blocking me from the window. My friend Sean was the one doing the looking and all that other hard stuff. It was all so surreal how unaffected I felt. My friend NaToya pointed out how fortunate it was that our food took so long because we could have been outside when it happened.

I just can't believe how this time of year brings out the absolute best and absolute worst in people. I can't believe how someone would pull out a GUN over an argument and then shoot someone in the BACK??!

There is no honor or reckoning in that. The gunman was in custody within minutes along with the weapon so its not like he bettered his position at all either. The whole thing is just miles outside of my understanding. Maybe that's why I'm not shaken, because I just don't get it.

Also - I have a brother on a mission with means blessings. Blessings of protection and blessings of peace. The though of my brother being in that position brings me instantly to tears, just witnessing something like that, but I'm OK. Very surprisingly OK.

1 comment:

Becca said...

because obviously a tiffany's prevents violence..
I am soo sorry you had to see that hun. We love you and are glad you are safe