Actually nothing bad happened to me at all, but a wash of gloom at work has made this one of least blissful weeks in about as long as I can remember. I’m sure glad it’s Friday. What it was like:
Monday: After reading a story about the U.S. military apologizing because a bunch of young boys had been accidentally killed in an airstrike (kept in harm’s way by Afghan insurgents, some say), I read a story about a child-porn ring being run out of the UK in which unspeakable acts were performed live over the web on very young victims. Then I found out what happened to this soldier we wrote a huge series of articles about chronicling his recovery from a bomb blast that left a massive dent in the side of his skull. Something went wrong with his most recent surgery, leaving him brain dead and his family planning how to harvest his organs. Never knew the him beyond what we put in the paper, but I found myself thinking I really wanted that guy to live.
Tuesday: Word comes down that layoffs are on the way. As it turns out this would be the least-negative thing that would happen this week.
Wednesday: A co-worker well-liked by the whole newsroom dies suddenly at age 44. There’s no explanation for the cause of death, but we’ve been in the news biz long enough to know a cause of death is almost always given, with one exception.
Thursday: The newsroom is more like a funeral home; a vigil is held near the fountains outside in which co-workers praise the many qualities of our fallen colleague. The more nice things are said about him, the harder it is to reconcile the likelihood that he took his own life. Even harder to reconcile is the reality that whatever may have driven him to his grim departure, there was nothing we could’ve done because he gave no outward sign of trouble.
Friday: I’m strangely optimistic, a week like this has nowhere to go but up, right?