“For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.”
― Eric Roth, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button screenplay
Last night, as I was cooking dinner, my husband arrived home from work. He sat in one of the chairs at our breakfast table and asked if I’d heard the news story regarding the Brazilian soccer game.
I’d been busy all day and hadn’t had the time to listen to anything, much less the news, so he proceeded to tell me the story.
As he told me each incident of the events that occurred in the soccer game, held in Pius XII in Brazil, sadness and shock sprouted inside of me like a weed you can’t kill.
A soccer player and ref have a row over a call the ref makes which the player thinks is a bad call.
The ref fatally stabs the player.
I gasped at this part, “Oh my God!”
The player’s family kills the ref. (I’ve since learned family and friends stoned the ref to death.)
My eyes glued to my husband’s, and I reacted with, “What in the hell…?”
My husband said, “Oh, it gets worse.”
The same people who stoned him to death then quarter (my hand immediately clamps my mouth as a very loud gasp escapes) and behead (my eyes bulge from my head and tears rapidly well and spill over onto my cheeks) him.
Silently, I stared at my husband.
He then said, “It gets even worse.”
Oh my GOD, I think, how in the HELL could this get any worse?
Those who stoned him, quartered him, and beheaded him put his head on a wooden stake and parade it around the field.
With my hand still clamped over my mouth, I feel my throat tighten, sick welling up in my stomach and throat, chills pushing their way out of my skin all over my body. Tears are now spilling down my cheeks.
How could anyone possibly know that we are living in the 21st century upon hearing this news story, its barbarism taking us back centuries, way before even the Tudor times, which was known for its quarterings and beheadings, among other forms of “punishment.” How could this ever happen in the 21st Century?
Then again, how could the Holocaust happen, how could genocide happen, slavery, racism, reverse racism, hunger, poverty, etc., happen?
And so I shed more tears, realizing I can only do so much to better the world. If I discover I’m not proud of what I’m doing to make the world, even the small world around me, a better one, then I’ll muster the courage to start all over again.