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Vengeance? Or Something Else?

September 15th, 2001 - 2:54 p.m.

I'm Currently Avoiding:

This entry's probably going to take me forever to type b/c of multi-tasking too. And you know what? I don't care. It turned out to be a good thing that I didn't write about the situation last time b/c of something which occured last night that would've had to have been written as a seperate entry had I not postponed writing about terrorists and stuff. I'm such a slacker...write a paragraph, go look at other windows for an hour and a half....write a paragraph... And I'm not even writing my sixth chapter like I should be. Although, I guess I wrote a sentence in it. That's not very helpful, however.

I guess I'll just do the word things and then continue with what I was going to put in this entry below that. Why, I don't know.

(Insert Witty Comment Here)

fortuitous (adj. for-TOO-uh-tuss or for-TYOO-uh-tuss)

1 : occurring by chance

2 a : fortunate, lucky b : coming or happening by a lucky chance

For some 250 years, until the early part of the 20th century, fortuitous meant one thing only: happening by chance. This was no accident; its Latin forebear, fortuitus, is based on the Latin word for chance, which is fors. But the fact that fortuitous sounds like a blend of fortunate and felicitous (meaning happily suited to an occasion) may have been what ultimately led to a second meaning: fortunate. That use has been disparaged by critics, but it is now well established. Perhaps the seeds of the newer sense were planted by earlier writers applying overtones of good fortune to something that is a chance occurrence. In fact, today we quite often apply fortuitous to something that is a chance occurrence but has a favorable result.

yahoo (n. YAY-hoo or YAH-hoo)

: a boorish, crass, or stupid person

We know exactly how old yahoo is because its debut in print also marked its entrance into the English language as a whole. Yahoo began life as a made-up word invented by Jonathan Swift in his book Gulliver's Travels, which was published in 1726. The Yahoos were a race of brutes, with the form and vices of humans, encountered by Gulliver in his fourth and final voyage. They represented Swift's view of mankind at its lowest. It is not surprising, then, that yahoo came to be applied to any actual human who was particularly unpleasant or unintelligent. Yahoos were controlled by the intelligent and virtuous Houyhnhnms, a word which apparently did not catch people's fancy as yahoo did.

(Proof positive that sometimes you *can* make up words and get them into the dictionary. As for why Houyhnhnms isn't a word today? Who wants to spell *that* all the time? Besides, they were horses!)

Oh look...it's been more than two hours since I started this. What fun. So, I was going to discuss things? Yeah. Might as well start with what happened yesterday, I suppose. So, yesterday evening I was doing what I always do, which is sit at the computer and browse things, while attempting, yet failing to work on my sixth chapter (sort of like now). Yes, anyway, there was apparently a meeting of some sorts being held in the basement. I didn't really notice it until the people came in asking for the available chairs in the room b/c they had more people than they did chairs. Anyway, before I noticed them, I noticed the police officer who was wandering around the basement. This puzzled me greatly, since I've never really seen one down here before, and couldn't imagine what she was hanging around for. I figured it out, however, when I went upstairs and asked the guard at the front desk what the meeting in the basement was all about. The guard was rather secretive and was also on the phone. "Arabs," she barely whispered, "I think they're having some sort of secret meeting down there." Thus, the mystery of the policewoman was explained.

I couldn't believe that utter nonsense. Secret meeting? I doubt it was all that secretive. And the more I thought about it, the more offended I became. They were doing nothing more horrible than talking, and they had to be spied on by a police officer? I recognized one of the people in the meeting as being from Morocco, so I know it wasn't some weird terrorist meeting. As if the terrorists have suddenly decided to use this campus as a meeting place. Yeah, right. It has been pointed out that maybe the woman was there for their protection, which possibly could have been the case, but I'm way more in favor of the prejudiced spying action for a theory. This really pissed me off, that they've become that paranoid. It just seems really unfair to be biased against these particular people because of a few terrorist, zealous nutjobs. I honestly don't know why I was so offended...okay, so I lied, I really *do* know why. Yet, although this prejudice has perhaps the most valid reason, as much as irrational hatred can ever have a valid reason that is, it is the one which has irritated me the most.

I've been avoiding the news and tv as much as possible lately, for obvious reasons. Oh? You don't think the reasons are obvious and wish me to elaborate? Well then. Besides my natural tendency to avoid the newspaper and news programs on television other than the little snippets I get in my e-mail, I have made a special effort to remain in the dark during the aftermath of the tragedy. It hasn't worked too well, however, and I've heard more about what has occured in the wake of the incident than I really wanted to know. Too many people have turned into instant-racists, if they weren't already, in the wake of this attack. The school paper Friday devote an entire page(not the front page of course, no it was pretty much buried in page 5) on anti-Arab & anti-Muslim feelings and acts, but two pages later, in the very middle where someone was much more likely to see things, had full-color photos of a car with a layer of dust from the explosion with sentiments like "Bomb the Middle East" and "Vengeance" written in the dust. Somehow I don't think that will help settle bad feelings.

Bush as President at a time like this seriously frightens me. He seems entirely too trigger-happy, like he's just itching to push that ominous red button. After all, when he was Governor of Texas, didn't he make a hobby out of executing people? Then there's the whole terrorism begetting (is that even a word? Begat? I don't know.) terrorism thing. It's not a happy thought by any means. Again, I feel as if I'm almost the only one dealing with this semi-rationally, and that I'm in a large minority. I have difficulty understanding how we feel affronted. I mean, for decades we've funded terrorist groups and even used our own military *as* a terrorist group to overthrow governments, people, policies, whatever, that we didn't like. These terrorist groups have spent our money, weapons, equipment, & training creating incidents like this in other countries for a long time. And now that it finally happens to us, we turn around and say, "Hey! That's not fair!"? It seems incredibly hypocritical and arrogant to me, but then again...this is America. Hyporcritical and arrogant are some of the things we do best. And maybe that's the saddest thing of all.

P.S. Finished at 8:34 pm, 5 hours & 40 minutes after it was begun.

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