I need a new power cord/charger for my iPhone. I’ve been staring at exposed wires for weeks now. You’d think I’d have twigged. Nope. It took incessant ‘dinging’ every two seconds while I had it plugged in, ostensibly charging the battery, for me to figure out something might be amiss. Well, that’s not quite true.
It was when I went to use the phone and it was dead.
Before I go too much further with this story, you should know the photo is NOT one I took of my cord. Even I would look at this and understand procrastinating isn’t an option.
Most of the Apple stores in Toronto are in suburban malls. I’m a city dweller. I gave up my car years ago. The good news is, there’s an Apple store in the Eaton Centre. Right downtown. A quick subway ride away. The Eaton Centre is the largest mall in downtown Toronto, home to 330 stores, spread over 148,000 square metres (1,593,058.7 square feet). Actually it’s both a shopping mall and an office complex.
Sadly, it’s also been the scene of several shooting sprees. A la Columbine, Colorado and now, Connecticut. One lone gunman. All kinds of mayhem. Innocent people killed, while they were out shopping and having fun. For no reason. As if there could ever be a reason.
So here I am with a phone I can’t use.
“No problem” was my initial reaction. I’ll jump on the subway (virtually at my front door). And I’ll be at the Eaton Centre in eight or ten minutes. I could be back home, cord in hand, within thirty, forty minutes, tops. I was almost out my front door, when it hit me. The weekend news. The memories of similar tragedies, including here, in our own back yard. Nothing along the scale of what’s been happening in the U.S. mind you, but mass shootings, none the less.
Our new reality.
Weapons are finding their way into the wrong hands. Seriously damaged hands. With greater and greater frequency. Even here, in Canada, where we don’t have a constitutional right to bear arms.
Our new reality.
We can’t even go to a mall or to a movie or to school without fearing for our lives; and the lives of our friends, neighbours and loved ones. Who would ever have imagined this would be a topic for discussion.
The new normal.
Hate to admit, but I got spooked. It stopped me cold. Dead in my tracks. And as I stood there, rooted to the spot for a few minutes, all I could think was, “Are you sure you want to go there, Fransi?” This little voice inside my head was speaking to me. “The Eaton Centre’s been targeted several times before. What if some deranged individual is watching the constant coverage from Connecticut?”
What if a chance to have his, or her, name and photo splashed across every newspaper and TV network in the country is just too enticing an opportunity to pass up? To be known worldwide. Instantly famous.
It’s happened before. Copy cat killers do exist. These people don’t have a conscience. Or a sense of right and wrong. They’re sick. Heartless. And sometimes, what they crave most, is attention. Notoriety. So sick. So tragic. So terrifying.
Believe it or not, I stayed home. I couldn’t bring myself to go down there. To risk it. To take the chance. What kind of a sad commentary on our society is that? Five will get you ten, I’m not the only person who chose to stay home instead of going to a mall, either.
Guess we’re the ones who are in jail.