4.20 / Columbine

Ten years ago, I was sitting in a cheap motel room in (I think) 100 Mile House, BC. I was in the middle of a ten or so day road trip for Extreme Canadian Championship Wrestling, and I was getting ready to do a show that night at the local high school gym.

While kicking back and relaxing a bit, I clicked on the TV to help pass the time. It was fairly customary if I was sharing a room with Tony Kozina to find out which channels offered a steady stream of Simpsons reruns.

I’m not sure why I seem to remember this day so well, but while flipping through channels, we noticed that there was little in the way of Simpsons episodes (at the time, it seemed EVERY channel showed multiple episodes at different times of the day). Actually, we came across very little in the way of TV shows at all.

Instead, every channel had cut in with news reports of events taking place at a school named Columbine in Colorado. I think by this point, a whole ten years later, people are more than familiar with what happened that day. There have been video games made, documentaries, best-selling books, and TV shows like Law and Order who have aired episodes loosely based on the massacre.  But sitting there on a smelly bed watching it all unfold, it hardly seemed real. It was more the stuff movies are made out of.

Today, April 20th, marks ten years since that day. The word “Columbine” has become a part of our culture. Like “J.F.K.” and “9/11″.  There have been other school shootings, and other events that will live in infamy, but this one seemed to strike a cord with all walks of life. Children, parents, teachers, you name it.

What lessons have been learned since then? Are we a better society? Do we need to better monitor what movies kids are watching? The music they are listening to? Is it about bullying? Do we just need to be nicer to eachother.

Personally, I just think it’s sad. A lot happens in ten years. I look at my own life as an example, and think of all the great things I have been able to experience and accomplish in that time. I was 22 years old at the time, several years removed from high school. Maybe I’m in the minority, but when I completed high school, I never looked back. Those years were unimportant to me, except for the piece of paper they provided me with. I wasn’t even interested in going to my reunion. Whatever was bothering or disturbed Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, it’s just really too bad that they weren’t able to see things with that kind of perspective. If they had, then 15 people (including them) would still be alive.

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