Saturday, April 01, 2006


There's absolutely no making sense of it. It's the kind of random, terrifying event that makes me want to collect my little family, throw some clothes and books and bottled water into the car, drive away and settle into a fortified compound in some Duss Ridge deep, deep in the mountains. And I'm not the country type.

The picture that is drawn of Kyle Huff is one of alienation, loneliness and disconnectedness. I can't get Taxi Driver out of my head. Without pushing the Travis Bickle thing too far, it's interesting that Kyle Huff's preferred job was pizza delivery, cruising around in his ship in the night, with only the briefest, most superficial social interaction required. Kyle's having a twin brother frustrates the comparison a bit, but at this point the nature of their relationship is not clear. All that's known for sure is that Kyle Huff was extremely shy and socially awkward, and that he was more or less alone in this world. As Eli Sanders points out, the latter is where he truly differed from his victims.

I recognize two of them from Madison Market, the food co-op a few blocks away where they worked. Reading about the lives they were leading, living in a group house and partying a lot, making music and art, is a little unnerving. I pretty much was them in my twenties, working modestly paying jobs and living simply in order to attend to other more important interests. It was great. Man, it was great. These kids were having the time of their lives, they were doing their thing and they weren't messing with anybody. They were tripping happily through the forest and ran into the Big Bad Wolf.

Kurt Vonnegut wrote that "friends are the family we choose for ourselves," and I love this quote because it captures my exact feelings about my group of friends here in Seattle. I realize, though, how much chance and luck was involved with my meeting my West Coast family. Maybe Stacius doesn't happen to read The Rocket and answer the ad for a bass player and drummer, maybe Stu doesn't want to leave his old band, maybe Tess never comes into the Wedgwood Ale House and meets us, maybe Leslie never comes to take our picture. But they did, and we have this wonderful extended family that helps to cushion the blows of this life, and to exponentially increase its joys. The residents of the Blue House had created a family like this for themselves. The Capitol Hill murders have made it painfully clear to me, again, that some people never have this opportunity, don't have this luck, that this world is full of Eleanor Rigbys and Father McKenzies floating loose out there, unmoored and unloved. And some of them have trucks full of fucking guns.

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