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Location: Aotearoa, New Zealand

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

news that makes me want to cry (in a good way)

Seriously, I felt the wee sprigs of tears when I saw this story in the paper. At first I was like, "Whaaat? Bloody soft summer story - they'll print anything" but the reporting had such a personal edge, it really amazed me.

Basically, this little toddler in New York fell four floors, but was caught by two men who saved his life. And the impact of it was so huge that the first guy was knocked off his feet and the kid bounced into the other guy's arms. He was travelling the equivalent of 35 miles an hour apparently!

The NY Daily News has the basic story and some great pics of them, you can
read it here.

But the newspaper really beat them to the punch when it came to engrossing details. Their article (sorry, I don't recall what the source was - I find it hard to believe the Dom Post has someone getting them the scoop firsthand in the Bronx) was solid gold.

It said that the wee childer has been saying to his mum that very morning that he wanted to be Superman, to be Spiderman. And that the babysitter had opened the window up to have a cigarette, and then left the room to go to the toilet, leaving the boy unsupervised. So, what does he do? Make the most of the opportunity to test his superpowers, of course.

Also, it mentioned that one of the men was the father of four or so kids, while the other one had just one foster child. If that doesn't tug on the heart-strings - sheesh!

The closing lines of the article was what got me jumping online though. It said "Last month, a baby was caught after a drop from three floors" or something like that. I was like "And what? Now that guy who caught THAT kid is feeling real bummed out?!".

But thanks to your friend and mine - Google - I found the origins of that story and BOY is it a cracker!! A young mum, a newborn child, a burning apartment! No choice but to say a prayer and throw the baby out the kitchen window!
...and straight into the arms (three floors below) of the catcher on a local baseball team who happened to be passing by and heard her screaming for help!

Oh lordy - isn't it just amazing? Couldn't get any better huh?


That's right people, thanks to the over-vigilance of surveillance cameras, the terrifying incident was recorded on CCTV and can be viewed here (link within text article) thanks to CBS, complete with a WalMart ad beforehand.

All in all, it has been a thrilling day in 'human interest' stories for me. One of the other articles I scanned through about the "Catch Of The Day!" incident mentioned it had been a week of heroes, as three NYPD cops had helped deliver a baby on subway platform and that someone else had leapt down and rescued a young guy who fell off or into or SOMETHING a SOMETHING. Basically it was all very exciting.

I had been on such a horrible buzz, thinking of all that happened in Lower Hutt, with that on-parole murderer guy, killing another person and injuring/terrorising all those others. (There's lots on for those of you overseas). I'd been reading and re-reading the pages of reports and photos they had in the paper, a mixed blessing of all the detail they can go into at this time of year.

I'm completely of the opinion that we have to believe that our justice system and our prison services are there for the fact that when crimes are committed, people can serve their time and then be free again. We have to believe that being in prison has a positive effect on changing somebody's attitude and behaviour long term, otherwise what is the point?

So when something like that happens, and so much harm comes of it, I feel so sad and discouraged. I'm not saying our prisons are without flaws, not at all! A tragedy like this makes it very clear. But as well as the personal ramifications of the people affected by this man's actions, I'm so wary of the political spin-off.

The main thing that got me was seeing the effect this guy had though. The house he invaded where it was just a teenage couple and their mate, the girl pregnant. And he dragged the guy round with a gun to his head, room to room, demanding drugs of which they had none. What were the next days like for them, until they heard he'd been captured?

The face of one of the guys he punched on the mountain bike trail was purple purple purple. He was acting in such a vicious, inhumane way. How do you get to be like that inside, that you can treat other people in that way? What can we do to help, change, heal?

Okay, so now this about news that makes me want to cry, in a bad way.

Might go watch that video of the baby being caught again.



Blogger Lou said...

Boohoo - my computer doesn't have the software to watch it! (and I shouldn't download it having clogged my user allowance with iTunes and Ugly Better)

You REALLY need to read We Need to Talk About Kevin, Bel... it's a woman looking back over her son's life after he has committed a violent atrocity aged 15 - examining culpability etc...

Thu Jan 11, 02:20:00 AM  
Blogger Bel said...

Its on my list, Lou. (Hypothetically - not actually organised enough to write these things down!).

Which brings me to my second problem. I never go to the library. I rely on people lending me books, or on just buying them.

So is it worth me buying? Or does anyone OUT THERE wanna lend it to me??
Advance warning: I am a dog-earrer.

Thu Jan 11, 06:41:00 AM  
Blogger Lou said...

Um... I think it is worth buying. Yes. It's the best thing I've read since Time Traveller's Wife.

Thu Jan 11, 11:02:00 PM  

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