Monday, December 12, 2005

no reverence

Tonight, I sat in the bar with Alyson and watched the "developing news" coverage of the fact that -- four hours from now -- Tookie Williams will be executed.

The mere thought of that horrifies me. What goes through your head when you know the hour and minute in which you die? Studs Terkel once described described death as the only thing that we all have in common about which we collectively know nothing. Do you try to imagine what awaits you or is it about acknowledging the fact that you will merely cease to exist? Fear, regret, anger, sadness, lonelines -- what do you do with all of that? Do you watch the clock? Do you pray to your G-d?

I had this fantasy that Governor Schwarzennegger was going to tap into his vast experience as an action hero and save Tookie at the last minute. Remember that scene in The Player -- the film within the film -- in which Bruce Willis saves Julia Roberts from the gas chamber after the pellets have already been dropped, carrying her down the hall in his arms? "What took you so long?", she says with a sly smile as the credits begin to roll.

Maybe Arnold would storm in at the last minute and carried Tookie away, tossing him over his shoulder as he dropped one of his famous one liners?

Did Maria do anything to contribute to Arnold's thinking? To try to get him to do the right thing? Did she whisper sweet nothings, threaten to deny sex, remind him that he was not G-d? If she didn't, Jack and Bobby are rolling in their graves -- more rotations than the day she married Arnold and the day she stood on stage with him as he did his acceptance speech as the new governor of California.

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