Don’t throw in the towel, but raise it as a flag.

We finished lunch early and headed back to our Airbnb. Almost to the house, an undercover cop car sped through traffic in the opposite lane. It was startling to see the all-black vehicle with distinctive lights seemingly come from nowhere and vanish similarly. My first thought: Whatever they are responding to is not good.

For the last five weeks, we have been residents in a very peaceful Las Vegas suburb. The area reminds us of a much more relaxed version of Orange County, California where we lived for ten years. Traffic is relatively light, people are very friendly and of course, the weather is fantastic for this time of year.

About an hour after getting home a notification popped up with news of an active shooter situation at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas—About 20 minutes north of our position. And then it clicked, that’s why the cop car was traveling at insane speeds. They were responding to the crime.

This morning I read that a 67-year-old white male asshole decided to seek revenge for not being hired as a professor at the school. I’m sure next of kin, neighbors, and former colleagues will either say he was the nicest guy, but mostly quiet or that he was always a little-off and kinda angry. Either way, another person decided that they had no other way to respond to their situation other than death. I’m angry but I’m also incredibly sad that this person felt it was the only way out.

Before yesterday afternoon I have had thoughts and slight anxiety about the weeks ahead. The holidays are already a rough time of year to get through, but there are so many folks who have had compounding problems. And this year has not helped anyone at all.

Knock on wood, I haven’t lost anyone to depression directly, but I have friends and acquaintances who have. I have felt their tangible grief. I hate having to write this post but I’m concerned and my heart compels me to say that I hope you are okay right now but if you’re not, let me or someone else know. Do whatever you can to get some help. Walk into a fire department if you have to! In addition to receiving care, maybe they’ll show you around and how cool is that?

I hope you are all well. I hope that this post never needed to be written in the first place and you’re all good, but my gut is telling me that’s not the case. Don’t spend the next weeks alone or in agony. Don’t throw in the towel, but raise it as a flag.

Also, consider getting a cat or two.