I’m writing this just before ten o’clock, though I won’t post it until after eleven.
I can’t honestly act in personal remembrance of anyone who died, because none of my ancestors or relations did, as far as I know. This doesn’t stop me from being aware of what happened, and I have read long lists of names on memorials, not just recently; but does it sound harsh to say that names are not the same as personalities?
I’m going to switch on the TV in a moment. (The TV is, of course, a source of light.) All but one of my house lights are off, but that’s not unusual at this point in the evening, so I can’t claim to be making any kind of gesture.
Just a last thought – wouldn’t it have been more affirming to ask everyone to switch their lights on, or light their candles, one by one, rather than extinguish them? Or do we have to wait another four years for that?
It’s now 24 hours later. I’d intended to add a postscript to the above – but as I was watching the ceremony, in the dark, I reached out for my wine glass and knocked it all over the computer. It’s taken until now for the keyboard to dry out enough that ‘s’ doesn’t come out as ‘\s’, ‘q’ as ‘zq’, etc. I’d spent the night and half the day worrying about whether I needed to buy a new keyboard, or a new computer, or what… but as you can see it’s now back to zqnormal (only jkidding!/)
I missed the last bit of the ceremony, obvs. I see that a girl movingly proposed that names (or even the absence of them) can in fact be used to construct personalities – and that it doesn’t actually matter whether those are real or not.
As a final, slightly confused, thought: small mistakes (spilt wine, shot man) can lead to huge stupid consequences (new computer, world war), if we’re not careful.