Eulogy for the Common

Life and death is a struggle every day. It is a choice for some. A battle for others. It is the blind sided slam of the unpredictable or the ill thought out…. some are mislead into battles they thought were intended as easy for victory. For these names on the front page and the stories they lived, the lives and gifts they brought to this earth. Their children… their every day presence in the lives of others we grieve.

This isn’t about praising the heroes or the damning the incompetence. This is praising the loss of the ordinary. Those who showed up everyday to make a day happen. The ones we marginalizes as useful and dismissed after the cordiality of interaction. They were holding the normal background rhythms of our lives.

These people held up the tiny threads and wove them into the fabric of daily life. They taught in schools. Served coffee. Mopped floors. Fixed cars. Scanned groceries. They walked beside us on the streets and mostly we took no notice of them as our attention focused on the tiny screens and tight linear direction of our lives moving always forward… away from the reality of falling behind… losing….

For some the irony of recognition on the front page of the New York Times comes a bit late. Their lives were the very essence of what makes this world tick and hum into existence. Without their willingness to shoulder the grinding cogs of the societal machine and return day after day held fixed by the circumstances of survival, getting an education, fulfilling dreams, paying rent, sorting out the land mines of life or fighting poverty’s grip….

In a world that constantly tells them they are not worth investing in but are required to clean up the messy garbage of privalage, and Capitalism.

All of these names and the ones that will follow as we continue to navigate this virus and all the chaos it brings. All of you were the very life force of this country. YOUR worth and your value is echoed in the halls, kitchens, homes, garages, gardens, offices, classrooms, farms, shops, etc….

My condolences to you, your families and the hole that is left in the lives you have touched, the world you created and the reality you show us. If we are at all compassionate then we will come together and resolve this in your names.