Tuesday we elect the leader of the free world - the most powerful man in the world.
Critically important, with profound consequences for millions if not billions of people.
Pardon me if right now I don't give a crap.
A very close family friend went into the hospital Friday for routine surgery. Something went tragically wrong, and now she is brain dead, being kept alive by machines.
Her husband and son will decide tonight whether or not to pull the plug.
Actually, it's not so much a question of if, but when.
Can you imagine being faced with such a decision? And to have it come from out of nowhere and smack you in the face with no advance warning?
I understand that this election will have major implications for the future of our country and all of us. But right now those seem insignificant. They are distant and abstract.
This is personal - like a slap in the face.
She was in good health. The hospital is a bright, clean, well-run institution. The procedure routine, the doctor experienced. She was a person who enjoyed life - always smiling, laughing, and engaged. A good friend, a wonderful wife, and a fiercely devoted mother. And now she's gone, in mind and spirit if not in body.
She will be missed.
Her husband, my buddy, is a big, burly, manly kind of guy. He played college football. He was a minor league baseball catcher. And last night he was blubbering like a baby on my shoulder.
Damn it, things like this just aren't supposed to happen to good people.
So count your blessings. Keep things in their proper perspective. Give your loved ones an extra hug tonight. Whisper a little prayer to keep them safe.
And pray that you never have to go through what my friend and his son are going through.