"the lives they lived"

If you have to read one thing this weekend, click onto http://www.nytimes.com/indexes/2007/12/30/magazine/index.html and read last week's edition of The New York Times Magazine, dedicated to the lesser-known deaths of 2007. I happened to missed it until yesterday and gosh, the stories were beautifully written and incredibly moving. The one about Joybubbles - a dial-tone phreak who discovered that if you whistled at a certain pitch, you coukd cut a phone from a circuit and call anywhere you wanted - was fascinating and sweet. The one that really broke my heart was the deaths of Omar Mora and Yance Yell Gray, two of the seven courageous soldiers serving in Iraq who wrote an article that appeared in The New York Times talking about the difficulties they faced in the war. “We are skeptical of recent press coverage portraying the conflict as increasingly manageable and feel it has neglected the mounting civil, political and social unrest we see every day," they wrote. These guys weren't questioning whether the war was right, they were questioning how the war was planned and whether it was working. It just tore at me that they never lived to find out the answer to the question. Or maybe their deaths answered the question.

Artwork by Jorge Macchi and photo by Jeff Wilson for The New York Times


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