Lin sent me this some time ago, and I've meant to post it, but it's just not been the right day until today.
Saturday I went to Luby's to have some vegetables for lunch, and at one point, there was a loud percussive "POP" near the front of the dining room and all conversation immediately ceased. Suddenly, a small boy--maybe 3 years old-- began to cry. Standing next to him was a little girl with a balloon, and it was easy to surmise that his balloon had just popped. The room remained silent. There was a long line for the cash register, but the cashier stood up and walked over to the bundle of fresh balloons, pulled one from the bouquet and walked it over to the little boy. No one in the register line seemed to mind or to be impatient. Slowly, the hum of conversation and the tink of cutlery on plates again filled the air. I wondered how many people like me thought of that day in 1991 in a Killeen Luby's where this woman's parents were murdered by a lunatic. I wonder how many people, like me, said a silent thank you under their breath that the sound we heard was a balloon popping, and not something more sinister.
However, unlike all those years ago, I would put good money on the likelihood of some of today's fellow Luby's patrons packing heat and doing so legally, and I call that a beautiful thing.