The Herald Bulletin

April 15, 2013

George Bremer: Another day of forced perspective


— There were so many things I planned to cover in this space today. The aftermath of Pendleton Heights’ utter dominance of the spring Madison County events last week — winning four of the five championships that were contested. The official start of the 2013 season for the Indianapolis Colts, with players reporting to the team’s facility for offseason workouts. And the approach of next week’s NFL draft, which will give the Colts a chance to add a few more pieces to this season’s puzzle.

But it all seems hollow now.

The twin explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon again forced painful perspective on the sports world.

Just looking at Monday’s sports section, there were reports about the Indiana Pacers’ continuing struggles as the NBA playoffs near, a controversial decision that went against Penske Racing in NASCAR and the fact Michigan’s Trey Burke — the national college basketball player of the year — has decided to leave school and enter the NBA draft.

On any normal day, each of those topics is cause for hours worth of debate on sports talk radio. On Monday, none of them really seemed to matter so much to anyone.

There were plenty of stories of heroes in Boston — the first responders who rushed to the scene, runners who crossed the finish line and continued on to give blood at area hospitals, even a cameraman who went into the heart of the chaos in the moments following the initial explosion to get some of the most compelling video you’ll see all year.

Those stories, and others like them, serve to inspire in dark times.

But the overwhelming feelings Monday were anger and confusion.

How did this happen? Who was responsible? When will they pay?

There was also concern.

The Pacers were in Boston preparing for tonight’s canceled game against the Celtics. There were early — and erroneous — reports the team was staying at a hotel where another of the explosive devices was discovered. It turned out the Pacers were staying a safe distance away from the tragedy, but there was still enough concern from fans that the team felt compelled to send out a tweet after confirming all members of the traveling party were safe and accounted for.

Back home in Indianapolis, the city began reviewing its security plans for next month’s mini-marathon as part of the Indianapolis 500 festival.

It’s likely to be awhile before any fan truly feels comfortable attending a large sporting event, even though the Red Sox home game went off — thankfully — without incident Monday morning not far from the site of the bombings.

The shock, the fear and the anger all are understandable.

Monday was supposed to be a day of celebration in Boston. It became a day of tragedy.

I hope we never become immune to the horror of a day like this.