Then I spent two hours at the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum, and all the sarcasm just evaporated.
From a spectator standpoint, the museum is one of the best in which I've been. It was a very humbling experience too. I was 13 when the bombing happened, yet I don't remember it happening. I knew it did, of course; I remember talking about it, I knew who Timothy McVeigh was. But it wasn't a moment for me like 9/11 or Columbine.
Then I heard the recording of a meeting happening in a nearby building that recorded the moment the bomb went off. I watched news footage from a chopper 15 minutes after the blast. I saw the rubble.
That Big Bird toy just hurts. Kids died -- 19, to be exact. As terrifying as traumatic events are for adults, as least we have enough life experience to make a little sense of it. Kids just hear noise, see blinding lights, feel the fire. They don't know what's happening. They're hurt and afraid -- 20 years ago in Oklahoma City, today in Nepal, every day in many parts of the world.
The museum was full of stories of quiet heroism: workers from the Murrah Building carrying injured colleagues out; people donating blood, food, blankets, even booties for the rescue dogs; private vehicles lining up to act as ambulances. Oklahoma came together. The country came together.
I truly hope I never find out how I'd respond to such a situation.
Tomorrow I'll be back there -- the finish line of the Oklahoma City National Memorial Marathon is in the shadow of this monument.