Friday, April 13, 2012

Directional Stupidity

A woman told me yesterday that I seemed to do okay with people, and I likely wasn’t as introverted as I thought. I told her I didn’t have a problem with individuals, it was people in general that bothered me. “Why?” she asked. “Because a crowd is always a loud noise away from directional stupidity” I told her, and I have always thought that was true. The emotional momentum of human beings can be a very frightening thing. Individually, people are simply irritating.
I sit near doors if I can. I won’t jump through hoops to get a seat near the door, and I won’t fuss about sitting anywhere else, but I do not like being in a crowded place and having a herd between an exit and myself.

A rock back was playing in a night club and to keep people from trying to sneak in they locked all the doors except the two in front. For reasons surpassing any and all understanding, the management decide to allow a pyrotechnics show on stage that included fountains of sparks. Small building, big fire, many people, and one exit; this is planned natural selection at its finest. You cannot think for a moment this will end well.

A video shows fire getting to the ceiling and spreading. There were those who thought it was part of the show and cheered. There were those who were unsure, but no one else was running and screaming so they hesitated, and watched those who were cheering. Those who were still sober enough to be terrified ran. In less than thirty seconds it was too late.

The fire grew quickly and then the music stopped. People realize what was happening and everyone broken towards the doors at one time. Those who got out stopped at the entrance and milled about, looking for the lost and creating a worse human traffic jam than before. Those in front where crushed by the panicked and the fire grew worse. There was no way to get the people out. There was no way to get first responders or firemen in. Over one hundred people died.

If you can watch the video and not cry you need to seek help.

Take Care,


  1. Dear God...I had seen a very shortened version of this but not the whole thing...I couldn't watch it all :(
    Wayne is a lot like you, he is always having us sit near the door and always, no matter what resturant we are at, sits so he can see the door and everyone coming in....always.
    He, like you, does not do well with crowds.

    1. This is why.

      Wayne and I are very likely more attuned to the probability of terrible things happening than most people are.

      It's a horrible, horrible thing, this video. But everyone on earth ought to watch it before they go into a crowded place.

  2. Replies
    1. Oh I forgot to mention that part of it, Bruce.

      I would have been running when those sparks started.

      and thanks!