It’s Sunday and Harvard and Cambridge have started to recover a sense of normalcy—but not quite. Yesterday my older son texted me the picture of his friend Sylvan with Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and their dates, headed off to the high school prom three years ago. My younger son had come home Monday, reporting that one of his schoolmates, a girl who wanted to be a ballerina, had been among the 170 injured at the Marathon finish line. Since then, we’ve learned she’s lost her leg. Dzhokhar and his brother Tamerlan freed the driver of the Mercedes SUV they hijacked, after killing the MIT policeman, at the Shell station where I’ve bought gas for years, and then fled into the Watertown neighborhood where I used to take my boys for baseball practice. The brothers lived, I learned a few hours ago, just two blocks from the hockey rink where my sons have skated for more than a decade. We’ve driven past the triple-decker where the Tsarnaev boys grew up hundreds of times.


Parker, Richard. "After Boston: The Banality of Shock and Sentiment." Nation, April 22, 2013.