Today’s Must Reads

The story of the man who was carjacked by the Boston bombing suspects. A great line: “The story of that night unfolds like a Tarantino movie, bursts of harrowing action laced with dark humor and dialogue absurd for its ordinariness, reminders of just how young the men in the car were.” Read more: Carjacking victim describes harrowing night

The fertilizer plant explosion in Texas last week got totally overshadowed by the Boston bombings. I heard a pretty chilling excerpt from the memorial service, from the brother of one of the victims. I think you really have to hear it voiced rather than read, but here it is:

“‘Cyrus always hated the word ‘hero,’ said Bryce Reed, whose brother was attending a EMT class when the fire that preceded the explosion began. “He and I shared the belief that heroes are persons (whose names) are etched in marble. And that a hero is a sacred and solemn term reserved for only those who paid the ultimate price when others would falter or run.

My brother would disagree, but I firmly believe that all privy to this incident can attest that my brother and all those who lay with him are heroes now and forever.‘”

Very few people have heard about the Central Park Five case, and for some reason it seems that even fewer have seen the amazing Ken Burns documentary about the five African-American and Latino boys who were wrongly convicted of brutally assaulting a white woman in Central Park in the early ’90s. I saw the film when it premiered in L.A. last fall and was totally blown away. It exposes so many wrongs in our society: a corrupt justice system, a sometimes-failing media, still-present race relations and more. I’ve honestly never been so affected by a documentary or story. It’s worth reading about or even better, seeing the documentary. From The NationLessons from the Central Park Five and The New York TimesGood Cops, Bad Cops

Feelin’ hungry? Check out my review of Umami Burger’s newest Northern California outpost. Umami Burger comes to Palo Alto (For pretty pictures, go to page 18 here.)

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