Remembrance Day

by Tom Ingram

“Perhaps a tableau in bronze,” said Vimes sarcastically. “All seven of them raising the flag, perhaps?”

“Bronze, yes,” said Vetinari.

“Really? And some sort of inspiring slogan?” said Vimes.

“Yes indeed. Something like, perhaps, ‘They Did The Job They Had To Do’?”

No!” said Vimes, coming to a halt under a lamp by the crypt entrance. “How dare you? How dare you! At this time! In this place! They did the job they didn’t have to do, and they died doing it, and you can’t give them anything. Do you understand? They fought for those who’d been abandoned, they fought for one another, and they were betrayed. Men like them always are. What good would a statue be? It’d just inspire new fools to believe they’re going to be heroes. They wouldn’t want that. Just let them be. For ever.”

–Terry Pratchett, “Night Watch”

Today we take time out of our busy lives, out of school, work, and even National Novel Writing Month, to remember the ones who did the job they didn’t have to do. Listen to their stories. Remember with them. At 11:11 today, tune in to CBC for the moment of silence. Reflect and think, not about the job they didn’t have to do, but about who “they” are and why they did it. When it ends, there are 365 days to act, to do what you can. Maybe one day we won’t need Remembrance Day. Until then, we stand in silence, poppies on our chest.