Save a Chilean Miner Day

It started yesterday afternoon. Every TV channel that I attempted to meditate to was concerned with the breaking story that some people we don’t care about from a country everyone knows as “that skinny one” were being rescued from a collapsed mine.

I suppose that the story is mildly interesting if you are a person that suffers from claustrophobia, nyctophobia or perhaps even speluncaphobia, but for the average person it could hardly qualify as news, right? Why would anyone possibly care about this story except as an interesting sidebar about the rescuers’ ability to get the miners food and water while simultaneously convincing them that it’ll take months to drill them out?

Let’s assume for the sake of argument that you all are not as callous, cynical, and cold-hearted as I am and you found this story about trapped miners to be an inspiring tale of the courage and fortitude of otherwise ordinary men. Does this story still require constant TV news coverage?

Apparently it takes 15 minutes to haul a miner up to the surface and with all the safety checks and repairs the rescue crew conducts after each extraction, they are averaging one miner per hour. So what are the news reporters talking about the rest of the time?! Is it really news that the miners are happy to see their friends and families again? Is it really worth mentioning that being dragged a mile through solid rock in a steel cage is scary and nerve-wracking? This is news?!

Even if you assume that the above does indeed qualify as news, then you’d think that there would something even mildly interesting to look at while they talked about it. Sadly, we are treated to the same pictures of a hole in the ground with a cable running into it and 15 second clips of some random guys speaking spanish and wearing jumpsuits. Of course the reason that there isn’t more compelling footage is because IT’S NOT AN INTERESTING STORY!

Miners getting trapped in a mine collapse is not a news story. Mining is a ridiculously dangerous job and miners are trapped  in mines all the time. An interesting story would have been having a group of miners get trapped in a Victoria’s Secret. Or conversely, having Victoria’s Secret employees get trapped in a mine. That would definitely be an interesting story and I can promise you that the video footage of the story would be a thousand times more interesting.

Clearly I’m disappointed with the enthusiasm people have had for this non-story. Why on earth anyone would care about the plight of random people half a world away in the face of the nearly endless idiocy and tragedy happening in their own communities is beyond me. Personally I think it was an excuse to expense some very nice chilean wines and possibly hitch a ride on an alpaca. In any event, I’ll be happy when the last miner is hauled up and everyone dedicates today as Save a Chilean Miner Day and we can get back to our regularly scheduled meditations.

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