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My knowledge of the details is pretty sketchy at this point but early yesterday evening my brother was stabbed three times by his next door neighbor. No one else was home at the time so he went inside and called 911 himself, the cops came, looked at him and called an ambulance. He's in the hospital now and set to go home (probably) tomorrow. Amazingly his worst injury was a nicked lung, the other two stabs missed all internal organs (at least according to the ultrasounds they did).
The neighbor and he apparently have never gotten along, the guy called him out into the street and My Brother went outside, the guy pushed him, My Brother pushed back and then the neighbor stabbed him three times with a steak knife. The neighbor is claiming self-defense and it doesn't look like he's going to be charged. Meanwhile my sister-in-law and nieces understandably don't want to stay at their house, 'cause the Stabbing Neighbor is in his house right next door.
My Sister-in-Law called last night, on my niece's cell phone (hers was dead and her charger was at home) and her opening line was "Hi, it's SiL I was calling to tell you Scott was stabbed tonight (pause for me to have a full-on heart attack), he's in the hospital now and doing ok, but ....." She was calling to let me know and also so that I would call my folks and have them call her. The only reason she even had my number was that I had put my cell number on the girl's cell phones during my January visit, mainly so that I could call them and they'd know who it was. It certainly came in handy.
I decided, after going in to work this morning, that while it was unlikely that I'd regret going down there for the weekend it was very likely that I would regret it if I didn't. So I'm flying to North Carolina for a long weekend with my brother and his family. Since there will probably be a fair amount of time spent sitting around in hospital/sick rooms I'm checking my bag so I can bring my knitting with. I'm also bringing the laptop but I'm not sure what my access to the internet will (or indeed, should) be.
As I said, he should be fine but it was a near thing and I'll feel better once I'm there. (Of course he'll start pissing me off almost immediately, but I still can't imagine regretting going.)
This will put a dent in my Duck budget though, so if anyone wants to split a room let me know (this offer applies only to those I know IRL.)

*The subject line refers to a classic phone call opening line that you don't want to hear. It never prefaces good news. Of course there are worse opening lines, for instance when one has to call and can't say 'everyone's pretty much ok'.

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Elephants That Are on FIRE

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