Born, August 28th, 1986.
Sitting in captivity in some Gaza hell hole since June 25th, 2006. Meantime, this peice of work goes home to a hero's reception.
I hope we didn't miss our chance to get him back in time for his 23rd birthday.
Speaking of which, what were you doing on your 23rd birthday? Or your 22nd? Or your 21st? Well I don't want to talk about my 21st and you probably don't either because like me you probably can't remember too much of it. Lots of fun these early-20's birthdays. Before you realize you're closer to 30 than 20. Or more than halfway to 50. Yikes.
It's a scary time in your life to be 23, you know?
If you're an American (or even an Israeli) in all likelihood you're either recently done with college or about to be done.
It's time to start thinking about your future, your career. What you want out of life. Maybe you've been in a relationship for a couple of years and now it's time to start talking about whether or not your plans are in line. After all, if you're all about Medical School and she's all about looking to start a family (or vice versa) - it may be time to go your separate ways. At 21 or 22 it may not have been a big deal, but by 23...well it's getting to be decision time my friends. Lots of big decisions to be made at 23.
Big, scary decisions.
But none of that really matters if every day you wake up in the basement of some nearly-collapsing house surrounded by people who want to nothing more than to see you suffer in the name of their insanity.
Nope, no scary decisions necessary here. If they give you food today, you eat it. If they give you water today you drink it. If they beat you today you nurse your wounds. If they don't, you wonder what they're planning tomorrow.
Everyday you wish it were over. But everyday it continues, same as the day before. Same as it ever was. How many days has it even been anyway? Is it your birthday today? If it was your birthday today, how old would you be? Does it matter? What should you do today in between dealing with your captors? Should you count how many bricks are in the wall again? Should you try to sleep? Will they let you sleep? Do you even remember what normal sleep feels like?
No, not much to decide here. Not much sense in obsessing over the future when you're Gilad Shalit...and it's been more than three years since you had to make a scary decision. No worries about the future or what to do with your life or if you should go out with that girl from last night again...when your entire life consists of just getting to the next hour without having your arm broken or face punched or your body violated. No scary decisions about the future, when the future is just your next breath. Or the next burst of pain. Or the next time you'll be able to chew your food.
Man it sure ain't easy being 23.
For some though, it's easier than others.
Today on Twitter, in honor of his upcoming birthday there was a concerted effort to make #giladshalit a top trending topic.
Despite the demise of Ted Kennedy dominating the headlines, this effort was a success, indicating just how much support there is for this 23-year-old. Hopefully enough people on Twitter clicked on this topic, learned about this travesty of justice and will try to do something about it.
I'll close with a small selection of what people were saying about Gilad today on Twitter.
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ashleyscorpio @JIDF I am praying too! In the words of Rabbi Chaim "Let's bombard heaven with prayers!" #GiladShalit less than 20 seconds ago from web
Dogmum21 @JIDF RT @ashleyscorpio: Wish there as more I could do for Gilad than just tweet about his plight. #GiladShalit // PRAY! #GiladShalit
Esty_Gluck RT @superimma #GiladShalit has been in captivity for over 1100 days and is allowed no contact with .. http://bit.ly/2nG8mY #GiladShalit
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scarpetablog thinking about #GiladShalit half a minute ago from TweetDeck
JoesaidTweeter FREE #GiladShalit NOW! Free #giladshalit NOW! #tweetforshalit #gilad #shalit #tweet4shalit half a minute ago from web
JewishAgency First, I want to again says thanks to all the awesome tweeple who shouted out our #GiladShalit petition: http://ow.ly/lsyY #FSUBlog less than a minute ago from HootSuite
RoytelM #in10years Criss Angel and Drake will go on Top Chef sponsored by AT&T cooking Snow Leopard for Candace Parker. Goodnight #GiladShalit Jay-z less than a minute ago from web
GiladRS RT @GiladRS #Giladshalit #Giladshalit #Giladshalit #Giladshalit #Giladshalit #Giladshalit #Giladshalit #Giladshalit #Giladshalit 1 minute ago from TweetDeck
bethanyshondark The Hebrew nation and all the world have #GiladShalit in our hearts and minds. May he find freedom well before his next birthday.
JBCarver Who is #GiladShalit you wonder & why is he a trending topic? Read about him here http://bit.ly/mobSC #FreeGilad #prisoner 1 minute ago from Seesmic Desktop
watchful1 Vancouver, Canada it's 9:04pm let's trend #GiladShalit to #1! 2 minutes ago from TwitterFon
benny428 @JIDF ROCK ON MAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DO YOUR SHOW!!!! BOOYAKASHA #GiladShalit!!!!! 2 minutes ago from HootSuite
txrepublican Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem Ps 122:6 Pray for #GiladShalit #Tweet4Shalit #iamthemob #TCOT #RS #Israel 2 minutes ago from twhirl
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rachelcravit MY THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS ARE WITH GILAD SHALIT 4 YRS. IN TERRORIST CAPTIVITY MAY HE SOON BE REUNITED WITH HIS FAMILY #GiladShalit 1 minute ago from API
jacquelinewl FREE #GIladShalit #GIladShalit #GIladShalit #GIladShalit #GIladShalit #GIladShalit #GIladShalit Bring Him Home to His Family 1 minute ago from web
JewishGayDads Hundreds gather at Western Wall to mark Gilad Shalit's 23rd birthday, his fourth one in captivity. http://short.to/o22u #GiladShalit 1 minute ago from API
Justice_For_All RT @prosam 20 Quick Tips For Aspiring Freelancers http://ff.im/-7duB9 // #GiladShalit 3 minutes ago from web
JoesaidTweeter FREE #GiladShalit NOW! Free #giladshalit NOW! #tweetforshalit #gilad #shalit #tweet4shalit 3 minutes ago from web
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pinkylsb @jidf Can we keep campaign 4 #GiladShalit going beyond 2day? #prayer #america #israel #jewish #mia #pow #idf #soldier #peace 1 minute ago from mobile web
benny428 #GiladShalit!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YO MAN!!!!! KEEP HANGIN!!! WE LUV YOU!!!!!!!!!! 1 minute ago from HootSuite
arashad Free the terrorist #GiladShalit from his crimes, execute him after a fair trial along side his superiors .. please half a minute ago from web
GleaningHarvest RT: @JIDF: Plz RT! Support #GiladShalit today using the #GiladShalit hashtag all day! Help raise awareness! #Tweet4Shalit half a minute ago from TwitterFox
Katelyn_Thee is listening to David's radiocast thing .... still tweeting4shalit #GiladShalit half a minute ago from web
LeniPenny @JewishAgency Just signed the petition G_d Bless all you are doing and everyone taking a stand for this young man. #GiladShalit #FSUBlog less than a minute ago from TweetDeck
moliwo #GiladShalit is in need of freedom. One that he deserves. less than a minute ago from txt
Ain't that the truth.
Here's hoping that by birthday number 24 he's back to making "scary decisions" like the rest of us.
Good luck Gilad - stay strong, bro.
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