Tonight I was meant to post my regular "Let's Talk About..." column. This is a light-hearted section in which I poke fun at current political, social, cultural and economic affairs. But I'm not doing that tonight.
Who am I kidding? When a gunman goes on the rampage and kills innocent tourists. When innocent people worshipping in a church are killed in cold blood by an assassin who made their acquaintance moments before. When innocent commuters are blown up on the tube... am I going to be all laughter and fun?
The people killed in Charleston, in Tunisia, the man beheaded in France, those murdered in London on 7/7, these people are/were my brothers and sisters. The ties that bind us are far stronger than our differences, whatever these differences may be: nationality, skin colour, creed or lack of it thereof, gender, (dis)ability, sexual orientation. They matter not. The ties that bind us are human ties, the type that you cannot break by pulling the trigger of an AK-47, or by detonating a bomb in a crowded train carriage.
For the next ten days my blog will be closed as a mark for respect for those murdered in Charleston, Tunisia, France, Nigeria and on 7th July, London, the 10th anniversary of which will be next week.
I will return, however. I will return on Saturday 11th July and I will bring my usual mirth and - warped - sense of humour with me. Because terrorism, whether state-sponsored or religiously motivated, is afraid of laughter. For a better example, look at Charlie Hebdo. Who knows? I might be the next victim on the London Underground or at a beach resort in Europe or north Africa. But if I shall be the next one, let it not be said that I went down crying, beaten, defeated. I am crying now, for my murdered brothers and sisters. But on the 11th July I will come back laughing like Maya Angelou: "'Cause I laugh like I've gold mines/Diggin' in my own backyard".