The Moment

4|5|09: New York

Richard Cory, richer than a king, "fluttered pulses when he said,/ 'Good-morning,' and he glittered when he walked." And in the shocking final line of E.A. Robinson's famous poem, this outwardly ideal man "went home and put a bullet through his head."

Some lives are like Hollywood soundstages, all fa├žade, and suicide is the instrument by which their hollowness is revealed. Increasingly, though, this tragedy works in reverse. Hollow men (it's almost always men) add mass murder to their suicidal outbursts, hoping to mask their nothingness with a front of brutal significance.

Jiverly Wong was unknown and unremarkable in life. Had...

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