American Lonesome: The Ballad of Jared Loughner, by the Associated Press

Who was that in the

news trough

behind the first wave of Arizona shooting coverage, trying to do back flips on a cheery-colored boogie board? Why, it was the

Associated Press

, the Wire Service That Zigs™! No more for the AP the drudgery of writing the first draft of news, for others to write into the first draft of history. Your 21st-century wire service has moved on to writing the first draft of sociology:

Before everything fell apart, he went through the motions as many young men do nowadays: Living at home with his parents, working low-wage jobs at big brand stores and volunteering time doing things he liked.

Jared Loughner: typical young American, going through the motions. But how did he


? How about a first draft of biography?

Even when Loughner tried to do good, it didn’t work out.

And finally, the first draft of poetry:

Loughner grew up on an unremarkable Tucson block of low-slung homes with palm trees and cactus gardens out front. Fittingly, it’s called Soledad Avenue - Spanish for solitude.

Solitude found Loughner, even when he tried to escape it.

Heavy stuff, Associated Press. Heavy.


found him. Or—did it…

leave him alone