I received an email this morning alerting me to the murder of Lily Burk, 17. I thought, Lily, Greg's daughter? No, no...

Yes. I am not going to detail it. I am going to say that I got in the shower and wept. I was not very close with Greg, but he was on staff at the LA Weekly, where I was writing, and we interacted. I also saw him or his wife, who I never saw not smiling, nearly every weekday morning for five years, because our daughters were schoolmates in Hollywood. Lily was two years younger than my daughter, petite, a smiler like her mother, with waist-length hair and a bouncy step.

I wrote an email this morning to a dear friend, a mutual friend of Greg's and mine, and said, it's as though we -- LA journos with kids the same age -- are part of the same fishnet, and this has come along and ripped out part of it, irrevocably. It's wrecked people's lives, and the rest of us look at what's happened in horror, but there's nothing we can do to fix it, we can only say how sorry we are and also, that Lily is remembered.

Part II: The Monstrousness of Empathy

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