There was a time when what happened in Toronto on Monday would simply shock us.

It would be the type of story that would dominate conversation in the office with many gathered around the television in horror. At the same time we would likely say something like “I’m glad things like that don’t happen here.”

Unfortunately there is not much that shocks and surprises us any longer as we have become conditioned to expect tragedy and the senseless loss of lives.  The latest just yesterday when a 25-year old man drove a rented van onto a crowded sidewalk over a near two-mile stretch, killing 10 and injuring 15 pedestrians in Canada’s largest city.

This does not appear to be a terrorist attack and likely the latest instance in which an emotionally disturbed person was pushed over the edge for some reason and the result was the innocent loss of life.

Stories like this were simply unimaginable 50 or even 25 years ago but now ones that at times we barely pay attention to.  Sure we bemoan the lives loss and express sympathy in our own way but just for a moment as we then go about our own business.

It’s not that we don’t care but rather have come to accept instances like this as simply a sign of the times.  That in itself is the greatest tragedy. That we know it’s just a matter of time before something similar takes place somewhere else.

At the same time let’s be honest. We hope and pray that the next random attack or the one after that simply does not impact us directly in any way.

Those 10 people killed Monday in Toronto woke up in the morning just like most of us.  Getting ready for work or school, wondering about things that seemed important and in truth were trivial. We all do the same thing.  They might have just finished lunch or were making plans for dinner when out of nowhere comes a van traveling at 40 miles per hour on the sidewalk.

This is the world we live in today.