Memories of September 11th
Where were you when the towers fell?
With September 11th 2012 coming up, I was thinking about 9-11. I remembered that 9-11-2001 was on a Tuesday and, I realized that this year, for the second time since 2001, September 11th would be Tuesday again.
Like other seminal questions of a generation, "Where were you when you heard Pearl Harbor was bombed?", "Where were you when John F. Kennedy was assassinated?", "Where were you when Martin Luther King (or Bobby Kennedy) was assassinated?", "Where were you when Neil Armstrong landed on the moon?", "Where were you when the Challenger exploded?", "Where were you when the Twin Towers fell?" has become the question of a generation.
My Recollections of September 11, 2012
I am a night person. I often go to sleep after 2 am and rarely wake up before 9 am (I often sleep until 9:30 or 10 am). My best friend, who was living in Nevada three time zones away from me, is a morning person. At 8:46 in the morning Eastern Time, I was still sleeping, so when my friend called to tell me a plane had hit the World Trade Center and she didn't have many details, I just thought it was a private plane hitting a radio tower or something like that and went back to sleep.
But when she called again a few minutes later to tell me about the second plane, I knew something more was happening.
At that point, I was taking kickboxing classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays -- that Tuesday, September 11th 2001, I decided that I need to kick the "you know what" out of something. But the next day, I spent the day in sorrow. I wasn't angry. I wasn't scared. I was just filled with sadness. I was sad for all the people who lost mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers,, sons and daughters, friends and coworkers. I was sure that I'd hear more people who had died in this terrible attack, more than the original estimate. But, that didn't happen.
Instead, I heard story after story of people who were supposed to be in the building at that time but weren't. I heard about the man whose wife went into early labor, so, instead of being at work that day he was in the hospital with his wife. I heard about the voters who had stopped on their way to work and never made it to the WTC that day. And, because it was a few days before Rosh Hashana, many Jewish men were late for work because of the extra prayers (called Selihot) said in the synagogue that morning.
I also started thinking of the time I spent in the World Trade Center. I remembered going there when I was in college. I used to love being there; I loved the energy there. I used to sometimes just sit in the mall area, at one of the tables, just drinking a soda and eating a candy bar. I used to like walking home from there or walking to the WTC from home because the subways were easier for me to take to school than the subway near my house. I liked walking trough Chinatown and down to my house.
I remembered a trip I took there with my brother and his wife and niece and nephew and my other brother. My niece got a migraine and my nephew acted up. But by the time we got back to the Staten Island ferry, everything was fine. When the news reports told us that the best thing we could do for the survivors was to give blood, I remembered that when I was in college, I gave blood at the World Trade Center. I felt guilty for remembering the building, for mourning the building, when so many people had died, so many people had lost loved ones, so many people had lost their places of employment and their coworkers. And then I also felt that we needed to attack our enemies. I felt we needed to make sure this never happened again.
Ten years later, in 2011, people were talking about how we would never forget. But I felt that we have already forgotten. We make excuses for the people who did this. We call them "militants" and, even worse, "freedom fighters" instead of terrorists. We try to "understand" them instead of realizing that they want to use our freedom and liberty and US laws to take over our country, as they did in Lebanon. We don't "bother" to help the people in Iran who tried to vote out Ahmadinejad, or the people in Darfur who are being slaughtered by the thousands. We blame it all on the US and Israel and think that by buddying up to the terrorists they will stop and leave us alone. But that doesn't work with these terrorists any better than they did with Hitler.
The only way to prevent this from ever happening again is to fight back and protect ourselves. Let's keep the World Trade Center and 9-11 in our hearts and our souls and avenge the victims the best way we can, by protecting everyone else in this country.
September 11th Products from Amazon
I Remember the World Trade Center
Compugraph Designs' Spoonflower Shop
Spoonflower is a site for buying custom designed fabrics. The design pictured here is a New York Skyline.
The Princess Who Wanted to be Beautiful
One of my first short stories, "The Princess Who Wanted to be Beautiful" started out as a bedtime story for the children of a close friend. I had been worrying about the "Disney Syndrome" whereby all the heroes are beautiful and all the ugly people are villains. This is a story about a princess who has heard that all princesses are beautiful and doesn't think she is beautiful. She decides to go to a wizard and ask him to make her beautiful but along the way she makes some friends and learns a lesson about herself.
Now that I've told you about my recollections, what are yours?