Like everyone else…

11 September, 2008
Rat Fink

…or at least a huge portion of the blogging population, I think it’s fitting to commemorate the 2001 event that changed the world. No pictures today. Just a memory.

Know what sticks in my mind like super glue? The ice-blue sky that day. There wasn’t a cloud anywhere. I will never forget that image; I don’t know why, and I can’t tell you why it’s bothered me all these years. Maybe it’s the incongruity of it; the beauty before the tragedy. Regardless, it’s burned in my memory forever.

Anyway…

I don’t know precisely what I was doing at that moment, but I was nowhere near a television (back then, I didn’t have a TV in my classroom). I was walking down the school hallway, on my way back to my room from the office, when another music teacher met me and said, “I think somebody just bombed the Pentagon.” From that moment, it was on. Total confusion. I remember being uneasy and just a little fearful. I immediately thought about Pearl Harbor in 1941 (the last time anyone perpetrated an open act of war on United States land). With only sketchy information, I didn’t know what to think about everything.

I had to teach a class, and by the time it was over, it was about 9:40 (the attack happened at 8:48). I went to another teacher’s room, where I watched in disbelief what had developed while I was with 8th graders. Everyone was in shock. People came to the school and picked up their children. No one knew what it all meant or what was going to happen next. I think a bunch of us experienced an inexplicable urge to nest. I wanted to be home with my family. It was an awful day, followed by some more awful days.

I watched part of CNN’s coverage of the initial event this morning. I had to stop watching. Too horrible when you know what’s going to happen…

I’ve been to New York twice since 9/11, and I must say it is a city of resilience. That’s gratifying and comforting to see. But part of me is still mad. Mad at the arrogant hubris of America, mad at the psychopaths who were behind this mass murder, mad at someone or something I can’t identify. It’s unsettling.

I think I’ll ruminate on it today. I’ll mix a cocktail out of it; sadness of the anniversary of 9/11, and absolute joy at Lance & Heidi’s upcoming wedding. It will be a good weekend after all.

Fink out.

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