Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Where were you?

Where was I? 
I was sitting in the pew of my school's sanctuary. 
The only thing I remember being confused about is the Twin Towers. What were they? Oil towers? Should I know what they are? Why was it such a big deal if someone ran a plane into an oil tower? Then our teacher turned on the television. I was in 7th grade. Contrary to what most adults may think, I fully understood what was going on. I can remember, just like it was yesterday driving in the car with my family that evening. My mom said to look at the sky, because it would be the only day in my entire life where I wouldn't be able to find an airplane in the sky. 

Today at work was odd. Most of the day I was livid that all the school did in remembrance of this day was flying the flag at half-staff, just like it was just another government holiday. Many of the kids weren't old enough to associate any kind of sadness or feelings to this day. I guess I'm one of the few who were just old enough to remember everything about that day. The adults didn't mention it, like they are already trying to forget. Maybe it still hurts too much. I even had a teacher ask me what today's date was. It almost made me cry, and then snap with anger. How can you not know what today is? Maybe its because this day change my entire childhood, what was left of it, and shaped my whole future. A friend from college wrote this piece, which sums up a lot of people my age are probably feeling. 

by: Josh Kinney

I kind of remember the night before, but it’s hard to say.
That morning came like a tidal wave, sweeping away everything we once knew and thought as safe.
I remember being glued to the television for hours, watching everything on repeat, listening to my mother crying in the other room and holding a newspaper, her eyes red and tired.
We saved all of the newspapers.
From then on The Monster had entered our lives: my life.
He would be there for years to come, causing me to look over my shoulder, judge people I shouldn’t have judged, and imagine things I would’ve never before imagined.
Every time I heard that roaring sound of a low-flying aircraft or saw some kind of embellished or paranoid behavior on a subway train, The Monster reminded me of his nasty presence, his lingering effects.
The Monster was always there.
Every now and then we would hear of one of The Monster’s plans, barely thwarted, but somehow foiled.
New laws and paranoia as well as a new wave of political propaganda swept the land.
As I grew up from a boy to a man, I’d never forget The Monster.
I lived with him, we all did.
The Monster and what he did to us was ingrained in our psyches forever.
The Monster was often a topic of conversation, his lasting mark stretching into and out of our college years.
And then one night we were warned of a great announcement.
Our elected leader had awoken us from an early night and the Internet buzzed with activity.
Immediately we were reminded of The Monster, our stomachs choked in fear, but then – relief!
An ease I only remembered from childhood and had thought I’d forgotten.
Brave men had tracked down and slaughtered The Monster responsible for our fear.
Although The Monster’s minions still lurked about the globe, for the first time in the longest time, I slept with a peace I had only known as a boy.

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