Monday, May 02, 2011
I can't say anything new
about the death of "that man," as a friend put it so well.
But needless to say the past 25 hours have been weird. I didn't sleep a lot last night, mainly because I was thinking back to the horrific events of almost 10 years ago.
I lived in New York City for three and a half years - I went to college there. I didn't go "home" during the summers; I lived there year-round. So when 9/11 happened, three and a half years after I moved back to the West coast, after the disbelief passed, it was like someone had blown up my home. Like someone had ripped out my heart.
For my friends that live there, it was like someone had ripped out their guts.
The past day's events have made me think about all kinds of stuff from that time - the months of flinching every time the phone rang, every time I saw a plane flying low. The months of nightmares that I was running from buildings falling down. The F16s flying over my house at night. The realization that the shops and cafes I used to hang out at, with my ex who worked downtown, were charred and gone and that somewhere among the ashes, there had been people. Flying in and reconstructing the skyline in my mind. Carrying a portable radio in my car.
And the few weeks of general kindness right after it all happened.
I went to get mashed potatoes at KFC; the checker said, "God bless you."
We were overwhelmed by generosity for the survivors and their families.
We tread lighter. We realized that most of the daily bullshit was unimportant.
That couldn't last - but why can't we have it back? Why not channel that deep-seated human compassion and goodness and kindness and live like that every day? Why does it have to take a tragedy?
Maybe, one day, it won't. What if we channeled that energy and ended hunger and suffering around the world?
Just because we choose not to do it doesn't mean it's impossible.