On a personal note, it's weird how much detail I can recall of the event. Where I was, for instance. I can picture the office drywall, how my office smelled, where I was sitting (I had three computer stations, I was sitting at the one closest to the door), and the cell phone call from my wife, stuck in traffic on her way to Baltimore, saying a plane hit a building in New York. I recall posting to Hissyfit, never thinking my thread would have such massive importance (later, many ex-HFers told me I was the first person the recall mentioning it). I recall CNN and Yahoo news going down. I recall going to the AOL NOC to see plastered paper on the windows with a crude and angry sign, "The NOC is not a giant TV, go to the weight room!" Seeing the live footage, and thinking, "It's amazing the tower stayed standing from a hit like that." The IM of Aaron Tung from AOL HK telling me they just hit the Pentagon. The AOL UK desk asking if I heard the first tower fell. I can recall thinking of my friends Keith and Sue, and my cousin Michelle, all whom worked at the Pentagon at the time (all safe: off shift, other side of building, and away in training, respectively). I recall the trail of smoke in the sky going home.
I'd rather not recall a lot of this. It seems so cheap now, that 9/11 is waved in my face as a reason for governments overspending, the War in Iraq, and the lessening of my constitutional rights. I'd rather not connect the memory of wondering what GB would do now. It reminds me of a saying by Kafka, "Every revolution evaporates and leaves behind only the slime of a new bureaucracy." The patriotism I felt so proud of now makes me feel more ashamed at the reaction of a leader I tried hard not to get re-elected. My only hope is that things will get so fucked up, the people will rise up again, as they did in the 1960s, to set it all right again.