Sunday, September 11, 2011

Because we remember where we were

I remember my mom and dad talking about where they were when they heard that President Kennedy had been shot. I remember people telling me again and again how important it was and how everyone could remember that moment in history. I also remember a history teacher telling me he kind of felt sad that our generation hadn't had that moment.

Of course ten years ago today that moment actually came and I can't say that I feel all that better for it. It's nice to remember where you were for something (and I actually remember where I was when the Challenger blew up-take that old history teacher), but let's face it: if you and multitudes of other people --or even a whole country-- remember where they were when something happened, it probably wasn't a good thing that happened. It was probably catastrophic.

Here's where I was when the towers went down: in my first apartment that was all my own. I had just moved to Nashville two weeks before and was about 3 weeks into my job at the American Heart Association. I was listening to my giant boombox--specifically listening to the Bob & Tom Show because it made me feel like I was connected to Indiana. Kristi Lee came on and said that a plane had flown into one of the World Trade Center towers and then Tom came back on a few minutes later to tell the audience about the other tower.

What happened next for me and most Americans that weren't in New York or Washington DC was a lot of confusion. Hours of who did this? What happened? Why would someone do this? How many more sites were up for grabs? What would happen to other plans in the air? Could you imagine being in the air and finding out this news?

Clearly time unfolded the answers to those questions but one thing remains certain: If you and a collective nation all remember where you were for a moment, chances are good that something horrible happened. For that reason, I hope that the generation born after 2001 never remember where they were when. . . at least for a really long time.

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