I remember five years ago today. I remember it as if it was yesterday. I’ve read a couple of blogs where people discussed their 9/11 experiences. Jay’s blog has a good post, about that day. I’ve read about fear and rage, but none of them seemed to reflect the feeling that I had during that day; first, the disbelief and then, later in the day the shame. To this day, I still feel shame over that day.
That day started normally enough, I had class so I was on campus. I had no idea what was going on in New York. I never turned on a TV or a radio before I went in. I was concerned with assignments and classes. The little things.
I went through my first class, in ignorant bliss of the changing world around me, and the first sign that there was something wrong was while I was in the computer lab. I wasn’t able to access CNN or any other news site so I figured that there was a problem with the net connection, never thinking that all the news sites were bogged down due to the amount of people looking for information about what was going on.
Then I started hearing people talking about it, about New York and the Towers, and then the Pentagon. At first I thought they were talking about some TV movie that I missed and then I tried to go to CNN.com again and the webpage came up and I thought “my god, someone hacked CNN”. I thought this because it seemed more realistic than what was really going on.
It was soon after that someone told me about the Towers and that there was a TV set up in the Student Lounge. It was in that room that reality finally set in as I watched the news coverage, the replay of the events from earlier in the day. I watched the end of the world as we knew it.
The rest of the morning allowed me the opportunity to let reality sink in. I went to my other 2 classes, but mentally I was somewhere else.
The afternoon was where the shame sank in. There were some points of rage and disgust but mostly shame. I remember hearing some woman talking about how ‘things would get back to normal’ in a few days. I wanted to say that things will never be the same again. I remember overhearing 2 guys talking about ‘how cool’ it looked when the towers fell. When I heard that I wanted to scream, and choke the life out of those 2 stupid retards.
The shame came at work when I did nothing. I went to work and did my job like it was any other day. Inside, my mind was screaming. I kept telling myself, that I should be doing something. ANYTHING!!! Donating blood, donating money, SOMETHING, but I just did my job. My boss acted like it was a normal day and when I asked about having a radio to hear the coverage, he said something about meeting our customer’s needs. I wanted to beat him to death at that point but I did nothing.
What I remember from 9/11 was that thousands of people lost their lives and I did nothing. That is my shame.
My 2 bytes.