September 11th has been important to me since 2001. And perhaps it always will be. I, for one, can take D-Day, Pearl Harbor, even Vietnam a little more lightly, because my only recollection of such events are from movies, television specials on the History Channel and in books, which I seldom see because I'm not a fan of war fiction or non-fiction, unless its the Civil War or the Revelutionary War.
What makes 9/11 more gripping for me, though, and I'm sure many will agree, is that I was there when it happened. Well, I wasn't there in NYC, or Washington, or in Shanksville, but I was... well, there. Old enough to remember. Old enough to see, in my mind in vivid detail, report after report after report, old enough to stay glued to the television, old enough to remember trying to log on to MSNBC.com and have it say across the top "due to extreme, this site may become slower" until it was nothing more than just a splash page with no links, bearing the title "America Attacks". CNN.com did the same thing. I remember ESPN.com going from a little box on the right side saying, "Breaking News: World Trade Center on Fire" to a somewhat bigger box saying, "Both World Trade Center Towers Hit By Airplanes" to the entire site saying something like both MSNBC and CNN had done.
This I remember. And I choose not to forget. I choose not to block out those memories, as horrible as they are, as uncomfortable as they may, as terrible as they might have been. I don't want to forget, because forgetting means that it is pushed back in my mind, like those memories of earlier conflicts and sad days in American history.
Tomorrow is 9 years. Here on this site, I've tried to do or say something each year on 9/11, if only to help me remember--and you too, if you want to remember. Tomorrow, the music playlist will be disabled through the weekend. Tomorrow, I will be doing a special "video based" post on 9/11, walking you through the entire morning. I invite you to come back, take a little more time than you might usually do here, and remember. I don't want to say "enjoy", because I'm hoping you won't. I'm hoping you just remember.
Here are my previous posts on 9/11, if you want some more reading:
Thoughts on 9/11 Part I
Thoughts on 9/11 Part II
Five Years Later: Today's Thoughts
Five Years Later: Where Some of You Were
September 11th Links & Thoughts (its a recap of some of the links I just posted)
Join us tomorrow here on The Clouds...