Sunday, September 11, 2011
It was a Tuesday morning. Like many other weekday mornings. I was lying in bed, pseudo-awake, anticipating the annoying bleat of my alarm clock which wasn't going to happen for another hour or so. The ringing of my phone in the living room beat it to the punch. I rarely got calls at home, but it was usually from one of the people in my department calling to let me know that they were sick and wouldn't be in. As crabby as I can be early in the a.m., I never minded them calling me because it gave me time to prepare. This time, however, I answered to hear the voice of the company president's assistant, Barbara. She sounded numb...if that makes any sense whatsoever. I was to shut the office down for the day. Something had happened in New York. I immediately thought of the corporation offices that are located in New York. Before I could even ask if everyone was okay, Barbara told me to turn on the news. I punched the button on the remote as she told me that my boss wanted the voicemail changed to say we were closed, the elevators needed to be on security lock out, etc. I said I'd take care of it all. Then we hung up. Then I had a chance to really focus on what was unfolding on the TV. There are a number of words I can think of to describe what I saw that morning of September 11, 2001. The two that jump out are 'horrifying' and 'surreal'. I had worked in Hollywood for a number of years by that time, and...well, that most definitely was not a product of Hollywood. It was real. As real as it gets.
Over the last couple of days, 'friends' and 'friends-of-friends' have been posting various status messages on Facebook regarding today's anniversary of the tragedies of September 11th. The one I noticed most was "where were you when it happened?". I had been planning to post something here on my blog relating to the tragedy at the Twin Towers. It was something I had been working over in my mind for a few days, but those Facebook posts helped me think of what to write. So...that's what I did. I wrote about where I was when I first found out. The only thing left was to find an appropriate picture to head my post. That was proving to be a bit more difficult.
Don't get me wrong, there are many photos from that horrible day. Most of them are of the towers in various stages of fire and rubble, several with one of the planes pre-impact. Others had workers from the towers in free fall as they plummet to their deaths stories above the ground. Just so many images...so many horrifying reminders...it was ten whole years ago that the events happened, and I find them as repugnant today as I did back then. As I quickly scanned another section of photos, I stopped on the one above. A business man, briefcase in hand, handkerchief held over his nose and mouth against the particle filled air. True, most of his face is covered, but even with the distance of the photographer I can see pain in his face. It makes me wonder what this man's story was. Did he work in the Towers and was able to find safety? Did he work nearby? Did he have friends or family in the Towers? Whoever he is, this image really touched me. It just really encompassed the pain, sadness, and horror of it all. How anyone anywhere on the planet could carry out and justify the killing of so many innocent people is beyond my comprehension. Where ever those cowards are, I hope it's hot.
Update to Post: A friend of mine shared this link with me regarding the above photo. The man pictured is Edward Fine, who was photographed after escaping the North Tower to safety. For more information about Mr. Fine and his ordeal, visit the link.