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September 11, 2009

9-11

I'll never have the words to accurately describe my feelings. I post these images to remind us all of the murder of innocents.

And the murder of innocence.










Eight years ago, I remember opening my eyes at 8:46 a.m. in my downtown Manhattan apartment because...

...I thought a truck had crashed in the street outside

I remember pacing my apartment for the next 15 minutes thinking, stupidly, that a gas line might have been hit in the North Tower...

...and then I heard another explosion. I hope no one ever hears anything like it.

All I can say to describe it is: Imagine the sound of thousands of Americans screaming on a city street

It was unbelievable, almost literally



I remember being on the sidewalk and there was an FBI agent saying he was cordoning off the street...

...and then, the next day, when I went back for my cats, they told me I might see bodies lying in front of my apartment building (I didn't)

We held a memorial service in October for my cousin's husband, who was "missing" but not really...

He worked for Cantor Fitzgerald. They found a piece of his ribcage in the rubble not too long afterwards.

This is the guy who conspired to murder him: http://is.gd/38h7y

Had a friend from the high school speech and debate team who disappeared from the 105th floor

Had another friend of a friend who worked on the 80th floor or so, married six weeks before the attack...

Speculation is that he was right in the plane's path, and was killed instantly when it plowed through the building

Did a bit of legal work for a couple whose son worked in the upper floors. Was dating someone else up there at the time...

I was told that she managed to call her parents while they were trapped up there and that the call "was not good"

Never found out if it was cut off by the building collapsing or not

I remember opening my eyes at 8:46 a.m. thinking "I hope that was just a pothole." Then I heard a guy outside my window say, "Oh shit"

Opened the window, looked to my left, saw huge smoke coming out of the WTC

Left at around 9:30, decided to walk uptown thinking that the buildings would never collapse and that...

...I'd be back in my apartment by the next night. I never went back. It was closed off until December.

I remember thinking when I was a few blocks away that the towers might collapse, and so I walked faster...

...although I sneered at myself later for thinking that might be true and for being a coward. Although not for long.

To this day, you can find photos of thousands of people congregated in the blocks surrounding the Towers, seemingly...

...waiting for them to fall that day

When I got to midtown, rumors were that Camp David and the Sears Tower had also been destroyed. I remember looking around...

...and thinking that we had to get out of Manhattan, as this might be some pretext to get us into the street and hit us with some germ

I callled my dad -- and somehow miraculously got through -- and told him I was alive, then headed for the 59th street bridge

To this day, the scariest memory is being on that bridge, looking at the Towers smoking in the distance,

and thinking maybe the plotters had wired the bridge too to explode beneath us while we were crossing it.

I remember talking to some guy on the bridge that we'd get revenge, but...

...you had to see the smoke coming from the Towers in the distance. It was like a volcano

I remember being down there two months later. There was a single piece of structure...

...maybe five stories tall of the lattice-work still standing. It looked like a limb of a corpse sticking up out of the ground.

They knocked it down soon after

At my office, which I had just joined, I was told that...

...some people had seen the jumpers diving out the windows to escape the flames that morning

There was a video online, posted maybe two years ago, shot from the hotel across the street,,,

...and it showed roughly 10-12 bodies flattened into panackes lying in the central plaza

Maybe it's still online somewhere

You have to see it to understand, though. You get a sense of it from the Naudet brothers documentary hearing...



...the explosions as the bodies land in the plaza, but seeing it and hearing it are two different things

I remember after I got over the bridge into Queens, I heard a noise overheard...

...that I'd never heard before. It was an F-15, on patrol over New York. Very odd sound. A high-pitched wheeze.

I remember on Sept. 12, when I got on the train to go downtown and try to get my cats out of the apartment...

...the Village was utterly deserted. No one on the streets. Like "28 Days Later" if you've seen that

We made it to a checkpoint and the cop said go no further, until my mom intervened. Then he took pity...

...and agreed to let me downtown IF I agreed that any exposure to bodies lying in the streets was my own fault.

Didn't see any bodies, but I did see soldiers, ATF, FBI, and so on. The ground was totally covered by white clay...

...which I knew was formed by WTC dust plus water from the FDNY. It look like a moonscape.

There was a firefighter at the intersection and I flagged him down and asked if I could borrow his flashlight, since...

...all buildings downtown had no power. He gave me a pen flashlight.

The doors to my building at Park Place were glass but had kicked in, presumably by the FDNY, to see if there were...

...survivors inside. When I got in there, all power was out. No elevators, no hall lights...

...I had to feel my way to the hall and make my way up to my apartment on the third floor by feeling my way there...

...When I got there, the cats were alive. There was WTC dust inside the apartment, but...

...for whatever reason, I had closed the windows before I left to walk uptown that day, so dust was minimal. I loaded them...

...into the carrier and took them back to Queens. That was the last I could get into the apartment until December 2001,...

...and then it was only to get in, take whatever belongings were salvageable (i.e. not computer), and get out. I lived...

in that apartment from 7/2001 to 9/2001, but given the diseases longtime residents have had...

...I'm lucky I decided to move

My only other significant memory is being in the lobby of the apartment building on 9/11...

...and trying to console some woman who lived there who said her father worked on the lower floors of the WTC. I assume...

...he made it out alive, but she was hysterical as of 9:30 that a.m. Who could blame her?

I do remember feeling embarrassed afterwards that...

...I initially thought the smoke coming out of the North Tower was due to a fire or something, but...

...it's hard to explain the shock of realizing you're living through a historical event while you're living through it.

For months afterwards, I tried to tell people how I thought maybe the Towers...

...were going to be hit by six or seven or eight planes in succession. Which sounds nuts, but once you're in the moment...

...and crazy shit is happening, you don't know how crazy that script is about to get.

When I left at 9:30, I thought more planes were coming.

I left because I thought, "Well, if these planes hit the building the right way, it could fall and land on mine."\

I remember getting to 57th Street and asking some dude, "What happened?"

And he said, "They collapsed" and I couldn't believe both of them had gone down. Even after the planes hit...

...I remembered that the Empire State Building had taken a hit from a military plane during WWII and still stood tall

So it was never a serious possibility that the WTC would collapse. I assumed...

...that the FDNY would get up there, put out the fire, and the WTC would be upright but with gigantic holes in it

It took an hour for the first tower to go down, 90 minutes for the second.

Even now, despite the smoke, I'm convinced most of the people trapped at the top were alive...

...and waiting, somehow, for a rescue. The couple whose legal case I worked for told me that...

...their son and his GF contacted her father very shortly before the collapse. Which makes sense. As much smoke as there was...

...if you have a five-story hole in the wall to let air in to breathe, you're going to linger on.

So for many people, the choice probably quickly became: Hang on, endure the smoke, or jump

If you listen to the 911 calls, which I advise you not to do, some of the chose "hang on"

Although needless to say, if you ever saw the Towers...

...you know how dire things must have been up there to make anyone think the better solution was "jump"

They were ENORMOUS.

Another weird memory: Shortly after I got my apartment in lower Manhattan, on Park Place...

...I remember taking my brother to see "The Others," which had just opened.

And afterwards I remember taking him up to the rooftop of my building to admire the Towers. According to Wikipedia...

"The Others" opened on August 10, 2001, so this must have been within 10 days or so afterwards. Very eerie.

And I remember we also went to Morton's and Borders right inside the WTC complex to celebrate my new job

That Borders was gutted, needless to say, on 9/11. You could see the frame of the building in the WTC lobby after the attack

I was reading magazines in there the week or two before

One of the weirdest feelings, which I'm sure everyone can share, is that I remember distinctly feeling...

...in the month or two before the attack that "important" news no longer existed. It was all inane bullshit about...

...shark attacks and Gary Condit and overaged pitchers in the Little League World Series. To this day...

...I try never to grumble about a slow news day because the alternative is horrifyingly worse

After the attack, maybe a month after, I remember going to see "Zoolander" in Times Square and...

...coming up out of the subway tunnel having the distinct fear that...

...the sky would light up and a mushroom cloud would appear instantly above my head in my lost moment of consciousness. No joke. In fact...

...I ended up going to bed around 6:30 p.m. for maybe three months after 9/11.

Even when I ended up working downtown for years after that, with a luxurious view of upper Manhattan from the top floors...

...I always feared looking out the window because I was paranoid that at that precise moment, the flash would go off...

...and that'd be the last thing I see. And in fact, for a moment in 2003 when the power went out city-wide,

...I did think that was what was happening. The wages of 9/11.

I leave you with this, my very favorite film about the WTC. If you're a New Yorker, have a hanky handy. No. 3 is golden http://is.gd/38qsT

One more note: If you've never seen a photo of the smoke coming from the Trade Center after the collapse, find one.

Watching it from the 59th bridge, it looked like a volcano. There was so much smoke, it was indescribable. Just *erupting* from the wreckage

Remember

Hat Tip to Mike at Exblogitate

66 comments:

Opus #6 said...

I will never forget. Thanks for posting these pictures. These people deserve our remembrance. Their blood cries to me.

Unknown said...

The perpetrators will be apprehended.

Someday.

Timeshare Jake said...

I look back at that day, which I have a blog that goes live in an hour that I prewrote, and I can never really capture the anger I felt. I can see the whole day laid out. I just can't express the true feelings I had. I hope I never see anything like it again, but I am beginning to have my doubts. I am really worried about 9/12 this year.

Snarky Basterd said...

I've never had the words, either, Nickie. I don't know if I ever will.

LL said...

There are no words, but there is an emotion: we need to find everyone that had a hand in this attack and kill them.

I know Dear Leader opposes this, but irrespective, we owe it to the fallen to set things right.

Janie Lynn said...

That day changed my life forever. It woke me up to being an American and to what I cared about. I guess you would call me a September 11th conservative. Horrible, horrible day. But it brought out the best in everybody that day - for a while. People need to be reminded every year. It's something we can't ever forget.

Anonymous said...

Opie, I am determined never to forget this massacre.

Anonymous said...

Son, I don't expect that to happen. The greatest revenge is to make their savagery be remembered as tragic and the act of desperate impotent little men.

Anonymous said...

Bill, I worry because we don't have a president who will inspire the nation. He'll probably ask us to look within our own hearts for the perpetrators.

Anonymous said...

Dave, I don't recall words. I recall anger.

Anonymous said...

LL, I'm starting to realize that Dear Leader opposes just about everything I believe in.

Anonymous said...

Janie, I remember hearing Dennis Miller talking about his 9/11 conversion to Conservatism. He sounded just like you.

A- said...

Sometimes it's fun being someone else-ski.


I don't need some stinkin' pictures to remind me of these losers(terrorists), I see them everyday @ the Mall, grocery store,gas stations, public bath houses and wonder Y they're still walkin' around. What's up w/ dat?

Wetzy said...

I always think about the people on the planes. They could have been any of us.

Anonymous said...

Pray for peace and terrorists won't do it to New York again.

Opus #6 said...

Anon, yep, as soon as we find those moderate Wahabi's to beg for our lives from. They're right across the road from the moderate Taliban, I hear. All we need to do is prostrate ourselves in front of them like our Dear Leader did and convert to Islam. And take down our large buildings and live in bedouin tents, kneeling 5 times per day toward Mecca in prayer. That kind of peace you recommend us to pray for? Will they sell nice black tents for me to cover my face and body with? Then will they love me?

I stand with Rudy Giuliani. I also remember how he threw the Saudi money back in their faces. We didn't need their blood/guilt money then. And we don't need to ask their permission to live now.

F them and the camel they rode in on.

Rhod said...

Keep these images in mind when you recall our jellyfish president bowing to a couple of Saudi scumbags.

Writer X said...

I'll never forget. People massacred for simply going about their day.

Timeshare Jake said...

We now have a president that is bascially encouraging another act to happen again through making Americans the terrorists whether it be at GITMO or questioning our government while appeasing his own religion.

Gia's Spot said...

We need to be reminded, not every year Janie Lynn, but every second of every day of every nano second in time and remember that men and women are still fighting this fight and losing their lives every second of every hour of everyday...................When is the last time YOU or any of you sent a letter, package, momento from home, to a soldier who is in need of love from home? just sayin..........

Denise said...

Eight years later and I still sob from withing the depths of me. We remember.

Mike said...

This wasn´t the first, nor will it be the last time I cried today.

If interested, I posted Allahpundit´s rememberance surrounding the events of 8 years ago. He Tweeted them early this a.m. and they´re well worth the read.

BTW, thanks for the props NG ;-)

JihadGene said...

I blame the f@ckers who did this, not America, as Bill Clinton and Obama's preacher-man, Reverend Jeremiah Wright Jr, did!

jay son said...

the saying is prepare for war and pray for peace. it was liberal thinking such as yours anonymous that got us to 9-11, and may take us back. nickie thanks for posting the pics and signing up. and gia, you're right on target.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Nick, for putting this up. I need to see it again. It's good to go back and see the ugliness of where tyranny goes ... I think we need to know this to know how significant it is to preserve liberty.

Good things can and often do spring from dark times.

Remember when the Congress burst into God Bless America? And Nancy Pelosi didn't seek an injunction?

I wouldn't so much call it the death of innocence as a clarion call back to reality. Remember that the dark of evil allows us to see the contrast of good.

Anonymous said...

Wetzy, they were us. They were our neighbors and relatives. They were our friends and children.

Anonymous said...

Anon. It's not us who'd better pray.

Anonymous said...

Thanls, Opie. I forgot all about the Giuliani episode.

Despite the Left's worst work, America is still here and patriotism still beats within the hearts of true Americans.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Rhod. It's no accident that I keep the images close the year round. I does tend to put things into perspective.

Anonymous said...

Writer...

People massacred for having maintained a society with freedoms. It was an affront to izlam.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, Bill. We're the terrorists. We're a hateful nation that, 7 years after 9/11, voted a man named Hussein to the presidency.

Anonymous said...

Gia... Our military members will truly be the strong backbone of tomorrow's society. For many, they are today's inspiration.

Great comment.

Anonymous said...

Denise, imagine the sorrow of the families as they watch this country deteriorate. There sobs should be heard by all Lefty softheads.

Anonymous said...

Mike, I'll repost it here with a hat tip to both of you. Thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

Gene...

Thanks for not being misled my the media.

Anonymous said...

summ, thanks for the visit. It's nice to know there's yet another patriot out there in the blogosphere.

Anonymous said...

"I wouldn't so much call it the death of innocence as a clarion call back to reality. Remember that the dark of evil allows us to see the contrast of good."

DC, thanks for the insightful words. You never fail to focus onto the big issues.

Anonymous said...

@NG: At the same time we've been posting the same pictures... wow

Anyways: I remember watching CNN and thinking that this MUST be a movie! Unfortunately was a reality.
Reality that changed reality forever!

I'm sure you've watched those two:

Loose Change 9/11 http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7866929448192753501#

Zeitgeist http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7065205277695921912#

Anonymous said...

Sure have, Mammon. Thanks for the links.

This a day of remembrance, reflection and restoration.

RantinRab said...

I was at work when I heard about the planes hitting the WTC. I was thousands of miles away, in the staff canteen of Safeway in Stevenston, a little town in Ayrshire, Scotland. No one could believe it, the shock rippled throughout the staff and customers in the shop. I finished at 11pm that night and started at 6am the next day. I never went to bed, I stayed up watching Sky news all night.

I remember being completely stunned at what I was watching and hearing.

Cristina said...

Non dimenticherò mai l'attacco terroristico alle Torri Gemelle. Sono vicina alle vittime innocenti di una strage assurda. Chry

WomanHonorThyself said...

just got home from the Memorial..thank u my friend.............

Suzy said...

I was at LAX waiting to board a plane to Florida on 9/11. I went to the ladies room and heard a little girl say to her mother "Mommy, why are those planes flying into buildings?" I thought it was just a typical kid question until I came out and saw about 50 people gathered at the bar, watching a TV.

When I realized what had happened I turned to the lady next to me, who was pregnant, and said Get out of here, NOW! They released people from planes and I ran down to Delta baggage. Delta had FLOODED the floor with their agents, all helping us find our luggage.\

I ran outside and waited in a taxi line and got out of LAX. 10 minutes later they shut down LAX and no one could go in or out. I often wonder what happened to the pregnant lady.

I took the same flight 10 days later and there were 6 of on the plane. We all sat together.

A former New Yorker.

Maria José Rezende de Lacerda said...

Tem um selo “SOMOS TODOS IRMÃOS” no meu blog para você. Este selo representa o amor universal. Vamos participar desta corrente de amor, levando luz a todos os nossos irmãos.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, my brother. Sorry I have been scarce. Real life, like 9/11 unexpectantly intervenes.

But I am here ... Good to know you are, as well.

It's still the land of the free.

Anonymous said...

Rab, I remember the feeling. It was like the most frightening movie I had ever seen, and then I had remind myself that what I was seeing was real.

Anonymous said...

Chry, accosentiamo. Grazie così tanto per l'aggiunta del vostro commento speciale.

Anonymous said...

Woman, it's surely been a full and emotional day for you. Thank you for stopping by here.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Suzy. I can't imagine the confusion and chaos in a major airport on that day. And thank you for telling that touching story.

Anonymous said...

Maria, the older I get, the more doubtful I become that love can effectively counter hate.

Anonymous said...

DC, you're here. All is well with the world.

Thanks for being there, compadre.

Woodsterman (Odie) said...

Thank You Boss ...

Anonymous said...

You are welcome, old wooded one.

Anonymous said...

Can anybody guess what The Muslims are doing on 9/11 in Britain?

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I've been following it. I wish they'd try that in New York City.

Anonymous said...

They only do it in places where small, relatively peaceful groupings, have had permission to protest against Gordon Browns despicable policies. Hence a large presence of Stasi style policing is sure to have been booked.
Then, with the engineering of New Labour induced scum at the cost to the British tax payer of many millions, up pop the U.A.F./Islamo alliance to cause riots and mayhem, and guess who are the only people that are Ever Arrested?

I've had this up to my ears.

Anonymous said...

Let me guess. Those links are pretty disturbing reading.

Thanks so much for taking the trouble of putting together such a detailed comment.

CI-Roller Dude said...

I hate terrorist.

Coffeypot said...

Nickie G, an emotional heartfelt post. I am sorry you had to experience it first hand, but I thank you for sharing your thoughts and emotions with us. As in any tragedy, it’s the survivors and the extended families that have to do the suffering. Only time will make it bearable.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Coffee... but I didn't experience it firsthand. Like most of the world I felt the emotional trauma of watching American history through an electronic window.

Frances Davis said...

In a day of tearful remembrances, this was a fitting end.

Anonymous said...

I'm happy you stopped by, Frances. Thank you.

The Daily Retard said...

DAMNED good post, man. Looking at those pictures, the emotion I feel is as raw today as it was the first time I saw them. Thank you for sharing them. Even though my local papers couldn't bring themselves to mention the anniversary above the fold, thank God there are those of use who haven't forgotten.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, DR.

ninnuh said...

Thanks for this post, Nickie G.

Anonymous said...

My pleasure, ninnuh.