I've spent the morning trying to stay awake. And/or engaged in my work. YOU try being engaged in my work. My job is to make sure words are spelled correctly, in the right order, and surrounded by the appropriate punctuation. Still awake? Yeah, I thought so. Your face started to imprint itself with the textured pattern of your shirt. And that, right there, might be a hint of drool...
It's Friday. It's beautiful outside. I've been listening to my favorite music and radio talk shows. So why am I in such a funk?
That must be it. I have a strange, seemingly misplaced feeling of dread washing over me. I cannot help but feel as though something is about to happen. Something bad. Something even worse than Obama's toilet-tanking approval rating or the putrid economy that's joining it.
Odd how I had no such feeling just moments before I turned on my car radio to listen to NPR on the way to the newsroom at the Ogden Standard-Examiner that pre-fall morning. That's when I thought, "Wow, they must be running old audio from that twin towers bombing a few years earlier." A few minutes in to my drive, I called Tim and said, "Are you watching the news? Get up. Turn on the TV. Tell me what's happening."
Nothing's been the same since. Wars. Hatred. Anger. Loss. Fear. Wariness. Weariness.
What's next? I hope nothing. I hope I manage to stay alert and focused until 4 p.m., when I go pick up my kiddo at school and get him ready for swim clinic and a weekend of football-watching and fun times with friends.
This is a kid who wasn't even around when 9/11 became more than simply the eleventh day of September. He has heard us talk about the attacks a bit, and he's asked questions about who did it and why. I hope we gave him an appropriate answer. Bad people hurt good people because the bad people were mad at America. Wrap your 7-year-old head around that one. He's seen a bit of video of the planes crashing into the towers and, truthfully, I don't think he realized it was real. It wasn't some Hollywood production. Those were dying people jumping out of windows hundreds of stories in the air. Those were real live people on those planes, people's mommies and daddies, grandparents, children, best friends, lovers, heroes. To him, it seemed almost "cool" to see the explosion and watch the buildings cascade to the ground in smoke and dust.
Will I watch the remembrance coverage? I can't. It hurts too much to remember. I can't NOT. We've all heard the phrase: We'll never forget.
I just hope NO ONE gives us something ELSE to watch this weekend. The date, 9/11, looms large. It seems to beckon those who wish us, as a nation, harm. Will they, a decade later, commemorate the day with further destruction? I worry about the possibility.
Then again, on that day ten years ago, I wasn't worried about much more than getting to work on time. It was just another day.
Until it wasn't.