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September 11, 2006


Hi judi,
        Could you please post a link on the blog to
Dave's September 11 column?
        - Guin

Published: Thursday, September 13, 2001


By DAVE BARRY, Herald Columnist

No humor column today. I don't want to write it, and you don't want to read

No words of wisdom, either. I wish I were wise enough to say something that
would help make sense of this horror, something that would help ease the
unimaginable pain of the victims' loved ones, but I'm not that wise. I'm
barely capable of thinking. Like many others, I've spent the hours since
Tuesday morning staring at the television screen, sometimes crying,
sometimes furious, but mostly just stunned.

What I can't get out of my mind is the fact that they used our own planes. I
grew up in the Cold War, when we always pictured the threat as coming in the
form of missiles - sleek, efficient death machines, unmanned, hurtling over
the North Pole from far away. But what came, instead, were our own
commercial airliners, big friendly flying buses coming from Newark and
Boston with innocent people on board. Red, white and blue planes, with
``United'' and ``American'' written on the side. The planes you've flown in
and I've flown in. That's what they used to attack us. They were able to do
it in part because our airport security is pathetic. But mainly they were
able to do it because we are an open and trusting society that simply is not
set up to cope with evil men, right here among us, who want to kill as many
Americans as they can.

That's what's so hard to comprehend: They want us to die just for being
Americans. They don't care which Americans die: military Americans, civilian
Americans, young Americans, old Americans. Baby Americans. They don't care.
To them, we're all mortal enemies. The truth is that most Americans, until
Tuesday, were only dimly aware of their existence, and posed no threat to
them. But that doesn't matter to them; all that matters is that we're
Americans. And so they used our own planes to kill us.

And then their supporters celebrated in the streets.

I'm not naive about my country. My country is definitely not always right;
my country has at times been terribly wrong. But I know this about
Americans: We don't set out to kill innocent people. We don't cheer when
innocent people die.


The people who did this to us are monsters; the people who cheered them have
hate-sickened minds. One reason they can cheer is that they know we would
never do to them what their heroes did to us, even though we could, a
thousand times worse. They know that when we hunt down the monsters, we will
try hard not to harm the innocent. Those are the handcuffs we willingly
wear, because for all our flaws, we are a decent people.

And now we are a traumatized people. The TV commentators keep saying that
the attacks have awakened a ``sleeping giant.'' And I guess we do look like
a giant, to the rest of the world. But when I look around, I don't see a
giant: I see millions of individuals - the resilient and caring citizens of
New York and Washington; the incredibly brave firefighters, police officers
and rescue workers risking their lives in the dust and flames; the
politicians standing on the steps of the Capitol and singing an off-key
rendition of God Bless America that, corny as it was, had me weeping; the
reporters and photographers who have not slept, and will not sleep, as long
as there is news to report; the people in my community, and communities
across America, lining up to give blood, wishing they could do more.


No, I don't see a giant. What I see is Americans. We may have the power of a
giant, but we also have the heart of a good and generous people, and we will
get through this. We will grieve for our dead, and tend to our wounded, and
repair the damage, and tighten our security, and put our planes back in the
air. Eventually most of us, the ones lucky enough not to have lost somebody,
will resume our lives. Some day, our country will track down the rest of the
monsters behind this, and make them pay, and I suppose that will make most
of us feel a little better. But revenge and hatred won't be why we'll go on.
We'll go on because we know this is a good country, a country worth keeping.

Those who would destroy it only make us see more clearly how precious it is.

© 2001


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This was written the following year.


Here's the column, a link to the hallowed ground piece (perhaps in more readable form), and also some audio commentary:


Beautiful, well put, I had a hard time getting through it without tears.

I remember that day so vividly, every event, every person in room as we watched it unfold. Even though we lived in bucolic sothern Illinois, we were told to go home and be with our families. As I walked across the parking lot I remember the silence of that morning, no planes, very few cars, even the birds were quiet.

That day was a crack in the fabric of time. A turning point for the whole world.

And it still applies today.

Thanks Guin.

I've been looking for that for weeks.

I remember that morning so well - how the sky looked, what a beautiful morning it started out to be. I almost lost a family member in the tragedy and thank God she was able to escape safely. I pray for all those who are still grieving for their loved ones and those who are still suffering from what they experienced.

It hasn't lost any of its impact.


Well said, then and now.

...maybe Dave SHOULD be president.

Thanks for re-running this Dave.

Amen to that, Dave - it still holds true today. I pray for those who lost loved ones and to continue to keep our country safe.

God Bless this great nation...

Not so sure I feel like trying to be clever today. Everyone, have a safe and thoughtful day.

observes moment of snork free silence.

Very moving. I remember reading this column when it first appeared.

Our country has been forever changed.

To quote Gene Weingarten -

"Me: "




I was in class at Naval nulcear training in SC when my Section Leaser entered the room saying "The World Trade center was bombed!" and one guy behind me said "Yeah, that happened years ago." We were shocked, and unable to watch the tv, but had the same person come in and give us updates. When the second tower fel we were given an early lunch. The campus was completely silent. I went to my room and called my parents, just to have some connection to someone.

Thanks for posting this.

Never forget.

The great thing? The attackers wanted to permanently change everything, and failed. We're more cautious, but we still get on planes, still laugh at booger jokes, still watch totally unbelievable shows and roll our eyes at how stupid they are, and tune in again next week. The attacks were supposed to take that away from us, make us fearful of holding on to that. And they didn't.

Nice job, Dave.

The morning of September 11, 2001 I was actually out at the ranch working my part time job. My cell phone rang and it was my boss. I remember so clearly what she said. "Chris, stop whatever you're doing and get back to base, New York has just been attacked." She took a minute to tell me what had happened but I really didn't begin to comprehend until a little later. I went home, put my uniform on and went to work. The days following the 11th were pretty long for us military-type people. No days off, not even very many hours off but that's what we do. A day like today serves to remind me why I do what I do. I'm gonna go now. I'm crying.

Thanks, judi. And Dave.

Most vivid memory of that week: Being on an ambulance responding to Ground Zero. Any time the convoy of ambulances slowed down enough to catch, people would run up and swamp them. Handing off food, medical supplies, or simply hugging the ambulance crews.

Thank you Dave.

On that day I was in Manhattan but at the very upper end of the island, some 12 miles away. I watched the horror on TV like the rest of the world but also watched as neighbors on my street frantically, hysterically tried to make cell phone calls to people downtown. I work in Soho which, for a couple of days was closed off. When I got down there on Friday, I wanted to do something, anything, to help and had seen lists of items that responders needed. I loaded up on eyewash and headed up to the nearest donation center. Along the block leading to this spot was a line of parked ambulances and rescue trucks from all over; Connecticut, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Delaware and farther, much farther, their crews waiting around for orders. As I walked along I felt a surge of gratitude and unity. But as I got to the end of the street it hit me that these rescue teams were up here on 17th Street because there was no one to rescue from the WTC. That's when I cried.

Thanks, Judi, for reposting Dave's column, and thanks Dave for writing it.

wow...thanks blurk and all the military guys and gals out there!

I've been crying since last night - watching all the specials...

Thank you judi and Dave for posting this.

I can't watch those specials. I can'twatc h those towers fall again. I won't ever forget.

Thanks to everyone on here for being real and trying to make the world a better place. God Bless you ALL

On that morning, I was at a meeting at my daughter's elementary school and someone called to tell us to turn on the news. We watched in horror as the second plane struck and I just remember driving to work in complete shock. The days after were spent glued to the tv set, crying and trying to make some sense of it. What got to me most were the people and their stories. Wanting to DO something I went to my local blood bank and donated...it was all I could think of at the time.
It's still pretty vivid.

chaz, i know how you feel. i'm in avoidance, not denial. too much overload.

passes out tissues and hugs to everyone

December 7, 1941
September 11, 2001

That's enough.


I LOVE the fact that you posted this column. it was wonderfully astute/relevant when Dave first wrote it and it continues to be so, today. Thank You. xox


sending out much love and some hugs to you all as well...

I just noticed that my 10:14 post was reposted with an earlier time...NO idea how that happened...sorry for the repeat.

Still crying. Would someone smack me or sumpthin'?

I was a medical student on a rotation at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, just down the street from the CDC. I had just finished assisting in an operation to repair a child's skull, which was severely deformed. When my attending surgeon asked me to run back to his office for films for the next case, a child with a brain tumor, I cut across the street and through the lobby. There was a cluster of people gathered around the television in the waiting room, watching in disbelief the re-runs of the first plane crashing into the first tower. I stopped to find out what was happening, and saw the second plane hit. The waiting room was silent.

I couldn't believe what I had just seen. I had lived in NYC during the first WTC attack, but this was incomprehensible. I returned to the OR and told the surgery staff what was happening and we turned on the radio during the preparations for the next operation. None of us could listen when we had to get to work taking out the tumor in the child's brain, and I could hardly hold the retractor, for worry about my friends in NYC (they turned out to be fine).

Later that day on my usual drive home past the CDC, there was a roadblock with police preventing traffic past the building. They reached from the other side of the world into my backyard and changed it.

Thank you, Dave, for writing what we were all thinking, but lacked the eloquence or skill to say. Thank you, blurk (and others who have served our country at your own personal risk), for doing what most of us don't do.

I would blurk, but you like that :)

it's ok to cry though...((((((hugs))))))

No smacks today, blurk- you get a hug.
*hugs blurk*

group hug, sioux
*wipes tear*

group hug, ddd :-(

I was out fishing with a friend that morning. Gorgeous day on the Indian River. We got back to the dock and got a call from my wife saying a plane had hit the WTC. Having been an air traffic controller for 20+ years my first reaction was "Holy sh!t. Someone in the radar room screwed up that time". By the time we got the boat on the trailer the second plane had hit and we knew it wasn't controller error. By the time we got home the towers had come down. I had to work in the tower that afternoon, and I remember how eerie it was to look out the windows and know there wasn't a plane airborne anywhere over the US. I couldn't even donate blood Siouxie, having been stationed in Germany 10 years earlier. Hang in there Blurk. I'm out of the fight now, but you guys are doing a hell of a job for us. Keep up the good work.

its getting wet in here

So well written. It still touches my heart. Thanks.

I was in class at Naval nulcear training in SC when my Section Leaser entered the room saying "The World Trade center was bombed!" and one guy behind me said "Yeah, that happened years ago." We were shocked, and unable to watch the tv, but had the same person come in and give us updates. When the second tower fel we were given an early lunch. The campus was completely silent. I went to my room and called my parents, just to have some connection to someone.

Jollymon, Mr. 24 was also on the "can't donate" list as he was stationed in Germany and Haiti within the last 10 years. The Red Cross has eased up on their restrictions considerably in the last year or so. You may already know this, but I thought I'd throw it out there.

Jollymon, Mr. 24 was also on the "can't donate" list as he was stationed in Germany and Haiti within the last 10 years. The Red Cross has eased up on their restrictions considerably in the last year or so. You may already know this, but I thought I'd throw it out there.

Thanks everyone for all the hugs and good wishes. Today is another one of those days when I could really use 'em. Been havin' a lot of those lately.


The last time we tried here at Patrick AFB they still wouldn't let us, but that was well over a year ago. I'll have to try again.

Thanks for letting me know.

Someone should tell almne his enter button is stuck.

There's obviously something funky with typepad this morning - that explains all the repeat posts. I knew I wasn't nuts.

I remember walking into work late that day, looking up at the sky and thinking how beautiful it was. It was cloudless, and at least in mid-Florida, there was an absence of humidity which we like to call “a nip in the air.”

I made my way to my desk and had just turned on the computer, when Brandon in the cubicle next to me stood up and announced that a plane had hit one of the Towers. At that point, we still didn’t know it was intentional and thought maybe it was a terrible accident.

We spent the rest of the day huddled around the television in the coffee room, watching the awful events. We talked about what it would be like to try to evacuate the small, six-story building we worked in and we imagined the same process multiplied by 80+ floors.

As awful as it was for us, I can’t imagine what it must have been like for those who lost loved ones.

Dave-Thank you for writing that column. Judi-Thank you for posting it.

okay i deleted a few of them... just to make it easier to read.

Still moving, Dave. Thanks, Judi.


Thanks for running Dave's column again. Dave, thanks for writing it.

Miss C

thanks judi!

{{{{blurk}}}}} Thanks for your service to our country.

diver-It must have taken super-human strength to continue with such intricate work on a day like that!

Tried to post but it didn't take, so if the rest of this posts twice, my apologies.

Lisa Bisa: it was just as beautiful here that day.

I was at the post office in Red Hook (Brooklyn) and the fires were clear. We picked up faxes and other burnt papers that blew across, about 3 miles away.

My wife had a friend whose husband was a firefighter killed with 5 members of his crew that day.

He left behind a one year old daughter.

Creepy how calm and clear the sky is here today.....just like on that horrible day.

There is one sound I cannot get out of my brain - it haunts my sleep, it sickens me....I listened to a live audio feed from firefighters inside the ground level of the towers....I kept hearing odd, loud "thwunk" noises. The firefighters didn't know what it was, until one of them said, very softly, "They're jumping".

It's amazing how vivid all these memories are, five years later. What's incredible to me is that there are already people who were too young in 2001 to feel the shock of the event as it happened, so instead, experience it now as an historical event. Sort of like the way some of us know of Pearl Harbor, or JFK's assassination -- mind-bending events that changed life as it was.

Those of us at the tail end of the baby boom were lucky to live in a bubble for so long, having never experienced any real fear of massive violence on our own soil. As a kid, I didn't think it was possible. I'm sad that my children live in a time where such a blind and blissful sense of safety, due to simple lack of experience, just doesn't exist.

We all gather here at Dave's place out of a shared need to laugh and make some sense of the crazy world we live in, with all its snakes and squirrels and low flow toilets. Laughing at the absurdity of it all (and singing along with C-bol) makes it bearable.

Thanks to judi for reposting this, and to Dave for writing it in the first place.

And Chris/blurkie, we're honored by your presence. Thank you.

*smacks blurkie, because he asked for it*

Punkin, I was watching that firefighters documentary last night and that sound horrified me...when the firemen realized what it was.

Today will be a day of many hugs and tears..

My Dad fought in WWII. Didn't talk about it much. When he did he taught me that there is such a thing as a just war, that men are capable of terrible evil that must be resisted.

Because he didn't talk much about it, I learned about the holocaust from other sources and only slowly came to appreciate what he and men like him had done.

The fiftieth anniversarries of VE and VJ day inspired a lot of folks to pay tribute and homage to this "greatest generation". The book of that name, "Saving Private Ryan" and the WWII memorial come to mind. My Dad lived to see all those.

Unfortunately, he also lived to see the face of evil again, this time right here, within our borders. I guess in some vague and naive fantasy I had always hoped that this sort of evil had been put down for good, or at least that Dad would be able to go to his grave thinking that it had. Ic ould have read "O Captain, My Captain" at his funeral.

But instead, as he lay dying, I held his hand and vowed to carry on the fight. Me, already arthritic and gray, carrying around with me a handicap of my own making, the residue of the good life that my father's valiance afforded me. The scene in hindsight is ludicrous and tragic. But perhaps, just maybe, my son will be able to read "O Captain, My Captain" at my funeral.

a haiku:

blood of innocents
strength, compassion and courage
the silence of fools

I was in Oklahoma City on April 19th 1995, working in the Journal Record building. It was the second most damaged building that day. I remember I was supposed to be taking a smoke break but had some things I wanted to finish when that explosion went off. Each time I see something about that and the September 11th attacks it always makes me hope the families of the victims are doing ok.

God bless ya blurk, and all you bloglits today.

I too, along w/ many others, remember that day well. One of the guys at work told me about the first plane hitting one of the towers, we were trying to find out what was going on, but the internet was moving so slow because everyone was using it trying to find out as well.

The weather that day was nice and the sky clear and blue. I remember going outside and taking a look at the sky after all of the planes had been grounded, and how clear it looked w/o all of the contrails.

Thanks for running the articles from Dave. I enjoyed them the first time, and remembering how eloquently he was able to say what we all were feeling at that time. They still have great impact.

Thank you Dave.

I too, along w/ many others, remember that day well. One of the guys at work told me about the first plane hitting one of the towers, we were trying to find out what was going on, but the internet was moving so slow because everyone was using it trying to find out as well.

The weather that day was nice and the sky clear and blue. I remember going outside and taking a look at the sky after all of the planes had been grounded, and how clear it looked w/o all of the contrails.

Thanks for running the articles from Dave. I enjoyed them the first time, and remembering how eloquently he was able to say what we all were feeling at that time. They still have great impact.

Thank you Dave.

That was my sophomore year of college. I was in my Asian Lit class when I heard that some kind of hijacking had happened. After class was over, I went straight to the campus library where I learned the rest from CNN.
I wrote a column too a little later; actually, I wrote it as a reflection and emailed it just to family, but my dad got it published in the paper he writes for.
I've reposted it at betis.multiply.com/journal/item/2 (sorry for the lack of link, I've misplaced that HTML info) in case anyone would like to read it.

did the blog break??

This was not a good day to have a robot or Typep@d eat your post. It was hard enough writing this the first time. Sheesh.

Good, if sad, morning, friends.

Thanks in advance for indulging my emotional memories of this most awful of anniversaries.

I had just arrived in my White Plains office north of NYC, where you can see the tops of the tallest NYC buildings on clear days like that day and, interestingly, like today also. I knew nothing of the first plane hitting the north tower until my boss called from an upstate power dam that my company runs, asking if I could tell him what was going on. I hastily tuned in a radio, and relayed what it said. I told my boss I could not grasp that a plane could inadvertently hit such a structure on a perfectly clear day such as this. Then the second plane hit the south tower, and I could barely speak to my boss as I knew that the word "inadvertently" was not applicable.

In a previous job, I had worked at times about three floors above where the south tower was hit. I remembered the limited drills that we had gone through, and knew that they were not developed for anything remotely like this. As my former company had been dissolved, I knew that none of my former coworkers was in jeopardy, but I was still horrified for the people who were there now.

The radio announcer then said the unfathomable words that the south tower was "gone". She didn't say it had collapsed straight down, so I thought she meant it had fallen over, and I was baffled that she wouldn't say in what direction it had fallen and what it had impacted. I knew I had to see what has happening instead of listening, so I found a group of people on another floor clustered around a TV. We stood, horrified and unprepared, as people jumped from 90 floors up, and then watched transfixed as the north tower also collapsed. I then knew what had happened to the south tower.

It dawned on me that many of my old friends were firefighters, and that they must all be consumed with this nightmare-come-to-life. I found out the next day that one was not accounted for, Chief John M. John is presumed to have perished with the south tower's collapse, and none of his remains were ever identified. John was a kind and magnificent person, and he left behind a wife and two young sons.

John's brother Mike was a firefighter also, but he was off that day and didn't arrive on the scene until well after the catastrophe. Mike was the fireman who later uttered the infamous taunt to Osama bin Laden at the Madison Square Garden benefit concert. Mike also delivered the eulogy at his brother's funeral after hope for the recovery of John's remains was finally given up. As passionate and raw as that taunt was, Mike's words for his brother were the most moving and eloquent I have ever heard anyone say on such an occasion.

I knew one other person who died in that conflagration, a former high school classmate named Eric A., who was also a firefighter. He was not a good friend of mine, but I knew him well enough to know he was also a good person. Other people I knew who worked in the area, but not in the towers, all made it through OK.

RIP, John and Eric.

Thank you, Dave and Judi, and the friends I have made here. And special thanks to those who serve our country.

I too, along w/ many others, remember that day well. One of the guys at work told me about the first plane hitting one of the towers, we were trying to find out what was going on, but the internet was moving so slow because everyone was using it trying to find out as well.

The weather that day was nice and the sky clear and blue. I remember going outside and taking a look at the sky after all of the planes had been grounded, and how clear it looked w/o all of the contrails.

Thanks for running the articles from Dave. I enjoyed them the first time, and remembering how eloquently he was able to say what we all were feeling at that time. They still have great impact.

Thank you Dave.

mud, that is perhaps the most moving and incredible haiku I have ever read.

My grandfather also served in WWII. He was at Normandy. He never spoke of those days to anyone until I came back from Desert Storm. He and I sat on the front porch and talked about war and the terrible things that people are forced to see and do. But, at the risk of sounding melodramatic, there are those of us who do those things so the rest of you don't have to. We don't do it for praise and we certainly don't do it for money we just do it. Because someone has to.
I'll step down off the soapbox now. I guess today has just reopened my eyes to the reasons I put on a uniform everyday.

Apparently it's working but still double and triple posting...

I dunno about the rest of you but I can't seem to even concentrate this morning.

I made it through Dave's column without crying...then I read the posts. That did me in. I'll never forget that day. Thanks Dave. I appreciate your ability to put thoughts into words and the fact that you're willing to share those thoughts with all of us.

God Bless America.


I tuned in just before the second tower fell. I'll never forget my anxiety upon realizing I was only seeing one tower.

Yeah, I'm not ready to watch those 9/11 specials/movies/etc. Yet. One day, perhaps, but not today.

Thanks Dave, Judi and friends.

I was trying to post earlier but kept getting error messages.

Mud - we thank your Dad for his service and what a beautiful poem...well done!

Well done, Dave. Thanks, Judi.

and btw, blurk...you have certainly earned the right to step on that soapbox.

My parents were trout fishing in southern Missouri that day. They drove into town to get dinner that night and noticed the long lines at the gas station. They seldom listen to the radio in the car, especially in that area because all you get is static. At the restaurant, they asked the waitress if something had happened. The waitress's jaw dropped and she said "have you guys been in a cave all day?"

Dad said, "No, just in a river."

When they found out, they packed up and headed home.

my boysies couldn't understand why they had to go to school today.

I am proud to be an American


One of the things that makes us great is that we fight and yell and accuse each other of terrible things in this country--but on 9/11, some of us were killed, others hurt, and NO ONE CARED if the pint of blood they gave or donation they made went to someone of a different race/religious belief/political party/sexual orientation. Nobody gave a damn if what they were doing helped someone who voted for the other guy in 2000, or how they felt about gay marriages, or any of that--the U.S. was one big "US."

One of our lowest points became one of the finest hours of any country in history. Remember that today. You can do it by helping some stranger you'll never see again, or giving the bum on the corner an extra buck, or saying a prayer if you pray. At a stingy guess, for every single person who died on that day, TEN THOUSAND Americans did something in response. And that doesn't even begin to factor in the generosity of other countries as well. So be sad, and grieve--but be proud.

Thanks for the repost Judi. Dave said it all.

I was teaching my journalism class that morning when my wife called and told me about the first plane. My students and I watched the horrendous events unfold on TV and I supposed the lesson we learned that day was that extreme cowardice and extraordinary bravery co-exists in our world.

God Bless America.

I almost forgot to thank KDF for that smack.
Thanks, I needed that.

very well said, jt

got an unusually beautiful 5th Anniversary Tribute to 9/11 in an email. i'm posting it everywhere i can think to. it's the most moving one i've ever seen.

RIP all those lost

I was living on Cape Cod at that time and it was a particularly gorgeous day. I was listening to Bob & Tom, a comedy show, on the radio, and it was the first and last time I'd ever heard them turn serious, which made me turn on the TV, just as the 2nd plane hit. Unlike the rest of the country, we had very noisy skies because of our AFB's proximity to NYC. The feeling I had was similar to the one I'd get every time they tested the air raid sirens during the Cuban Missle Crisis, when we had to hide under our desks.

This terrible disaster has renewed our patriotism, which was in a sad state. My boyfriend's son-in-law had been in Iraq for a year and was about to come home to Ft. Richardson, AK last month when they were told they would be staying another 6 months. I pray for his, and all our brave service men and women's safe return and to all of our miltary - thank you for your dedication to our country and our safety.

Dave, although you often slay us with your wit, I treasure the rare 'serious' pieces because they demonstrate your ability to touch everyone's hearts. They have often helped to heal my heart.

judi, thank you for being such a wonderful research assistant/stealth bloggerette. You're a jewel.

{{ mud }} that was very beautiful.

{{ all bloglits }}

I saved this column when it came out—I still have it. I didn't know if we could still be funny after September 11, and I didn't know what a humorist could say and be relevant about September 11, but Dave did a great job.

Thanks, Dave.

cyn - wow. that's all I can say

On Sept 11 2001, my daughter was 14 and only a few days into her freshman year of high school in Portsmouth, NH. She told me this when she got home:

The door to her classroom opened, and the school nurse whispered into the teacher's ear. The teacher blanched. She stood and asked one of her students to please go with the school nurse. The boy stood up, looking puzzled, and went out the door. The teacher covered her face and began to shake and cry.

Of course, this upset the entire class. The teacher, who had been asked not to say anything, saw the concern in the young faces of her students and very quietly told them that two planes had crashed into the World Trade Center towers in New York, and that the boy in her class, Tommy McGuinnes Jr, was the son of the co-pilot.

The school brought all the students into the auditorium to watch the news on TV. They saw the towers fall. They were terrified. I got the world's biggest hug when she got home... I'm still hugging her....

I can't even look at that tribute without tearing up...thank you cyn

i cant watch that....

How awful, Punkin:(

Me too, Fish.

Siouxie, I agree, can't concentrate on anything but what happened.

Thank you Dave.
Thank you judi.
Thank you blurk.
Thank you everyone else.

Thanks to all our military men and women. Your service is most appreciated, even though we don't say it enough. I, for one, try to thank people in military uniform or camos every time I see them. It's the very least I can do.

One of my most vivid memories came not on 9/11 but a day or two later. At that time, I worked very near Dulles airport, so we were used to constant airplanes overhead; but of course for a few days there was only silence. Then, suddenly we heard an airplane overhead. We all looked out the window, wondering what was going on, wondering if we were being attacked again.

When I saw that it was an F-16, I just about cried in thankfulness. It still brings tears to my eyes thinking about it. I don't know what that pilot was doing, but perhaps his best achievement that day was giving a bunch of us a lump in the throat, a tear in the eye, and thankfulness in the heart.

Because I'm a dick, I'll come right out and say that in general I am not a fan of Mr. Barry's serious writing. However, this piece was among the finest commentary I read following the tragedy. Thank you for the opportunity to read it again.

Sept. 11th is still unfathomable to me to this day. Good article that expresses well in words what so many could not say.

Punkin, I also hug my girls a little tighter after that day. It's a constant reminder of the many who'll never get to feel that.

Watching the news this morning and re-living those horrid moments puts things into perspective once again...

I can watch it again now but I couldn't bring myself to visit Ground Zero last year when we went to NYC - just saw it from a tour bus - far away and I still cried.

I had flown to Detroit on Sept. 10, 2001 on business. On the morning of the 11th I was in a conference room when someone turned on a television set to play a video cassette tape. The TV was set to CNN. It was a couple of minutes after 9 AM, and the second tower had been hit moments before. When they played back the footage of the second hit, all I could think was, “The pilot did that on purpose. HE DID THAT ON PURPOSE.” It sounds stupid now, but that was the mental state I was in. To this day my mind still stumbles and slows when I consider that there are people who would do such a thing willingly.

Everybody, go out and buy a copy of “Boogers are My Beat.” It contains the essay judi posted above and the one Dave wrote a year later. I only wish I could make the English language do the things Dave can. Thanks, Dave.

I'm going to bake some brownies and bring them to our local fire station. Anybody else wanna do the same for theirs?


I'm sorry, but I have to point out... Judi is not a research assistant, she is a research department. We all depend on her just as much as Dave, and she's come through nicely once again.

I can still feel the abject horror of that day. Thanks to all of you for being here now, and then. Even though I have never, personally, met any of you, I feel closer to you than I do to many people that I have know longer.

I was a mommy driving the kids to the Y that morning. My mom called before I left the house, while we were dicussing the unlikelihood of an accidental collision with the WTC, she watched the second plane hit on TV. Charlie Gibson was a wreck; my mom was in tears; I left to take the kids to swim lessons. As I pulled into the Y parking lot, there was a report of the Pentagon attack. I hustled the kids inside and went to watch the TV in the babysitting room. All the mothers who had gathered in there were in awed silence. When the unimaginable happened - it was a chorus of wails louder than any of the babies in the room that I remember. All of us, mothers of sons and daughters, could not imagine the pain in NYC and around the World at that moment of wrenching metal and crushing concrete. We were far removed in rural Ohio, but our hearts were in NYC and Washington, DC and later in PA from that moment till this one. Time seems very short since then. Can it really be five years have come and gone? America grew up that day, not to adulthood, but we are definitely rebellious teens now - out for revenge and justice. I still hold out hope that we can find the mastermind, but I am truly fearful of the next step in America's growth. I fear for what my children will see as America comes of age in the next hundred years.

Blessings to all of you, I know that that sentiment isn't exactly PC these days, but it is what I feel, and, hey, what am I saying? If you are looking for PC, find a different blog.

I remember this as one of the few Dave Barry columns that didn't make me laugh. (I distantly remember another about his son being hit by a car.) I was glad to read it.

I was also glad that the next week, Dave made me laugh again.

The word "glad" isn't quite right, but you know what I mean.

My son is in Cub Scouts, and his Den leader asked us parents to send the boys to school in their uniforms today to "honor and remember". When I told him that he was wearing it, I had to explain why - and ran into what KDF mentioned earlier - he fortunately does not remember it, so it's more of a history thing for him. I just told him an abbreviated (and much less eloquent) version of Dave's column - that some mean people didn't like Americans and killed a lot of people 5 years ago today.

Many thanks to you all, especially you folks like blurk and Wyo and everyone else I can't remember who is or ever has served, and to Dave for having a wonderful way with words and to Judi for the re-run.

I need a tissue. Been sniffing and teary-eyed all day.

Hugs to all!

I love my country but never considered myself overly patriotic - no flags waving at my house, no flag bumper sticker. I vote and pay taxes and travel to countries where they do not have the same rights and privileges that I enjoy. By witnessing people in other countries, my appreciation for where I live has grown, as has my need to work to make it a better country, because, despite its greatness, it has its faults, as do we all. I love this country because I can disagree or agree with the policies of our government, have coffee with someone from a different political belief and have civil discourse on our different philosophies. I never loved this country so much as I did 5 years ago today. I had just moved 3100 miles across the country - because I'm an American and I could choose where to live. Then I took a road trip to Calgary on my way to Banff with my mother before she returned to FL. We woke up on September 11th in Calgary to the devastation in NY, DC and PA and I never in my life ever wanted anything more profoundly than to go "home" - to America - so I could mourn with the rest of the nation. Canada isn't particularly a foreign country to me, but it certainly felt that way on that Tuesday morning. I'll never forget, I don't think anyone ever will or should and I shall spend quite a few quiet moments today meditating and reflecting on those whose lives were taken, the families and friends that were left behind and the sense of innocence that was lost - by me and by this nation.


Thanks, Jolly, I hadn't noticed that Dave revised his bio on judi. I have known all along that judi runs it. ;)

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