Today is September 11th, and while I would not only like to refrain from making political statements in addition to not sharing too much of my personal life on this blog, I have written something in reference to the events on this date in every blog I’ve ever had. This should be no different.

I always scratch my head when I speak to people or read the op-ed page in the newspaper (yes, I still read the paper) and hear or read people saying that people should forget the events that happened on this date. There are plenty of things in life I have no problem forgetting. You can forget songs, you can forget what you had for breakfast, you can forget your house keys, but there’s no way I can forget a day when my world and the lives of so many people changed for good.

Being born in 1976, I’ve been fortunate enough to live in a relatively peaceful time in history-for Americans at least. Watching airplanes fly into two buildings less than 10 miles away from where I lived, buildings that I saw in the distance almost no matter where I was walking in the city, was…for lack of a better word, stunning. It’s one thing to watch the news and see bombs falling from other countries on the other side of the world, quite another to see it happening very literally in your own backyard. Not to overdramatize, and I don’t know if I was particularly innocent at that point in time, but seeing the World Trade Center towers fall, traveling home after work that day and witnessing the stunned silence of almost everyone I encountered, walking outside of the store I worked at and seeing a bright blue sky polluted with thick, foul-smelling black smoke…at some point during that day I and many others lost their innocence or naivete about the world or whatever you want to call it…for good.

There are thousands upon thousands of people who have stories far more harrowing than mine. I mean, I emerged unscathed physically, and somehow by the grace of God, neither I nor anyone who I was close to lost any of their loved ones. In no way am I trying to turn myself into a victim of this tragedy-I was a close-range bystander at best. I’m just saying that when they write about our generation in the history books, this will most likely be the defining moment. It changed the lives of even people who witnessed it peripherally. And it’s certainly worth taking a moment to remember all the innocent people who were lost on that day and the days following.

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