I am extremely happy.
No, seriously, lately life has been one big huge reminder of how great it is to be alive. My son’s wedding in Montana not only took me to a monumental family event, but also to the natural monuments of Yellowstone and all the beauty that life has to offer.
I’ve never been able to accept compliments very well. And so, when life goes well, I feel surprised. When life goes extremely well, I actually have a tough time handling it. Whether it’s an underlying feeling that I don’t deserve it, or a suspicion that I know it won’t last long, that doesn’t matter. I’m awkward at best when it comes to good times. I was even telling my step-daughter (and I hate that term) Kjersti at my acupuncture appointment the other day, when she asked, “How’s it going?”, I told her, “I’m really, really happy right now.”
So, while Monday didn’t ‘harsh my buzz’, it did provide a moment of concern. Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m a big believer about things happening for the reason they do, all things are meant to be, etc. but this past Monday, the 16th anniversary of the 9-11 attack on the U.S., I heard comments that bothered me.
That fateful morning, my radio co-hosts–Bruce Murdock and Alice Porter—and I were heading into just another day, with a pre-recorded interview to play in that 5:30-6am time slot. After all, most people weren’t up by then, so if we had an interview and played it during that early morning stretch, we could replay it later in the morning–say, in the 8am hour–and most of our audience wouldn’t have heard it. This particular interview was with the author of a book about 9-1-1- calls. Thus, the 9-11 theme. We were within minutes of playing it when we noticed on the TV monitor in our studio that a plane had crashed into one of the Twin Towers in New York. We assumed it was some small aircraft that had screwed up badly…but next thing you know, we were getting notices about a special ABC report. That canned interview never aired. Life would never be the same.
Thousands of lives were lost. Our lives were changed forever. Remember going out to the airport and actually walking out to the gate to greet a passenger with a funny sign or flowers? Gone.
So, this past Monday, when I heard the things people were saying about 9-11, it bothered me. “C’mon, that was a long time ago!”, “Oh, just move on!” or “We don’t need another holiday!”, I just shook my head.
First off, those of use who remember that day will never be the same. It was our Pearl Harbor, our Alamo, our reminder that our perfect little land of America is just as susceptible as any place on the globe. This isn’t political rhetoric, this was people’s lives. People who weren’t planning to have it all end that day. In their honor, I cherish every day since then. What they wouldn’t give to be able to complain about politics or global warming or any of the other complaints we have about today.
I truthfully don’t know what to do about that date. Make a National Day of Remembrance….or, does that make it a target for terrorists to use for an attack? Let it fade into history? (I’d have a hard time with that)
The bottom line is that it’s a decision that should be left to those who will be here 40 years from now. I doubt that includes me, but then again, I’m a stubborn bastard. I won’t go easily.
So, it is for that reason that I can’t get too caught up in the lack of enthusiasm about an event that seriously shaped my life 16 years ago. So, I’ll express concern and then go back to being extremely happy.
However: never forget!