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Take your candlelight vigil and shove it

tower jumper

You know, I meant to do a proper September 11 post today, but I don’t have the spit.

Every year this damn anniversary rolls around and I get more and more wadded up and pissed off about it. I’m going to feel prickly and impossible all day. The memorials make me fucking insane. They’re all “boo hoo” and tinkly piano music and kumbafuckingya and it all Could Not Be Farther from the way I feel about what happened that day.

I’m ashamed at the body count. We didn’t do right by those poor bastards in the towers. Not much to do about the people who were vaporized on contact (except prevent the whole damn thing in the first place), but they were the lucky ones, anyhow. We should’ve gotten it together and evacuated the whole area the moment the North Tower was hit. It was bound to collapse eventually; that was reason enough to clear the block even before a plane struck the second tower and cut off hundreds more.

Have you listened to the 911 calls? It’s hard to take. Like the scared secretary who hides under her desk and whispers into the phone while the heat and smoke sneak up on her. An angry man tries to get some straight answers, right up to the moment the floor crashes away under his feet. “Hold tight. Help is coming,” the operators said over and over, knowing that help damn well wasn’t coming. No help could possibly come. But what else could they say?

There were as many as two hundred jumpers. Cubicle dwellers who went in early on a Tuesday morning to catch up on some paperwork found themselves smashing their ergonomic swivel chairs through the glass to suck in a little cool oxygen. They leaned out the windows for a moment and then launched themselves straight into the thin September sky. How awful was the thing behind them to make a hundred storey fall look better? How bad does it have to hurt to work up the nerve?

Jesus Christ.

Spare me your moments of silence and .gif files of crying eagles. Osama loves your tears; to him they are like sweet, sweet candy. You don’t answer evil with a Hallmark Card. This calls for an ugly black cloud of vengeance and death to roll over our enemies — and anyone unlucky enough to be standing too near our enemies. It calls for wildly and crazily disproportionate response, so that even the dimmest cave monkey gets the idea Uncle Sam is a little too bad and too crazy to fuck with. Why not? The ‘international community’ hates us as hard as it can already. Only…the moment passed and we still send millions in aid to that ugly ululating Palestinian cow with the glasses.

For maybe a week after the story of Flight 93 went around, people realized that government isn’t always going to be around to protect us, and we have to grow up and butch up and look out for each other sometimes. And then everyone gradually fell back into a government-issue haze of Czar this and identity card that and pointless, humiliating airport security rituals.

I stared at my clock radio this morning and fantasized about lobbing it out the window when some random Rhode-Islander-on-the-street whined into the microphone “Iraq, Afghanistan…when will the killing end?” This is a neighbor. Somebody — however blessedly remote the prospect — I might need to watch my back some day.

God, I hate September 11. It gets harder every year…

September 11, 2007 — 1:33 pm
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