Sunday, August 23, 2009

Someone mentioned 9/11 in another thread, and it gots me to thinking, hey, yeah, those were fracked up times man, fracked up.

So post your impressions of the day, if you were there. This is NOT a conspiracy theory hash thread. We all know that Bush was in the kahoots anyway. ;0)

I want to hear your accounts of the day if you were there.

My story.
I was working in the vicinity, and my birthday had been the day before. I was smashed, and hung over. My boss had a habit of calling me if I was so much as 1 minute late, so walking in at 10 past 9 was not going to be fun. I come out of whitehall station, only too see what looks like confetti sprinkling from the sky. "those silly americans, its probably flag day, columbus day, or the yankees won the world series again" I discount the phenomenon and run to the office. I slip under the cover of the cubicles to mine, and pop up my head.

2 seconds later, boss pops his head out of the his window office. 'SHIT', I'm busted, I think. "Hey, did you hear? A plane crashed into the World Trade Center!"

First thought in my mind -- "YESS! he didn't notice that I was late!!" Second thought in my mind -- "another one of those stupid crop dusting farmers who lost control of his plane again?" Third thought in my mind -- "heeeey wait a second, there ain't no farms in lower manhatten! wtf?"

Check Yahoo (google wasn't as dominant back then, and was still the place to go for news.) Web site server no response. WTF the internet is down?!?!?

oooooooooh donkey doodles, this is something serious.

I look out the window. I don't now why, as my view points the other way and I can't even see the towers. then I hear a loud reverberating Booooooooooong! The kind of sound that those garbage trucks make when they drive over those metal plates they cover holes in the road with in manhattan. Oh my, I wonder if that was just a very very heavy truck running over those plates outside. (later on, I deduced that it was the second plane hitting)

Security announcement comes on over the PA. Evacuate the building. News from the floor (they have CNN and all the news channels continuously on) Word is that america is under attack.

WTF! Gets me the heck outta here! I'm thinking.

We leave the building... and stand around outside. Security likes to think that they have everything under control, but lets face it, there is no authority in chaotic times. More confetty falling from the sky outside, drifting down like large chunks of snow. I pick one up. Its obviously a piece of drywall this time, larger than the first ones I saw in the morning. I put it in my pocket.

We wait for around 15 min. Security then calls us to return to the building. (likely they realized that inside at least we would be safe from falling debris)

A couple buddies and I say, to heck with that! We want to see the damage! I mean, this is NEWS. We head over to the Battery tunnel, we see the two large black smoldering holes in the towers, a sight now emblazoned in the worlds consciousness. We stare for a while, and just wonder how many dead. And how the heck where those firefighters going to put out a fire that high. Do sprinklers even work if a plane were to crash through the water pipes? I pondered these questions as we just stood in awe. (I'm an engineer after all) At this point, we were still sure that somehow things would get sorted out. I mean, this is AAAmerica! Fuck Yeah! They will think of something. Right? So with that mental reassurance, we decided to get a camera and video cam from my friends apartment, who lived in battery park, whose building had its power out. Against all of the security guards protests, we proceed up 30 flights of stairs, in the dark (rather fun actually in retrospect) got the camera stuff, and went back down to the vantage point from batter park, and started filming. I started commentating on the video CNN style. We were walking closer and closer to the buildings. NYPD were trying to marshall people back, but they didn't have enough officers to keep an eye on everyone, it was easy to get around them. So here we are, walking up Rector street towards the towers, when well, you know,

So in the next 2 seconds the following happened: First thought in my mind -- "holy shit! Wow! My god, this is really happening!!" Second thought in my mind -- "Oh SHIT! its going to flatten us!" Third thought in my mind -- "ooooh phew, it looks like its just falling straight down... no worries" Forth thought in my mind -- "Wait.... but what about the... Oh donkey doodles! the debris cloud! the debris cloud! Run!"

The girl with us faints, the weight of the situation is too much for her, and she is unable to run, me and my buddy we haul her up on our shoulders and hussle back as fast as we could, every couple seconds or so, I turn around and snap a picture with my disposable camera.

First thought in my mind after we start running: -- where they heck can we go? Jump in the river? hmm...But drying out my socks and shoes... and we could drown. Bad idea.

Thankfully the cloud dissapates a bit after we turn the corner, and head for one of the office buildings beside the South Ferry subway, we duck into the lobby. the dust cloud covers us like white funeral ashes in some buddist ceremony.

The rest is history. I never saw the second building fall, we were taking refuge in the lobby of the building, and the final picture I took that day was of me and my self fashioned face mask filter, made out of panty hose that I bought at the newstand smoke shop in the basement of the lobby.

I still have that little piece of drywall today.


1 comment:

Planet Huddleston said...

I was in Ottawa when it happened. I arrived late to work too, closer to 10am I think. The office was all abuzz with the news. Somebody had setup a TV in the cafeteria and people were congregating around it. I just remember not believing what I was seeing/hearing. It took a long time to really sink in that it was actually happening. It was pretty shocking!