11 September 2008

Today's a day to remember and reflect on that deceptively beautiful day seven years ago.

Back then, I lived in Midtown. 47th Street in Hell's Kitchen. I was working at an entertainment law firm then known as Frankfurt Garbus on Madison Avenue, so I hopped aboard the M50 bus for the short commute. As I sat down, the bus driver was annoyingly and uncharacteristically yammering with a couple of my fellow passengers. Not the morning person, I like as much peace in the AM as can be mustered in Manhattan. But then I heard the fantastic topic of conversation, that a plane had struck the WTC.

The M50 crossed avenue after avenue like normal until I exited at Madison and peered to the south. In the distance, I could see some of the plume of smoke billowing from the tower. I then hurriedly got to the office. In a partner's office, one of the many with televisions, I saw a bawling secretary sitting at the desk, with partners, associates, and other staff sitting on the floor, standing, whatever, watching the broadcast.

Thankfully, it's not much of a story. I finally left the office at about noon, walking back crosstown while hordes of people poured north on the avenues. I remember trying to go to Mercury Bar on 9th Avenue to get a drink, perhaps a burger, and spend time with my neighbors (my wife was stuck in Greece at the time, so I was left to my own devices). The bar didn't open that day, so I stayed in, with televisions on in both the living room and upstairs in the loft.

A few weeks ago, I spent an afternoon at the Newseum in DC. The 9/11 exhibit was affecting--it doesn't take much to get me started. I was struck by the wall of newspaper front pages from 9/12, specifically the one below. I still feel the same, seven years on.

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