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My irreverent yet conservative opinion on topics relevant to the cosmos.

Monday, March 11, 2002

I watched CBS's special on 9/11 last night, and was generally impressed by the footage they showed, though the musical accompaniment at various points seemed misplaced, more appropriate for Deep Impact than a documentary about the worst attack ever on American soil. The producers did a good job of conveying the utter normalcy of that morning before the attacks. Even though you knew it was coming, my reaction was still one of shock when the firefighters, making a routine check for a gas leak underground, suddenly looked skyward just in time to see the first jet hit the north tower. For all who were worried about the footage being unnecessarily graphic, it was actually much more tame than most of what we witnessed on the small screen in the week following the attacks. As one of the firefighters on film commented, those two huge buildings were "reduced to dust."

While it feels a bit early for retrospectives about a chapter in our nation's history that is yet to concluded, the CBS documentary did serve as an apt reminder of how terrible those early days were. Six months later, our perceptions of the world altered, the war on terrorism has become a normal facet of life. For two hours last night, I re-visited the hours and days just after the attacks, when, glued to the television screen, it felt irreverant even to walk across the room, get something to eat, and like an act of cowardice to turn the set off. While life must go on, it is good to have such reminders.

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