September 11, 2002

Only One September 11th

It’s weird to look at this page today and see that date. I say the date to myself, like I do every day, “Today is September 11th.” But then some other part of my brain kicks in and says, “No, it’s not. That happened last year.” The date and the event have become so entwined in the national consciousness that it’s not possible to separate them. Has that ever happened in history before? The 4th of July is the only other date that holds any signifigance in and of itself, and that’s always a celebration. The battle cry during WWII was “Remember Pearl Harbor!” not “Remember December 7th!” We say “the Moon landing,” not “July 20th.” We say “Hiroshima,” not “August 6th.” But by unofficial consensus, Americans have named this event “September 11th,” and so it shall stay, most likely.

But it’s still a phrase that we have to keep using for more mundane events. “I start my new job on September 11th” – “What’s your birthdate?” “September 11th.” – “When does that milk turn sour?” “September 11th.” It’s not like we can retire that date, in the way a lot of buildings don’t have a 13th floor. We’re not going to start seeing calendars that run September 9th, 10th, 12th. So I guess we’ll forever have to live with the paradox: Every year has an 11th of September, but there will always only be one September 11th.

Filed under The Computer Vet Weblog

Comments (0)

Comments RSS - Write Comment

No comments yet

Write Comment