Let me tell you about my Twin Towers. NOT the “World Trade Center,” but my Twin Towers. When I was 10 years old my uncle was a Port Authority cop. This meant that his “beat” was the entryways to NY and NJ, specifically shipping terminals, bridges, tunnels, airports, and waterfront developments. And the Twin Towers.
One summer evening my uncle decided that he was going to give us a treat nobody ever gets. So he rallied a few of us and brought us to the top of the Twin Tower. The OTHER Twin Tower, the north tower. Not the one with the observation deck near the top, the one with the giant antenna on the roof and nothing but a 3 foot high fence between you and a 1000 foot plunge. I was fucking scared out of my mind. It was sheer terror being up there; I can feel the fear in my chest even as I write this. The winds were strong and we moved closer and closer to the fence. I slid my feet slowly, inching forward. I touched the giant antenna, I leaned over the edge, I felt the wind in my face and the sick fear in my belly...
AND IT WAS GREAT!
I LOVED being up there. I loved that place and I came to love those buildings. It was one of the best days of my life and I never saw them again without thinking of that day. THAT’S why I was hurt that day. I was hurt because they’d fucked with my home, my people and my childhood. Someone stole a lot from me that day.
When it happened I screamed the same curses you did. I swore the same oath you did, that I would get revenge. I gave food and money. I wanted to run down there to help the rescuers but they kept saying over and over on the news “Do NOT come down here. We don’t need any more men”. It’s still a small shame in my heart that I listened to those newscasts and didn’t just go down there. I have a friend who did and I’m so jealous of him. I needed to help, to do something. I just felt helpless. And I hated my enemies: America’s enemies. I hated them with a passion. I hated the Afghanis and the Iraqis. I hated Osama Bin Laden. I hated those fucking Middle East bastards who lived in a turbulent, fucked up land and whose people fought each other constantly over religious necessities and national borders and had done so for centuries. And now they’d brought it here to my house.