"Asleep in my dorm room."
Wow. That might have been the most non-descriptive, vaguely written lead in the history of journalism. I'm all about setting new lows around here.
I was actually getting the answer out of the way. You know, the answer we're all going to share today.
What's the question? What's the question, you say? Look at the date of this article and ask that again.
Where were you five years ago today?
I was asleep in my dorm room. My first class was at 9:30. Luckily it was in a classroom just downstairs, so I could theoretically roll out of bed 10 minutes prior and make it with time to spare.
As I sat down in class the teacher and a couple students were talking about something that hit the World Trade Center. As is with most early mornings, my brain functions at a very slow, stubborn pace. But that wasn't important. My prime focus was on pretending I did the required reading assignment.
Ninety minutes later I faked out the class, but more notably, the professor. Yeah, I read the short story. Heh. Suckers.
Tuesdays in my first semester of college rocked. I had just the one class at 9:30 then, like Sean Connery on Saturday Night Live's rendition of Celebrity Jeopardy, "The day is mine!" It was time to check my fantasy baseball team and see how they had done, as well as rotate out the starting pitchers for ones slated to throw that night.
The Internet was ungodly slow. Well, for the last couple of weeks it was notoriously sluggish, thanks to all those crazy kids downloading from Napster.
The TV reception was fuzzy. That was gonna make it rather unpleasant to watch The Price Is Right.
I finally loaded ESPN's front page. A story on the sidebar noted that an airplane crashed into the World Trade Center in New York. That's odd, I thought. ESPN doesn't normally run non-sports news on their front page.
A bit later ESPN reported that the Yankees game was cancelled. Well, nuts. Roger Clemens was scheduled to start, and I had him on my fantasy team.
Later the commissioner announced that all games would be cancelled for the day. Then it was that all games were cancelled until Friday.
Well, damn, I said. This is serious. For I was a serious sports fan, and my Arizona Diamondbacks were in the thick of a pennant run.
Bowling Green's football team was scheduled to go to a Lou Holtz-led South Carolina. A ranked team. BG didn't have a prayer of winning. But college football was cancelled for that week, and our team was saved. The NFL cancelled their games that week as well.
What the hell was I going to do for a week? Certainly not my reading assignments. Did I know anyone who lived in New York? Not that I could think of. My friend who lived down the hall knew a guy who went to NYU, but that was it.
All of the shows on TV were talking about this thing. SportsCenter focused on athletes impacted by this, which games were cancelled, how they'd be rescheduled, and other stories of that nature. The late night shows certainly weren't ready, either.
I had some computer games, and I thought about donating blood. I tried to keep on writing on my website back then to ease the hurt felt by everyone, but the jokes didn't come out so well:
Tough week for everyone. Thankfully I don't know anyone who lives even remotely close to NYC. A lot of people think that Afghanistan extremists are to blame. Do we really know who did this? Should we just bomb every country alphabetically? I'm sure our faces will be red if the people of Zambia have anything to do with this.
The Onion did it a little better. Then the games eventually resumed and things kind of went back to normal.
Well, that's where I was. I never said it was a heartfelt story.