Monday, September 11, 2006

September 11. The hype is horrendous. I wish people would stop. Where was i on Sepetmber 11? I happened to be crossing City Hall Park on my way to Beekman Downtown Hospital for my appointment at 9 AM; i was early, and as i was walking from the BMT City Hall subway station, an incredibly loud BOOM rushed through the air, and a sudden shadow covered everything, i looked up to see a plane awfully low in the sky....

I rushed to the lobby of the hospital, but by that point, people were rushing outside to watch the plane hit the World Trade Center. Within seconds, the phones at the hospital were ringing off the hook. The guards were telling people to stay calm, and they were waiting to find out what was happening. This was 8:45 AM; by 9 AM, the guards asked everyone in the lobby (who had been waiting to go upstairs to the various doctors' offices) to leave, as they started to bring in people who were bleeding, because they had been hit by debris (falling glass, mostly) from the World Trade Center (which was about five blocks from Beekman Downtown Hospital). I walked past Pace University, and went to the subway, and got on.... No one in the subway was panicked (because no one knew what had happened) but i rushed home....

When i got to our loft, no one was there! But the TV was on and Matt Lauer and Katie Couric were talking about the fact that the twin towers of the World Trade Center had been hit by planes. I ran to the phone to call Christine, because she worked in the Federal Building and was near the World Trade Center, and i wanted to tell her to drop everything and just leave! But i only got her message. Where was she?

Then i heard voices on outside... people were on the fire escape, it was Larry and Christine! They came in and we all watched TV, and then rushed out to the fire escape (the fire escape had a view of lower Manhattan, and we could see the World Trade Center to the south). At some point, the three of us were on the fire escape as the towers started to collapse, and we saw it happen, right before our eyes.

I called Christine this morning, Larry and i could NOT watch any of the coverage of the various 9/11 ceremonials. One thing no one has talked about is how Chinatown was commandeered, how it was roped off and remains (basically) roped off. One reason: because Chinatown is one of the only areas in lower Manhattan where the real estate is in the hands of nonwhites, so Chinatown became the site of being blocked off. (Why wasn't Tribeca, which was the actual site of the attack, blocked off and made inaccessible? You think the rich white people would stand for it? So City Hall and the police have used Chinatown as one massive parking lot, roped off from traffic except for police cars... and if you ask Bloomberg, he wouldn't recognize how racist he's being.)

What's amazing (almost amusing, in a sick way) is how Tribeca and Soho are two areas in the city where the property values have simply skyrocketed. And rich people moved in left and right, and when enough of them moved in to our old building in Soho, it was time for us to leave, because i couldn't stand being on the board and trying to keep costs down and arguing when these people wanted new elevators and new... whatever. And then, the other rich people moving in around that building have had no consideration. Our windows used to look out over the roof of a building on West Broadway... but in the last year, some rich person bought the top floor and simply built a two story addition (how the hell can anyone build more than one story on top of a New York City rooftop? but money fixes everything) and there goes everything.

It's like rich people consuming rich people! It would be funny if it weren't so disgusting.

One question: why do these rich people want to live in Tribeca with their children? Hello? Haven't they heard about the air quality downtown? Or do they think that their money will exempt them? Yet right next to the site of the World Trae Center, there are buildings being converted and built, for residential lofts which are selling well into the millions, so obviously the market is for rich people, and there they go, buying these places up.

Are they crazy? The only consolation i have is that the air quality is still bad, and that these people are paying for the privilege of developing lung caner. Which might not be such a bad thing: all the rich people dying off, and having no one else to blame but themselves and their greed for space in lower Manhattan.

If only George W. Bush would decide to live near the World Trade Center after he leaves office!

But i can't stand how, in the last few days, the Republicans have taken control of the agenda by using 9/11. It's sickening.


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