Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I get email

I was first drawn to your Forbes blog because I had been laid off and, well, misery loves company.

But your Atlantic blog on PTSD takes that to a whole new level. I note that one of the comments says it is the 'most well-written' etc and I agree.

So why not just post a comment and be done with it? Even with the anonymity barrier of the internet I cannot go there.

I went to Tulane so Katrina was a special focus: few people now remember that it was the counterpunch of Katrina that caused the trouble--Vermont is the NOLA of Irene.

But that is not why I am writing.

What you said about your experience regarding Katrina made me confront something I have been struggling with for now very nearly ten years exactly.

When the sky in NYC turns crisper and bluer as fall approaches all I can think of is 9/11 and how it was that I was at a funeral in [redacted] NJ that morning rather than walking in between the twin towers to my office at [redacted]

And it was not just that day. For months afterward the air I breathed to and from work was rancid and acrid. I tried describing it to a friend who happens to be a Vietnam Vet and he held up his hand and just said 'stop'--I know that smell. You are smelling bodies. Bodies slowly burning. And as the ferry painfully slowly took me to and from [redacted] and [redacted] I was an unwilling tourist of tombstones of twisted steel. No one talks about that.

OK. So I have taken a bit off my chest. And I feel a bit better now.