I. The Yarn Harlot has gone to New Orleans. I'm not entirely sure why her post seems so worth reading that I'm linking from here, not the knitting side. Perhaps because so much of what we hear about New Orleans now is quasi-technical: it's about the specifics of the aftermath, what have the insurance companies failed to do, how many people have left, what does pundit x think should have been done differently by agencies y and z and what they should do differently in the future. This is just a Canadian with a camera going there on book tour, but she gives a little bit of the big picture, somehow.
II. We have a famous emeritus visiting us from New York. Giving talks about the days when giants walked the earth (at least in Los Alamos and Princeton). He's old enough that he came here from Europe, as a schoolboy, in the aftermath of World War II. Turns out we went to the same high school in the city, as have some of his grand-nieces and -nephews. But as soon as the name of the school was mentioned, he started talking about what the students, including his relatives, had gone through, had seen and heard, on September 11.
This year we collectively seem to have become sort of embarrassed about remembering. How big should commemorations be? Isn't it awful how every blogger under the sun needs to tell you where they were, and what they felt, on that day? But I was struck by how the topic had come up so naturally, so inevitably, for someone who had lived through some of the epic horriblenesses of the twentieth century. He lives in Manhattan, and he's watched his relatives grow up there. Perhaps he worries about how they'll be remembering their youth?
(Perhaps I'm just oversensitized; I'm coming up to the end of The Emperor's Children, and various crucially important events are all planned for September 10 through 13, 2001. Don't tell me anything. Please.)