It was around 10 something on a Tuesday morning. A Tuesday just like any other day, until it wasn’t. I was in math class, or English class, I can’t remember. I was sitting in the second row behind a girl with brown hair, and in front of me was the door. We were writing a test or doing a quiz, I can’t remember. But here is what I do remember, the teacher from the class next door pops his head into the class, and in one of the sternest voices says “George, you need to see this”.
I was always a kid that had a difficult time paying attention in class. My mind was always thinking about sports. So you can imagine, when someone comes in and says “YOU NEED TO SEE THIS” it must be something serious. None of my classmates knew what “THIS” was until we came back after lunch. “THIS” was September 11, 2001.
I remember sitting in music class after lunch, holding my Tuba, wearing my purple Vince Carter Raptors jersey, when a kid named Carlos Alfonso Roca Rodriguez (yes, this was his name) comes in and tells me what happened. I was surprised, but I still wasn’t understanding the situation. Heck, I didn’t know what the World Trade Center was.
We were just kids, watching all of this unfold in front of us. Naive little kids. We played sports, rode bikes, and did our homework. We didn’t know that day would change our lives forever. In my mind, I was Vince Carter, until I wasn’t. I was a good kid, until I wasn’t. I was a normal kid, until I wasn’t.
This was the day that our identities were shifted.
Our identities were bad.
The discussion of identity is important. In order to know where you’re going, you need to know who you are and where you came from. I’m going to use the next post or two to expand further on this concept.