Tag Archives: Empire State Building

9/11 Chronicles-Volume 1

911

As we approach the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks I will be posting some of what I wrote on the days following September 11, 2001. The following I wrote within days of the attacks and was the first piece I wrote in reaction to what took place.

Living in NY on 9/11/01

On Tuesday morning Sept.11, 2001, we witnessed an event that will change the world forever. This act committed by the forces of evil against the civilized world is one that changes the shape of our future. As a resident of New York, I have seen a city traumatized, saddened, and angered. We were all abruptly forced to change the way we look at everything that we do and to alter our perspective on a daily basis. The average New Yorker will take serious umbrage to anyone touching something that belongs to them, especially when it belongs to them collectively.
At around 10AM on Tuesday morning I found myself around the corner from the original symbol of New York City, the Empire State Building. I am not ashamed to say that I was afraid to be there, yet like so many others there, felt a comfort in being with my fellow New Yorkers. After managing to get one call out, a call that created a chain to let my family know that I was OK, I started to walk uptown and to the East, and like many of the people who live in Queens, I walked over the 59th Street Bridge. When I looked to my right, where I used to see the symbol of the New York skyline, now all I saw was a trail of black smoke. I got home safely after a day of much walking and fear yet never lost sight of the fact that I was one of the lucky ones.
As someone who considers himself to be a New Yorker I have been deeply moved and grateful for the attitude and support of our fellow Americans. Today when I bought my first American flag, I did it for 2 reasons. Out of a tremendous pride for living in the greatest city in the world, and out of a gratitude and pride for living in the greatest country in the world. This week while we are all Americans, to us in New York it felt like the entire country was a country of New Yorkers.
The war that was declared on us a few days ago was an act of evil against our basic good. But true good will always conquer evil, and the victims of the attack on Tuesday will not die for nothing if the proper actions are taken to make this the beginning of a series of events that will insure the safety and freedom for us and our future generations.

HOW TO BUY THE BOOK

CLICK TO JOIN “THE GLOBAL COALITION FOR ISRAEL” ON FACEBOOK

Follow Holland’s Heroes on Twitter @hollandsheroes

email: hollandsheroes80@gmail.com

Advertisements

These things happened….

momnj

These things happened,

The publishing of Ulysses by James Joyce;  The first swimmer crossed the English Channel; Calvin Coolidge became president; the first Winter Olympics took place; Charles Lindbergh crossed the Atlantic Ocean; Walt Disney created Mickey Mouse; Herbert Hoover became president; the Stock Market crashed;Penicillin was discovered; the planet Pluto was discovered; Empire State Building was completed; Amelia Earhart crossed the Atlantic; Adolph Hitler’s Nazi Party became ruling party in Germany; Social security was established; Golden Gate Bridge was opened; Japan invaded China; Germany annexed Austria; World War II;  Japan attacked Pearl Harbor; Atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki; 60 million people killed in World War II;  6 million Jews were killed by the Nazis in the Holocaust; Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier; the State of Israel was founded; United Nations was formed;  NATO was formed; Korean War; Elvis Presley; Polio vaccine created;  Disneyland Opened; JFK became President; I was born; Cuban Missile Crisis; JFK assassinated; The Beatles; Vietnam War; Star Trek series; first Super Bowl; Apollo 11 landed on the moon; Terrorists Killed Israeli Athletes at Munich Olympics; Watergate scandal forced President Richard Nixon’s resignation; the movie Star Wars; John Paul II became Pope; Iranian Muslim revolution; CNN was formed; AIDS discovered; Personal Computers were invented; Soviet Union collapsed; Apartheid ended; Nelson Mandela became president of South Africa; 2 different Bush’s became Presidents; Bill Clinton became president; the Euro currency was formed; 3,000 killed in 9/11 attack in New York; Iraq War; the Internet was created; Holland lost 3 World cup finals; Justin and Kim got married.

These things happened, in the 92 years between the birth of these 2 people, my mother Sipora Groen and my youngest family member and great-niece Jara.

If this doesn’t give you hope nothing does.


A Day of Funny Mishaps, Good Company and Chocolate Wine

chocovine_originalThe purpose of Holland’s Heroes is primarily to promote the book  “Jew Face”.  As many of you already know, I often use this forum to discuss matters of the day and personal views or philosophies.  In this particular post however, I will be doing none of the above.  Instead this is me keeping a promise and sharing the events of what was a fun day filled with a series of minor incidents and mishaps, none of which would spoil the festivities.

As I do not use this forum to discuss my personal life in any detail, and since I believe in honoring and respecting the privacy of others, I will be somewhat vague in regard to the people involved when telling my story of December 25, 2012.

The plan was for me to be at the home of a special friend (the use of the world special here is all any of you nosey ones will get) in Queens by 4:30 so that we could travel from there shortly after 5 to her mother’s friend who had invited all of us to enjoy the Christmas festivities.  The woman we were visiting, a very friendly woman I had met just a few days earlier, was kind enough to invite me to her home and enjoy excellent company, food, and drinks.  I must say, as someone who is a lightweight, it feels like I’ve already had more alcohol between Thanksgiving and today, as I write this the date is December 27, than I had the previous almost 11  months of the year.  And that is before I even celebrate New Years and my birthday which will fall this year the day after New Years.  If you are scratching your head you passed the “is the reader paying attention?” test since New Years is on January 1 every year and my birthday falls the day after New Years every year on January 2.   Anyway, I arrived near my friend’s home, got off the bus, ran across the street, tripped over the island, stumbled, regained my balance and made it to the other side just ahead of the oncoming traffic.  Incredibly lucky to be alive (the drama is just for effect, it wasn’t THAT close), I made it to my friend’s house and waited with the 2 lovely ladies for the car service that was to take us to the party.

When the car arrived we put 3 large bags in the trunk of the car.  Being the man in the group, I decided it would be appropriate and mildly macho to carry 2 of the 3 bags, so when we arrived at our destination I went to take out the same 2 bags.  As I pulled away from the trunk I saw something in the trunk that might have fallen from one of the bags.  I moved forward to double check the trunk exactly at the same time that my friend, someone who I thought actually cared about me, pulled the hood of the trunk closed on top of my head.  The assassination attempt was not successful however and I still live to tell the story, even though I had to wait 2 days till my memory returned and the headaches subsided (more nonsense since 5 minutes after it happened I felt perfectly fine).

The house was filled with Christmas decorations.  And when I say filled, I mean it did not matter which way you turned your head.  Lights, ornaments, statues were everywhere.  The only problem is that since most houses are not equipped to use as much lighting as the Empire State Building, within 10 minutes of being there different fuses took turns turning off.  Of course the upstairs fuse went off just as we were walking up the stairs to drop off the coats, but despite my wobbly condition I made it up and down safely.   I did manage to knock down some decorations on the staircase, with the help of my friend’s mother, but it was dark so I honestly have no idea what it was we knocked down anyway, which means it is almost like it never happened.  Shhhh. Honorable mention goes out to my flashlight app on my smart phone.

The food was delicious, the wine was good and getting better by the glass, and little by little more people made it to the party.  I had Chocolate Wine, which, I am proud and happy to say came from Holland since it was quite good.  If it sucked I never would have written about it and certainly not shown a picture of it.

The food was heated on sternums, so when it was time to clean up there was one large aluminum pan that I helped the hostess carry to the kitchen.  Only half of the water in the pan made it to the sink, the other half ending up on my arms and on the legs of the hostess.  At least this wasn’t life threatening, even though I was fearful of drowning at one point (more nonsense).

I discussed fantasy football with the hostess’s son, much to the dismay of my friend, and then proceeded to watch his young daughter open approximately 250 presents (another exaggeration), but she was a cute little girl so everyone enjoyed watching her having such a nice time.  Plus I got a scarf from the hostess so I was happy too.

The cab came to pick us up, I was not attacked this time, and we all made it home safely albeit it a little ill from the constant stop and go of the car.  The only explanation I can come up with is that the driver was practicing for when he does drive in traffic, because there was none on this night and he still managed to drive like he was on the Van Wyck Expressway North at 5PM on a weekday.  On a personal note, I had a great time and thank all those responsible for making it a fun time for everyone.