Where were you when the lights went out?

@savak03 (6688)
United States
September 11, 2015 3:20pm CST
This was a joke that I had heard several times in the past. The answer of course is in the dark but some people would come up with inventive and sometimes off color answers. I thought about this today when I was thinking about how memory plays an important part in our lives. Most people's memory fades with time but some older ones can still regale their listeners with tales of their childhood antics. My memory fades faster than most people I think. I can't remember any of my childhood with the exception of a few isolated scenes taken out of context. Most of the time I can't even tell you when those few scenes occurred or where I was at the time. In fact I would be hard pressed to remember what happened last month. I just got a letter in the mail from a doctors office I visited at the end of last month. They wanted me to fill out a survey about how I was treated there. I have no problem doing it but they ask questions like how long I waited in the waiting room and how long I waited in the exam room before the doctor came in. If I had known there was going to be a test I would have set a timer. Anyway this got me to thinking about how much I did remember about my past. There are several times I do remember clearly exactly where I was at the time. These were tied to events that was going on that were traumatic. The first event was when John F. Kennedy was assassinated. I was in the seventh grade and we were sitting in our classroom listening to the news. Our teacher said we didn't have to do lessons that afternoon. The next time was when the space shuttle blew up on take off. I was in the drug store and the druggist had the TV on which for him was unprecedented, I thought it was some science fiction program until I saw the stunned look on everyone's faces. And of course we have the date that today is commemorating. It is amazing that it takes trauma to make us remember accurately. So where were you when the planes hit
7 people like this
6 responses
• Lakewood, Colorado
11 Sep 15
I was at home where I lived at that time upstairs in my bedroom and I had turned the television on to see the horrible sight.
2 people like this
@valmnz (12574)
• New Zealand
11 Sep 15
I remember my childhood well and, in fact, have written a book based on it. Re the planes hitting, I was asleep in bed here in NZ and awoke to the images on TV next morning.
1 person likes this
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
11 Sep 15
Another very descriptive word. I just don't know what they hoped to accomplish by these actions. I guess we never will.
1 person likes this
• Lakewood, Colorado
11 Sep 15
@savak03 It is a never ending quest for vengeance and still exists today.
@BarBaraPrz (16859)
• St. Catharines, Ontario
18 Sep 15
Where? Brushing my teeth before leaving for work when I heard about a plane hitting a building and I immediately flashed to the scene in The World According to Garp... When I got to work I found out it was a leetle more serious than that. Speaking of memory, I recently read Still Alice by Lisa Genova... a novel dealing with early onset Alzheimer's disease. Highly recommend it.
2 people like this
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
25 Sep 15
I will look that book up. It sounds interesting but I hope that is not what's going on in my case because I've been noticing this effect on myself since my early teens. I would not want it to be that Alzheimer's could effect us that young. Besides, I have never forgotten who I was or where I was. It is just that my past keeps fading away. Although I have found the past few months that I can recover some of those memories by searching for them. I started a family tree on Ancestry, primarily to search for my birth mother. And while using their research tools I have uncovered facts that have triggered memories of my childhood that I thought were gone forever.
@Rosekitty (19500)
• San Marcos, Texas
11 Sep 15
I was at home watching the today show and saw it happen right in front of my eyes..the news people didn't know what to think..like maybe it was a hoax or something and then it happened again next tower..so so sad..my daughters friend has today as her BD and she really didn't know how to celebrate it after that.. By the way..i never do surveys anymore unless they are paying me somehow..so i always ask or look to see if there is money involved..if not in the recycle bin it goes..
1 person likes this
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
11 Sep 15
It did seem like a hoax at first. We had never seen this kind of thing on American soil and it was a shock to know it could happen here also. I think I will follow your advice on this survey business. Why waste my time without some compensation.
1 person likes this
@Rosekitty (19500)
• San Marcos, Texas
11 Sep 15
@savak03 one day i got this envelope in my mailbox at home..almost through it out but for some reason opened it and they asked me to do a survey and there was 2 brand new one dollar bills in there..said when i mail it back already stamped from them, they would send me 5 dollars..so i did..the fiver showed up about a week later..then they asked me to do a phone survey and would send me ten dollars..i did that and got the ten in the mail a week later..so never throw your junk mail away..hahah
1 person likes this
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
11 Sep 15
@Rosekitty My daughter is actually doing surveys on her smart phone. She's getting a respectable balance built up in her account. She has to reach fifty dollars before they will issue a payout but I think she is over halfway there.
1 person likes this
• United States
1 Oct 15
I learned this in psychology. When something tragic happens, our brain holds onto where we were and what we were doing at the time and we never forget. I was actually in my bedroom on the phone talking to a friend about the possibility of being pregnant (I was) and my call waiting beeped in when another friend called to tell me to turn the TV on, that a plane flew into one of the towers. Then as I was watching, I saw the second plane hit.
1 person likes this
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
3 Oct 15
I just find it so amazing that our brains are hardwired that way. Why can't the pleasant memories have, at least, the same affect?
1 person likes this
• United States
4 Oct 15
@savak03 If the pleasant memory is very emotional, I think works. Like the time I put my name in for a $600 scholarship and my son kept saying "why did you do that,? You won't win" Well I will never forget the phone call I got from campus saying I won!
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
10 Oct 15
@Carmelanirel2 That made him eat his words didn't it.
1 person likes this
@TLChimes (4845)
• United States
12 Sep 15
I watched it unfold live on the news because we had it on already. That morning I had assigned my homeschooled son the job of watching the morning news and picking a story to write a paragraph on. He learned more about it then his freshmen (young teenager) brother did. The schools didn't want the kids talking about it... which I found appalling. I watched both space shuttles fall out of the sky..... I was at home for one and at the hospital on the end part of a ten day stay for my 3 year old. I was at work when the power grid failed for a lot of the East Coast. Everyone was worried that it was another terror attack.
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
15 Sep 15
Do you find it odd that our clearest memories are attached to the most tramatic events? Why would the school want to stifle the children's conversation about that. Don't they realize that talking about something like that can help you deal with it?
1 person likes this
@TLChimes (4845)
• United States
15 Sep 15
@savak03 I do have a few very clear memories that are tied to joy but I don't think our joys are as so unexpected or as HUGE as those traumatic moments so they have a harder impact. Because schools are not always the smartest places.
1 person likes this
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
15 Sep 15
@TLChimes You are right about the schools. They are not the brightest. But if they can at least teach our children to read they can learn anything they want to from books. I can't think of any joyful memories at the moment although I;m sure I have had some. But I think you are right trauma makes a more lasting impact.
1 person likes this
@Susan2015 (18036)
• United States
11 Sep 15
I was at home and getting ready for work. It was very shocking to see.
@savak03 (6688)
• United States
15 Sep 15
Yes it was very shocking. I kept telling myself that this cannot be happening here. It was unprecedented. And when the story came out about the passengers that overpowered the hijackers on the one plane and crashed it before it could reach the target I cried like a baby. I still do in fact.