It's April 19th...

and I'm haunted by yellow socks.

Every year, on this date, I become even more horribly depressed and paranoid than usual. And everytime I close my eyes I see yellow socks.

It's been 10 years, the building is gone, the devil has been destroyed, but the image of the yellow socks never goes away.

I have a similiar reaction around September 11th, as it was just as horrible an experience as any. I try to keep most of the people faceless, because it's easier to deal with that way. Not that I don't remember that they were human, or that it was any less humane, but the yellow socks makes it so much more horrible, so much more incomprehensible, in my mind.

Was it because it was carried out by one of our own? That one of the "good guys," someone who swore to defend our country, came out of the shadows and snuck up behind us when we weren't expecting it? Someone who attacked when we were most vulnerable, looking to outside forces as a possible evil? We never would have believed it.

Maybe it's because the owner of the yellow socks would be the same age as my oldest, but was the same age as my youngest when it happened. I look at my girls and ask myself how I would cope. I don't know that I could. I have no doubt that I would drop down dead with my grief, a grief so deep that it would destroy any semblance of humanity that I possess. Did her mother feel that way? Was she angry because her daughter's yellow socks became the symbol for evil in the world? Did she feel vindicated when the devil was destroyed?

Just because the devil is gone, that doesn't mean the demons aren't still haunting us. I can't close my eyes today, as the yellow socks are there. And the fireman.

The fireman holding the dead little girl with the yellow socks.

  • April 19, 1995
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