September eleventh isn't just the day after September tenth. Unlike August eleventh or April eleventh, it is a day unpleasantly blasted into people's memory.
You may sometimes wonder why we call it 9/11. It isn't as though it is so different from Pearl Harbor or the Ides of March. Here in America we don't normally use dates as a name. We don't, for example say, "I can't wait for December 25th! or, "We don't want another occurrence like December 7th! In fact, the only other date we use as a name is July 4th. However, we also commonly refer to that as Independence Day instead.
There are many reasons why we say 9/11. It might be that it came as a complete surprise. On Independence Day we had been rebelling from Great Britain for a while. Thomas Jefferson had spent some time writing the Declaration of Independence. Pearl Harbor happened right in the middle of a huge war, and it marks our entrance into it. Calling 9/11 by its date seems appropriate because it emphasizes that it was out-of-the-blue.
Another reason we call it 9/11 is that the attacks happened in two different places at the same time. We could just call it, ˜the terrorist attack on the world trade center' or ˜the terrorist attack against the pentagon'. However, this would take away from the magnitude of this outlandish event. Also it would take too long to say the terrorist attacks on the world trade center and on the pentagon every time you talked about it. September eleventh is quicker and easier to say. But 9/11 is even quicker and has a catchy sort of rhythm to it, and it is the number you dial for the police.
It was such a big and surprising thing that it deserves to be set apart somehow. I remember sitting in my homeroosm a bit after homeroom was suppose to have ended, playing magic with my friends. I was glad for a delay in going to classes even ... Continue Reading