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can of worms

can of worms

This is interesting. I decided to use my weblog - my space, my domain - to vent my feelings about the upcoming anniversary of September 11.

Now, I've been made to feel as if my feelings are wrong and/or trivial. First, in the comments below, and then in this email (I will not post the sender's name or email address):

I'm generally not one to criticize the material on someone elses blog considering the shitty content I put on mine, BUT. Don't you think that the september 11th tragedy has been beaten to a pulp by every single type of content? Somone recently said that its(sic) so we don't forget. How can we. They are driving it into our brain unforgivingly. They use it to sell Ford trucks, insurance, you name it. Its been used to start a war that has obviously not gotten us very far. I'm waiting for the 9/11 pez dispenser myself. Whats my point? I know you live in the area and where directly effected but, I have to say I'm tired of it and believe that most others are as well. I would just hate to see you fall into the 9/11 oh what a trajedy(sic)! Toyota! Type scam. but, maybe its already to late.

I don't know why, but I suddenly feel as if I've been beaten up. It takes an awful lot to make me break down in tears (since the anti-depressants, anyhow) but I'm sitting here crying and I can't figure out why.

Did my post offend anyone else? It wasn't meant to be like that.

Perhaps I should stick to movie reviews and fart jokes? Would that be better than actually showing any emotion over an event that obiviously had a profound influence on the last year of my life?


Horseshit. And what a pompous ass Mr. Anonymous is. If they're so fucking tired of it, I suggest they become intimately acquainted with the Back button because EVERYONE was affected by that day and I'm pretty damned sure EVERYONE is going to have at least something to say about it.

Goddamn, people never cease to amaze me. This is your blog, Michele. Write what you want to write. We leave ourselves open for commentary by allowing comments and publicizing our email addresses, and yes, some fucktard with more hair than wit is going to trash us in some way...but it's still your blog. And you write better than any of us, articulate better than any of us. Do your thing...and ask Kara for the URL of the picture to which she directs such asshats....

Yea in the words of someone famous tell em to piss off.

Movie reviews and fart jokes are all very well, but there is a time and a place for real emotion to. A year on, now is a time; your weblog, this is the place.

Your feelings are neither wrong or trivial Michele, and you should write about whatever you feel like writing about.

But, to me as a non-American it is terriblty obvious that the 9/11 catastrohpe, notwithstanding its magnitude, is being treated as if it somehow is more important than, for instance, the estimately four thousand civilians killed in Afghanistan.

Or how about the thirty-year conflicts in Angola, the seventeen-year conflicts in Afghanistan, the eleven-year conflicts in Sri Lanka, and the seven-year conflicts in Somalia?
Are they not as important? Where is their memorial?

I'm not saying you should pay as much attention to those conflicts and deaths, I'm saying that the 9/11 catastrophe is given an unproportional lot of attention.
To me as a non-American that fact is a bit disgusting.

It's not any more disgusting than the amount of news coverage and reverence that Princess Diana's death received.

I would say about equally disgusting.

Michele ~~ please blog on.

The gist I got from the anonymous person was that they object to the "in your face" media attention sept. 11th has recieved, and all of the marketing scams taking advantage of people's grief and fear. Since your post about sept. 11th didn't fall into either one of those categories, IMO, I don't think you have anything to worry about. This is your personal space to talk about whatever you want. No one said they had to read it. I'm not sure exactly what the anonymous person wants us all to do... go through the one year anniversary as if it's just another day? Impossible.

But, to me as a non-American it is terriblty obvious that the 9/11 catastrohpe, notwithstanding its magnitude, is being treated as if it somehow is more important than, for instance, the estimately four thousand civilians killed in Afghanistan.

Tomas, that statistic is bullshit and has been thoroughly debunked.

It sounds to me like the e-mailer is one cold-hearted son of a bitch. Yeah, don't let it affect you, Michelle (btw, you forget the [sic] on that one, ha!), you're blowing this way out of proportion, everyone ELSE is talking about it, so you best keep your pretty little mouth shut, now hear? Bah. Fuck what anyone else thinks, write what you know and love - you're damn good at it.

Sekimori: Bullshit or inconvenient?
Please, do tell where I might find the "truth" defined by you?
How about the other statistics I mentioned, do those count? Or are those inconv.. I mean bullshit, too?

The email was mine, One should always take responsibility for their actions and comments.

I in no way meant to trivialize your feelings. I in fact addressed them and your right to feel them, or atleast it was my intention too. "I know you live in the area and where directly effected". If I did so inadequately, then I apologize, it was not my intention to make you feel that they where not unwarranted. They are very much so.
But, they put Rest in Peace on graves for a reason. I believe that the people that payed the ultimate price deserve more respect than they are being shown. Theresa has my gist correctly.

I may have more to say about this later, but I will do so in my personal forum. Same as this is your personal forum. It is your choice to display what content you will. I maintain that right on my site the same as you should maintain it on yours. It is however my choice to voice my opinion on your content after all you do post your email address and have a comments section.
By the way, I am in no way shape or form offended. It takes far more to offend me than that. Disapointed would be a better word, after all I am a daily reader.

A courtesy email before displaying my comments would have been appreciated.

The pompous ass.

Sorry about that, you may need to close that tag.

Edgar, the reason I didn't display your name or email is because I like you, but I was really put off by your comments and other like yours that I have received.

I'm not trying to turn this into a commercial for patriotism or flag waving. You know me better than that.

I'm sorry a)if I misconstrued what you meant and b)for not asking you if I could post the email first.

I agree that the entire spectacle of things related to 9/11 from a politician/commercial stnadpoint is off-putting, and even wrote about it briefly myself. I don't think people should not remember what happened, or not grieve over it. While I believe the words could have been used differently, I don't imagine Edgar's intent was to offend or to suggest anything other than what's apparent on the surface. People (in general) rush to take offense where none exists, which is what makes this medium difficult sometimes.

Yeah, I guess we Yanks do tend to place a little more significance on events that happened right in our own backyard. How terribly rude of us to show more concern for our friends and families than we do for people on the other side of the globe. We should really be ashamed of ourselves.

To cut to the heart of the matter, The US of A encompasses 280 million souls. 280 million people who, for the most part, still feel a kinship with each other. 280 million siblings who fight over the bathroom and argue over the bills, but still look out for each other when an outsider starts causing trouble. So I guess the rest of the world is just SOL if they expect us to put their problems in front of ours. It ain't gonna happen, bro.

Keep on keeping on, Michele. Do your thing, tell the whole world what's on your mind, and tell anyone who doesn't like to take a hike.


First, I think its inappropriate for anyone to tell anybody that they shouldn't be talking about something on their blog. Especially something that is emotional and personal. This is your space. If you wantt to talk about picking your nose, licking frog's asses, the atomic weight of cobalt, the price of tea in china, the evil of government, the good of dancing naked in a watermelon patch or 09.11 you're allowed.

Second, the comments on 09.11 posts is why I have never discussed it in any meaningful way and why I am dreading the anniversary. Any dissention of opinion on the event, on its aftermath, on its precursor's, on its context in the global community, on anything that one might be able to consider as a lack of patriotism or lack of proper empathy or contrition is met with browbeating an anger.

That is frustrating. Your blogging about it though, is not. And you shouldn't be made to feel that it is.


Back when I was bungling through my first blog, I commented on something another blogger wrote on her blog. She told me that it was her blog, she'll post whatever she damned well pleased.

She was absolutely right. I had to grow up with regards to blogs as Mr. Anonymous does now.

You're one of the best writers on the net, in my view. If I had to say that I wanted to write like anyone, it would be you. Write what you want, you're entitled.

my name is not annonymous. Its Edgar.

E - D - G - A - R

Make me sound like I was hiding in a closet somewhere. please, give me the chance to give myself a bad name here will ya?

I wasn't offended at all. I appreciated your efforts to deconstruct the blog entries you'd made and the news/links you obtained in relation to the events of that day.

I think it's great of Edgar to step forward as the writer of that email, and to a degree I understand what he's saying and share some of his frustrations at the degree and ways to which September 11 has been and is going to be portrayed in the way - but it's also unrealistic to criticize Michele for blogging about something that big, that affected her as directly as it did, and the first anniversary of which we're now 11 days away from. There are tons of people out there who are going to be writing about this now and in the coming days (myself included) - some of whom were more affected, many of whom were less affected - are you writing similar emails to all of them?

In my opinion, the personal accounts of individual people about how they feel about September 11, regardless of how directly impacted their lives were by it, are much more meaningful and worthy of attention than the bombastic flag-waving pathos we're going to be seeing in the mainstream media. I look forward to what Michele has to say.

Um, that should be "ways IN which" in the second line above - damn, I hate it when I typo when I'm trying to write about something worthwhile!

Anyone who was around last year knows for certain that you have something special and important to add to that day. I don't care about the CBS specials either, but I do have every intention on reading your words that day, michele.

although I do enjoy reading tomas's blog at times, he has a streak of anti-americanism that angers me for some odd reason.

As ron said..
The US of A encompasses 280 million souls. 280 million people who, for the most part, still feel a kinship with each other. 280 million siblings who fight over the bathroom and argue over the bills, but still look out for each other when an outsider starts causing trouble. So I guess the rest of the world is just SOL if they expect us to put their problems in front of ours.

I don't care if my parents came from another country. I don't care if people of my nationality came here years ago and were faced with constant and blatant racism and other forms of hatred. I'm still an American. I don't care if I hate the president, if I even CARED about the president or Congress or other political things. I'm still an American, and anything against America as a WHOLE hurts me, too. I'm a tiny, tiny part of it.. but it exists. I exist.

You know, when I first walked into class on that day, I had no idea what was going on. The tv was on and everyone was sitting there in silence. For a high school classroom, this was beyond strange. It was nearly impossible. But that's what was happening. Students were crying, and other students were holding them and comforting them. Students who had relatives, parents, siblings, and/or friends in the area. I don't know if you find that disgustingly over-played. I find it heartrending.

Go ahead and blame Bush. Go ahead and blame the people who trained the terrorists, who financed them, who let them through the gates onto the planes.

But DON'T think that ALL AMERICANS are 1) responsible for sept. 11 and 2) are self-centered arrogant bastards who don't give a fuck about the rest of the world.

Let me post an e-mail I received two days after sept. 11.

Widespread but only partial news coverage was given recently to a remarkable editorial broadcast from Toronto by Gordon Sinclair, a Canadian television commentator. What follows is the full text of his Trenchant remarks as printed in the Congressional Record:

"This Canadian thinks it is time to speak up for the Americans as the most generous and possibly the least appreciated people on all the earth.
Germany, Japan and, to a lesser extent, Britain and Italy were lifted out of the debris of war by the Americans who poured in billions of dollars and forgave other billions in debts. None of these countries is today paying even the interest on its remaining debts to the United States.
When France was in danger of collapsing in 1956, it was the Americans who propped it up, and their reward was to be insulted and swindled on the
streets of Paris. I was there. I saw it. When earthquakes hit distant cities, it is the United States that hurries in to help. This spring, 59 American communities were flattened by tornadoes.
Nobody helped.

The Marshall Plan and the Truman Policy pumped billions of dollars into discouraged countries. Now newspapers in those countries are writing about the decadent, warmongering Americans.

I'd like to see just one of those countries that is gloating over the erosion of the United States dollar build its own airplane. Does any other
country in the world have a plane to equal the Boeing Jumbo Jet, the Lockheed Tri-Star, or the Douglas DC10? If so, why don't they fly them?
Why do all the International lines except Russia fly American Planes? You talk about Japanese technocracy, and you get radios. You talk about German technocracy, and you get automobiles. You talk about American technocracy, and you find men on the moon - not once, but several times - and safely home again.

You talk about scandals, and the Americans put theirs right in the store window for everybody to look at. Even their draft-dodgers are not pursued
and hounded. They are here on our streets, and most of them, unless they are breaking Canadian laws, are getting American dollars from ma and pa at home to spend here.

When the railways of France, Germany and India were breaking down through age, it was the Americans who rebuilt them. When the Pennsylvania Railroad and the New York Central went broke, nobody Loaned them an old caboose. Both
are still broke. I can name you 5000 times when the Americans raced to the help of other people in trouble. Can you name me even one time when someone else raced to the Americans in trouble? I don't think there was outside help even during
the San Francisco earthquake.

Our neighbors have faced it alone, and I'm one Canadian who is damned tired of hearing them get kicked around. They will come out of this thing with their flag high. And when they do, they are entitled to thumb their nose at the lands that are gloating over their present troubles. I hope Canada is not one of those."

Maybe you don't feel the same as this guy. But I think he has a point, for all you non-Americans. For you anti-Americans.

People who write about 9/11 may have several reasons for doing so. Not everyone will write for purely personal and emotional reasons, but there's no reason to imply that Michele was blogging about it for a propagandistic reason. You have no right to tell her what to say and what not to say. That's the beauty of freedom of speech.

Michele, sorry this was so long.

Mouse: I despise stupidity, not America. However, America is a big country and has room for a lot of fools. Furthermore, of all reported incidents in news, a lot of them occur in the US, so it's not so strange that a lot of the stupidity I react upon do occur in the US.

I'm sure a lot of stupid shit goes on in, say, Greece, too, but the news does not reach me.

Plus, America has a very hilarious administration right now so I guess that explains a lot of it.

"Widespread but only partial news coverage was given recently to a remarkable editorial broadcast from Toronto by Gordon Sinclair..."

This really irks me for some unknown reason. I can understand why this whole thing got sent around after 9.11, but what really bothers me is that everywhere I saw it, with the exception of a very few places, made it sound like it was a recent thing that Mr. Sinclair had said... which it isn't. That whole spiel was shot off in about 20 minutes in 1973, after Mr. Sinclair had watched American troops being bashed on their return home from the Vietnam War.... c'mon folks, basic literary rules state to document your sources... and that includes dates.

Now as to the whole issue at hand. This is Michele's place. It's her little section to write about things that matter to her, or make her laugh or cry. Just because she's been nice and opened up the sandbox for us to all enjoy, doesn't mean that we, as observers, have the right to slam her for posting stuff about 9.11... although I know if I posted my feelings and experiences from that day I'd be slammed from here to hell and back, but... that's another story.

sorry, mercy, I didn't know it was frmo 1973. I got it sept 13, 2001.


Your blog, your rules. You say what you want. And in this instance, you have plenty of reason to: so many people -- your own father! -- that you know were affected. You were affected. So speak, and vent, and heal.

Tomas if you have an interest in Greek news you can find it out. In fact if you want up to the minute, honest local news from even the remotest corners of the world, you can find it out. Just go to a local electronics shop and buy a ham radio. However, the way you discuss world tragedies as mere statistics leads me to believe you won't try to find anything out about Greece until something spectacularly horrible happens. Something with the right combination of death figures and American culpability that you can use in yet another vacuous argument.

You criticize American arrogance and self-centered-ness and yet you exemplify those traits with every post you leave. If the news doesn't find it's way to you, it's not relevant. If it isn't amusing "stupid shit" that's easily derided, if the entertainment value isn't high enough, well it's just not worth your time, eh?

The only thing that makes any blogger's work or opinion worth reading is the personal nature of it. You're not the UN Ambassador from Sweden and Michelle isn't Rudolph Guiliani (much to both your pleasure, I'm sure.) So why the fuck should I care what either of you think about anything if it doesn't come from your personal "world" and experiences?

I can get your regurgitated opinions from any old site. What I get from Michelle's writing is her truth; a view of her world, her life that isn't distorted by some anal need to be better or "right" all the time. Life is not a college debate.

You're not this much of an asshole on your own blog. What made you decide to act this way here? No, REALLY, I'm asking. You could try to give a true answer for a change instead of some pathetic sound bite.

Cis: I'm not a newspaper, I am not obligated to report on everything I read in every news source. My blog is, like Michele's, my own place.

Regarding Greece, tell me, do you read every bit of news from every news source in every country? If not, what the fuck are you criticising me for?

Your posts is so full of imagination I don't even know where to begin. UN ambassador? Me only writing about "stupid shit"? Are you imagining things or do you have a problem with English comprehension?

Am I not allowed to write in my own blog nor in the comments space of others unless it is "interesting" to you? What the hell are you on?

Dumb shit, in Greece.

Tomas I don't think you actually read what you write. Whether you think much before hand is also debatable.

You're the one who said you complain about the US news because it's what you hear about as opposed to Greek news. You're the one who is trivializing a US trajedy by saying it's just one of many. You're the one who professes to care equally about the entire world news. I'm criticising you because by criticising Michele you open yourself up to it.

Your reaction to the UN Ambassador thing really makes me wonder how well you understand english. I still don't think you understand the meaning of "world" that Michele used in her original post, which makes it highly laughable that you question my own comprehension.

As for the "stupid shit" reference, again, that was a direct quote from one of your comments. You said: "I'm sure a lot of stupid shit goes on in, say, Greece, too, but the news does not reach me." Then you also qualified your attention to US vs. Anywhere Else news by saying the US is just much funnier.

Tomas, I am not telling you what you can or cannot say. I am telling you that what you say will have little or no impact on anyone or anything unless it is based on your personal knowledge. When Michele asked how has 9/11 changed the world she was asking for personal, individual reactions. If she wanted to know from some pseudo-objective point of view what the impact on global culture has been she would ask a sociologist, she wouldn't ask a 23 year old web designer.

And you still didn't answer my question. I never said you shouldn't post whatever the hell you want to post on Michele's blog or your own. I'll leave Michele to decide when she's had enough of your comments. What I am curious about is not only why you went on the attack in the first place here, but why you're keeping it up in every single 9/11 post Michele has written since. You'll notice I didn't respond to any of your previous comments until I got here and just couldn't take it anymore. I would really love to know what you think you are saying to Michele about 9/11 because I do think there is a language barrier here that you are refusing to recognize. And I would hope that after you understand how much of an ass you are being you will give Michele the apology she deserves.

Cis: (in order of importance)
1. Last I checked I wasn't a web designer.
2. "If it isn't amusing "stupid shit" that's easily derided, if the entertainment value isn't high enough, well it's just not worth your time, eh?" Where did you fetch this idea from? I was merely clarifying to mouse that I do not despise America, but stupidity.
3. I've never ever criticised Michele for what she chooses to write about. Never.
4. My initial post here was not a response to Michele.

I posted This in response to Tomas's earlier comment comparing the 9/11 tragedy to other events, and how he feels it's getting an unfair ammount of coverage. I guess here's as good a place as any to post it again.

Dear lord man, on your about page you say you are a programmer, developer and designer. Since you didn't qualify any of those statements and since this is the internet I assumed you meant a web programmer, developer and designer. My error. Perhaps you can pass me that "chrystal" [sic] ball of yours when you get done with it.

Wow, Michele, you weren't kidding, this IS getting wildly out of hand. Christ on a stick.

Apropos of nothing (per Tomas), here's a personal blog by a Greek (writing in English) full of news of the politics and other happenings in that country. Not that I think that Tomas really cares about what happens in Greece or any other country. He doesn't seem to care about the United States either; from his cavalier treatment of the World Trade center atrocity, he seems only thankful that something exists that he can use to tweak American nerves. Yawn.

my head hurts.... the doctor says my nose will stop bleeding if i don't pick it so much.

Andrea: I'll follow yours and Cis's examples of reading all news from all countries. Thanks for the tip.

Stop feeding the troll.

at least you don't have people in your comments saying things like 'the terror attacks of 9/11 are neither good nor bad, just like the holocaust was neither good nor bad.'

trade you trolls. honest.