When you come to your next fork in the road, what way will you go?
There’s a favorite Seinfeld episode of mine - where George Costanza does the complete opposite of what he usually does throughout the entire show’s running.
For example, if George would normally be shy in front of a woman, he does the opposite. So, in this episode, he would go right up to her and ask her out on a date.
He says that he always orders tuna on toast at the diner. But, he ponders, nothing exciting ever came from tuna on toast, for him. So he’s going to go ahead and order the exact opposite of tuna on toast…. And see what happens.
And, if he normally does absolutely and literally nothing, all day long, then he now would do the opposite - meaning he would do SOMETHING!
Whatever it is in his entire life that is his usual REACTION - he decides he will now go ahead and do the absolute opposite reaction.
And in turn, he gets a whole heck of a lot done, accomplished. It may not have all turned out the way he wanted, but he was acting, living, and most importantly, trying. I tend to think that George considered himself a failure in life, most of the time. But in this episode, as is usually the case in sitcoms, everything changes, for a single show.
And Jerry tells him, “If every instinct you have is wrong, then the opposite would have to be right.”
With this realization, George gets out there and kicks some major behind.
And for 22 minutes - George is living his best life. He is successful. He is alive. Because doing something, he realized, was better than doing nothing. And making that hard choice was better overall, than making the easy choice. The usual choice.
So, maybe go ahead and watch that episode, or even just some hilarious clips from it, online, if you have a few moments to spare. Or even if you have a pending decision to make.
Because there’s a Seinfeld episode out there about every single decision in life. And this one is a Hallmark Classic.
Bringing me to the question I have for you today…
When you are at a crossroads - which way will you go?
Which way have you gone when reaching crossroads in your past?
When you reach the very next junction in your life… Do you know which direction you will be choosing?
I’m here to remind you of that tiny, little voice inside your own head… directing you… to….
If you do the absolute opposite of which you have always done, won’t you theoretically get the opposite results from which you have always received?
Thus, leading your life in a completely new, and foreign, and challenging, direction? Stimulating growth, new ideas, and therefore, completely new results, in your life.
And it is with that question in mind, that I hope you enjoy this week’s vlog of Christine’s Floridian Dreams... My newest YouTube video that I’ll be sharing with you later this week.
In it, I’m merely taking you along on a little, minor, daily adventure. For some small, and simple, choices in daily life. Where do I go that day… where will we eat… what do we order? What dessert location should we go to? And - how will we get there?... Because - There are multiple bridges to cross along the way too. And sometimes, it’s the actual bridge that becomes the best part of the day. Not where you have gone, or where you are headed to next, but simply stopping along the journey, and enjoying the junction itself.
So, what direction will you choose - at your next fork in the road?
What way will you turn, and therefore, which route, will you take, at your next crossroads of life?
When that fateful question begs inside your own head - Maybe it’s time to consider the absolute opposite of tuna on toast - to you - and choose that. ~
*What’s your favorite Seinfeld episode? Do you always order tuna on toast, like George does? I’d love to know. Drop me a comment down below:
Also, if you’re enjoying my Floridian Dreams, adventures, writings, ramblings, poetry, challenges, and reviews, you can go ahead and check out some more, right here:
77] The Lost Art of the Phone Call
75] The First Supper @ Palm Valley Outdoors Bar & Grill
73] What I’m Missing Right Now
71] My 69 Week Break From Social Media ~ Why I Left & Why I Came Back
68] A Sunday Stroll
63] Mercy & Comfort
62] PERSPECTIVE @ Seaside Sculpture Park
61] Bean’s Idea List ~ 15 Daily Activities For Well Beyond 15 Days
59] REACTION ~ To World War 19
57] First Watch on the First Coast
56] Shell World ~ Key Largo
51] Life Is Full Of Pasta-Bilities ~ Bean’s Red Sauce Recipe
*Part of - Bean’s Kitchen - series
46] Key Largo, Montego, Baby Why Don’t We Go?
40] Visiting The Florida Cracker Kitchen ~ Jacksonville
36] The End Of A Decade & My New Year’s Wish To You
Jerry Seinfeld once said after visiting a certain and particular bubble boy in upstate New York... “There’s nothing finer than being in your diner.” And you know what, every time I walk into a diner I think of that episode. The Bubble Boy.
But you know what else? Sometimes I tend to disagree with Jerry on that sentiment… Sometimes, I think there might be just one small thing finer on this Earth than being inside a diner. And that’s being inside a coffee shop… in The Keys.
Located @ 713 Caroline Street, Key West, FL 33040, and open seven days a week, The Coffee Plantation Cafe is a must-visit while in Key West, Florida.
What a complete and total rare gem on an island. During our recent visit to the Keys to run the Key West Half Marathon, on our first day we walked past this lovely little cafe late in the afternoon. Everything about it looked very tempting. We had just visited the Race Expo for the event we would be running early the next morning and strolled past the shop as we headed back to our hotel. Just one glance and I knew I had to go in there before our short and spectacular visit in Key West came to an end.
So, after exercising for hours upon hours that next morning at the race, my brain told me it was definitely time to get some much-needed and well-deserved coffee. In fact, toward the end of that crazy and fun and ridiculously challenging race, coffee is what held me together. Coffee kept me going. Coffee was my motivation. Well - at least the thought of said coffee.
So shortly thereafter crossing the finish line, and obtaining my highly coveted compass race medal, and eating all the cornbread my stomach could handle at the post-race party, and drinking a lot of water just for kicks, coffee was the next thing on my agenda. Actually, it was the only thing on my agenda. I just wanted fresh, hot coffee, if I accomplished nothing else that entire day.
And The Coffee Plantation Cafe is smack right there at the race finish; in the heart of downtown Key West. I’d say the cafe location is quite ideal for both tourists and locals alike. It’s right in the middle of everything, but off a quiet little side street. It’s quiet and cozy inside, but always seemingly busy. It’s friendly, and warm, and welcoming. And quite intriguing with all the beautiful art adorning the walls of the shop.
With lots of both indoor and outdoor seating available, there’s something for most everybody. Walking in one passes cold cases of bottled drinks and such to grab and go. And then at the counter there is a variety of baked goods for sale. Fresh and tasty, and very tempting, we had to buy something. We had no choice. We were forced into it. After 13.1 miles almost anything and everything looks good, but this stuff would have looked good even if I had just rolled out of bed and hadn’t burned one calorie off my behind yet that day.
We ordered one very large cinnamon roll, to split. The hubby ate his half right away, as he doesn’t need to watch his calorie intake and can do whatever he pleases. But I saved my half for a treat that evening, as I do now watch my calories every day and had already had an amazing plate of cornbread for breakfast after the race.
Hubby ordered a large iced latte, and I ordered a large hot latte. They were perfect. I could have visited this shop every day of my visit in Key West. And I was sad when I actually did have to leave. Had I been a resident of this quaint little area of the world, this cafe would definitely be on my regularly scheduled itinerary.
They also sell a variety of little gift items inside the cafe. We purchased a Key West Southernmost Point magnet with a lovely little piece of art in a matte frame. There are some little sea creatures floating around inside the drawing, and they’re now nestled hugging my refrigerator back home with us… But gosh you know what, every time I look into their eyes as I open the fridge, they give me a sad little look and even a sigh. Ughhhh, I think I hear. I tend to think deep down inside they’re a tad bit homesick for their favorite Key, and would rather go back to where they came from.
We sat on the comfy couches inside the cafe for a while. Needing to give our legs a rest after the half marathon, I probably could have fallen asleep inside the shop and slept for days on end.
So after that realization we decided to step outside and see the action of the town go by while finishing our drinks.
Something I will always love about the state of Florida is that I can sit outside with my cup of coffee in the morning, and the month on the calendar tells me that it’s January on this our Earth. That realization never gets old. And can maybe and probably only be truly appreciated from someone who grew up in the North, with its potential for bitter cold in the month of January. I am outside now more than I ever was my entire life before living in Florida. And I cherish every drink I sip sitting outside in the fresh and salty air. Florida Winter, ahhhh...
As we finished our drinks and called our Uber back to our hotel, I had already decided I need to come back to this shop at my very earliest convenience. I miss it already, and I do hope if you visit Key West you will have a lovely and delicious and quite caffeinated drink at The Coffee Plantation Cafe, while sitting there on their comfy couches. I hope you enjoy sipping your large hot latte while sitting on their front porch watching the world go by, as much as I did. Because there really might be nothing finer on this Earth. ~
Here’s some more stories about life and adventure living in The Sunshine State:
9] Sago Coffee: A Cup Of Friendly & Flavorful Florida
*Part of ~ Bean’s Coffee Shop Challenge ~
13] 2 Pro’s & 2 Cons About My 2 Night Stay - In Celebration, FL
16] Beach Diner ~ If You Feed Them They Will Come
42] Where Does The Chicken Cross The Road?
Have you been to the Coffee Plantation Cafe? What is your favorite coffee shop in the Keys? And even more important, what’s your favorite Seinfeld episode? Let me know in the comments down below:
The scene is referring to a bed-bound woman who is being cared for by her neighbors. But the woman is never happy with her level of free care; never satisfied, never pleased. And she’s certainly never grateful of the others who are taking the time out of their lives to care for her. She has come to expect this care, and then still proceeds to complain about it. At some point in the film the people vent their frustrations about her (while still never giving up on her)... They declare and come to a vocal realization about her ongoing complaints and extreme levels of ungratefulness. They call her “cantankerous.”
They realize the most simple of facts… When they are offering her one thing, she wants the complete opposite. Almost as if out of spite. The woman is never able to be satisfied in any way whatsoever.
If you haven’t seen the film, I highly recommend viewing it. I’ve watched this film repetitively throughout my youth and I’m pretty near confident I have most of the lines memorized. I would say the film is basically about Pollyanna’s affect on those around her… With Pollyanna being introduced to a new home, a completely new way of life, and with that new life, a whole bunch of new people brought into her world.
And she plays ‘The Glad Game’ with all of them. Always finding something to be happy about, no matter the circumstance.
Without giving any spoilers for those who haven’t seen and may be inclined to watch… valuable life lessons are learned throughout the film, especially when things don’t go one's way.
And sometimes that’s just how life really is.
You expect a certain something, but you are thrown a certain something else completely.
Life is about how you handle those things you are thrown.
If you live your life fully and completely and are truly happy, you may understand that life is not about your wants and desires and dreams that haven’t been fulfilled and might never be… life is really about how you react to your certainties, your abilities, your strengths, and your weaknesses.
Life is sorta just like the saying goes…
Life is 10% reality, and 90% your reaction to that reality.
Please re-read that previous sentence. Soak it in. You can do whatever you want in life, merely by your reactions. Your reactions become your reality. With that key - you can unlock the potential to your complete happiness. So if you don’t have the reality you want, react to your reality, and that reaction will become your new reality. Life is your reaction, life is your perspective. PERSPECTIVE. MATTERS.
You can continually sit and complain and wait, and wait, and wait for LIFE to arrive at your doorstep. OR, you can go out there and catch life along the way and enjoy the journey you are on.
I’ll give you a simple and silly example. My hair has never cooperated with me - like, ever. My hair is the stuff of jokes, of classic Florida memes. My hair is the hair in the YouTube joke videos of Florida Woman stepping outside her air-conditioned vehicle, and two seconds later her hair is completely puffed out... along with her sunglasses being fogged up, and she can’t see a thing. It doesn’t matter if I had a salon style blow-dry treatment worth hundreds of dollars or more. When my hair hits that Florida humidity, it turns into its own living creature. Completely wild and untamable.
My hair is the Velociraptor in the first Jurassic Park who eats alive the Newman character from Seinfeld.
And usually, I just roll with it. I go with the flow. I have become really used to it. My hair doesn’t do what I want it to do... Ok…. Whatever… Sigh… And then I throw it in a ponytail and go on with my day.
And keep in mind that yes, I’ve tried all kinds of products and spent a ton of money on all kinds of tools and strategies and types of shampoos, etc. It doesn’t matter, my hair does what IT wants, not what I want.
But I don’t throw a fit. I work around IT.
I buy beautiful and colorful and fun barrettes to help attempt to calm it down. I buy fun and cheapo colored rubber bands to hold it all together, and I go through a million of them, as my hair is also so thick it breaks rubber bands way too frequently.
And so, well over a year ago now while visiting up in Illinois, I was getting my hair cut and styled buy my favorite hair stylist in all of the entire world. Her name is Faith. And she is a living, breathing example of exactly that - FAITH.
If you’re having a bad day… go see Faith. If you want someone to talk to, or listen to, just go see Faith. She’s like a frosted Christmas sugar cookie from a bakery, alive and breathing. You can’t see Faith and NOT have your day brightened in some way. Plus, you’ll have an absolutely gorgeous head of hair when you leave her station.
Faith is a Pollyanna to me. You just can’t go see her and not be glad afterward. She is a living version of Pollyanna’s Glad Game.
And I value Faith’s opinion greatly. Not only is she an absolutely wonderful human being, Faith is the only one on Earth who can work miracles on my hair. I leave her station refreshed, and with hair set for a night on the town - even if I’m only going out for some good ol’ Chicago style pizza afterward.
And the last time I saw Faith, which was much too long ago I might add, I was contemplating all of these above thoughts. I could sit in her chair, with my jaw dropped, watching her in the mirror fix up my hair to perfection. Mesmerized. I’m always in awe of what she is able to do with my wild hair.
I knew as I watched her doing it that I could never replicate it myself. Awestruck, I asked her what brand of straightening product she recommends for at-home use. At the time she mentioned BabylissPro. I had never heard of it, but kept the name in the back of my mind.
Later on, after my visit up in Illinois was complete, and I was back home down in the hot and very humid Sunshine State, I was thinking about BabylissPro, as I gazed upon my completely humidified and wild head of hair in the mirror. I did some research about straighteners, and quality straighteners, and I found the product online at Ulta.
Coincidentally, I had just previously signed up for Ulta’s awesome rewards program. So I researched which one I wanted. I decided that my hair needed the BabylissPro Nano Titanium Ionic Straightening Iron with the ceramic heater and the 1 ¾ inch thick titanium plate. The cost came to a whopping $139.95, before tax and shipping.
With new knowledge of the high price, instead of splurging on yet another hair care purchase, and not even knowing if it would do anything to help or if I was going to be wasting some real legit money, I decided to save up for the straightener with my Ulta Rewards.
I then bought all our soaps and lotions and makeup and shower gels and lip balms, etc. etc. etc. for well over a year. At some point I obtained the coveted Platinum status, and then started earning 1.25 points for every dollar spent.
Every time I needed a skin care product and was at the grocery store, I instead told myself I would order it on Ulta to get the points. Every month we got a box from Ulta in the mail. Every month I earned points. I saved my points and I saved my points. And I finally redeemed 2,100 points just a few weeks ago, ecstatic. My very own BabylissPro was finally on its way to my front door.
Ulta is very, very slow - religiously slow - with their deliveries. I waited and waited for my product to arrive. When it finally got here I couldn't wait to try it out. And I had just washed my hair when it arrived at our door; a full head of long, wet, ridiculous hair. I decided to wait for my hair to be fully dry to try out my BabylissPro for the first time. I patiently waited until the following morning, and then finally, I plugged in for it’s trial run.
First, I used a bottle of dry shampoo on my hair, sprayed it on in bursts, brushed it out, and waited a bit. I repeated that process. I turned on the product for the first time, and rested it on top of my Vera Bradley heat-resistant sleeve I was going to use to store it in. I clipped my hair into sections using some very ancient hair clips that came with an old hair dryer from years ago. I had no idea how to test if my new Baby was hot or not. The box stated that it can reach up to 450 degrees. Well, that sounded pretty hot to me!
It was set for 300 degrees when I plugged it in. I decided to leave it at that temperature for my first use. I envisioned in all of my clumsiness burning off my hair that I have been patiently growing long for a few years now, and starting a fire on top of my head. 300 degrees sounded plenty hot for a test drive.
I was so scared to touch it. I picked it up and touched the heat pad it was resting on to test if it felt hot. I started straightening. And - It worked! Instantly! Well, not instantly, but it started to work right away.
And, Yes! I actually tamed my wild, humid, Florida hair. It was worth all the money in the world. I was so satisfied with the product that I honestly would have paid even more, knowing how well my hair turned out. I felt it was the “fanciest” my hair ever looked by my own handiwork.
And it only took AN HOUR! Ha. No joke. It took me one whole freaking hour and I still could have worked much, much longer on it. I would say I could have spent at least another half hour on it to just maybe get it even near perfect. As you can see from the photo, it was definitely not perfect, but it was so shockingly improved, that I didn’t recognize my own hair. Around fifty minutes into the process I thought to myself…
Wow…. And I haven’t even burned myself yet!
Gosh... I’m so proud of myself… of this miraculous skill and talent I have for straightening my own hair! [Crediting only myself completely in my own mind, and not the expensive and very high quality product, but of course.]
And… of course... that’s right when I burned myself. I grabbed the plate the wrong way for a mere millisecond… And I screamed bloody murder!
300 degrees of heat, smooshed into my pointer finger… I dropped my BabylissPro in agony. I screamed again!
It was at this point I finally decided it might be best to stop straightening for the day. After an hour of hard work, and completely dripping with sweat, I finally decided I probably should just give it a rest. I knew I could keep straightening and straightening - maybe for another hour? How long would it take to fully straighten this wild hair? But after I burned my finger I knew I finally had enough for the day.
And I was absolutely thrilled!!! I honestly didn't expect it to look even half as good as it did. I expected NOTHING. I expected the same wild hair.
But I had the patience to try. I had the patience to wait over a year and earn up the product through reward points. I had the patience to stand in the bathroom mirror for an hour and work on it. I was very pleased with the outcome...
And then I went outside.
Into the Florida air.
And that was the end - of the perfect hair.
Florida heat, and extremely high coastal winds off the shore that day, blew all my hard work into oblivion; and almost immediately. Much as I had expected. A rubber band and ponytail were very much needed later that day. I didn’t care though. And I would do it again.
I am very pleased with the product. I highly recommend it. Yes, I’ve had many types of straighteners in the past, and no, none of them have done this well of a job. Mind you, all the former products I owned were very inexpensive, drug-store type products, costing well under $20.00; or found collecting dust from some random bottom shelf in the shampoo aisle at the grocery store. My BabylissPro was definitely the best, and most high-quality straightener I ever purchased.
I am looking forward to straightening my hair again, very soon. Actually, I need to remind myself that I can do this to my hair every single day if I really wanted to - now that I have my very own BabylissPro! But who wants to spend an hour in front of the mirror? For that? Every day? When there are so many other things I could be doing? No thank you. I’m so glad I own it, I envision using it a lot. But definitely not on the regular.
For now, and today, It’s the usual ponytail for me. It’s a head of hair that’s not cooperating with me in any way whatsoever. A head of hair that has its own mind, and is stubborn as heck, and wants the complete opposite of what I want it to do.
My hair is the CANTANKEROUS neighbor in Pollyanna.
When my hair decides to be curly, I’m trying to straighten it. When I’m trying to curl it, my hair wants to be flat and boring. When I want a thin head of hair, my hair puffs out trying to reach the ends of the Earth... As if it’s been ZAPPED into an electrical socket.
Faith has told me that she sees many clients who would die for my curly, thick hair. Ha! OMG - I think. Who would want this?! I want the absolute opposite of what I’ve been given.
If the hair is naturally straight, they want it curled, if the hair is curled, they want it straightened. Cantankerous, folks!
The people in Pollyanna’s new world are dealt some serious blows. Life knocks them for a loop. In their own small town kind of way, there is drama, sadness, and of course, much happiness. But their lives in the film are merely how they react to what has happened to them. Aunt Polly, who, never been married, no children of her own, no husband or current love in her life, is dealt an orphan child arriving on her doorstep. Pollyanna. To come live with her. How will she raise a child? How will she react to Pollyanna? How will Pollyanna react to her? And the ripple effect of other people throughout the film that have change brought to them because of Pollyanna’s introduction into their lives.
Change happens. Whether we want it or not. It’s coming. There’s no stopping it.
Change is life.
Faith is life.
And Faith is a good thing to have.
If you don’t have a Faith in your life, go out and get one. Maybe Faith will be in the form of your hair stylist. Maybe Faith will be a frosted green and red sprinkled Christmas sugar cookie you pick up at the bakery. Maybe you will make your own Faith. Any way you get it, grab ahold of your Faith, and go.
Whether you want them to or not, the wheels are turning. Nothing stays the same.
How will you react to that change is the biggest question of all?
Life IS change. My hair IS my hair. How I handle it is how I look, and how I appear, and is who I am. I can be all fancy and have a professional style blowout every day, spending hours in front of the mirror, and there's nothing wrong with that! But it’s usually just not for me. Most of the time, I throw my hair into a ponytail, and get out there, and live my life.
Life is your TIME. Life is your REACTION. LIfe is your PERCEPTION. Now get out there, grab a rubber band and put your hair up if you need to… and LIVE. ~
Every year, on this day, when I wake in the morning and look at the calendar, it's just another day… but then I see my phone screen displaying today’s date to me. The phone tells me that it’s Nine Eleven, and I get a sinking pit of a feeling in my stomach. A feeling of doom and gloom. It feels like in a nightmare when I am falling and there is no end ever to the fall; and then wake up scared to death. But that feeling stays with me all day. It’s a feeling of aching and utter real, raw, sadness. And I feel it every single year, without fail, on September 11.
From that point forward in the morning it becomes a very different day than any other of the calendar year. It becomes a very difficult day for me. A day I push myself forward with an extra amount of force. Force necessary to complete my tasks and go about a normal day of activity.
Saying good morning to my husband. And then our first words to each other this day: ‘It’s Nine Eleven.’
Talking on the phone.
Reading and watching the news.
Going to the library.
Tipping the barista a bit extra today at Starbucks.
Crying as I write this.
Choosing a very happy comedy or adventure-filled film to watch this evening with my husband, and my dog-who didn’t live through that day upon this Earth. Choosing a comedic film to not add any more sadness to my day than necessary.
Saying goodnight to the most solemn and somber day of the year.
On Nine Eleven, 2001, I was at the very beginning of my junior year of college. I abruptly quit the cross country team at the start of that school year, after two years of running NCAA Division III collegiate athletics. I always thought it was a rash decision, but I went with my gut, and my gut feeling does not fail me. I also quit winter and spring track, right then and there as well. Fiercely independent - I had always wanted and craved to run on my own; and this decision allowed me to give more time and focus toward my very expensive college education. My grades were not where I wanted them to be. I only had so much time and energy; I was spreading myself too thin. I was confident in my decision and never wavered from it.
My grades immediately improved with that action. I knew I made the right decision. I made a lot of important life decisions during that school year. I became engaged to be married. I moved off campus and into the condo my fiancé and I purchased in the spring of junior year. I continued onward with my schooling. I worked. I planned my wedding. But when I think back on my junior year of college, I always remember that it began with Nine Eleven.
On Nine Eleven I was safe at college in Illinois, tucked far away from the terror taking place to my East. Being in the Midwest, I never happened to know anyone directly affected by the attacks on America that day. And I spent most of that day in the dorm rooms of my friends, watching coverage on tv. That was all you could watch. Everything else stopped. Not being directly affected by the attacks at all, and feeling the way I do each year on Nine Eleven... I cannot even bear to imagine the pain and suffering of people who were directly affected in any way by the attacks.
Being of college age when the terrorist attack upon America occurred, I believe I am a member of the in-between generation. Or, what I am calling the “Floating Generation.” Listen up if you are about my age and ever wondered what generation you fall in. Are you a millennial? Or a Gen X’er? I used to question my generational status all the time. Some days I thought with 100% certainty that I am a Millennial. Then, other days, I think, those silly Millennials!!! I canNOT relate to them at all! There’s no way I am a millennial, am I? I realized that people my age have our very own and very distinct generation. I hover. And float. The Floating Generation. I hover and I float between generational skills and beliefs. I float back and forth and go where the waves of time take me. I can balance that paper checkbook very easily if the internet went down. I can use Apple Pay at McDonald’s in an instant if I forget my wallet. Maybe someday I won’t even carry a wallet? I am a ‘Floater.’ Everyone is born into a distinct generation. It’s up to you to decide which one that is, though, and which one you will put yourself in - even if that means creating your own generation.
I had grown up prior to Nine Eleven. Nine Eleven occurred when I was a very young and very new adult. A young adult making very important life decisions for the very first time. For me and many others, there was life before Nine Eleven and life after Nine Eleven. Just like there was life before smartphones and life after smartphones were invented. And there also existed for us life before social media and life with the advent of social media. Or “Life Before Facebook” as I commonly say. I am of the American generation who has experienced both eras. I lived and survived life before the internet and now live with the internet a part of my life every single day. I know how to live with Facebook, although I have chosen to now continue life without a Facebook account. I know how to balance a paper checkbook, and will be forever and eternally grateful for the banking app on my phone home screen that keeps track of everything for me now. I float back and forth between the two eras, quite easily adapting to any situation on hand, maybe easier than others can adapt. We are adapters. Adapters to the continual and quick-paced changes taking place around us. This Floating Generation appreciates those little things like a bank app more so than any other generation potentially can appreciate it. Because we have seen, experienced, and know both ways of life. Generations coming up and being born now will have those pieces of technology molded into their lives from as long as they can remember back. How will they relate and study and know their past?
At some point in the unknown future, will there exist a generation of humans who don’t know how to live life without a smartphone? Or live life without the internet? I question if the internet will become classified as a public ‘utility’ in the future?... As imperative to life as gas and electricity and air conditioning and heat are now to our way of life? I compare and contrast my life before and life after in my head all the time, as only ones who really and truly experienced both can do so. And I also see life before Nine Eleven, and I see life after Nine Eleven. We are definitely a different nation today than we were before the attacks. Just as the entire world is different today directly because of social media’s never-ending presence, as well as the invention of the smartphone.
On future Nine Eleven’s, there will be more new and innovative inventions that will have changed human behavior and communication yet again. When I go to sleep tonight I will know that this day will come again 365 days from now. The world may be far different again next year at this time. And years into the future. One thing will remain the same though. That feeling inside my stomach. That pit. Because all the technology in the world cannot change the real and raw feeling inside a human heart. And stomach. It will be like the ‘Groundhog Day’ film, I think to myself. The same day all over again. Just 365 days apart, not the next morning. Except this year, 2019, there was one difference for me. Today, this Nine Eleven, 2019 - eighteen years later - I came to the realization that an entire generation of Americans are now legal adults who never lived through that horrific day in America. They don’t know what waking on this day feels like to some. They need to know our history. - how and why things can change in an instant. I pray they are taught what happened.
My dad is a World War II history buff. That’s how I have always thought of him. And when I think of his history knowledge, I then think of the show Seinfeld… The episode where Jerry and George see Keith Hernandez. And Jerry tells George that Keith Hernandez is a big Civil War buff. George is fascinated by the statement. He says he’d like to be a buff. What does one have to do to become a buff? He contemplates. My father is one of those such buffs. Sometimes I think he knows more about WWII than some of the generals who fought in the war.
Recently, June 6, 2019, marked the 75th Anniversary of D-Day. I like to educate myself about WWII. I like knowing as many details as I can. I’d like to someday know all that my father knows about WWII. Yet, I know I will never know as much as my father knows. He knows things that WWII movies get factually wrong. When this past 75th Anniversary came and went, I couldn’t help but think at the time, that someday, it will be the 75th Remembrance of Nine Eleven. And then the 100th. Whole generations come and gone. What will American’s think that day, Nine Eleven of the distant and unknown future? Will they be watching television that day, on some strange futuristic device, and see world leaders from all over the globe come together to remember the fateful day of the past? Will people put flags up and wear American flag tees and pins to remember 9/11 that far into the future? They might, and they will, if future generations are taught what happened. A history which is forgotten is a history that may be repeated. If something is forgotten, how does one learn anything at all from that something?
To the new and waking and growing generations of American’s out there - this is what Nine Eleven feels like to some of your fellow Americans. And next year, on Nine Eleven, Twenty Twenty, we will feel this way again. This is why the American Flag is brought out specifically today, hung proudly outside homes and businesses and in window displays and waving from vehicles all across the country. This is why news coverage is different today. This is why when you Google something today on your smartphone you will see a sad and somber black ribbon just below the search bar, draped gently over the American Flag; a Flag who mourns a loss from 18 years ago today.
And next year, on Nine Eleven, I already know on that morning I will again wake and I will again look at my calendar and see the date; and a sinking pit of a sad and heartbreaking feeling will fall upon my stomach. That Groundhog Day repetitive feeling will come upon me again. Reliving the day with heartache and a profound sadness. And I will go out into society to get coffee, and I will tip the barista something extra that day - whether I can afford to or not. Living the same day, with the same feelings and emotions, again. And tears will come again. Without end on that day of the calendar, Nine Eleven. For the rest of my life. I will never forget.
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