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9/11 Recollections

A few years ago The Queen frequented a hairdresser named Caroline. Caroline was a real girlie girl, forever bemoaning the state of the Seattle dating scene, showing off photos of her overly-pampered dog, and providing exhaustive recaps of recent Sex and the City episodes. She couldn't have been more unlike The Queen, but she was very nice, gave good haircuts, and her salon was two blocks from our house. Plus she was a neverending fount of funny stories, which The Queen would relate to me when she got home.

In February of 2002 -- five months after the September 11 attack -- The Queen arrived for her regular appointment and found herself alone in the salon with Caroline. After she was seated and the two had engaged in some small talk, Caroline picked up the current issue of People Magazine off the counter.

"Have you seen this?" she asked, showing it to The Queen. On the cover was a group shot of 32 women holding infants. "All of those babies had fathers who died in the World Trade Center collapse," Caroline said somberly. "Can you even imagine? It's so sad. The whole thing is just so, so sad."

The Queen and Caroline stared at the photo without speaking for a while. Then The Queen noticed that Caroline was watching her out of the corner of her eye, as if she waiting for an appropriate amount time to pass.

Finally she could wait no longer. "Look at this one," Caroline said, breaking the mournful silence and excitedly calling The Queen's attention to a woman in the picture. "Can you believe that lip-liner she's wearing? And her hair -- my God, it's horrible!"

Posted on September 12, 2005 to Storytelling