Who was the first person you called when the towers fell? I called Isaac Mizrahi. How crazy is that? I rode my bike to the studio extra early that morning because I was designing a table for Isaac and he was sending a film crew to my studio to shoot some process footage for his show. I wanted to make sure that all my best crap was hanging on the walls and the place looked immaculate but functional. This was going to be my big break and obviously it was overwhelmingly important. I wanted to look cool, so I put on my favorite t shirt, a sleeveless black rock t for the band "Twin Barrels Burning" printed in yellow. Black and yellow...stings like a bee.
Next thing you know, my pal Julius who worked for some French furniture fruitcakes next door to me told me to head up to the roof because a plane had crashed into one of the twin towers. The studio was in long Island City, Queens. From the roof we had a clear view down the East River. That explains this weird picture. That is also where the soapbox derby team name came from. Any ways, after the second tower was hit but before either of them fell, I went downstairs and called Isaac and asked if we were still on!?! I mean, the whole thing was so shocking and surreal I just wondered if I was going to be on camera in an hour or not.
No. The shoot was postponed. Thank god, I wasn't really ready yet. No, I wasn't behind 911.
Seriously, I have met so many people who experienced 9/11 from so many different places and there is a similar characteristic or look in one's eye when they reflect back on that horrible, horrible day. Whether they were in the bloodbath at the foot of the towers or if they were on the west coast learning about the events from 3000 miles away, everybody tapped into a new, deep, communal pool of sadness and disbelief. What a day.
I always think of 911 when I see firefighters. You should have heard the sirens coming from all over the planet, funneling down the avenues and across the bridges to lower Manhattan. From the roof of the studio it was terribly eerie hearing the screaming sirens while the skies were completely quiet as all air traffic was grounded. You don't realize how many friggin' planes and choppers are always flying overhead until they stop.
I don't really have a point I just want to spew. 9/11/09