Friday, September 11, 2009


It's a hot day. The curtains help block the heat of the white sun. The sky is blue, unusually blue, January-in-Egypt blue. We woke up this morning and talked about political rhetoric, about narrative truth, as we sipped coffee. We listened to the imam next door, first praising then shouting then dropping to a soft prostrating lull. We did this as we watched 24, second season. We talked about the way that season reflected an American attitude toward the Middle East at that time, one that has changed in significant ways. I finished reading Wise Blood. J left to run an errand, and I sat in front of the computer, intending to work on a short story I have been working on since 2000. I procrastinated. I checked facebook. It's morning in the U.S. - people are just starting to rise and go to work. I was puzzled by status updates about praying for people, about not forgetting. I felt panic rising in me, and I wondered if something had happened again. It took me a few minutes to realize my mistake.

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