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Dear Jon

by 12/01/2005
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

Dear Jon, An airplane crashes into The World Trade Center where you’ve been working for only six days. 97th floor. We are told— incinerated. A friend calls to wake me— turn on the radio. I get through to Erika and ask her how she is. It’s not me, it’s Jon. A memorial service, suicide attempts, […]

Death Masks at Ground Zero

by 07/06/2004
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

With the groundbreaking of the Freedom Tower at Ground Zero, this past Fourth of July marked the latest phase of post- 9-11 recovery. “As we commemorate the foundation of our nation we will lay the foundation for our resurgence,” Gov. George Pataki hopefully explained about the event. But while Pataki may feel it is high […]

9/11 Archive

by 12/26/2002
Neighborhood: Multiple, World Trade Center

  The View From the Seventieth Floor by Sandy Gelpieryn Death Masks at Ground Zero by Kendra Hurley The Numbers by Bryan Charles The View From Silver Lake Park by Gabrielle Walter Don’t Look Back by Kevin McLeod Scenes From The Brooklyn Bridge by Jim Merlis The View From Long Island Part Ii by Adam […]

The Season of 9/11

by 09/19/2002
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

Another September as bright as a dime. Another morning of clear air, another day of hearing shrieking jets and watching strangers acting strange in the streets. Another day of firefighters in their FDNY T-shirts and brotherhoods of policemen in their dress blues, this time like old war veterans dressed up for the parade, assuming a […]

Forces at Work

by 09/11/2002
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

I am a skeptic when it comes to psychics like John Edward, the hunky television charlatan, who claims he is able to communicate with “The Other Side.” When I have a premonition I tend to deny it. I denied one in late August of last year when I was seven months pregnant. While organizing my […]

Shouldn’t We Be Digging?

by 09/11/2002
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

I am not a firefighter, police officer or paramedic, but when a nurse at the Red Cross barricade mistook me for one and asked, “Are you coming?” I said, “Yes.” That was 8:45 P.M. on September 11th. What followed was a two-day odyssey at Ground Zero. I worked with many good-willed people on bucket brigades […]

The Numbers

by 03/11/2002
Neighborhood: Lower Manhattan, World Trade Center

Mr. Beller’s Neighborhood was started in the year 2000, and we have published many stories about what happened in New York on 9/11/2001 and the months that followed. Today is the 20th anniversary of that day. We are featuring one of those stories this week. This story was first published on March 11, 2002. (JM) Here […]

Unbearable Lightness

by 03/10/2002
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

It’s a trick of the light. Depending on where you stand, the “Tribute in Light” memorial looks more like a pillar of fire descending from heaven than a recreation of the World Trade Center. You’d be forgiven if, after 9/11, you thought you’d never crane your neck to look that high up again, because there […]

The College at Ground Zero

by 02/02/2002
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

My class started the fall semester in the beautiful rooms of newly renovated Fiterman Hall, the south annex of Borough of Manhattan Community College, and finished in a trailer on West Street across from the barge port where trucks dump debris from the World Trade Center. “Have a good weekend and keep up with your […]

America is the Bomb

by 01/10/2002
Neighborhood: Letter From Abroad, World Trade Center

“America. Boom. America. Boom. Boeki Centaa. Boom.” During my time in Japan, I had grown quite used to not understanding what the hell people were trying to tell me. But this was a new one. Usually you can decipher the broken English of the Japanese by taking an abstract view of the words and changing […]

Back Then

by 11/24/2001
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

Some South Jersey friends and I have a Christmas evening tradition of ditching our families and meeting for drinks in a dive near Atlantic City. There was a time when most of us lived in New York, but we’ve since scattered, some further afield and others, like my friend Paul, back to NJ. This year […]

The Fate of the Pear Trees at Ground Zero

by 11/10/2001
Neighborhood: World Trade Center

Two weeks after the shock of September 11th, I was sent to “ground zero” by the Parks Department Commissioner to make a quick evaluation of the damage to the plant life in the area. The Commissioner wanted to know what had survived, what plants would need to be replaced, how much it would all cost. […]