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Cleaning into my past

This afternoon's been a cleaning afternoon. Recycling's picked up tomorrow, so that's good motivation; so is having just too much stuff. My bedroom, desk, CD racks and closet are all now incrementally neater and better organized, and LOTS of paper is in a bin at the curb.

I also found random pages I'd saved from my day planners, which I started using in 1996 because my then-girlfriend Alicia gave me an extra Franklin planner she had. I'd saved a page or two from all the way back in '97 (noting a job interview at a newspaper in Tillamook, OR, on the Coast); another page from mid-last decade noted a couple of Portland addresses where my dad's mom, my Grandma Jean, grew up. (One house is still standing; another that was downtown was long ago torn down.)

Some of the planner pages were from right after 9/11.

I was taking notes about how my family and friends (all unhurt and nowhere near the Pentagon) were coping during the aftermath. Lots of calls; as far as I know, the only time I had trouble getting on the phone with anyone was Tuesday the 11th, and I did eventually get through to my brother in Northern Virginia. Fifteen years ago. Whoa. Long and short times, at the same time. And I was at a remove from the attack. (I knew fewer people in and around New York then than I know now.)

Like all of us, I had loads on my mind that week. Including, maybe not surprisingly, phrasing that I thought was worth saving. Randomly written on one of those pages: "An apple: Hand-held health."

I'm saving some of those pages, still, along with plenty of other things. I hope I've better organized stuff now.