1. When John F. Kennedy was shot (11/22/1963):
Unborn. But I'll take this moment to remind everyone that this was one day before the premiere of Doctor Who.
2. When Mt. St. Helen's blew (5/18/1980):
I don't actually remember what I was doing when I heard about the eruption of Mt. St. Helen's, because to someone living in Illinois, who really cares about a mountain exploding in Washington? However, I see here that the eruption occurred at 8:32 AM, so I can state with some authority that I was at church when it happened.
3. When the Challenger exploded (January 28, 1986):
I was in gym class. My high school required final exams in all classes, even in those in which giving any kind of exam was stupid, like gym. Boing! Anyway, on the day the Challenger exploded, we had our gym final. Once we were done with the exam, we had about an hour and fifteen minutes to kill before the next exam, so I was sitting on the bleachers in the small gym with a couple of my friends when the teacher -- Mrs. Fisher, I think it was -- came in and told us that the space shuttle had just blown up. We thought at first she was kidding, but then we realized that he had never demonstrated any discernable sense of humor before and that she was probably telling the truth.
4. When the 7.1 earthquake hit San Francisco (10/7/1989):
See no. 2, but substitute "Iowa" for "Illinois." And I probably wasn't at church.
5. When the Berlin Wall fell (11/7/1989):
Again, I was in college, so I probably read about it in the paper in the Commons. If I had any specific reaction to it, it was probably something along the lines of "huh" or "neat!" I have a piece of the wall that my sister picked up for me when she went to Berlin.
6. When the Gulf War began (1/16/1991):
I was in my dorm room, and I got a phone call from the editor of the school paper. She wanted to prepare a special edition of the paper about the war for distribution the next morning. So I spent an hour or so watching the news and taking notes, then I went over to the newspaper office in the Commons to work on the paper. We pounded out a two pager and had it on the tables in the cafeteria the next morning.
7. When OJ Simpson was chased in his White Bronco (6/17/1994):
I was working at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee that year, and the chase started while I was at the office (we were working late that night). Once I got home, I turned on the TV and, having no interest in watching the chase, watched a basketball game. It takes a lot to make me want to watch a basketball game, but the chase coverage did the trick. Saturation news coverage of anything gets boring really quickly.
8. When the building in Oklahoma City was bombed (4/19/1995):
I was at work. I came out of my office and found a bunch of people clustered around the office manager's desk. I went over and saw they were watching coverage of the OKC bombing. I watched for a little bit, taking time to reflect on the creepiness of watching coverage of an explosion at a nine-story Federal building from the eight floor of a nine-story Federal building. Then I went back to my desk, checking back every so often for new developments. Saturation news coverage of anything gets boring really quickly.
9. When Princess Di was killed (8/31/1997):
I think I heard about it in an e-mail. I didn't much care. The only thing I found interesting about Princess Diana's death was that is happened so close to Mother Theresa's death, because I thought it unusual that two extremely famous people would die so close together. I remember talking about it with my sister, and we decided that if there really was such a thing as the rule of three, the next person to die would have to be either Michael Jordan, Bill Clinton, or the Pope.
10. When Bush was first announced President (11/7/2000):
The first time? I was asleep in bed. When it became clear that no answer was coming soon, I went to bed. When he was named president by the US Supreme Court in December, I was at my office, working. It was a disappointment, and history has certainly demonstrated that it was a bad choice, but what are you gonna do?
11. When the 6.8 earthquake hit Nisqually, WA (2/28/2001):
The what in the where? Obviously, this survey was created by someone in Washington, because man, who else gives a crap? Seriously.
12. When terrorists knocked over the World Trade Center (9/11/2001):
I was in bed. I was awake but not very. The radio was on, and I heard someone say that a plan had hit the World Trade Center. My didn't think it was that big a deal -- planes have been known to fly into tall buildings before, you know. By the time the second plane hit I was out of bed. I watched the news for a little while I while I got dressed, and then I left to go to the library. I was unemployed, and needed to continue looking for a job. And saturation news coverage of anything gets boring really quickly. The news sites on the Internet were jammed, so I kept up with what was happening via the Television Without Pity forums. Hee.