Daily Archives: September 15, 2013

My Tiara

I’ve just finished a deep clean of my office. I was getting a stuffy nose sitting at my desk so decided to take everything off the desk and wipe it down well, dust all monitors and other desk items and return them to the desk. Then I thought I should take everything out of my closet and vacuum the rug in there and sweep under all other furniture in the office. I vowed to not put anything back in my closet that I didn’t need. That was about 15 days ago and I just finished about an hour ago. I have two garbage bags full of trash, two bags of stuff that belongs in other parts of the house that found its way to my attic and an overflowing moving box of items to donate. One of the items in that box is a tiara.

You see, I don’t need a tiara. and I’ve been meaning to blog about this tiara so I could dispose of it because it is really hard to store a tiara and even harder to display a tiara.

Here’s the story of the tiara.

Twelve years ago around this time I was still trying to emotionally and intellectually process the attacks of September 11. Then the anthrax attacks started happening. We were told to be wary of our mail — not knowing who was going to be targeted next.

One day at work I was given a package. It was a small, light cube-shaped brown package and had been mailed through the US Postal system. It had no return address. I was afraid to open it. Normally I tear into packages, but not this one. I let it sit on my desk in my cubical. Finally our administrative assistant asked what was in the package and I told her I had not opened it yet. She said I should and that I had no reason to think it was anthrax or anything else dangerous. So I brought it to her desk and slowly opened it.

What I found inside was nothing I would ever have guessed — t was a silver and (fake) gemstone tiara on which the word DIVA was spelled out in metal and gems.

The note inside explained it all. Joanne, my one-time friend, and I had met for lunch one day in late summer. We discussed my work and she said I was a 508 Guru. I said, not a Guru, a Diva. So when she saw the Diva tiara at a store she wanted to buy it for me to wear when I did my Section 508 work. She also wanted me to know she was thinking of me, living close to some of the 9-11 attacks.

It was a thoughtful gift and it was a turning point in how I felt about the September 11 events. For some reason I felt that having such a sparkly tiara, I was somehow safe. Nothing bad would happen to me. I kept it at work and occasionally wore it when I did 508 work — mostly when someone else was looking.

Damn, now I want to take it out of the give-away box…