Sunday, October 5, 2008

Houses, Houses Everywhere Today

Today, at the Barack Obama concert/rally/voter registration drive held
on the campus of Ohio State University, Bruce Springsteen told the
crowd: "Despite the terrible erosion to our standing in the world, we
remain for many people a house of dreams, and 1,000 George Bushes and
1,000 Dick Cheneys will never be able to tear that house down."

Quite interesting to read that tired, old, rearview mirror statement
while watching an Extreme Home Makeover show in which an entire
community - also in Ohio - came together to rebuild a house for the
Jason Thomas family. Before the show, the Thomas house was in such a
dismal condition that it barely provided shelter for the family. After
this show, it was a house of strength, just like its owners and

And why this particular family? Because on 9/11/2001, Jason Thomas was
a Marine who worked long and hard (and has the melted boots to prove
it) to extract people who landed beneath tons and tons of building
that had once been the Twin Towers. Two of the men who were extracted
by Thomas were interviewed on the show. As best I remember, one man
was trapped for 13 hours, the other for 22 hours. Both men thanked
Thomas and all the other heroes who were ordinary citizens before that

Jason Thomas is a man who keeps his love of country no secret. The man
flat out loves this country. He does.

The show brought many tears. The family cried, of course, when they
first saw the house. Crew members cried when local Marine recruiters
presented them with flags (one American, one Marine) to fly at the
remodeled house. The Marine Sergeant teared-up as he explained to
Jason Thomas why the Marines were honored to be part of this project.
Ed, one of the carpenters on the Extreme Home Makeover crew, cried
openly as he spoke of his love of America and said, in his heavy
foreign accent, how he could not wait to become an American citizen.

Ed also cried when he cut his hand badly while carving an American
flag to decorate the Thomas' new home. When Jason Thomas saw the flag
and was told about Ed's injury that occurred while carving the flag,
he quietly commented that people bleed for the American flag every
day, and to know that Ed bled for this flag would make it the
centerpiece of the house. Forever.

Two stories of houses. Two stories of people coming together in Ohio.

Just goes to show, doesn't it girls? Just goes to show.

Miz Vul

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