Sunday, June 26, 2005


The last few weeks I have been questioning my morality. With Tom passing and what my employer is, I have been wondering a lot about the vastness of life. I feel that I am a realist, with meandering doubts. It may seem that I am depressed about a certain situation, but I will do it, whatever that task may be. I always prepare for the next day. Does that entitle me as an optimist, I don't think so.

There are many questions that I have about just why are we here. And questions about what is the purpose of it all. I can not tell you, nor can anyone I have ever asked. Don't get me wrong, I have heard a many reply.

Such as:

Procreation-God's Will-For you parents-For your children-For your soul

The thing is, what propels that conscience state?

I don't have my answer, nor do I expect to receive one.

I am just going to prepare for tomorrow, and see what that day brings.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Telegraph Pass

We did it!

From the Dead End of North Frontage Road to the cross roads in front of Telegraph Pass it took about 13 minutes. It is about 3/4 of a mile.

From there to the top, (the bench in front of the towers) it took about 22 minutes. That includes 5 cigarette breaks. It is about a mile as a crow flies.

From the top back to the crossroads it took 9 minutes.

Then from that point to where we parked our trucks and cars it took about 8 minutes.

Now, granted at each point we waited for everyone to get there before doing each trek. There were about 4 people ahead of me, 2 with me, and the rest were behind. The times are my times for each distance. The whole time that elapsed was about 2 hours. Not too bad I was expecting about 3 and 1/2 hours. It was a good last PT for me.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Checking out

All this week I have been checking out of MCAS Yuma. If fact someone realized I did not have enough time on my contract for my move to Japan, so, this morning my contract has been extended. (Yea!) This doesn't really mean much other than my EAS (end of service) is a later date.

Now here I am, about 2 weeks out from my last day in the squadron, and I really don't have any responsibilities. I kind of feel like I don't know what to do with myself. I did ask to go home. I was denied. Such is life.

The real "fun" is tomorrow, my last day for PT(physical training) and since it was my choice for what we are doing, I wanted to do a "Telegraph Pass" run. I recieved all my approvals from the higher ups and we will have a safety vehicle. I have a feeling that my Marines will remember me as the asshole who made them run up a mountain for 2 hours. That's okay. I do the trek twice a month, anyway. Should be real fun.

In retrospect, the area here is very simular to the Middle East so this great training.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Thomas L. Stueber Jr.

Thomas L. Stueber Jr., age 29, of 1105 Dewey St., Manitowoc, died Sunday evening, June 12, 2005, at Holy Family Memorial Medical Center, Manitowoc.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday at St. Michael?s Catholic Church, Whitelaw. The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated by the Rev. James Jugenheimer with burial to follow at St. Michael?s Parish Cemetery.

Thomas was born Dec. 21, 1975 in Manitowoc. He was the son of Jane Mueller and the late Thomas L. Stueber Sr. He was a graduate of Valders High School with the class of 1994 and continued his education at the Lakeshore Technical College receiving his associate?s degree in computer aided design. Thomas was employed with Wisconsin Aluminum Foundry since 1994 as a CAD/layout supervisor. On May 15, 2004, Thomas married Nicole Kane at First German Evangelical Lutheran Church, Manitowoc. He was a member of the Viking Bow and Gun Club in Valders and was involved in the Tuesday night trap league. Thomas had a great love for life, enjoyed his time with his wife, family, pet dog, Carmen, along with time spent hunting.
Tom was my best friend. And after the funeral and wake I realized he was many people's best friend.
Tom and I had something different, we would call each other, " Assholes." But this wasn't what he would hear and it is not what I would hear. For some strange reason, this translated into, "your the best friend I have ever had and I would do anything for you." Funny, isn't it? If you knew him and me, you would know this was true.
For the last 10 years, Tom, had picked me up from the airport when arriving or taken me back when I would leave. This is the first time I flew back to Wisconsin and something was missing.
Now, I really didn't write this post to be sad. Tom would have not liked that one bit.So here are a few of the memories that I will cherish.
Everytime, we would go back to Sam's (for whatever) he would stop in the kitchen, find the biggest bowl he could find and fill it with all the toasted garlic bread he could find. By the time we would leave there seldom was any left.
-And if the bar was open, he would just stuff his pockets ,when no one was looking.
One time, Tom and I went to a party to watch a boxing match. Of course this party, was just that a party. I got kicked out of the house some down the line for doing something stupid and was trying to find Tom to tell him I had to leave. Well, I never found him. I drove and his jacket was in my car along with his keys to his parents house, and it was in the middle of winter in Manitowoc. I made it home, put my keys in the same place I always put them and passed out.When sometime in the middle of the morning he had found a ride back to Valders. He climbed upstairs outside in the snow and it was snowing, got my keys found his jacket and his keys and headed for home.
Well, he never actually made it home. He got about 2 houses away and decided to sleep under the porch until his neighbor woke up and kicked him towards his own house.
Sometime, I figure about 3 or 4 hours laterI woke up and couldn't find my keys. I got my spare set and trekked off to Tom's house. When I got there he was sleeping in his own bed, and if you Tom, he is near impossible to wake up. After I finally got him awake and semi coherent, he told me that he got ride about an hour after I left, got back to Valders, couldn't wake me, so he got his crap from my car, locked the doors, and set my keys on top of the driver side front tire.Tom and I spent about 3 hours looking for my keys in impacted snow.
That is not the end of the story, Tom always got back anything I had ever done to him.
- It was a NewYear's Eve a few years later and I was in the Corps by then. I was home and he said his girlfriend, Nicole, would drive us out to Whitelaw and drive us back. Ha Ha. Well, I didn't take a jacket and dressed for a hot and sweaty evening, as did he( he was always hot.) We had a great time and people started filtering out about One in the morning, so I look for Tom and Nicole. Neither could be found. Then, the bar was kicking everyone out. So I go outside to find where we had parked and I couldn't find the vehicle. And I know exactly where it was, but it was not there. So I figure, I will go back and see if I could use the phone, well, the doors were locked. At about this time, I could no longer feel anything, I had little iciles forming where sweat had been. As luck would have it, a car just circled the block and it was a relative of mine, opened the door and told me he would give me a ride. Whew!
Sometime the next day I got ahold of Tom, and all he would do was laugh, and tell me I should've ate more. That way I wouldn't have been so cold. ( He did say that alot.)
I have alot more memories, but I think these 2 are the only PG rating ones I have. Maybe someday if you see me I will tell you in person some of the adventures we had. There were many and I could talk about him for hours. Tom was truly the best friend I ever had. I will miss him greatly. I know if Tom is with me he never stop laughing at all the dumb things I do, that's what friends are for.

Sunday, June 12, 2005


I still go to church. I just go to the sermon then leave. Is this really wrong?
If there is a heaven or hell, I am definitely going to hell, probably in the seventh ring. Or maybe purgatory. I am no angel. That's means not one you'd see in a church anyway. Those of you that know a thing or two about angels know that "Lucifer" was an angel. And there are lots of different types of angels, kind of like people.
In almost all religious text, the common theme is basically "doing the right thing, and do the right thing when no one is looking."
- This something I try to instill in my Marines. It is hard. This is the one thing that depresses me at the end of the day. These Marines are really my heaven and hell.
Back to that church idea. I did go to the whole service, quite regularly at one point in time. I lost the need to be there. Probably the only good part about staying for the whole service is: you can sing and suck at it and no one cares. I believe this is why most people go. They can't sing so they group up with others that can't carry a tune either and disguise this as a church outing.
The question in your head is why do I even go? It's a good question. I could watch it on TV or listen to it on the radio. Why do some people need to go to the opera, or play, or the movie theaters?
If you know me, which most of you do not, I would tell you, 'God will not kill me yet, he isn't done screwing with me.' Or My life is similar to Job. I keep thinking this one is true, do you remember what Job got in the end?
One thing most of are thinking is: here's a guy who goes to church regularly and I(you) don't go, there must be something wrong with me.
I believe that America has turned into a giant bowl of lard. And on the way, 'God' got stuck in it and drowned.
Why is the 'world' in such a hurry? I allot time in my day on Sundays, sometimes it is a workday(like Monday or Thursday) and go to a sermon. {1 : a religious discourse delivered in public usually by a clergyman as a part of a worship service 2 : a speech on conduct or duty} When you were growing up, or right now as you are growing, have you ever wanted to listen to someone's speech?
- I admit it, I didn't. I wanted to go play with my friends or play pong.
- Side note about pong, you needed 2 players to play.-
Have you ever noticed that in sermons the only part God or whomever the deity may be, is only mentioned in the beginning and the end? The middle is usually a story about something that may have happened to you or me or someone you know. This is a known as an analogy.{ a : resemblance in some particulars between things otherwise unlike : SIMILARITY b : comparison based on such resemblance}
The proctor uses this to help us humans understand something he or she need a degree for. This way we never have to go to "church school." We just need to stop by every once in awhile and listen.
Does God hear me? Do you hear me? Do your kids hear you? Do your parents? Do your friends?
I am a confirmed Lutheran. That is ELCA. Yea! I was baptized, had my first communion, and then was confirmed. Since that day, I have dabbled in more than 27 different types of religion and beliefs. (Why didn't I say 28? There were a few that didn't count as a whole one maybe two thirds.)
Don't get me wrong, I appreciate what my parents did for me. And if I have a child some day I will insist on the same thing.
I did not find what I was looking for. This is why, I just go to the sermon.
The message is the same no matter which church you go to. Some people are just better than others when it comes to relaying that message. So I don't limit myself to one type religion. I tend to go to more Lutheran based services, it's a northerner thing. And if you are not Roman Catholic and go to "their" service, you will be treated like you are Lucifer himself.
Why is it that some people don't like outsiders in "their" church? Why are they there? What message are they really saying? What sermon did they listen to?
{1 : an act or instance of sharing 2 a capitalized : a Christian sacrament in which consecrated bread and wine are consumed as memorials of Christ's death or as symbols for the realization of a spiritual union between Christ and communicant or as the body and blood of Christ b : the act of receiving Communion c capitalized : the part of a Communion service in which the sacrament is received 3 : intimate fellowship or rapport : COMMUNICATION 4 : a body of Christians having a common faith and discipline }
Sharing is not what Roman Catholics do. Why am I picking on this set? They are by far the worst. And it doesn't matter where you go' Atlanta, Georgia or Phoenix, Arizona' it's the same reception. Maybe they need to read the dictionary.
{1 a : allegiance to duty or a person : LOYALTY b (1) : fidelity to one's promises (2) : sincerity of intentions 2 a (1) : belief and trust in and loyalty to God (2) : belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion b (1) : firm belief in something for which there is no proof (2) : complete trust 3 : something that is believed especially with strong conviction; especially : a system of religious beliefs}
I have faith.
I have faith in my country.
I have faith in the Corps.
I have faith in God.
This why I believe everything will work out in the "End."
Death- I am not afraid. I know it will happen. Part of life is death. I just want to know before that happens that I did something or said something that made a good difference to someone. Is that asking too much? I hope not. I think this is what God wants.
If there is a higher power, (I know I said I have faith in God. This doesn't mean the same thing) why do 'we' assume he (she) is human or even have a sex related to it. What if God is energy? A conscience energy. I don't know. I think it is better that way. Not knowing. Life is better with uncertainty.
Some people say,' Do things for the right reasons.' If fact my boss repeats that at least 20 times a day. It's nice to say, but really, what is right? I happen to know my boss does not practice what he preaches. I have not told the others. Thing was, I was looking, and he did not do the right thing for the right reasons.
That's probably why I like the phrase. 'Do the right thing when no one is watching.' You don't know who is around the corner. This is a small world. I believe if you try to do this, you will be doing the right "thing" when it matters.
This goes back to the original idea of 'God.' If God is keeping a tally for "our judgment."
What would your score be?
I think I am still in the negatives. I am working on it though. I figure that I might get back in the black, in a couple of years.
I can't judge myself.
You can judge.
I can't be a self described "good guy."
You can call me a good guy.
Do see where I am going with this?
I hope so, if not, you've just wasted your time regarding this column. And you are probably late for something. Because your time management sucks, or you have lost your common sense.
God and Common Sense
You can't buy God. (Maybe at Walmart, a little statue.)
You can't buy common sense. (Not a state quarter.)
You can't earn them.
You can't get them as a gift.
You can find them, but I can not tell you how.
- I believe sometimes, that man couldn't figure out what to call common sense in the 'early days' and called it God.


For some reason no one believes me when I say 'I am a simple man.'
This is what I need:
1. Food ~
I pretty much like all foods except for:
anchovies, fish eggs, cold potato salad, squash, eggplant,
and chocolate.
(I really like chocolate, but tend to get migrains if I eat more
than a Hershey's Kiss worth.)
2. Sex ~
I wish to be a 2 minute man.
Let's face it, I have a 'hard' time of orgasming in less than
half an hour.
If I do, you would be one of those special people.
3. Quiet Time ~
If you've read "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus"
this would be referring to "the cave."
If not, then here's the breakdown, sometimes,
and I won't necessarily know when,
I will need to spend some "me" time away from you or anyone else.
4. Exercise ~
This is usually achieved by my job, but can also be done by number 2 above.
When I don't exercise, I get depressed. At least, I know it.
5. Touch ~
I like to "feel" women.
I list this separate because this does not
have to include sex.
Most of the 365 days of the year, hugs and a gentle
squeeze somewhere will suffice.
This is sometimes referred to by women as cuddling.
I don't like to call it that, it seems to be too much.
No, I just need to known that I am alive with my soul.
Well, that's it. 5 (five) things I need. Don't get me wrong, I have plenty of wants. If the the above 5 are covered, my 'list of wants' gets smaller. Amazing isn't it?
So, you tell me, does this make me simple or complicated?

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Ralph Waldo Emerson

"The task ahead of us is never so great as the power behind us." Ralph Waldo Emerson
Do I really need to add to this?

Japan and the last few years leading to it.

For those of you that haven't heard, I am on my way to Japan for a 1 year stint. Knowing the Marine Corps and all of its "Red Tape" and "Green Weinie Awards" I feel there may be a good chance of me stayinga little longer than 365 days. That's reality. Yes, I did say Japan, but odds are good I won't just stay there either.
I really just have to count my blessings and say I was fortunate to stay in a non-deployable unit for the last 5 years. This is one of the things that has bothered me the most since being a Marine. Not the fact that I have not deployed for a little under half the time I have served but that my family actually came to visit me. This I don't understand, I have spent time in beautiful places, places that have many activities places that are green, but I did not have one visit there, no, I have been visited in the desert. Little to nothing to do, and unless Arizona landscaping (desert and cactus) is your premier choice for a backyard, it has been the most "dry" place one person could spend in the Marine Corps. My brother, my Mom, my Dad, and several other family members took the trek to this "God forsaken" place.