Friday, November 30, 2007

Letters - The Answer Expanded, Part II

Since I am an avid fan of mail (that is not bills) I finished writing my "Christmas cards" tonight. I sent out about two dozen or so. I did something different this year, which I think may be caused by my "new" surroundings this year.

Well, the people I have an address for that sent a letter or care package, will receive a card from me. So not to be left out(my current audience) my year in review is right here. This blog. Even though I have been careful about OpSec (Operation Security) everyone should be able to get the idea what has happened to me and the Marines of MALS-29 REIN.

A Word About Mail, Maybe Two

I cannot express enough in words the appreciation for the letters, postcards and especially the care packages that I have received during this 13 to 14 month deployment. I cannot say if it would have been bearable without the love and dedication I (we) received in the mail.

If you (the person reading this) has my address here in the Area of Operation (AO) please do not send anything else past December 15th.

If you do it reminds me about a letter I was recieved from my Mom 3 years and 7 months late. It was sent to an address similar to the one I have now and did not reach its destination until after I had left and went back to my garrison command. Well, that letter "floated" through the system until it ultimately found me in Arizona. (Which I am not stationed there anymore either.) I still have the envelope it has stamps form seventeen different military posts and international post offices. While it is nice to know the mail system still works even after you leave an AO, it is just better to not test out the system.

RevGals Friday Five: The Grinch Edition

Will smama has included a Friday Five that is right up my alley, the kind you beat with a stick then run it over with your car.

Please tell us(RevGals) your least favorite/most annoying seasonal....

1) dessert/cookie/family food
I do not know what it is called it is white, round has nuts in it, some sort of powdery substance an the outside, it is only seen during this time of the year, whatever it may be called I hate it. Always have. Seems like "old" like to have them in in abundance and when you visit it is in you rbest interest to eat several or you will be beat by a cane. (Or something like that.)

2) beverage (seasonal beer, eggnog w/ way too much egg and not enough nog, etc...)
Eggnog by itself makes me want to hurl, but if you add enough brandy anything can be tolerable.

3) tradition (church, family, other)
I don't have any "Christmas" traditions anymore so maybe that is my complaint.

4) decoration
It is not anyone decoration but the one who is competing with Clark Griswald, those people should be *****. ( I can't really express my feelings on a blog about this one.)

5) gift (received or given)
The one where you receive and everyone in the room knows it is crappy gift but you smile and tell the person who gave it to you, that it is something you always wanted and then give it away at the next year's Christmas party.

BONUS: SONG/CD that makes you want to tell the elves where to stick it.
Bing Crosby's White Christmas - I can't stand it ever since being stuck in a snow drift two stories tall , while in a '79 Ford Bronco which the heater didn't work well, and not very much "cold weather" clothing for the "short" trip to Grandma's house in some Christmas during the eighties and the only song playing "it seems" was that, on the radio.

Honorable Even if Not Entirely True

I recieved an email deplicting it was an article from Jay Leno. Well, being the avid researcher of truth, I went to to verify its authenticty. It was not by Jay Leno, there is a quote by him in the closing paragraph in the email, but that was it. The actual articel was written by Craig R. Smith.

Here is an excerpt from that article appearing in the World Net Daily:

Made in the USA: Spoiled brats
Posted: November 20, 2006
1:00 a.m. Eastern

The other day I was reading Newsweek magazine and came across some poll data I found rather hard to believe. It must be true given the source, right? The same magazine that employs Michael (Qurans in the toilets at Gitmo) Isikoff. Here I promised myself this week I would be nice and I start off in this way. Oh what a mean man I am.

The Newsweek poll alleges that 67 percent of Americans are unhappy with the direction the country is headed and 69 percent of the country is unhappy with the performance of the president. In essence 2/3s of the citizenry just ain't happy and want a change.

So being the knuckle dragger I am, I starting thinking, ''What we are so unhappy about?''

Is it that we have electricity and running water 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? Is our unhappiness the result of having air conditioning in the summer and heating in the winter? Could it be that 95.4 percent of these unhappy folks have a job? Maybe it is the ability to walk into a grocery store at any time and see more food in moments than Darfur has seen in the last year?

If you would like to read the full article go to:

Thursday, November 29, 2007

The Many Uses...

Of Motrin. Probably the most common "candy" a Marine will get in his(her) career.

Today is a mix of Dr. Pepper and 800mg Motrin.

A Busy Thursday(ish), Part II

The day is not done but the major hurdles are. I did not get quality sleep like I meant to do prior to my PFT. I did, however, perform a First Class. It is not a high one, but first class the same. I was also a afforded the opportunity to weigh-in which would have been done at 0800 the following day. It is confirmed I gained thirty pounds since arriving in Iraq. People keep telling me I don't look fat, but I still feel that way. I did not, however(pause for effect), make it to the Post Office. So I will still have to make that trek tomorrow or the next day. I probably got about two good hours of sleep afterwards, I probably need ten. (I am not a spring chicken anymore.) I got to work, did my shift change, and sent the day crew "home." I held my meeting and now I am chugging coffee at a new rate which will most likely cause me to sleep crappy again tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A Busy Thursday(ish)

I work at night time, if you haven't gathered that already. Pretty soon I am going to attempt to sleep. This means leaving work early and sleeping at a time not normal for my body. (Times like this in the states are usually accompanied with a couple of favorite frosty beverages.) Then during the time I am normally asleep at my heaviest hour, I am going to run a PFT(Physical Fitness Test). After which I am going to try and mail several boxes of accumulated items back to the states. Afterwards with hopefully a successful Post Office trip, I will go back into work(for the "next" day). The Packer game should kick off sometime between 03 and 05 (following day) which the only problem arises with the end of my shift when my boss(the Captain) would rather see me doing something else(not watching football on his TV).

So tomorrow(today) should be a fun busy day.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Five of My Favorite Gifts of All Time

Rev Kim tagged for me this meme, to "name five of your favorite all time gifts. Either given or gotten." I am game for it, but this will be a tough one, okay.

One) A fire truck. Not just any type of fire truck but a fire truck I could drive(pedal). I would have to say I was five maybe four, hard to say. Yeah, that one was awesome.

Two) A Green Bay Packer cribbage board. Two things I enjoy in one present, what is not to like.

Three) Green Bay Packer Stadium Blanket. The darn thing comes in handy in all sorts of places. (In my adult years I have gotten pretty easy to shop for.)

Four) Leatherman Kick. Two years ago, in Japan, at the avionics Christmas Party. I use it everyday.

Five) A kiss. Christmas 2004.

I will tag everyone I didn't give a gift to in the last thirty years. (That should cover the blog sphere.)

The Valders Journal

I know the majority of my readers have no clue what the "Valders Journal" is and no idea where in the world Valders may be. Well, it is a small village about the center of Manitowoc County in Wisconsin. Did that help? How about 10 miles west of Manitowoc by way of US Highway 151? That should help you find it a bit easier. The Valders Journal is the paper for that village.
Simple. Now the tough questions are answered.

I receive the Journal about two to three weeks after the printing. Oh wait, I didn't tell you the obvious answer, this is where I am from. So this paper, that I receive about half a month late, is always filled with something interesting. I like to look at this as the local news with pizazz and small town humor. The writing is superb and I know they have won awards so don't take this too lightly.

There are many times in which I really, really want to write an editorial. But I suppose it may be my better judgement that stops me. If you haven't figured it out, I have a lot of opinions.

There is always a part of the second page that talks about "today's" history, which I think is important, even though sometimes the facts are one sided sometimes. Of course, I get to keep up on the high school sports and see the progress through the seasons. "News of Record" tells of tragedy and heartache. The Outdoor Report gets a laugh on occasion with his Olga and Swen jokes.(If you don't know, just nod and grin.) The part that I seem to always enjoy is this opinion article by Gregg Novacheck titled "What the Parrot Saw." His writing style to me seems similar to mine. Very funny stuff and to me is the paper seller.

The Learning Curve

Wouldn't you know it, as soon as I get the flow of letter writing going, I have work to do. The "work" at the time required my attention. It was the senior man rule. It involved our famous aircraft. The one that no one wants to work with. (Except those who use them daily.)

That is why the senior man rule comes in. Who ever the senior man is, that is the guy or gal that gets his ass handed to them if something is amiss. It is a great system unless you are that senior man.

The "work" is currently off doing the thing that I put in motion. Tomorrow will be the test of time. If I don't get my ass handed to me, then I made the right decision. If I do, that is what we call "a learning experience."

Monday, November 26, 2007

Christmas Hangman

Halloween Hangman created by The Dimension's Edge, Inc.

For fun.

Word Verification

If you have commented here before you know that I do not have a word verification. (In fact, I don't use Blogger for my comments at all.) There are many(bloggers) that do. And I would venture a guess that 95 percent have a word verification. Why?

I know what it is for, but does anyone really have a problem with this? This = "robots" leaving unwanted messages of his or her blog. I don't know anyone with this problem.

I did have this problem with a guestbook I had for my website, but I was using php and I have now corrected that problem.

Here is the next point, where are the words? I can't remember a time where there was a word. It was just a jumbled mess of letters and sometimes numbers. Why even call it a word verification if there are no words?

The last point or statement or question is: Let's all get rid of this waste of time. Say "No" to word verification.

That is my story and I sticking with it.

Happened Upon

I happened upon this article by Peggy Noonan in the Wall Street Journal. Wacky. Here is an excerpt and a link. I thought it inspired a thought or two.

People Before Prophets
We're making too much of politicians' religious faith.

Friday, November 23, 2007 12:01 a.m. EST

I was talking with an old friend, a longtime Democrat, and she asked if I knew what religion a certain presidential candidate was. I replied that I didn't know and hoped I'd never find out. We started to laugh, and she nodded.

I didn't mean it and yet I meant it, for we have come to an odd pass regarding candidates and their faith. It's not as if faith is unimportant, it's always important. But we are asking our political figures--mere flawed politicians--to put forward and talk about their faith to a degree that has become odd. We push them against the wall and do a kind of theological frisk on them. We didn't use to.

Forty years ago, a firm-jawed, silver-haired Michigan governor made a serious bid for the presidency. He was well-funded, well-credentialed, and was done in by one of those campaign gaffes in which a throwaway line becomes a death knell. He had changed his position on Vietnam, and in explaining his previous support said he'd been "brainwashed" on the issue. Americans don't like their presidents to be people who'd allow their brains to be sent to the dry cleaners. Republicans in particular were not amused. So he was over.

His name was George Romney. He was Mitt's father. And no one back in those narrow-minded, benighted days seems to have cared that much that he was a Mormon.

Now it's an issue. Now we debate the candidate's faith.

This is change. Is it progress?

It doesn't feel like it.

In 1968 we were, as now, a religious country. But when we walked to the polls, we thought we were about to hire a president, not a Bible study teacher.

No one cared, really, that Richard Nixon was a Quaker. They may have been confused by it, but they weren't upset. His vice president, Spiro Agnew, was not Greek Orthodox but Episcopalian. Nobody much noticed. Nelson Rockefeller of New York was not an Episcopalian but a Baptist. Do you know what Lyndon Johnson's religion was? He was a member of the Disciples of Christ, but in what appeared to be the same way he was a member of the American Legion: You're in politics, you join things. Hubert Humphrey was born Lutheran, attended Methodist churches, and was rumored to be a Congregationalist. This didn't quite reach the level of mystery because nobody quite cared.

Question Twenty Three

The importance to question twenty three can be calculated in measures of life and death but rarely is that extreme. Could be considered as important as the Council of Trent or landing a of the lunar module on the moon.

I think it is best we examine the question in parts.

The first section, What is, I believe is self explanatory but I added a hyper link any way. The second part, Captain, Captain Morgan, the preferred is the Spiced Rum, but others in their wacky tastes might go with some other not as good flavor. The next part is coke, truly Coca Cola is the best but may be substituted with other varieties. This falls into the category of why fuck up a good thing. The last part, in a tub, is a carry over from a couple of generations ago, it is the use of a large usually wide glass with no stem. The idea is to get rid of the stupid shit so one can enjoy the drink. This can be especially helpful if you have a large nose.

This is an obvious addition that there should be no junk in the drink. Junk refers to fruit and vegetables. Some people not really interested in the drink believe having junk in their drink enhances it, but in truth they really look naive and probably should be beaten with a wet noodle, something to match the brain power.

This post is not meant to offend anyone, but if it did there are people that can help you and you will win a jacket that will be your last jacket you will ever wear.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Vacations, Part II

I think I may need a vacation.
Somewhere that serves chilled beer.
A place where I can talk to a woman and maybe get lucky.
A venue with good music.
A place I can not worry.
Somewhere that knows what a "Captain and coke in a tub" means.
A place with conversation.
Somewhere not close.
Somewhere not far away.
A locale with a massage parlor nearby.
An area with fresh air.
A place that everyone is not carrying a weapon.
An area that has real beds.
Somewhere PDOA is okay.
I think I need a vacation.

Group Photo

For those people who have wondered who we are, well, here we are! This is my platoon if that is what makes sense to you.
(Let me tell you this, it was 39 degrees at the time this photo was taken. There was a wind and where we took this photo there was nothing to block it. )
Hope you all enjoy the photo!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Spelling Bee

Apparently, I have been spelling CHAPLIN and been meaning to spell CHAPLAIN for quite some time now.

The chaplain here caught me misspelling the word today and corrected me. I think I have been messing this up for my entire career. No one has even mentioned it before. Boggles the mind, it does. I would like to think I am a decent speller and I use the correct spellings, except for this glitch.


Friday, November 23, 2007

Reason Four Hundred Twenty Two

I don't think I could really be a civilian, per se, ever again.

What do you do on your holidays? I don't really know anymore. This is not about me anymore it is really about the young Marines in their first few years of the Corps. Making sure they are as happy as possible.

I really do not know what makes me happy. I know what makes me sad. I know what makes me angry. All the "bad" emotions, I know, what causes them, so I try to avoid it. (Don't call the Chaplin, I like me.) I have just been thinking and now I am writing it down. Think it as a reflection.

If this is fate, so be it. If it is God's will, fine. I can live with it.

300th Comment of the Month

Iris of Growing Where I'm Planted has posted my 300th comment of the month!

Your prize is my collection of imaginary elf horns.


RevGals Friday Five: Post Thanksgiving

Singing Owl writes:
Thanksgiving is the American holiday when the greatest number of people travel somewhere else to celebrate. I am posting this from my son’s home in Minnesota where we are recovering from the food shopping and the preparations and the meal and the clean up. It is difficult to think of anything requiring much energy today, and I am enjoying my sweet baby granddaughter, so I will keep it simple. For those of you not in the USA, I apologize for the nationalistic tone of this Friday Five!

1. Did you go elsewhere for the day, or did you have visitors at your place instead? How was it?
I spent the day in Iraq, I didn't have any visitors so that was good.

2. Main course: If it was the turkey, the whole turkey, and nothing but the turkey, was it prepared in an unusual way? Or did you throw tradition to the winds and do something different?
I actually had a type of steak couldn't tell what kind or from what animal but it tasted okay.

3. Other than the meal, do you have any Thanksgiving customs that you observe every year?
When I am not deployed (and sometimes when I am) I try to enjoy it with someones family.

4. The day after Thanksgiving is considered a major Christmas shopping day by most US retailers. Do you go out bargain hunting and shop ‘till you drop, or do you stay indoors with the blinds closed? Or something in between?
I wrote about this below, no I do not shop. Not a crowd person. If football is on, I will watch that.

5. Let the HOLIDAY SEASON commence! When will your Christmas decorations go up?
There are up. Didn't I post that already? I added stockings on my desk that a nice woman from Washington and a nice woman from Florida sent.

Black Friday

The first thing that comes to mind is a religious connotation. Maybe when Jesus died on the cross or something along those lines. That does not seem the case here. No, what it is, is the start of "holiday" shopping. Is that stupid?

Holiday shopping = whichever holiday you shop for

I think it was originally Christmas shopping, then America added Santa Claus. Then we added political correctness. Then we added (forgive me Mel) California. Then we added, “we are too damn sensitive and on drugs to understand what the reason is to give materialistic items to our children." Then we added GWOT.

Black Friday has its own website, I am not endorsing it, I am just showing the level at which this has come.

I am not trying to end it. I am not trying to bash Californians (really). I am not trying to do anything.

While I am here, abroad, I wonder what kind of chaos ensures the American public. What kind of fever runs the veins of those who could really care less of the purpose of their time off work or school?

I just don't understand anymore.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Rights - A Look

I did some research on copyrights. What prompted this was a desire to form my ideas in a book at some point in time. I have been working on an autobiography for some time now and have been toying with the idea of put this and other blogs and my website content into this medium.

This is what the government says:

Copyright protects “original works of authorship” that are fixed in a tangible form of expression. The fixation need not be directly perceptible so long as it may be communicated with the aid of a machine or device. Copyrightable works include the following categories:
1) literary works;
2) musical works, including any accompanying words
3) dramatic works, including any accompanying music
4) pantomimes and choreographic works
5) pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works
6) motion pictures and other audiovisual works
7) sound recordings
8) architectural works

These categories should be viewed broadly. For example, computer programs and most “compilations” may be registered as “literary works”; maps and architectural plans may be registered as “pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works.”

And this is the cool part:

The use of a copyright notice is no longer required under U.S. law, although it is often beneficial. Because prior law did contain such a requirement, however, the use of notice is still relevant to the copyright status of older works.

This is the part that lets me live forever:

A work that was created (fixed in tangible form for the first time) on or after January 1, 1978, is automatically protected from the moment of its creation and is ordinarily given a term enduring for the author’s life plus an additional 70 years after the author’s death. In the case of “a joint work prepared by two or more authors who did not work for hire,” the term lasts for 70 years after the last surviving author’s death. For works made for hire, and for anonymous and pseudonymous works (unless the author’s identity is revealed in Copyright Office records), the duration of copyright will be 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter.

So I am not going to worry too much today, or tomorrow either.

Green Does Me Well

Your results:
You are Green Lantern

Green Lantern
The Flash
Iron Man
You have strong
will power and a good imagination.

Click here to take the "Which Superhero am I?" quiz...

How My Thanksgiving Ended

What more can I ask for?
(To watch it would have been nice. I know I am reaching.)

Changes for Fun

I have been doing some more changes to this blog,little things, really. I have added some charities that have helped in a magnitude that I cannot express in words. Should be the third thing down the side there. I am sure there are many others, but these were the ones that directly impacted my life and the lives of my Marines.

I changed my aviator(the picture associated with my user name) to a logo that one of the Marines here drew and painted with is hung by a tori(it sounds like that, not sure of the spelling). The tori is made out of anti-aircraft gun barrels, in which some more Marines made possible. I am sure you can't tell, but the picture is of two separate wolverines. You may have to cock your head a bit to get the idea.

It may sound stupid but I am trying to get people to write a comment in my guestbook on my website. This is why I think it may be stupid, I have a blog and you can comment here. I try to consider the two separate, which is the "why" and people visit the blog or the website for usually completely different reasons. I link both of them together, but the website is really the true story of my life via pictures. This is the story with words and interactions with words. Maybe I just confused my audience here, bottom line is I want a comment for the website.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Some Things I am Thankful For.

My list is inspired by the generation that has more than four channels of television to choose from.

A Charlie Brown Christmas

A Christmas Story (1983 film)


Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town

I know his list is Christmas type shows, but they all start today and will run until Christmas.

Between Letters Being Written

If you remember, I said I was behind on my thank yous on a previous post, I still am. I wrote a few more then found a new way to procrastinate, for a little while anyway.

I have church questions, these questions have popped up by reading "my" church newsletter. (The one I grew up with.)

What is an associate pastor? - Is that like a secondary or like a safety?

What is a supply pastor? - Do they just handle rations?

When the church says they are looking a senior pastor, does that mean he or she is in the emerald club? - In other words, what is a senior pastor?

In this letter, there is a section with finances and a big box around a negative number, but there is no negative numbers in the actual logbook area. I just don't understand, what is the point?

I do understand what a "Stephen Minister" is, but who was Stephen?


These newsletters have come along way, now it is colorful and printed on nice paper and have an advertising page in the back (which I don't understand either), but with all this fancy stuff doesn't it get in the way of the point?

I am not trying to make fun in anyway. I just don't understand some of these things listed in the letter. It must be important, or they wouldn't have put it in there.

One Possible Outcome in the States, Part III

I need to go check on my house and do something with "The Truck" that is still sitting there. So, when I go I will have plenty of time to visit with those of you on this side of the hemisphere. This trip most likely will not occur until summer, just because I will be doing my Resident course in late spring.

One Possible Outcome in the States, Part II

I highlighted some places that are a possible venues for early spring. I would love to visit some of you when I get back. I figure since I will be travelling north through some of those areas anyway, there is some definite possibilities.

Me being Me

Sometimes while writing I tend to be a little cryptic and do not say exactly what I was thinking. ( I know few of you are going "duh.")
Some of the outcomes(comments) on what I expect others to respond is not even close to what I was talking about. When things like this occur, I worry that maybe my communications skills are lacking somewhere. It really should not bother me, but it does.

Now, after reading this, do not try to find a hidden meaning in my posts. There really isn't one. I just can't tell you everything about me for two main reasons,

A) OPSEC - Operation Security - There are bad guys and gals out there wanting to do bad things to other people.

B) Self Worth - Wanting to get to know me, for me. If I tell you everything, then why would you want to meet me? It is better to keep a few secrets for the encounter.

On another note(Mi maybe La),
Well Wishes for everyone's Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Friends and Friends of Friends

This blog world is quite cool.
I really do not know how I managed to find so many great friends by use of this blog. (Or other blogs that I read.)

My coping mechanism or my intellectual curiosity has been best spent involving myself in each small way amongst the fellow bloggers and internet perusers.

"They" bring me laughs, make me mad and give me sadness. It is a drama unto itself that I control how much or how little I want to involve myself in.

If this is not therapy for the masses, I do not know what is.

The Holidays

Hate is such a strong word.
Displeased, unsatisfied, unfulfilling, or something like that.

I really "hate" the time period between mid-November to late December. I am supposed to be happy, in theory. It is not the time period really, it is the presumption that spending time with families, having time off at "work," the giving and receiving, the birth, the Puritans, the shopping, the whatever is going to make me feel better.

I am not a grouch, I am not the guy who goes "bah humbug." That is not me. I give. I don't really want anything. I can "buy" for myself if I need it.

I am really opening up a can of worms with this post. I know it. There is many issues revolving this. I just haven't decided yet if I am going to share it with all of you.

Just know, that I don't like these next few holidays.

Takes a Lick'n and Keeps On....

I have this watch that has a leather wrist strap, gold bezel, white face, has the day and date, indiglo, and is analog. My current watch I bought from Wally World for about thirty five bucks just before coming out here. Here is the funny part, this is the fourth time I bought this watch. It seems I "re-buy" this watch ever year or so.

I have never really liked digital watches. I believe that having an analog watch says something about a person. Maybe it really doesn't mean anything is different about another person , but I think it does.

My watch is bent in funny spots and the wrist strap is dying a slow horrible death. So when I get back, I will probably go back to the World of Wally and buy this watch again for thirty five bucks.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Was I the Only One?

Was I the only one saddened that Frank decided to wait to post until later this week?

Small Dilemmas

It appears I may have hurt something near my femoral artery on my strong leg. My opinion and the doctor's varies on what is really wrong. It does not matter much it still hurts to move.

I cannot get a hold of Chase, in which I have credit card. I have been unable to reach them via the phone, Internet, or mail. I think they forgot where I am. ( No other credit card do I have this problem with.)

I am very behind in writing thank you(s). Slow start, but progress is forward.

I have some packages that the mail room seems to be "holding hostage," hopefully tomorrow I will retrieve them.


Nothing major, just minor goings on.

A Kennedy???

Did anyone see this one coming?

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Reading the News and Shaking my Head

I was reading the news and saw that a 1st grader was suspended for drawing a picture with a gun.
Before I go into my opinion, let's go back twenty years. Would this same drawing offend anyone?

I think the world is nuts, crazy, loco and is trying to make our children the same. I have to look at my own experiences and say there is nothing wrong with a drawing that has guns in it. Think, today, what kind of TV shows do "we" watch at Prime Time?

Something has reversed, maybe.

My belief is if "we" continue down this backward path, we won't need to save the world, we need to save ourselves.

Different Shades of Gray

Well, I still did not pass the sustainment portion of the test. So for now I will remain a gray belt in MCMAP. I am not as pissed at myself today, for a few reasons:

1) I am still going to get paid
2) There is no adverse action
3) There is no reason that I can't go over the moves for a few days/weeks and take another test
4) Motrin
5) Naproxen
6) I am still the boss of my crew
7) I know that I have Marines willing to help me in my struggles
8) As far as I know nothing is broken
9) This deployment is almost over
10) I did my best

Makes Perfect Sense...

Some more fun I swiped from Hot Cup. It figures doesn't it?

Saturday, November 17, 2007

No Pressure

I failed.

I get to retake the test tomorrow night.

Funny, I didn't even get to the green belt part.

I really don't have anything nice to say about myself, it was all stupid(like "duh") mistakes.

Friday, November 16, 2007

One Possible Outcome in the States

I might get back find a permanent place to stay with a week or so. I do my job for the first few weeks, which is really catching up on all the training I didn't do in Iraq. Most of it is not my favorite things to do, but it must be done. Go on a leave period of 15 days.

While on leave travel north through DC to Baltimore and visit an old friend from when I was stationed in Yuma. Then skirt over and through PA to Youngstown, Ohio and visit with another friend from my days in Millingtion. Take a break in Chicago and shoot north and visit with my folks in Valders. While there I will probably renew my driver's license and find some of my old things that are no doubt collecting dust in the basement. After five or six days it will be time to head south again.

I might stop in Rockford and say hello to a friend I went to boot camp together, we reconnected on MySpace of all places. Then head cross ways through Ohio so I can take the mountains in West Virginia and see if the corridor is finished on I-77. On my way down, I may stop in Asheville and tour the castle there.

Once arriving back to base, I will most likely pick up my uniforms fro the dry cleaners and inspect them since it will be a month away and I will proceed to my Resident course.

Once I am done with that I will most likely take leave again and head to Yuma and probably donate my truck that is there.

Then again, I may do something completely different.

Cross Your Fingers and Toes

I will be testing out for my Green Belt tomorrow night. I am still having problems with a few moves that are similar in each of the belts.

Testing is simple really. The instructor will pick five random techniques from both the previous belts in which I can miss only one(out of the ten). After passing that I may proceed with the Green belt test with all the techniques, twenty seven or twenty eight.

I have been soliciting help from another instructor during my "off time" the last few days. The wacky part is I don't fuck up when I practice with him. So it looks like I know what I am doing. Then class starts and I fuck up.

So I have one more day of class with practicing(which is tonight), then tomorrow is the test. Worst case scenario is when being the "dummy" for the other person a bone breaks. I am not too worried, I have been in pain pretty much constantly since we started.

I guess what I am asking is, cross a finger or two in the next few days and hope I pass this test.

Thank you.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Fun with Locations

This is where the last fifty people who have visited me are from except the one person from England.

I did not know that I knew that many people on the east coast. Kind of makes it seem like the world is smaller. In theory, I could drive through most of these locations on the way to see my folks in Wisconsin. It is just a theory.


I have to admit I don't talk about to many mushy items in this blog. Things here tend to be on the "manly man" side. Someone had brought up an interesting point to me and it relates to the word love.

Let's start off with I love my Mom, Dad, and my Brother. I love my Brother's family. This love is the type of love that only families really can have.

Then my degrees of love take a sharp turn downward. My amount of love has gotten smaller and smaller with each divorce and ending relationship I had. So much so, the very definition of love has lost its meaning. I sometimes wonder why I even said vows to these women, obviously it didn't mean anything to them. I wonder if there was an attachment displayed as envy and love was never a factor or they were just coveting the marriage/relationship of another and wanted to be better than someone else.

I believe that each relationship(at least the marriages) were salvageable. In each instance, I put my good foot forward(since my first marriage) to resolve the problems or difference to save the relationship. Never worked, just prolonged the inevitable that they had set in motion.

I don't consider being a Marine as a major factor since I have been a Marine first and longer any of the relationships lasted. I am sure it played a role. My order of importance has been Children, God, Country, Corps, Wife/Girlfriend and this has not changed. I have always been up front with this. I mention it because I recall a time when it was brought up as an excuse on why the marriage failed. She was upset I put her kid in front of her during an emergency situation. Wacky, I know.

I am not saying I can not love. I am just saying that I have built a pretty big wall around me and to get through will take some time.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

I Had Some Time to Kill

I picked this up at ~ freshly ground & freshly brewed ~ which is Hot Cup Lutheran's blog.
Some of the questions were omitted, I am not making up new ones. Well, here goes:

2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED? I got kicked in the lower abdominal area and had a tear or two.
3. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? I can't read it, so yes.
5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS? Highly impossible, NO
6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON, WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU? I would kick myself in the ass or sucker punch me.
7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT? Does a bear shit in the woods?
9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Been there done that.
10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? I kind of like Pops, but only for a snack.
11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF? Depends if I was PTing or not.
12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? No, but I fight dirty.
15. RED OR PINK? Red, bloody.
17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? I hate to say it, the last ex-wife.
19. WHAT COLOR PANTS AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? Digital MAR PAT, rough side out leather.
27. HAIR COLOR? Is this mine? Brown
28. EYE COLOR? Matches the hair.
29. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS? I can kind of see
30. FAVORITE FOOD? This changes on what course we are eating. Peanut Butter Squares.
31. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? Scary with the bad guy winning.(Realism)
35. HUGS OR KISSES? Both, unless you are an alien.
36. FAVORITE DESSERT? I covered this on question 30.
40. What's ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? Nothing, air.
41. WHAT DID YOU WATCH ON T.V. LAST NIGHT? Rerun of the Chiefs game
42. FAVORITE SOUND? Ch53E in a formation.
44. WHAT IS THE FARTHEST YOU HAVE BEEN FROM HOME? I think here, I think here is the furthest I have been away from home.
46. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? In a hospital.
48. WHAT TIME IS IT NOW? 0600 GMT +3

Question and Answer Period

It is hard to be the one with answers all the time. I don't always have them. If fact most of the time I don't have them. When it comes to the job at hand, I know my job and can help it most circumstances. If the question turns to strictly a Marine Corps question, I usually have an answer or I know where to find it. It is the everything else that I have a problem with.

Since being in Iraq for more than three quarters of the year, I have been approached with some pretty hard hitting questions. Most of the time, I can reach back to my experiences and remember what I did in that circumstance. Everytime something like this has happened, I did not have all the right answers and most of the time there were no right answers, just suggestions.

Since most of my readers are clergy, maybe some of this post will be easy to relate to. I am not complaining, I am just saying it is hard.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Village Carpenter's Answer

The Village Carpenter's question is: If you could do your life over again, what would you do differently?

A bunch of stuff....I was no angel growing up, so maybe make the other decision would have been wiser. Not as fun, but wouldn't have limited some of my options later.

There was this girl, that I dumped for a younger, prettier model (kind of like a Barbie doll), that was a HUGE mistake. By the time, I realized it is was too late. I believe that a lot of my early adulthood decisions hinged on that mistake. Later, I met her husband which was the guy she dated right after me, they have two kids a nice house and are essentially happy.

Maybe when I went to college the first time, if I would have not had a full load and a full time job (that was also sixty miles away), I would have lasted a little longer. Maybe.

I probably shouldn't have married my first wife. I should have listened to the "adults" for my second.

All in all, all these experiences make me like I am today. Whether it is good or bad, this is me and I can't change anything from the past, just learn from it.

Way Too Early For Christmas

I have received some Christmas items suck as a tree and light and ornaments. And I said, What the Hay!" The tree reminded me of Charlie Brown's when I first started setting it up, but it is definitely a tad better than that. You all can make up your own mind. So what, if there is about forty days to go, minor.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Wacky Searches on my Blog

Seems that "lately" the most frequent searches(using that search thingy on the bar at the top of the page) are :

The nautical makes perfect sense since that goes with the birthday and Veterans Day. But the other five, I have not talked about any women on this blog since my six year rant and even that really wasn't about women it was about the church.

The answer is no, I do not have a girlfriend(or wife). Girlfriends and deployments do not go together, and as my past has proven wives and deployments do not work either.

If you happen to have a pointed question just ask.

Ben Stein, August 9, 2004...A Look Back

How Can Someone Who Lives in Insane Luxury Be a Star in Today's World?

As I begin to write this, I "slug" it, as we writers say, which means I put a heading on top of the document to identify it. This heading is"FINAL," and it gives me a shiver to write it. I have been doing this column for so long that I cannot even recall when I started. I loved writing this column so much for so long I came to believe it would never end. It worked well for a long time, but gradually, my changing as a person and the world's change have overtaken it.

On a small scale, Morton's [famous restaurant which was often frequented by Hollywood stars], while better than ever, no longer attracts as many stars as it used to. It still brings in the rich people in droves and definitely some stars. I saw Samuel L. Jackson there a few days ago, and we had a nice visit, and right before that, I saw and had a splendid talk with Warren Beatty in an elevator, in which we agreed that Splendor in the Grass was a super movie. But Morton's is not the star galaxy it once was, though it probably will be again.

Beyond that, a bigger change has happened. I no longer think Hollywood stars are terribly important. They are uniformly pleasant, friendly people, and they treat me better than I deserve to be treated. But a manor woman who makes a huge wage for memorizing lines and reciting them in front of a camera is no longer my idea of a shining star we should all look up to.

How can a man or woman who makes an eight-figure wage and lives in insane luxury really be a star in today's world, if by a "star" we mean someone bright and powerful and attractive as a role model? Real stars are not riding around in the backs of limousines or in Porsches or getting trained in yoga or Pilates and eating only raw fruit while they have Vietnamese girls do their nails. They can be interesting, nice people, but they are not heroes to me any longer.

A real star is the soldier of the 4th Infantry Division who poked his head into a hole on a farm near Tikrit, Iraq. He could have been met by a bomb or a hail of AK-47 bullets. Instead, he faced an abject Saddam Hussein and the gratitude of all of the decent people of the world. Areal star is the U.S. soldier who was sent to disarm a bomb next to a road north of Baghdad. He approached it, and the bomb went off and killed him.. A real star, the kind who haunts my memory night and day,is the U.S. soldier in Baghdad who saw a little girl playing with apiece of unexploded ordnance on a street near where he was guarding a station. He pushed her aside and threw himself on it just as it exploded. He left a family desolate in California and a little girl alive in Baghdad.

The stars who deserve media attention are not the ones who have lavish weddings on TV but the ones who patrol the streets of Mosul even after two of their buddies were murdered and their bodies battered and stripped for the sin of trying to protect Iraqis from terrorists. We put couples with incomes of $100 million a year on the covers of our magazines.

The noncoms and officers who barely scrape by on military pay but stand on guard in Afghanistan and Iraq and on ships and in submarines and near the Arctic Circle are anonymous as they live and die.

I am no longer comfortable being a part of the system that has such poor values, and I do not want to perpetuate those values by pretending that who is eating at Morton's is a big subject. There are plenty of other stars in the American firmament....the policemen and women who go off on patrol in South Central and have no idea if they will return alive. The orderlies and paramedics who bring in people who have been in terrible accidents and prepare them for surgery, the teachers and nurses who throw their whole spirits into caring for autistic children, the kind men and women who work in hospices and in cancer wards. Think of each and every fireman who was running up the stairs at the World Trade Center as the towers began to collapse.

Now you have my idea of a real hero. We are not responsible for the operation of the universe, and what happens to us is not terribly important.

God is real, not a fiction, and when we turn over our lives to Him, he takes far better care of us than we could ever do for ourselves. In a word, we make ourselves sane when we fire ourselves as the directors of the movie of our lives and turn the power over to Him.

I came to realize that life lived to help others is the only one that matters. This is my highest and best use as a human. I can put it another way. Years ago, I realized I could never be as great an actor as Olivier or as good a comic as Steve Martin--or Martin Mull or Fred Willard--or as good an economist as Samuelson or Friedman, or as good a writer as Fitzgerald. Or even remotely close to any of them. But I could be a devoted father to my son, husband to my wife and, above all, a good son to the parents who had done so much for me. This came to be my main task in life. I did it moderately well with my son, pretty well with my wife and well indeed with my parents (with my sister's help). I cared for and paid attention to them in their declining years. I stayed with my father as he got sick, went into extremis, into a coma, and then entered immortality with my sister and me reading him the Psalms.

This was the only point at which my life touched the lives of the soldiers in Iraq or the firefighters in New York. I came to realize that life lived to help others is the only one that matters and that it is my duty, in return for the lavish life God has devolved upon me, to help others He has placed in my path. This is my highest and best use as a human.

For validity of this post visit:

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Veterans' Day

Please remember your past and present veterans, especially today.
Here is a link to the VA Veterans Day page.

Friday, November 09, 2007

November 10th, 2007

Some of you have asked how I will spend my day, the answer is simple, with my Marines.

I will give you some of my favorite quotes:

"Where do you find men like this? They come from families like yours. From farms and villages, towns and cities across the nation...Today, the world looks to America for leadership. And America looks to its Corps of Marines."
- President Ronald Reagan, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina 1983

"Come on, you sons of bitches-do you want to live forever?"
-Attributed to Gunnery Sergeant Daniel Daly, USMC, Belleau Wood, June 1918.

"They (Women Marines) don't have a nickname, and they don't need one. They get their basic training in a Marine atmosphere, at a Marine Post. They inherit the traditions of the Marines. They are Marines."
Lieutenant General Thomas Holcomb, USMC 1943

"The U.S. Marine is a professional who stands ready to fight anytime, anywhere, any enemy that the President and Congress may designate and to do so coolly, capably, and in the spirit of professional detachment. He is not trained to hate, nor is he whipped up emotionally for battle or for any duty the Corps may be called on to perform. Patriotism and professionalism are his only two 'isms.'"
- Colonel Robert D. Heinl Jr. USMC 1970

"I still need Marines who can shoot and salute. But I need Marines who can fix jet engines and man sophisticated radar sets, as well."
- General Robert E. Cushman, Jr., USMC, 17 May 1974

Happy 232nd Marines! Where ever you may be!

RevGals: Friday 5- Extravagant unbusyness....

Sally, from RevGals, is writing in my official capacity of grump!!! No seriously, with the shops and stores around us filling with Christmas gifts and decorations, the holiday season moving up on us quickly for many the time from Thanksgiving onwards will be spent in a headlong rush towards Christmas with hardly a time to breathe.... I am looking at the possibility of finding little gaps in the day or the week to spend in extravagant unbusyness ( a wonderful phrase coined by fellow Revgal Michelle)...So given those little gaps, name 5 things you would do to;

(In the Marine Corps spirit, my list is slightly askewed) care for your body
100 crunches in two minutes, 20 dead hang pull-ups, and a 20 minute three mile run.
2. to care for your spirit
Praying for baby Jesus on his birthday, Christmas, and remembering God was a Marine as well.
3. to care for your mind
Engaging in the illustrustrious history of our fine Corps and teaching the up and comming generations in the pride and honor to be a Marine.
4. to bring a sparkle to your eye
November 10th, need I say more, I think not.
5. to place a spring in your step
Singing cadence while going about your daily business.
.... and then for a bonus which one on the list are you determined to put into action?
Every one as my fellow brothers and sisters in arms have done before me.

______________ ______________

Thursday, November 08, 2007

The Marines' Hymn


From the halls of Montezuma, to the shores of Tripoli,
We fight our country's battles in the air, on land and sea.
First to fight for right and freedom, and to keep our honor clean;
We are proud to claim the title of United States Marine.
Our Flag's unfurled to every breeze from dawn to setting sun.
We have fought in every clime and place, where we could take a gun.
In the snow of far off northern lands and in sunny tropic scenes,
You will find us always on the job, the United States Marines.
Here's health to you and to our Corps, which we are proud to serve.
In many a strife we've fought for life and never lost our nerve.
If the Army and the Navy ever look on heaven's scenes,
they will find the streets are guarded by United States Marines.

Do Feel It?

Do you feel it coming?

The emails and conversations have been leaning hard toward our birthday. For those of us that are Marines or former Marines our birthday is November tenth.

On the 10th of November in 1775, the Continental Congress passed a resolution, which said in part:

"...Resolved, that two battalions of Marines be raised, consisting of one colonel, two lieutenant colonels, two majors, and other officers as usual in other regiments; and that they consist of an equal number of privates with other battalions;
that particular care betaken, that no persons be appointed to office, or enlisted into said battalions, but such as are good seamen, or so acquainted with maritime affairs as to be able to serve to advantage by sea when required;
that they be enlisted and commissioned to serve for and during the present war between Great Britain and the Colonies, unless dismissed by order of Congress; that they be distinguished by the names of the first and second battalions of American Marines..."

On November 10, 1775, Robert Mullan, the proprietor of the (Tun) Tavern and son of Peggy Mullan, was commissioned by an act of Congress to raise the first two battalions of Marines, under the leadership of Samuel Nicholas, the first appointed Commandant of(the Continental) Marines.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Litttle Things that I Hate in the Blog World

I hate it when I visit a blog (or website) and they have a "Cost of the War" ticker.
I hate it when I visit a blog and they have a " Iraqi deaths due to US invasion" ticker.

I think it is "fucking" stupid. Of all the people it shouldn't piss off is me, according to most of those I have spoken to about their tickers.

I really can't write what I want to say. I have rewritten this post about two dozen times, not because I am trying to be politically correct. I have rewritten it because I am bound by the contract I signed under my own feel will and I am not allowed to say or write certain conclusions or hypothesis about my country men and women.

Oh, I understand, open your eyes ...various people that working against the system. Those people are not reading this, those people do not vote, those are the people who complain all the time and do not do anything about it.

The great thing here is not that you agree, you don't have to, "we" live in a free country.

Sandstorms and Post Cards

Today, there is another sand storm going through, it not the first I have seen, not the second, it probably is the thirtieth or more. I could take a picture but it wouldn't turn out because the sun is down. Sandstorms are bitch to prepare for, because they just kind of pop out of nowhere. So I keep a whole bunch of stuff for sandstorms with me all the time. It just sucks.

I did receive a post card from Fran I Am today. It is a picture of water fountain in Barcelona. (Just to let everyone know, I would reply if I had an address.) I am actually one of those crazy people who keep most, if not all, of the mail sent to me. I even have a wacky filing system. So lets say you wrote me a letter when I was floating around the ocean in 1996, odds are I have it somewhere.

So today's verdict is: it sucks there is a sandstorm but I am happy because I received a post card from Fran I Am .

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Post From Jan

"Cascading 268 feet into a deep pool, Snoqualmie Falls is one of Washington's most popular scenic attractions."
Very Cool.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Something Everyone Can Understand

cash advance

I saw this on Jan's blog, apparently anyone can enjoy my ramblings and only college level humans can enjoy hers.

The Truck

I have in my website several pictures of my '96 Ford Ranger in which I have painted several times. The thing that prompted this painting was this:

After this event, I attempted to fix it, but after another fender bender on Amarillo, Texas I said screw it.

The first original paint job was gold with chevrons on the fenders, but it didn't last very long.

This was followed shortly there after with a " 5-ton" color. I never understood why they look pale all the time until it finally rained. I had added some air-wing type terms with the type of humor I have. I have it displayed here.

Some time after that rain storm I took a little more time and used Marine Corps colors to paint my truck. This is the point when you may say I am a little proud. You can make your own assumptions. I had this paint job the longest.

The one thing you have to keep in mind is I didn't use high quality paint, so when the entire hood decide to chip up it was time to repaint. This was the last yellow paint job I had. (In the picture is a Chevy, it is not mine, it is my ex-wife's)

After that, I was experimenting with a digital patten to match our cammies and did various pattens. I did take a few pictures but I do not have access to them at the moment. Like I have mentioned before, I believe the last and current paint scheme is light blue with scarlet highlights. Something that should resemble the gremlin in the first Wayne's World.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Reading and Writing

Normally by now I would have read my usual 15 blogs and have read the headlines of around 10 news agencies. Instead I read my comments that were posted while sleeping and wrapped a hot towel around my neck.

I feel I am betraying myself somehow.

I should be writing letters back to the gracious people who have written me. I am going to put that off until tomorrow.

(Funny thing, I gave my sergeant time off again today, what the fuck was I thinking?)

Saturday, November 03, 2007

I Have Been Tagged

Tagged = someone challenges you come up with 10 random things about yourself, then you have to tag 5 other bloggers.

10 random things about The Wyldth1ng:

1) When I was knee high to a grasshopper I would camp out in my toy box shaped as a football.

2) My junior year in high school I applied for the Air Force Academy.

3) I have been fascinated with breasts for as long as I can remember and I just can't seem to get enough of them.

4) The words nifty, shnazy, and silly should be included in everyone's everyday conversations.

5) My MCMAP instructor says I look like "Foamy" the Squirrel.

6) I have a glow in the dark pillow case with the solar system.

7) I love being the devil's advocate, all the time.

8) I have painted my '96 Ford Ranger 17 times, never once with auto paint.

9) I have bought the movie LA Story seven times in VHS and four times in DVD.

10) I went to Nationals while in VICA for extemporaneous speaking and finished thirteenth.

I am tagging:

How it is.

I am not asking for sympathy.

I am hoping that this sore/pain lessens in the next few days or I do know if I can keep going in this course. I know that parts of my body that I don't use regularly are supposed to be sore. I have some bruises in places that there should not be bruises. I do not bruise easily.

The last few days I have been sleeping longer, my water consumption is up, and typing is royal pain in the ass(not literally, pain is in wrists and forearms). I normally don't lay still while sleeping, but everytime I do move I awake with searing pain in my ribs.

I volunteered for this. Does that make me a sadist or masochist?

Two weeks to go.

Friday, November 02, 2007

RevGals Friday Five: Interviews

Mother Laura writes:
Songbird just had an interview for a "vague and interesting" possibility, and More Cows than People is doing campus visits for doctoral programs. There always seem to be a few RevGals applying for new positions, and I just got my first call for this year's preliminary interviews for college teaching jobs at the American Academy of Religion meeting in San Diego coming up in a few weeks. It's for my dream job among this year's offerings, and I am flipflopping between excitement and nervousness. So please keep your fingers crossed and say a little prayer for everyone facing such conversations, and share your thoughts on the wonderful world of interviews:

1. What was the most memorable interview you ever had?

2005 Enlisted to Warrant Officer board at the Wing level. This was the first year in which I had put in a package and the Wing wanted to conduct interviews on the potential candidates. Previous years that I had applied I only interviewed at the Squadron level. Everything I did was wrong, my ribbons were upside-down, I rattled off the wrong job description in which I was applying, I couldn't screw it up any more that I did. (By the way, the list for this year is out, I did not make it, again.)

2. Have you ever been the interviewer rather than the interviewee? If so, are you a tiger, a creampuff, or somewhere in between?

I would have to say 'not applicable.'

3. Do phone interviews make you more or less nervous than in-person ones?

Never have I done one. I would think less nervous.

4. What was the best advice you ever got to prepare for an interview? How about the worst?

The best was reread the statement of purpose(reason why interview is taking place) ten to twenty minutes prior. The worst was act naturally.

5. Do you have any pre-interview rituals that give you confidence?

I hum the Marines' Hymn. Everytime.

(I don't know why my first link didn't work, but this goes to my site.)

Thursday, November 01, 2007

With All of Your Help

My comments have increased five times with all of your help. Then again, with this support I also wrote fifty posts. That alone is almost more than all of last year.

Thank you.