They Said It Better Than I Ever Could...


These words that I write, they keep me from total insanity. -Charles Bukowski

Who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived, or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed? -Dr. Hunter S. Thompson

Jan 29, 2009

Thank God For Broken Planes...

So here is how my day went...

I got to bed last night at about 0230 hrs. Why? Because I didn't want to leave this place and I wanted to enjoy as much of it as I could.

Then I got awakened by my alarm at 0530, I hit the snooze and slept until 0600 when Duby shook me up rather incessantly, saying that I was going to miss the flight. I couldn't help but thinking, "You mean the flight back to AssCrackIstan? The flight back to the suck? The land of exploding roads, and mountain mounted machine guns? Oh, that is what you mean. I am good with that, I'm more than happy to miss that flight!"

Alright, I'll get up. So I get up, jam all my shit into my ruck sack and a foot locker I just bought. (I had to buy the footlocker to transport the 20 cartons of cigarettes I had to get for all the GI's back at the FOB)

So anyways, we get over to the briefing room and they tell us that our flight is at 1100 hrs. Well thanks a bunch you pricks! You hauled my ass out of bed 4 1/2 hours prior to my flight. Well there is nothing like military timing.

Now they bus us over to the terminal to wait on this flight. 1100 comes...and goes. No flight, next scheduled flight is at 1500. 1500 comes...and goes. No flight, next scheduled flight is 1630. 1630 comes...and goes. No flight, next scheduled flight is 2100. 2100 comes...and we actually got on a plane. Now the real fun begins.

For those of you who have never been on a military transport flight, let me break it down for you. You march directly into what could only be described as a long tube that has a shit ton of hoses and wires and really important looking contraptions all over the walls, blinking lights all over the place and right down the middle is a metal scaffolding system that serves as the seats. There are 4 rows of seats, two on the outside attached to the walls of the plane and two more down the middle, back to back, attached to the scaffolding. Now the seats are not actual seats. They are webbing made of tow straps. Which after sitting on them for a few hours make your ass look like the hams that come in the net. (Do you know what I am talking about?)

So we jam this plane chock full of people and all their shit. And I get a lesson in what a sardine feels like...again. So we are putting along in this plane, who's name is "Christine" by the way. I should've known that Christine would be a temperamental bitch and she decided about an hour into the flight that she was going to have one of her major systems stop working. A whole lot of fun for me. It was actually cool though, because we had packed this plane so tight that the crew chief, who is responsible for keeping this pile of shit running, climb like a monkey along the scaffolding above our heads to get to the front of the plane to see if he could fix this thing on the fly. Well of course, he couldn't. So we had to turn around and come back to Qatar. We come to find out that there is no flights going back to the suck until tomorrow at 1300. Which can only mean that God does in fact love me and want me to be happy because I get to spend another day in paradise. Thank God for broken planes.

Fun fact: Qatar is one of those muslim nations that has a million and one rules about what you can and cannot bring into their country. Mostly having to do with booze and pornography. I mean we wouldn't want our people finding out what a great thing booze is, and we sure as shit wouldn't want them to lust and desire after women. I mean that would take their attention off of all the thirteen year old boys in the neighborhood. Can't have that now can we?

So they decide to go rifling through my shit and dig out my cheerleader calendar and my swimsuit magazine and Maxim and they took it away from me. Now I really appreciate the states. I can see taking away a gun or a bomb, but for Christ sake, MY MAXIM??? What the hell is wrong with you people?

In addition to that another funny thing was the fact that every time we had a flight, we had to line up on the flight line which is past customs and the terminal. So we had to emigrate out of Qatar to get to the flight line, and then we had to immigrate back in every time we missed a flight. So take a look at the paragraph above to see how many times I went in and out of Qatar today.

I am probably on some terrorist watch list back home now! I can see it the next time I go to get on a plane.

TSA Employee: Excuse me sir, why is it that on the 29th of January 2009 did you in fact, immigrate into, and out of Qatar 5 times!

Mud Puppy: Because I enjoyed them trying to relieve me of all my porn!

TSA Employee: This is no laughing matter sir. And how did you get to Qatar, we have no record of you ever leaving the country!

Mud Puppy: Of course you don't, Why would you? I was only off defending you and your family from the porn police!

Anyways, enough of that. Something at least a bit serious. We sat around all day in a holding tent waiting for these flights. Now over the years a lot of soldiers have cycled through this tent. And soldiers bore easily and then they do things to entertain themselves. One of the things they do is write on the walls. Yes, soldiers and children do have a lot in common. Some guys write their names and dates they were here, others write the classic, "So and so, was here", others write the name of their unit and their mottos, still others write dirty jokes, some are REALLY ambitious and they crawl up the side of the tent to about 20 feet up in the air and write their name and unit in VW bug sized letters. Then there was this guy...or girl. I don't know. Who wrote a little poem that caught my eye. It went like this...

WE ARE THE WILLING.
LED BY THE BLIND.
TO DO THE IMPOSSIBLE.
FOR THE UNGRATEFUL.

Now I don't know if they made it up, or they heard it somewhere, but it doesn't change the fact that that little verse is some powerful shit packed into four sentences.

WE ARE THE WILLING.

Every mother fucker here. For one reason or another. For patriotism, for a job, for their family, for their friends, for their country, for the mommy, for you, hell even for me too. We joined the military.

Volunteered years of our young lives, volunteered our bodies, our souls, our minds, hell our very lives for that flag. For the ideals that built the greatest nation the world has ever seen, for the freedoms that make life worth living and for the freedoms that are worth dying for.

LED BY THE BLIND.

This is self explanatory. Officers today, by in large are douche bags. Hopefully, when I get home I can put a stop to at least a little bit of that for a few soldiers. But I can't help but wonder with all the trouble that I get into as an enlisted man, what kind of trouble will I get into as an officer. I don't really know, but it will be fun finding out.

TO DO THE IMPOSSIBLE.

Another one that isn't real hard to figure out. We are asked on a daily basis to do with 100 soldiers something that should be done by 1000. We are asked to push our bodies beyond the capacity of human endurance. We are forced to mentally process things that would make your average American certifiably insane...and on and on.

FOR THE UNGRATEFUL.

This one was actually physically painful for me to read. I wonder who the author was talking about. I hope that they were talking about the people of the countries that we try and help. I hope they were talking about all of those who would fight against us regardless of how honorable our intentions are. I hope they were talking about anyone, really, other than who I think they were talking about. I can't help but think they are talking about those who would care more about Michelle Obama's outfit than soldiers in a foreign land. I can't help but think they are talking about those who use the power granted them by the people of our great land, to line their own pockets. I can't help but thinking that they were talking about those who live between the shining seas...

I really do hope that I am dead wrong.

Anyways, I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

16 comments:

  1. Don't ya just hate it when your flight gets delayed. Ho Ho Ho.

    Another day out of the suck. Sounds like a plan to me. By the way I mailed you some reading material, not the good kind you lost, the good reading kind, very few pictures. Sorry.

    Did I read you right. Is there an officer in the making? Sounds good to me. You will of course get into trouble. I think it comes naturally to you or, at least with very little effort. That will make you a hit with the men you lead. Good for you!

    I agree with AM it was an outstanding post. Believe me this is a Grateful Nation, unfortunately the media doesn't report good news.

    Hooooah!

    Pops

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  2. I am really just a little speck living between the shining seas so for what it is worth..I am grateful. I. Am. Grateful.

    Ann

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  3. mudpuppy...Your bonus day of paradise is well deserved! The poem is a quote by Mother Teresa, and truly the final line is heartbreaking to read. I do believe we are a grateful nation. I also believe we are a nation, filled with many (not all) who take our freedoms for granted.
    Stay Strong!
    Pray Hard!
    ~AM

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  4. For what it's worth...I am very grateful for all you and all our soldiers do. God Bless you!

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  5. Know that you and those that are with you are thought of and very much appreciated. Your posts are great, thoughtful and a joy to read. You will make the best kind of officer.
    take very good care,
    marian

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  6. You know that poem says a lot and if you do not mind I am going to cut and paste that to use it again. I am also going to use your description too. Thanks for doing what you do. I am very GRATEFUL and so is my family.

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  7. Some of us are grateful. More than words can possibly express. I swear. -Jenn

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  8. You missed the second half of the saying:

    We have done so much
    for so long
    with so little
    we are now qualified to do anything,
    with nothing

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  9. Hey Mud Puppy. We miss you. How are your deposits going in the bank? Millions? Cor and I made the license plate for you (not our idea)so we hope you like it. We wanted to write something else on it, but the commander gave us a thumbs down. He said too many other guys with you would have a heart attack. Hope all is well and look forward to seeing you soon.
    If you have personal email time, email us @ susanfry@sbcglobal.net
    Love ya, C-Girl and Mrs. R.

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  10. Awe Pumpkin you are appreciated - as are all those who serve .... and thought of too. Why I don't pass a bottle of hot sauce or a Maxim that I don't think how grateful I am for all of you :)

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  11. This apothegm (and the one provided by admiyo) was well known by the Viet Nam generation of serviceman. The last line was, then, in reference to exactly who you think.

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  12. Grateful in a way words could never express, even if I could write as well as you can.

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  13. I am beyond greatful and so proud of our military! No, they ain't talk'n bout me!

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  14. Thank you, and all the men and women that serve. Come back safely.

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  15. The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 02/02/2009 News and Personal dispatches from the front and the home front.

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  16. Hey Sweetie, Just wanted to let you know I am reading this...and LOVE IT! I spent all day today at my internship reading all the posts...slow day at the courthouse!!! Thank you so much for sending me the link! Love you tons, and be safe. Breanne

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