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

Jul 15, 2009

Dog Shit, Male Menopause and Mr. Potato Head...

So this post is about what has gone on for the last three or so days.

First let’s begin with the Dog shit. Actually, we have to start the night before.

We got notified that we were going on a mission that would take us back to Salerno. Oh joy, I just spent the last month trying to get the fuck out of there and now I have to go back. Why do I have to go back? Because we have to get some equipment updated and the other company that is here with us has to do their laundry.

I still think its funny that we drove right through the middle of a combat zone so that these schmucks can have clean panties. And why the hell do I have to drive their banana hammocks all over this country. Am I the only one who thinks that they should do this shit.

So I have to drive around all day tomorrow with a trailer full of skid marked underwear and socks that some sweaty GI wore for three days and could probably walk to the laundry room by themselves...but I digress.

Whatever, either way this mission was leaving out at 0600. Which made me laugh that I had to leave that early in the morning to drive to a place that is about an hour away. What is the Army’s fetish with getting up before the sun does?

Well, I gotta do it so I need to get some sleep. So I manage to climb my ass into bed at 2200. Which is early for me. I try to make my phone calls at that time and write all of this bullshit around then too.

I lay down, rest my weary head on the pillow, and slowly drift off to sleep. But, I don’t quite get there. I make it all the way to that point where you are pretty much dead to the world, but you can still hear things going on around you. And what do I hear?

Boom. But not a really big boom, just a little itty bitty baby boom. My mind starts to pull itself out of its sleepy dreamland because I know that in a few moments the “get your lazy ass out of bed someone is trying to kill you” alarm is about to go off.

And off it went.

Alright, everybody up. Get your shit on. Get your asses in the bunker. Grab your weapons. (Okay, so that’s all the stuff that the bosses make you bring with you. Then I grabbed a pack of smokes and my iPod. Sure bunkers suck, but why not make them a little more pleasant?)

So we got in the bunker and sat in there for about an hour. Which is always fun. Gotta love sitting in a steel box encased in sand bags waiting for a mortar round or rocket to fall on your head! Not to mention, I am pretty sure that every fly in this province has heard by now that we have some of the dirtiest mother fuckers in the Army in my platoon. And as such, they have all congregated here at my camp. More specifically, they have decided to all assume our bunker as their new mailing address.

Here I am, waiting out the attack with a pack of cigarettes, an iPod, a bag full of pistachios and a hundred fly’s using me as a landing pad. Fun all around. At least it was dark so it wasn’t a 150°, so that was good.

Nothing of note really went on in the bunker so we got out about an hour later, but they had yet to give us the all clear. So we went back inside the barracks and laid down. After, we had removed all of our armor and gear.

Then our wonderful platoon sergeant decided that since we hadn’t been given the all clear that we would have to wear our gear while inside the barracks. Now these vests that we’ve got are all encompassing. They cover your entire body from your neck to your nuts. So they are a bit cumbersome and in no small way a huge pain in the ass. The look of utter disbelief on my face when he said that shit had to be priceless.

Well fuck this. I need some sleep. Rockets or no rockets we are getting up at 0430 and rolling out at 0600. Now its after 2300. Only 5 1⁄2 hours till wake up. And if I don’t get my beauty sleep I get cranky. So I park my ass in the bed with this thing on. Which was probably hilarious just in the fact that the way it fits kind of props you up when you lay down so that my neck is at a 45° angle from my ass, yet my head is leaning back as far as it can go without rolling off.

I would’ve gone to sleep just like that. But our platoon daddy figured that this would be a good time to haul us all out of bed and inform us that one of our own was getting promoted.

(Slight aside: I was just sitting here writing this and a rather large storm just hit. Rain was coming down in buckets and apparently God decided that he wanted to throw each and every one of those buckets through my window. So there is a small lake forming as I write underneath my bed. Its pouring in through everyone’s windows. Well, thank whatever powers that be, that they hired KBR to build our dwellings here. These mother fuckers can’t even figure out how to build a structure that can keep rain out. Come to think of it, they can’t even build a structure that can keep half the rain out. As I look around the barracks I can only think that the ground outside must be bone dry because all the fucking water is in here.)

Moving right along, so now this promotion thing took us another hour. So now its midnight and I have to get up in 4 1⁄2 hours. Fun for me. So we finally got the all clear and took our shit off and laid down for our naps. Couldn’t quite call it sleep. So I calmed down, chilled out and went to sleep.

Then, after what seemed like about 20 minutes I was awoken. Looked at the clock and saw the dreaded, 4:30. Fuck, time to get your ass out of bed. So I do. But I am none too happy about it. We get all of our shit into the trucks, get the radios loaded, get all the guns loaded, grab all the miscellaneous bombs, grenades, GPS, food, water, candy, cigarettes, musical devices and what not, and we roll out the gate.

We get about 10 feet out the gate and we get the order to stop. Alright, what the hell is going on? Someone asks that very question over the radio. And the following exchange occurred. (One thing you need to know. The company that is here with us that we go out with is called “Dog Company”)

Dog 2-1 this is Dog 2-6, what’s going on?
Dog 2-6, one of our dismounts had an accident.
(At this time the truck two positions in front of me swings open its back door and a soldier comes running out, turns to the side of the vehicle, grabs the tire and pukes right then and there.)
Dog 2-1 this is 2-6, what do you mean an “accident”?
Dog 2-6 this is 2-1, what do you think I mean?
Dog 2-1 this is 2-6, Roger. Why don’t you take him back to get cleaned up and we’ll just take another guy from 3rd squad.
Roger that 2-6, that’s a real good idea.

How big of a fobbit is this friggin guy? He’s outside the wire for a grand total of 3 minutes and he shits in his pants! I mean really! What is the army coming to?

So that was the first, and only fun thing that went on during this mission. The rest of the day was filled with meaningless busywork at Salerno coupled with the ridiculous amount of dirty laundry which had a smell that could’ve knocked a buzzard off a shit wagon, made this day a rather large ball of suck.

Then we made it back. We went to bed. We got up in the morning and we were introduced to male menopause on an epic scale. We’ve got a platoon daddy who is about as moody as a pregnant woman. Except a pregnant woman can be reasoned with.

So we got up this morning and onto the war path he went. Ripped all our asses out of bed. And put us right to work. Oh boy, the E-7 is pissed, so he went on and on all damn day. Clean this, pick that up, do push ups, don’t lay down, don’t sit down, don’t smoke, don’t go to the MWR, and on and on he went.

It was about 1900 when I had finally had enough of his shit. So here’s what happened.

Now remember that I definitely have a problem with that filter between my brain and my mouth. So he sees a toolbox laying by my bed. He apparently doesn’t like the toolbox being there, so he asks, “Hey what are you going to do with that toolbox?”

To which I replied, “Bend over and I’ll show you!”

No sooner had the “you” left my lips when I felt that sense of dread as I contemplated all the different ways that this guy could make my life truly suck balls.

So I sat there and looked at him while I awaited the inevitable tirade of profanity and push ups that was to follow.

He looked back at me, stone faced. He drew in a large breath, heaving his chest out in front of him. Obviously drawing the breath in to supply him with the requisite oxygen that he will need to end my miserable life.

And...

Started to laugh hysterically!

See a little bit of humor can fix anything, even menopause. Even when its in a 40 year old dude!

Lastly, we need to talk about the box that I got yesterday.

As we all know, recently it was my birthday. I got a shit ton of cards, and candy and a mass of other shit. Which was awesome. All my boys back home sent me a huge card that they all signed and I loved it. I was going to take a picture of me holding it in front of a white sox flag on one of our trucks but the damn barracks flooded and ruined the damn thing. Can’t have nothing nice in AssCrackIstan.

But I got something else that was fucking phenomenal. Now there are a few White Sox fans here and a few more Cub fans. Its not their fault, they just don’t know any better. But apparently, you guys have been paying attention. Because I got a box from one of you, (You know who you are!) that had a Mr. Potato head in it.

Now there is no way around the fact that I have the maturity level of a flippin 3rd grader and I would’ve loved a Mr. Potato head no matter what, this one was different.

How was it different?

THIS MR. POTATO HEAD WAS WEARING A WHITE SOX UNIFORM!!!

How perfect is that? I’ll tell you how, that is absolutely perfect. I ripped him out of the box like a 2 year old who got the toy that he begged for, for Christmas. I put him together, then I went around and showed everybody, and now he occupies a place of honor watching over me while I sleep.

I couldn’t think of a better place to put him. But I do think that I am going to bring him along for all my missions from here on out. A little White Sox luck sitting on the dashboard of my 20 ton war machine! It’ll be perfect.

And I can’t thank you all enough for thinking of, remembering, and paying attention on my birthday. Especially you, the person who gave me the south side Mr. Potato Head. You’d be surprised just how much the most insignificant things can mean. So...thanks.

Alright, now I’m done.

Later,

I love you Mom...

3 comments:

  1. If I had know that to get out of a work detail all you had to do was shit in your pants, I would have looked like I had just got out of Dachau by the time I was discharged from the Navy.

    Glad you had a good birthday, too. Shame you couldn’t have a beer to celebrate. Come down Atlanta way and you will have one waiting for ya.

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  2. My husband will be so glad to hear that humor is how to handle menopause. Why "men" are in menopause is a mystery to me. But, I think I did have my first hot flash last week. It was SO exciting. It felt like steam coming out of my ears!! Thanks for posting.

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  3. While visiting the Navy Museum yesterday, I saw a FOBBIT patch, and thought of you! I said to Hubster, "I know one soldier who will not have one of these patches sewn on his uniform!"
    As for your comment regarding reasoning with pregnant women... I'll get back to you on that one after I visit my 7 month pregnant daughter tomorrow! Regarding male-menopause; it does exist and it ain't pretty! Sorry it followed you to the desert, but glad to hear you handled it!
    Glad to hear your birthday was special. You are loved by many!
    Stay Strong!
    Pray Hard!
    ~AM

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