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...

Jan 28, 2009

Ladies & Gentlemen, We Now Return To Your Regularly Scheduled Program...

So I am writing this from the computer lab in Qatar the day before I am scheduled to leave this wonderful place to return, ever so eagerly to the "suck"

I figured I would write this one today while I know that I have the time and the access to the internet. I don't really know when I am going to have these opportunities again.

So these last few days have been surreal to say the least. I had successfully suppressed the memory of all things that I missed about home. Then I came here and they all came running right back to me and started wriggling around on my face.

Certain things that everyone back home really takes for granted are amongst the things that will become the most important things in the world to you. I mean I haven't had to put on boots, or shoes to go to the bathroom in over a week. I have actually skipped meals because I was still stuffed from the last trip to the table. I have not had to wipe the inch and half of dust that usually settles on everything I own. I have not had to carry a weapon with me wherever I go. I am decidedly uninspired today because I know this little diatribe should be a lot funnier than it actually is...

Moving on, it just makes me wonder. I have been watching a bit of TV here and there and trying to catch up with what is going on back home. Unfortunately for me, not a damn thing has changed. Blago got indicted. Which is like an early Christmas present for every citizen of Illinois. Fuck that guy.

-Man admits stealing $400,000 from former nun.
-3-month old boy found dead in filthy apartment.
-Shelter owner sold cat food for drugs.
-Area home prices dip 12.5%, in November, national decline sets record.

Just a few of the tag-lines that I read on the Chicago Sun-Times website. Seems ridiculously similar to all the shit that was going on when I left. Then it really made me laugh that as you look around the site there are about 3 pictures of Obama on the front page, and another couple of Oprah, and then an article about how watermelon can't replace viagra or some shit.

3rd largest city in America folks, and this is the best they can do. Check that, this is what the American public wants to know about. Give us the bad news, but sugar coat it with Oprah and her mountain of bullshit, and articles about how to improve our sex lives, make our dick's bigger, and then tell us what movie to see this weekend. Well if this is the best that we can do folks, I don't want anything to do with it.

I am still looking at this page and I have yet to find something about the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan. Oh wait, here it is..."U.S. 'lost' in Afghanistan" (Pause while I read this one) Now I am going to get to this one, but first let me say this am I the only one who reads the Sun-Times who finds it contemptible that the entertainment, and lifestyles sections are above the Business section? Which one is more important?

Moving on, you can read the article that I am about to blabber about HERE.

So Mr. Gates believes that we will lose Afghanistan if we don't limit civilian casualties. Thank you for that very astute observation sir. I agree with you completely.

This is one of the most annoying things about the leadership of the military, both the brass and the civilian overseers in Washington. They tell you to do something, and they give you absolutely no idea as to how to accomplish the goal they set for you. Now I don't want the bureaucrats in Washington to tell us everything to do step by step. Nor do I want that from the brass. But what the hell are they thinking? That we are going out of our way to kill civilians?

Here is the thing, just like in Vietnam, the fucking Taliban look just like the civilians. Nobody wears uniforms, they pop up out of no where, hit you, and then melt right back in with the population.

So how do you defeat an enemy that hides amongst the population? You take away their hiding place. Turn the civilians against them. I can tell you with a certain amount of certainty that the people of Afghanistan hate the Taliban with a passion, trouble is they hate us more.

How do you turn the civilians against them? Refer to the two posts, they will tell you what I think of that. ONE TWO

Now they are considering doubling our troop presence here. Well thank you very much, Mr. Gates and Mr. Obama. Now where is everyone else? Even if they double our presence here, we don't even have half the guys here that they had in Iraq!

Well let's see if we can control the border with that shit. We couldn't control from Terewa to the Khyber Pass with that. It's bullshit, we could flood Iraq with soldiers, but not Afghanistan? Last time I checked, Afghanistan was the one where we knew we were in the right.

They go on and on...fucking retards that have never set foot in Afghanistan, I am not sure that any of these guys has ever left Washington.

But that's it for today folks, my brain is fried trying to think about this stuff. It never ceases to amaze me that a war can be going on where American's are dying every day and the newspapers are actually worried about what the fuck Michelle Obama is wearing. Well, that was your news break and now we return to your regularly scheduled program...

Later,

I love you mom...

Greatest Sex Joke Ever...

CHECK THIS JOKE OUT!!!

Jan 26, 2009

Well Today Has Been Very, Very...GAY!!!

So come with me, if you will, on a little journey. A journey of sight, and sound. A journey where one soldier comes to grips with his sexuality, and calls into question all that he has ever believed about spa's and chick stuff. Yes, my day has been very, very gay...

Today started out ordinarily enough. I woke up 10 minutes before I was supposed to be at the USO to catch the bus to some shopping trip that I signed up for yesterday. However, since I was up until 3 in morning last night playing around on the internet for no good reason I was in no mood to get out of bed and go. So I went back to sleep for another 2 hours. No problem. This place isn't like the regular Army where if you miss anything they send a hunting party out to find you. If you aren't there they just go to the next guy on the list.

Then I actually hauled my ass out of bed at 1000 hrs. Enough sleep for me, gotta get moving and enjoy my second day of R&R. So I needed some clean clothes so I made a pit stop at the laundry and threw in a load, I then jumped into the shower and washed my ass, twice! Still got AssCrackIstan on me, trying desperately (probably in vain) to get that stink off of me.

Then I went and found Duby. We had a few errands to run. Dropping off clothes at the dry cleaners and stopping by the post office to mail some drug paraphernalia home. So we got that done about 1300-ish, and decided that it was time for some much needed sustenance. At first we figured we would take the bus over to the chow hall, but then it dawned on us that lunch is only served until 1300 and we probably wouldn't make it in time. So we racked our brains a little bit. Pizza, no. Burger King, nah. Popeye's Chicken, Nope. Subway, close but no cigar. Ah, I've got it let's go the Chile's! That's right they have a Chile's here in Qatar. Just like the ones back home. Except for the non-alcoholic pina coladas and margaritas. Which to me is like reaching back with your pimp hand and slapping God in the face. Not good people, not good at all.

Now, I am a big boy and when properly motivated I can put down Chile's food like a 130 pound Chinaman in a hot dog eating contest. And so I did. Here is a breakdown of what I had this afternoon.

1. Triple Play appetizer. Southwest egg rolls, mozzarella sticks, and hot wings. Oh my.
2. Side salad with ranch dressing.
3. 12 ounce rib eye steak with french fries and broccoli with melted cheese.
4. Molten Chocolate Cake.
5. 4 Coke's and a glass of milk with the chocolate cake.

In the immortal words of Pigpen, "Holy Jumping Jesus On A Pogo Stick" It has been a long time since I was that full, and that satisfied all at the same time. I probably looked like I had a perpetual orgasm going for about 45 minutes after I got out of there. Needless to say, I have been eating rather copious amounts of plated shit since I have gotten here. To actually sit down and have a nice, civilized meal with REAL food was about as close to sex as I am going to get over here. If only you could...uh uh, moving on.

And then the day took a decided turn towards the gayer side of life. Now before I tell you what happened let me say this.

Until you have strapped on a weapon in defense of your nation, and lived in the mountains of some third world hell hole, and burned your own shit, not washed with anything but baby wipes for any length of time, or dug dust out of the most ungodly orifices in your body, or any of the wonderful list of perks that come with being deployed, then don't judge me. Because I would be more than happy to whip your ass and show you just how gay I really am. (I know, it didn't sound right did it.)

That being said, here is what happened.

I had an hour long massage scheduled for 1900 tonight. Duby decided that he wanted to see what other services they offered at the spa and possibly partake. So I figured, "What the hell". We get over there and it turns out that they have the whole kit and caboodle. Massage, facial, manicure and pedicure. Fun for me.

Duby decides he is going to get it all, so I dutifully followed suit. Now I have never had any of this, save the massage, done before. I mean c'mon I have been to Korea. Who hasn't gotten a massage there. Any male who says he hasn't is lying.

Moving on, so I lay down on the table for my massage and the girl comes in a does her thing. And I fall asleep. Apparently it was a much better massage than I had initially expected.

Shortly thereafter I was awakened by the most searing pain I have felt in a long while. She had begun the facial portion of my spa treatment and was digging into my face with what felt like the devil's thumbnail. She was scraping in the nook between my nose and my cheek, on top of my nose, on my chin, on my cheeks, on my upper lip, and on my forehead.

Scraping everywhere trying to dig down into my face until she found my damn brain. And as evidenced by the caliber of my writing it was going to take her awhile. I mean I am a pretty tough guy, but I'll admit it I teared up a bit. Then she showed me a kleenex peppered with little blackheads and bits of dirt and shit. Apparently, this is what she had just finished digging out of my face. Wow, it's called soap dickhead!

So far this experience rates as yellow on the gayness mood ring. Now it was time to bump it up to red.

I went back out to the front and sat down in a chair and waited for the gayness to commence. And commence it did. The girl came out and had me take my shoes and socks off and put my feet in a scorching hot bubble bath with some little nipples or some shit on the bottom of the tub that felt absolutely fabulous on the bottoms of my feet. Then while she let my dogs soak, she went to work on my fingernails. She put some pink shit on there that she said was nail strengthener or some shit, then she clipped them down to where they should be. After that she scrapped the top of them with something that looked like a miniature scalpel and then dug around in my cuticles with a pair of baby scissors and repeated this process until my fingernails were about as pretty as they have ever been.

Now it was on to my feet. And ladies and gents, let me tell you something about GI feet. They are easily the most disgustingly rancid thing that God has ever put on this earth. You lace up a pair of boots everyday for a decade or so and let's see how your feet look.

So she gets down to it, scrubbing the bottoms with a belt sander and getting all the dead skin off. Rubbing my feet down with a combination of cocoa butter and lava soap. Then getting to work on my toe nails and doing the same shit that she did to the fingers to the toes. I was like, "Holy O' Shit man, my toes are pretty too!"

Well then, I have only one thing to say about this. To every girl I ever gave any shit about all the stuff that you guys do to make yourselves feel pretty. "I TAKE IT ALL BACK"

I see why you guys like to get pampered. Now I'll really piss y'all off. I don't know how much this shit costs in the states, but here the whole thing cost me $48.00.

Anyways, now it is off to get my 3 authorized beers for today. Stay tuned though, I've got some incredibly insightful questions over the past few days, and I am going to answer them sooner or later.

Later,

I love you mom...

Jan 25, 2009

Smoking A Hookah, Riding A Camel, and 3 Beers A Day...

Ladies & Gentlemen, this is a camel...

IMG_0554

And I rode it.

This is me smoking a hookah sitting on the beach in Qatar. That's the Persian Gulf right behind me. Off to the right is Saudi Arabia. If only there was something worth smoking in there!

IMG_0562

This is my buddy, Duby, that's right he is smoking a hookah and his name is Duby. How beautiful is that?

IMG_0560

And finally this is the hookah....

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The picture doesn't do it justice It was like 3 feet tall.

So that was my day. I rode a camel, I smoked a hookah on the beach, and now I am sitting here writing to all of you right before I go and have my authorized 3 beers for the day. Fun for me.

If you ever get out to Qatar, I recommend the grape flavored smoke it was wonderful.

Anyways, moving on. Well I have come to several realizations while I have been here. What are they?

Well allow me to enlighten you.

1. Indoor plumbing is the most wonderful thing that anyone, anywhere, has ever invented.
2. Award winning chow halls are not a good place for a fat guy to go.
3. Combat zone habits make you look like an absolute retard if you are not in a combat zone.

The first two are self-explanatory. The third one may require some clarification. Then again, maybe it doesn't but I am going to do it anyways.

So on the way out to the beach today we were riding in a few trucks that the Army chartered to take us out there. The driver was a Palestinian guy named Hassam or something like that. Really cool guy, but a lunatic behind the wheel.

So we get out to the dunes that cover the distance between the Qatari highway and the beach, and he guns it. Runs us up and down all these sand dunes and around all these oasis's and around all these palm trees and shit, he even stopped to show us a plant. I forget the name but here's a picture of it. Apparently it only grows in the winter and then the camels come by and eat it. This was the extent of our sight-seeing today.

IMG_0541

Anyways, back to us flying across the desert. Every time we drove past anything that didn't belong in the desert. I mean a bag of trash, a random bottle of water, a bush that looked like it had been messed with. Anything that was even remotely out of the ordinary. I felt myself tensing up as we drove by it. Waiting for the impending IED blast.

I guess it was noticeable so Hassam started to make fun of me. As it turns out he says that a lot of the GI's that come here do the same shit. So he has fun with us by driving right by all that stuff. Ah, Hassam, a guy after my own heart. I would do the same thing. Any chance you get to fuck with people's heads you take it. Am I wrong.

Then later on that day I was walking through the PX with Duby and another guy from his unit and we came up to some barrier and had to walk around it. Without even realizing what he was doing, he took out an imaginary rifle and pied the corner (will take too long to explain) and cleared behind the barrier before he let us continue on. Well at least I am not that bad yet, but the letter is in the mail. You know what I mean?

So anyways, that is my observations for today and I want my beer and I have to call the mom so...

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Jan 24, 2009

America, Why I Love You, And Will Fight To The Very End For You...

Now for those of you who read me regularly you know that I am a bit crass, a bit unorthodox, and certainly I could give a shit less about propriety so the following is just a little photographic rundown of why I love the United States of America and am willing to dedicate my life to her defense...HERE YOU GO...

First and foremost my beloved Chicago White Sox, World Series Champions in 2005. And...Fuck the Cubs.

southpark2

Next up is the football team that taught me what being a badass was all about...

75557833DM011_CHICAGO_BEARS

And a gratuitous thong picture. Fun for all...
ChicagoBears

I love babies, and I love beer...especially Rolling Rock.

baby_beer

Just the fact that I am a soldier in a combat zone and I can post stuff like this is a testament to what a great country I am priviledged to defend.

love_america_pc

A picture is worth a thousand words...

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That's right Bitches...

patriotismeo1

And finally...

Their Sacrifice

When I was leaving Bagram the other day there was a sign on the wall that simply read...

"Live a life worthy of their sacrifice."

I love you mom...

Jan 23, 2009

Here I Sit Broken Hearted, Came To...

Shit but only farted...and so goes the traditional poem scrawled upon the walls of port-a-john's the world over. It was what I was reading this afternoon when the funniest event of this little jaunt to Qatar happened.

Now everyone knows that Bagram airfield has entirely too many people and the commanders here obviously have entirely too much time on their hands during which they sit around their mahogany conference tables and come up with new and interesting rules for those under their command to follow. Fun for me.

Well in this case, the rule in question is the designation of certain sets of shitters for use only by designated personnel. I never knew that the port-a-potties could be designated for just one group of people. But they do that here and apparently the ones that I decided to do my business in this afternoon were reserved specifically for the Air Force personnel that lived in the barracks directly behind them. Unfortunately for me, the shitters in question are also located just outside of the chow hall where I have been eating for the past several days.

So I sat down to enjoy my afternoon movement. I finished up, and came out of the john to be staring face to face, err more of a his face to my chest kind of thing, with a Bagram MP. I didn't really understand what the hell this guy was doing, I would never stand that close to another person who had just come out of the john and clearly had not washed their hands yet, but hey, whatever works for him.

So he says to me (and I swear I cannot make this shit up), "What were you doing in there?"

To which I responded, with no small amount of sarcasm, "I was solving the world hunger crisis!, what the hell do you think I was doing in there?"

Now I have pissed little napoleon off, and he shoots back angrily, "Do you know that these facilities are designated for the Air Force personnel in this barracks only!"

"Really, well where am I supposed to shit?"

"In the facilities located at your billets!"

"Well, I wasn't at my billets, I was here so I am going to shit here!"

Now let me say that I have an Army MP patch on my arm, this guy is an Army MP as well, and I have already pegged him as one of those, "I got my ass beat in high school so I am going to become a cop so that everyone will have to respect me" type of guys. And I am needlessly fucking with him just because I can. Regrettably, this is just what I do.

Anyways, so now he says, "Do you understand that I could cite you for unauthorized use of off limits facilities."

Now in my mind I am thinking, "Oh please, please Dear Lord please have this chump write me a ticket for using off limits shitters"

But unfortunately I am getting older and a little more controlled and I realize that if my chain of command were informed that I got cited for anything at all, the shit storm would be legendary. But there is another part of me that thinks it might be worth the trouble. However, cooler heads prevailed and I decided to make nice with the guy.

I gave him a little song and dance about how I wasn't from up here and I didn't know all the rules and la di da di da. And luckily for me he bought it.

So I thanked him for setting me straight and I wished him well as he left. But the funniest thing he said didn't come until he was getting in his truck to leave.

He said, and I quote, "Make sure you watch yourself, there are a lot of MP's around here who have too much time on their hands and they like to cite people from other units for bullshit!"

"Thanks for the advice, pal!" As soon as he left I was doubled over laughing. I almost got a ticket for unauthorized deposit of fecal waste! Only in the Army could something like this actually happen. Not only that, but the MP who did it actually went so far as to describe himself when he was leaving. Not to mention has it dawned on anyone that this guy had to have watched me go into the shitter and then said to himself, "Hey he is in an Army uniform, those are Air Force facilities. I think I'll set this guy straight." Then he had to pull over and stand directly outside the facility that I was using and wait as I grunted and groaned my way through the burritos and enchiladas that were served the night before. Then he had to prepare his little talk for when I exited. Holy shit, this fucking guy thought this through.

Then he had to do it. How bored do you have to be to actually notice when someone is going in the shitter? Either that or one of the pricks from the Air Force ratted on me, in which case that opens a whole other ball of hilarity. But for right now lets go with the "he was watching me" option.

Anyways, that was my funny story for today. I am sitting here waiting for the flight from here to Qatar. Which is supposedly at 0300 tonight. Which is another funny thing because if you think O'Hare is bad I had to check in for this flight at fucking 0830 this morning. A full 18 and one half hours ahead of time. But I digress.

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Jan 21, 2009

Hey Mr. President, What Do You Think Of This...

Well a lot of the guys around here make fun of me because I say certain things a lot. Amongst the things I say with ever increasing frequency is this:

You’re going to be fine, you’re going to be just fine.

So why did I tell you that? Because I am about to ask Barack Obama some questions and then I am going to answer them for him. Not to mention I am going to throw a little commentary at you about the conservatives in the military and I just love to say that to them.

YOU’RE GOING TO BE FINE, YOU’RE GOING TO BE JUST FINE…

To whom do I say this little gem? Pretty much everyone I know at one time or another. Where did it come from? Prison, a federal prison is where this one originated. This is what I tell my inmates whenever they get onto one of their little fits of bitching where if one did not know better and heard this tirade you would swear that the sky was falling.

I say it calmly and with the requisite amount of condescension but it’s true, the sky is not falling, the sun will rise again tomorrow and you are going to be fine.

Which is what I love to tell all the conservative lunatics that are here in Uncle Sam’s mean green machine whenever they lose their cool talking about what Obama is going to do when he gets into office and what not.

You would think that the conservatives around here thought that Obama is about to usher in an age when the military will be weakened to the point of irrelevancy, and all their money is about to be taken by the government and given over to…France.

Now the extremity of their ideas is laughable but for the most part the virulent dialogue that qualifies as debate around here is almost exclusively directed at Obama. Which provides me with an endless amount of entertainment given the fact that I love to stir up the shit and I also love to be the guy who disagrees with everyone else. Sometimes I wonder if I was home in Chicago where everyone loved Obama if I would’ve supported McCain just to be a pain in the ass. But I digress.

We all know that Obama has a full plate to deal with. He has one war to end, and one war to win. He has an economy that is truly in the shitter, and all the problems that come with that. He inherits a country whose standing on the world stage has never been shakier, and on and on…

Which issue is most important to me? Well if you guessed the war in Afghanistan, then there is another ETS cookie for you.

What is he going to do about this war? Where will he take it? How many more guys will he send here? How is he going to deal with the war-profiteers err civilian contractors that are here? If he does send more guys here, where will he have them sent? The questions about this one are literally endless. Each answered question gives rise to about twenty more.

So in order to further my patriotic duty as an American soldier, and in order to offer constructive solutions as opposed to just bitching I am going to answer every one of my questions and present the new president with a little plan on how to win this thing. I am going to use the “If I were you” format for answering the questions. I also realize the obnoxiousness it takes for a lowly enlisted soldier to presume to lecture the president on how to conduct a war and his international affairs, but hey, I am obnoxious so here we go.

What are you going to do about the war?

If I were you the first thing I would do is come up with a workable timeline for leaving Iraq. I think anywhere from 18-24 months would be feasible. The whole 16-month thing you were talking about might be a little too ambitious and you want to leave yourself some wiggle room. If something goes on that would delay the whole thing you don’t want to be shackled to the 16-month promise.

Next thing on the agenda would be moving most if not all of those combat assets from Iraq to Afghanistan. Actually this would be a concurrent thing. As resources are no longer needed in Iraq they could be transported over to Afghanistan. I would recommend that you have all this stuff fixed in Kuwait or Qatar so that the equipment would not have to go home. Easier shipping, you know what I mean.

Following the transfer of all of those military resources to Afghanistan I would hope that the generals you have in charge would see the need for a massive redeployment of troops and material within the theater. I have talked in the past of Afghanistan’s strange political dynamic that places the real power firmly in the hands of the tribal elders, mullahs, warlords, and militiamen out in the countryside and the mountains. Contrary to the American model which concentrates political power in the urban centers. Bearing that dynamic in mind two things should happen.

First, military forces in this country should be concentrated in the borderlands between Pakistan and Afghanistan to prevent the free reign border crossing that makes this war so damn hard to fight. In addition those forces should be concentrated out in the countryside to the south and east of this country. That is where the Taliban is rebuilding from, so that is where we need to be with the guns and bombs to prevent that rebuilding from taking place.

Secondly, have you ever heard of a “loya jirga” Well it’s a big council meeting of Afghan leaders. Not just the political appointees and the elected gangsters that they have in Kabul right now. I mean real Afghan leaders; the tribal elders, the mullahs, and all the guys that hold real sway out in the provinces that aren’t controlled by Kabul. Just so you know that is pretty much all of them except Kabul, not to mention I would bet my left nut that Kabul only holds power inside the city limits of Kabul and has very little real power outside the city in its own province. But I could be wrong.

I would recommend that you, or someone with some real juice come here under invitation from Hamid Karzai and perhaps secure the invitation of the Pashtu leaders in the border areas. (This would help out immensely with security, given the Pashtu and Islamic value placed on hospitality) Come here and participate directly in a debate with the loya jirga. I am not going to lie, this would be wild, Afghani politics is a contact sport and they would come out guns blazing. Maybe that was a bad metaphor.

Come to the loya jirga ready for them. Make sure you come with a plan. Tell them what you want to do for Afghanistan economically, socially, culturally, and militarily. And tell them what they have to do to ensure that American resources are not squandered and/or misused.

I would do some reading up on this one, the loya jirga I mean. There is nothing in American politics that really comes close. The closest thing would be like a congressional debate with very few rules and a two-drink minimum. Also be advised that one of the recent loya jirga’s that took place consisted of over 1800 people. This is not going to be any small affair.

Doing this would serve a myriad of purposes. First you would endear yourself to the Afghani people. Second you would be able to put your finger on the pulse of this nation. When presented with an opportunity like this the tribal leaders and warlords would come out in droves. Which would serve a third purpose of helping to identify whom holds power, and where they hold that power. If they had the juice to get elected to the loya jirga they obviously have the juice to make the moves that are needed to bring stability to this nation.

Take each and every suggestion seriously and examine all the possibilities presented. These people know their country and what it needs better than we do, I think if you want to preach the politics of inclusion there is no better chance than this to show you are serious.

Where will you take this war?

If I were you, the logical conclusion of this war is a stable Afghanistan with a functioning economy and society, and a government favorable to the United States and the world in general.

Well that is a mouthful and a shit ton easier said than done. So what would we need to do to accomplish that end?

Interconnectivity in this country is key to the stability of this country. Not only am I talking about cell phones and computers but I am also talking about the infrastructure of this land that will allow the free transport of goods, services, and people across the barren wastelands that permeate most of Afghanistan.

A nationwide highway system is so important to any stability that Afghanistan will ever see. There is no way that any central authority could ever be achieved in this country without it. How can the government assert its power in the countryside if it can’t even get there?

This is going to require one tremendous investment on the part of the international community. I couldn’t even begin to imagine how many billions of dollars it will take to pull this off. So may I be so bold as to make a suggestion as to how to do it.

Pull all civilian contractors out of the war in Afghanistan. They have already made entirely too much cash off this war anyhow. Tell them to go home and find regular jobs with paychecks that are commensurate with their skill set as opposed to coming here and driving a truck for $10,000 a month. There is precedent here as well. I found out that while in Kosovo and Bosnia (NATO or the UN) whoever’s mission that one was gave $2,000 per month per soldier to all nations that sent soldiers there. The governments of some other countries gave that money to their soldiers, while others, our government included kept that money and did not give it to the soldiers. Why? Because American soldiers are not mercenaries. Am I the only one who finds it slightly hypocritical that we would do that and then turn around and pay these people astronomical amounts of money to do something that all logic would say should be done by a soldier. But I digress.

This highway would not only connect the country to the city, it would speed the movement of military assets and material, it would contribute to winning the hearts and minds of the Afghani’s and would connect them to each other facilitating the transfer of ideas and dialogue and debate. Even if they have to drive it from one place to the next.

The second step in the process of connecting this country is telecommunications. Now this unfortunately is an area where civilian contractors would have to be used. Last time I checked the army didn’t have a phone company.

Cell phone towers need to go up everywhere. Make it to the point where cell phones are just as common here as they are in the states.

Get the regular phone lines up.

Get the mail system up to par.

Get the computer and Internet systems here up to a level where they can support the massive amount of demand that will come when people realize what is going on.

AND MAKE DAMN SURE THAT NONE OF THIS SHIT IS CENSORED!!!!

If you see what I am getting at, I do truly believe that this society would never be able to handle a free and democratic government right off the bat. But maybe it is a bit Machiavellian of me, but I can deal with that, so long as the avenue that will lead to the eventual formation of said democratic government is there.

The free exchange of all the ideas that this country can muster and the debate that will lead to the formation of new ideas, all of which will be facilitated by the Internet cannot be overstated.

Not to mention the ability of the Afghan people to see the rest of the world and how it functions and to be able to demand similar conditions from its own government is paramount.

The Afghani’s will eventually come around to a western way of thinking. Everyone always does so long as they are exposed to the ideas.

The free exchange of ideas is one of the few real questions I have. I don’t really have any suggestion for ensuring that other than requiring it of the Afghani’s and that smacks of American elitism and condescension. Which is not good. But you have people smarter than I to figure that out.

I already spoke to what I would like to see done with the civilian contractors so I won’t reiterate it. Just understand that the only civilians that should be allowed into a war zone are those who have such a highly specialized skill that no soldier, sailor, airman, or marine can be found who can do their job. Enough said. The next questions were how many more guys will you send here and if you do, where will you send those guys?

If I were you I would secure the border first. The border between Pakistan and Afghanistan is already well known as the most lawless place in the world. I know for a fact. How do I know this? Because I live really, really close to it. I don’t really know, nor do I have the resources required to give you an accurate estimate of how many troops it would take to secure this border. But I can say that it would number somewhere north of 150,000. (Bear in mind there are like 190,000 guys in Iraq.) Probably more, not to mention that the border between Iran and Afghanistan has to be secured for the same reasons. I mean there would need to be FOB’s, and outposts, and border patrol stations every 50 feet or it quite frankly is not going to work. Now that sort of presence could not be sustained for years on end, but it could be sustained long enough for the interior of the country to complete some of the work or rebuilding and by doing that you would make the country hostile to those crossing the border.

Next thing up would be chasing down the ones that we have in here already. You know the ones that don’t jump the border every October to avoid the harsh Afghani winters. Presently, our forces are concentrated in a few urban centers. This is a bad idea, the Soviets tried it and we all know what happened to them. Our forces need to be concentrated in the countryside and mountains of Afghanistan. I’m not advocating that we abandon the urban areas but they are no where near as important or volatile as the rural enclaves that have allowed the Taliban to reemerge as a powerful force in this country.

The Taliban presence in this country cannot be allowed. In no capacity can the Taliban operate in this country. They must be hunted down, killed or imprisoned and they must cease to exist as an entity. That is all there is to that. I have seen and felt the work of these men first hand. There is room neither on this earth, nor in any sort of civilized world for them. They must be eradicated.

To that end, a whole lot of American soldiers will be needed to secure the countryside. Once the border is secured then their reinforcements and supplies will come to a screeching halt and then the troops within the country can begin the hopefully not so long and arduous task of hunting and killing the remnants of the Taliban and the insurgency.

With a secure border the work of rebuilding this nation could take place. No one should assume that it will be easy or without tragedy or loss of life but nothing ever is. However, once that work begins in earnest and the Afghani’s see that there is nothing to be gained from opposing the development of their own country and that the west in general is a friend to Afghanistan then, as I said before, they will become hostile to those who would disrupt this process. Then the Taliban, and the insurgents would feel not only the weight of the American military but also the weight of the Afghani people. Taken together that weight would be a crushing blow.

Well I am sure that someone has already said pretty much every thing I have come up with thus far. All you really have to do is to look at history to see how to fight this war. Read all about how the Soviets did things here, and then do the exact opposite. So that is what I suggest.

Mr. President, I don’t know if you will ever even see this but at least I got it out there. Now to the rest of you, especially the Professor and Sooner23, let’s hear it. I want a debate on this one. I want questions, I want suggestions, I want “what ifs”, I want disagreement, I want alternate theories, I want it all. I didn’t just sit down and write damn near seven pages like I am a freshman in college again for nothing. Consider this a rough draft of a work in progress that needs to get critiqued and graded and cut up and analyzed and revised. And I want all of you to help me with it. So let’s hear it, what are your thoughts, what are your ideas for improvement, what did I get wrong, what did I get right, and all of that.

All right, so I am done, for now.

Later,

I love you mom…

So It's Good To See How The Other Half Lives...

So first of all let me say thanks to my pal, Spray on, for getting me on a chopper that only made one stop prior to hitting Bagram. That was a beautiful thing. I left on the 19th and I made it to Bagram on the 19th. Which for anyone even remotely familiar with travel in this country knows that is lightning speed. Now I am sitting here waiting for the "death by power point" briefing that we all have to go through prior to being allowed on R&R or leave. I am so looking forward to that.

However, it is the 21st now and I am getting to see Bagram in all its glory. The first question that comes to my mind is this. How many troops are here? And do any of them have jobs? I am being serious. Now up here I have no job, my job is to wait and attend this briefing and then leave. Now I am one of about 200 or so soldiers that are waiting for leave or R&R and yet the post is always full of soldiers and sailors, and airmen, and marines that are just wandering around killing time. Doing absolutely nothing. Going back and forth to the PX (post exchange, the Army's version of Wal-Mart) Going to the MWR to monopolize the computers and phones, and doing this that and the other, but none of them ever seem to work. This concerns me. And for a deeper reason than the fact that I am jealous as all hell that they can sit around doing jack shit while I have to work my balls off down at my FOB.

If you take a scant look at Afghanistan's military and political history you see a very disturbing trend that I am not quite certain the American military is paying adequate attention to. In this country, political power does not necessarily reside in the major urban centers such as Bagram, Kabul, Kandahar, and Jalalabad. For the most part the real power in this country is found in the countryside, in the mountains, and in the farmlands. The local tribal elders and the warlords and militiamen out there hold that power. The Taliban is now slowly and steadily retaking these areas. Why does this concern me so much? Well it is simple self-preservation. My FOB lies right in the middle of the countryside in between the mountains, and next to the farmlands where the fucking Taliban are slowly but surely reasserting themselves and in some cases going so far as to install the aptly named "shadow governments". Don't worry all of this stuff is things I have read in Stars & Stripes so I can't get into any trouble for saying it.

So what is my problem anyways? I want to know what the hell all these people are doing here. I have seen vehicles that could be put to good use in the outlying FOB's in the borderland, I have seen a shit ton of soldiers who are unoccupied by anything other than shopping and eating. I have seen a myriad of other resources being squandered up here. And I wonder why? Why do we have to spend so many resources, human and otherwise to secure this place? Why does this place have to be the size of a major state university when the FOB's where shit actually happens are roughly the size of football field?

I understand that Bagram is a major installation and airfield but really whom are we kidding? There is no way that all these soldiers are needed here. The Soviets made the exact same mistake when they invaded this country. They were able to secure the urban centers but were unable to ever subdue the countryside. Well guess what happened to the Soviets? They ended up getting their asses handed to them and running back to mother Russia with their tails between their legs. So hopefully there are some sorts of plans to get this thing changed. Whenever this "surge" of troops that is coming gets here I hope they send these guys straight out into the boondocks which is where I live. Oh wait, I don't think the commanders of those units would go for that they wouldn't want to be too far from their cell phones just in case their girlfriend calls wanting to cry about them being gone. (Also, my advice to any girl who doesn't like to be alone, DO NOT DATE AND/OR MARRY A SOLDIER...EVER!!!)

Where did that little aside come from? While we are here we have to sleep in a transient tent (which makes me feel homeless, but I digress) and the guy next to me was whining about his girlfriend at home who was crying about him being gone. Now I guess I could deal with that well enough, but I asked the dude how long he had been gone, and he said he has only been gone for about three weeks. Really? Three weeks and she is already cracking. Sorry to tell you this brother, but you are going to have a Jody keeping your bed warm in another month at the most. Don't worry I didn't say that to him.

So now while I am here I got to partake of all the wonderful things that the other half gets. Burger King, Pizza Hut, Popeye's Chicken, Dairy Queen, Orange Julius, Green Bean Coffee, and a cell phone shop coupled with satellite cable television. America goes off to war to liberate another country from religious tyranny and to stop the spread of terrorism and the first thing that we do is build a fucking mall! It truly makes me sick. But I suppose that while I am here there is no harm in joining in the fun. Like I said, I am still wrestling with the question of am I jealous of these guys here or am I contemptuous of them for what I have to do and they don't? I don't know, but who really cares? I don't because very soon I have to return to the suck, and they don't care because they are watching MTV and caring for their "deployment spouses".

I wish I had more to write about, but that's about it. The puppies are fine for those of you who are concerned. I am slowly but surely figuring out how I am going to do this. It's actually turning out to be a lot easier than I thought. I think I may go into smuggling when I get home. But I digress...and now I am going to DQ to get a blizzard. Why? Because I can.

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Jan 18, 2009

The 5-Gallon Bucket Brigade, Spray On Tans, And Beer Pong...

First of all I would like to introduce the latest in the never-ending cast of characters that is my company. I am going to call him "Spray on". Why would I call him that? Because he has one of the creepiest tans that I have ever seen. It never goes away! Regardless of the time of year. Now if we were at home I would just chalk it up to another emasculated metro-sexual going to the tanning beds all the time. However, we are here and I know for a fact that there isn't a tanning bed anywhere to be found. Apparently the complexion of the Afghani's is such that there is no money for "LA Tan" to make here. Nevertheless his tan has not so much as faded in the almost 3 months we have been in the suck. It's creepy.

Which, to me, says but one thing, HE SPRAYS IT ON! Hence his moniker. Well spray on runs the flight line here; he's one of those guys who are the complete opposite of me. First of all he's skinny, but then on top of that he has complete control of himself at all times. Which if any of you who know me can attest, I have the temper of a wolverine on PCP. Anyways, we were working the other day and he came up and gave me the idea for the title of this post.

Now what the hell is the deal with the "5 gallon bucket brigade"? Well I'll tell you, everything here breaks at one time or another. Literally, everything breaks. At one time or another. Now whenever something breaks we usually have to wait months while the part to fix whatever it is comes in, and in the meantime we have to do by hand what used to be done by some mechanical contraption.

In this case, the thing that broke was a really big moveable gas tank that we use to fill an even bigger but immoveable gas tank on the other side of the FOB. Now when this thing is broken we have to fill this really huge gas tank using 5-gallon gas cans that we use to keep extra gas on our trucks.

So this damn tank broke, and sure enough they came and found me and some guys from my platoon to fill this thing. 5 gallons at a time. Fun for us. I was told by someone who loves to see me angry that the tank we had to fill held 2000 gallons. So off we go, filling one can with fuel, then emptying it into the tank and so on and on and on...

Now if it is true that the tank held 2000 gallons and we were filling this damn thing 5 gallons at a time that means we would have to have dumped 400 of these cans in there. And we were taking 10 cans back and forth to the fuel point every time so we had to do that how many times? For you math majors out there it is 40 times.

Well luckily for us the big tank that they use to fill the bigger tank got fixed right in the middle of us doing this little exercise and we didn't have to finish. Thank God, there was only so many times I could've done that before I would've taken a rag, soaked it in fuel, stuffed it into the tank and turned that fucking thing into the biggest Molotov cocktail the world has ever seen.

And then we played beer pong. Yes, I know there is no alcohol allowed in AssCrackIstan, which seems counter intuitive to me. They are always preaching that we need to keep morale high, well why not slip us a little booze every now and then. I mean really, is it too much to ask? A beer or two after an IED would definitely get the ringing out of your ears.

But we do have this non-alcoholic piss water that they keep around for God knows what. I do believe that it is an evil joke being played by all the military brass. Now enlisted men know that the brass can pretty much get whatever they want, whenever they want, wherever they want. Every enlisted man also knows that we cannot. So in order to entertain themselves at our expense they put something that looks like beer, tastes somewhat akin to beer and does in fact smell like beer in the chow hall. So that every time you walk past this shit, if nothing else you are cruelly reminded of just how badly your life sucks. As you stare at this can you start to dream of all the good times you had drinking with your friends, all the times you found a girl who was probably about as cute as a mule's ass but you were drunk so she looked like Brittany Snow, all the times you found a girl who was as pretty as Brittany Snow and thank God she was drunk because otherwise she would've seen that you did in fact, look like a mule's ass prior to waking up next to you the following morning. Ah, God bless beer.

Hey Benjamin Franklin once said, "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy!" And he invented bifocals, how could he ever be wrong?

Yes, enough of that tangent and back to the beer pong. We held the first annual Monthly Waza Khwa Beer Pong Tournament. (Yes, we know that monthly and annual don't go together. Up yours, it’s our tournament.) And we played. Whipping ping-pong balls around the MWR like it was your favorite spot back home. And drinking this piss water, I still feel like ass, and so this completes the cruel joke. Not only do you get none of the benefits of real beer, but also you actually do get all of the shitty parts. Well someone send my thanks to the procurement department of the military "chow hall stocking committee".

And we played beer pong for about 5 hours. I managed to get all the way to the championship round but I lost, which sucks. And I have yet to figure out exactly why we wanted to torture ourselves like this. Think about it. We are in a place where there are people who are trying on a fairly constant basis to end our lives, not to mention we have to work pretty much perpetually doing some of the stupidest shit you could ever come up with and yet we want to remind ourselves on a fairly regular basis of all the great shit we don't get to do anymore. Sounds like self-loathing to me. But I digress.

Anyways, we have been snowed on for about 3 days now so nothing else has been going on.

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

P.S. Hey spray on, the S.O.G. will get his comeuppance sometime soon. Just searching for a little inspiration.

Jan 16, 2009

Two Soldiers In A Combat Zone, Watching A Musical...and Puppies...

Yep, that's right, Pigpen and I were just caught sitting around in the dark watching a musical. The musical? "Little Shop of Horrors" So maybe that's a little to the left of heterosexual on the straight scale, but quite frankly who gives a shit. It's snowing and we don't have a damn thing to do but sit around, and there are only so many rounds of spades you can play before you are ready to shoot someone. So we decided to watch a musical. If this is a world in which two men can't sit around and watch a musical, then this is a world in which I don't want to live.

And now I sit here writing this and listening to, "I Kissed A Girl" Dear Lord, what has happened to me here? I think that people are starting to wonder.

Moving on, another way to know you are in Afghanistan or at least to know you are in a foreign country. The movies that you buy from Haji are packaged about 20 movies to a disc. Yep, 20 to one disc. And they all have the words, "Can play on any dvd-player or computer dvd-rom". Not to mention the one that I just got today was "apparently" put out by Nike. Copyright infringement can be fun. Best part is that this disc works perfectly and cost only $5.00, God I love this country.

Also, I would like to send kudos to Airman mom, who came through big time without even knowing it. A while back she sent me a Rubiks cube that I have really done nothing with, until the last 3 days. So I spent the last three days (literally) turning this and spinning that, and trying to figure out how I could remove and replace the stickers without it being noticeable. I worked on that damn thing for hours on end until I just said, "fuck it" and went and downloaded some instructions on how to do it from the internet. AND THEN IT STILL TOOK LIKE 6 HOURS FOR US TO FINISH IT. I am really beginning to think that the longer I spend here, and in the Army in general, the dumber I get. However, it did kill three whole days.

Well what has been going on around here? Nothing, nada, niet, not a damn thing. So what happens when members of the military get bored? Nothing good. Not from the lower enlisted soldiers or mid-level NCO's but straight from the top. They got bored and sent us crashing down the 8th level of suck!

I can't even get into all of them due to the fact that my head would probably explode but suffice it to say that our chain of command spewed forth a pile of literary excrement (thanks, Kasper) that they called an S.O.P. (standard operating procedure). Which outlines all the places we can and cannot go, and how we can and cannot get there, and where we can be and when, and a myriad of other things that most likely no one will pay any attention to. The best one by far and away is the "ground guide" rule. For those of you who don't know a ground guide is someone who directs a vehicle around, from the ground. It is a safety precaution that the military uses to prevent accidents. Sounds good to me, how about you? The problem is that they take things to ridiculous lengths. Usually ground guides are used to get large vehicles around in tight places, and to get all our vehicles around the FOB at night. But we have to use these guides during the day! I couldn't resist, I told them that I get the ground guide at night thing, but why the hell do we have to use them during the day? The answer I got was that they were worried about soldiers running out in front of the vehicles and getting hit.

So basically our chain of command just told us that we are too damn stupid to know to look both ways before we cross the street! Ah, it's always nice to know that my superiors have such a high level of respect for my counterparts and I.

And here are the puppies...
IMG_0532

IMG_0527

Lastly, above are pictured a couple of the puppies we found under one of the B-huts here at the FOB. AWWW, They're SOOOO Cute! The next few months are going to be interesting as I am trying to get one of these guys home, and the rest to an animal rescue place up in Kabul. Given our command policy regarding animals this is going to be entertaining to say the least. It is kind of funny though, throughout my time in the military I have been in trouble for drinking, for insubordination, for fighting, for...you get the idea. I find it a little funny that here in AssCrackIstan, I am going to get into trouble for smuggling puppies!

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

P.S. A little note to my cousin Kenny. He has been posting my entries on another website of an apparently "family friendly" organization. I don't know how true that characterization is given how it makes it's money but whatever. However, he has been censoring my writing. Which I find hysterical. Reading my posts and seeing a bunch of XXXXXXXX's all over the place just makes me happy. Well first I would like to say to Kenny, "Thanks pal" and I would also like to say...

FUCK YOU, YOU FUCKING FUCK. And FUCK FUCKITTY FUCK FUCK FUCK (Try censoring that!)

Sorry about the language mom...

Don't Ask, Don't Tell...

So a nice young lady asked me what I thought of Obama's plan to overturn the "Don't ask, Don't tell" policy that has been in effect since the Clinton administration.

Well let me begin by saying that I kind of feel about this the same way that I feel about gay marriage.

If I have to endure the abject horror that is marriage just because I am straight, why should these guys be shielded from it just because they're gay?

First let me say that I have absolutely no problems with gay people, in fact I love gay men! That's right I love gay men. Why? Because every gay man there is, is one less guy I have to compete with for skirts. I wish every man were gay...except me.

Not to mention I am fully in support of lesbian marriage as well...so long as both lesbians are really, really hot...kidding.

Alright enough of the jokes.

I would support the dissolution of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy for the simple reason that I don't think that sexual orientation should mean shit when it comes to military service. There is no task, or training, or event in the military that has anything to do with who you fuck. The military, whether it likes it or not, has got to evolve along with society.

I mean at one time, blacks were not allowed to serve in the military at all. Then when they were allowed to serve, they were not allowed to serve alongside whites, they had their own segregated units. Society got over that, so why the hell can't they get over this.

I don't know maybe they should start with all gay units under straight officers. Then we could move on to integrating them into the service as a whole. This could actually be fun, station them in a new fort in San Francisco and they could wear a rainbow patch. That would be hilarious.

In the last election and in the recent past, a lot has been made of the politics of inclusion as opposed to division. I, for the life of me, cannot understand why we as the most advanced, and (supposedly) civilized nation on earth would still cling to the idea that someone is unfit for military service because of who they like to boink. Wait a second, it's not even that, because obviously the government has realized that gay people are more than capable of serving. They just can't serve and let people know that they are gay at the same time. Basically, what they are saying is that the military is full of unenlightened fucking cavemen who couldn't deal with a gay man or woman being around without their head's exploding. Which, sadly is probably true.

The sexual culture of the military as a whole is something that is deserving of a long, and exhaustive psychological study in sexual dysfunction. I mean we spend all this time worrying about gay people in the military, yet very little attention is paid to the absolutely abysmal divorce rates in the military, not to mention the insane amount of infidelity (geographic bachelor's anyone), throw in a rape or two, and the fact that most of our females are just as bad as the guys, and you have a recipe for a gigantic shit sandwich.

With all of that going on, I'd have to say that gay people are the least of the military's worries.

On the flip side, the policy also serves to protect the gay people who want to serve from the ignorant, fuck sticks that the military seems to love so much. When the policy gets overturned there will be at least a few military members who come out of the closet and when they do, there will be at least a few of them that feel the heat for it.

So there's that, and that would suck. But at least everyone in the military should know how to defend themselves and we all have guns so maybe it wouldn't be as bad as I think. But it probably would be.

Then there is always the religious thing. Let's get one thing out of the way right away, the U.S. military is unabashedly Christian. You want to argue with me you can but no one is going to convince me otherwise. I probably have about 6 Bibles that have ACU pattern covers, I was given a New Testament when I was at MEPS, I got another one in Korea, I got a few more here, and on and on. They have a "non-mandatory prayer time" prior to every mission, and how many military chapels or churches have you seen that were not Christian. I saw a Mosque at Fort Bragg but it was just a room in a building, not a stand alone building like the chapels I have seen elsewhere.

Unfortunately, religion and I have never really gotten along. God, now he's another story. I am a big fan of God and all that he/she teaches. I was raised and educated in a Lutheran school, regrettably for them I was also raised by my mother who made a questioner out of me. Now God tells us to love our neighbors and treat others as we would want to be treated. Then the church goes and throws in "unless they are gay". Well then God goes on to say somewhere in that book of his/hers "Judge not, lest ye be judged" Now that's a good one. Because it seems like the only thing that the church is really capable of anymore is judging people. Seems like God may have known ahead of time that at least a few people would run around being douche bags in his/her name.

Note: Going off on a tangent now.

I guess the whole thing with gay people comes down to whether they are born that way or if something happens to them that makes them that way. I cannot for one second believe that something makes them that way. I may be wrong, but it breaks down like this for me. When I was younger no one had to tell me that something was going on when Phoebe Cates got out of the pool in "Fast Times At Ridgemont High" and took her top off. My little soldier let me know, loud and clear, that something was UP!



I was never told to like girls, I was never trained or conditioned to like girls. It just kind of happened, naturally. I would venture a guess to say that it is the same thing for gay people. Except that they get all riled up for James Bond, instead of the Bond girl.

Note: Now I'm back.

So I figure that the dissolution of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy is a necessary step in the evolution of our military to mirror the evolution of our society. It's not going to be easy, simply because there are still some real assholes floating around. So that's what I think about Obama's plan for the policy.

And now I am done.

Later,

I love you mom...

Jan 13, 2009

The Friendly Ghost's Monkey With A Typewriter Experiment...

-Guest post from a fellow member of my platoon.

If you lock a hundred monkeys in a room with typewriters they will eventually bang out the works of Shakespeare, so by that logic if you lock one monkey in a tower with a pen and a notebook he should be able to write a guest post for his friends blog. So here goes.

I will start off this failed experiment of a guest post by telling you a little about me. Since MudPuppy likes to give everyone in this unit a fun pseudonym you can call me Friendly Ghost. I joined the military six years ago in high school and have been faithfully serving my country one weekend a month two weeks a year since then. I get to check the box labeled “some college: no degree” since I spent a few years a Western Illinois University. I have held several jobs in my life the top three are, Working at St. Charles Country club, A loss prevention officer at Kohl’s, and my favorite one Hot Dog Vendor at WIU. I love to procrastinate (just ask Mudpuppy how long he has been waiting for me to write a guest post for him). I love to read, mainly works of Fiction and Sci-Fi, but I will read the hippy tree hugging literary vomit which MudPuppy likes, because every now and then they bring up good ideas and have good points. I am also a self proclaimed nerd because I like well… nerd stuff. And yes I do enjoy sunsets and long walks on the beach. But that’s enough about me.

I figure I will start off this post with a rant about something at took place a couple of nights ago while on ECP, while guarding the FOB from non-existent attacks from the Taliban but mainly fighting off hypothermia. My team was doing one hour shifts, which means while one of us was defending the FOB, the other two were sleeping. However there is only one cot at ECP which means that while one person is sleeping on the cot, the other person can either sit on a chair or try to sleep on the floor for an hour then you switch out. It was about 3am or 0300 for you military types when it became my turn for the cot, and after an hour spent unsuccessfully trying to sleep on the floor I was looking to a little one on one time with the only piece of comfort in the entire ECP. So I get up ready to deposit myself on the cot and drift off to sleep, my team leader goes and sits down on the cot thusly dashing my hopes of lying down in comfort. Needless to say I am somewhat peeved so I ask him, “Can you sit on the chair?” Now keep in mind at 3am after lying on a cold floor for an hour I am about as friendly as a Bear who watched someone kick its cubs in the face, so it may have come out somewhat rude but it was still a reasonable request, however my team leader replies with “No.” So after I am able to digest this response I politely inform him that I would like him to “get off the fucking cot so I can lie down and go to sleep.” He then goes and tells me that I will be fine sitting for 5-10 minutes. I then chose at this time to bite my tongue and sit down on the cot, because as much as I sometimes do not like it I still somewhat respect the military rank structure. While I am sitting down on the cot when I should rightfully be laying down sleeping, I start to chuckle to myself over the entire situation, I chuckle because I know my team leader very well and if someone were to do that to him he would have pitch a fit and gone on and on till the person finally caved in a got off the couch, that or if it was a member of his team he would have sent them off to do some entirely pointless task so he could get the cot. So I’m sitting there when my team leader lets out this classic piece of verbal excrement, “If you would have asked nicely, I would have gotten up.” To which I planted a “Bullshit” flag on right away. This is because everyone has said that at one point in their lives or another and 99% of us know perfectly well that they would have never done it even if the person asked you sweetly enough to give you diabetes. And given how well I know my team leader I know that he is not in that 1% category. I mean I love the guy but as a team leader he cares way to much about himself and his own petty bullshit for me to respect him as a team leader anymore than I do, which I can say I do. I know the job is not an easy one but the team he has makes it easier for him then any of the other team leaders out there. I know that I may be somewhat biased when I describe the events which took place that night, but this is my post and I get to tell it how I see fit. So it goes.

Ranting about that just gave me a deeper respect for what MudPuppy does with this blog, it is a very safe and therapeutic place to bitch about what is going on which is a good thing and everyone needs to do it at least once in their life. So with that I give you Friendly Ghosts second rant of the post.

I have been in this company for six years. I know that our CO well, oks our CO sucks, and that the senior leaders do not always make sense on their decisions, but this is not a bad company. It is a good National Guard military police company. Do not get me wrong we are not perfect by any means, but we have learned to deal with things we cannot help and we did not bitch (as loudly or as much) as is going on now. Saying that most of the bitching started when we got inserts from other companies, at first we got inserts from other MP companies so there bitching was understandable and relevant. But some of their bitching was “this isn’t how we did it in my old company.” To which all I have to say is “that’s because this is not your old company, this is your new company.” Then we started getting inserts from other MOS’s who started to constantly bitch about why do we do this or why did we do that and of course there was always, “ this isn’t how we did it in the (insert other military occupation here).” We even have a soldier who likes to say “This is bullshit; this isn’t how we did it in Iraq.” I just want to say to all of them with bitches like that “SHUT THE FUCK UP!” We are a Military Police Unit, a peacekeeping, combat support branch of the military, which means we do things differently and have tactics which help us fulfill those roles. However what is most important is that you volunteered to come to this unit knowing full well that we are MP’s and a National Guard unit. We do things differently and you may not agree with it but unless you have a valid constructive comment to make during a meeting or when someone asks you something, just shut your freaking pie hole. This leads me to the senior leaders of my platoon to include the Team leaders of my squad, I say my squad because I do not know how the other squad’s team leaders deal with each other. I know that you all do not get along all of the time or for that sake like what each other has to say all the time, but you do not need to turn everything into a pissing contest. Oh My God. Someone said something you do not agree with or something you find ill advised. How about you bring up how you think it can be done in a respectful adult way, and if the person does not agree with you then you sit back and just follow the order, instead of turning it into yet another pointless pissing contest. Because in a pissing contest this big there will always be splash back and I only have so many clean uniforms. So it goes.

I have used So it goes a couple of times in this post for two reasons, One I just finished re reading Slaughterhouse Five and I really like that book, and Two, I suck at transitions when it comes to writing, I usually just email the paper to my sister and have her fix it (thanks Sis) That is usually the reason I do not write as much as I should or would like to. That and I hate looking at my hand writing and spelling. However I must say that I have found this to be an enjoyable experience and for those of you who make it through the minefield of misspelled words and grammar errors I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I did writing it.

Thank you
Friendly Ghost
P.S.
Love you mom and dad

And I'll leave you with another picture that I put together, I hope you like it.

Jones

My Mom Told Me, "Stop Beating A Dead Horse"...

Am I the only one who finds it even remotely humorous that I, at 30 years old after having graduated from college and served over a decade in the military with all the requisite bullshit that comes with that am still subject to her shit.

Basically, what I am saying is that even though I have managed, for the most part, to cut the apron strings and spend the majority of my adult life (with a few notable exceptions) out from under her autocratic rule. I still find myself doing what she tells me to. Maybe I am a mama's boy, but quite frankly I don't give a shit. She's cool, She's the mom.

So I am going to get off the "making fun of my chain of command" thing for a bit here. Which is what she was referring to with the "dead horse" comment. And I am going to show my loving affection for my dear old mother, and I am going to show that affection the only way that I know how. I am going to make fun of her...mercilessly! (She said it was OK)

First story.

This one happened when I was a baby. So I don't remember it, but it has been relayed to me several thousand times over my life and I am relaying it to you.

My mom used to sing to me, like so many other mothers, she sang "You Are My Sunshine" Which I am pretty sure was written just for me, because well...I am a bright fucking ray of sunshine! Aren't I. Anyways, I would fall asleep to her singing me this song. Now I learned later on in life, in church no less, that my mother has the singing voice of a wounded wildebeest. So my father said, quite accurately I believe that I would fall asleep so that she would stop singing! Anyone who has ever heard my mother sing would agree.

Second story.

So one day my mom, my kid brother and I go to McDonald's. She pulls the car up to the drive through and we are behind a couple of cars and she starts asking us what we want and we tell her. So one of the cars pulls up and she thinks that it is our turn. She pulls up, and turns from us and starts shouting our order into...a TRASH CAN. Now I guess that could be chalked up as an honest mistake, but immediately thereafter my brother and I start laughing at her. She turns back to us, and asks what the hell we are laughing at, and we don't tell her. Why would we this is too much fun. Then she turns back and starts asking the trash can if it had gotten our order. Finally after conversing forcefully with the trash can for about a minute she finally realized her mistake and quickly pulled forward all the while cussing my brother and I out as we continued to laugh hysterically at her.

Third story.

My mom and I were in the car when I was in junior high I think. So we always had trouble with the windows. We could never agree on up or down. So she had finally got a car with power windows so that she could control them from her seat. And lock them so I couldn't undo her evil window plans. So one day I decided to play a little joke on her. She was rolling up my window as we got onto the expressway and right as it got to the top I put my fingers up to the top of the window. Not in the window, but from her side of the car it probably looked a lot like my fingers were caught in the window. Then at about 60 MPH I started to scream in pain. I think that this was my most ill-conceived joke I have ever played on my mother. Why? Because she damn near killed us both. She swerved across three lanes of Chicago traffic while trying frantically to roll down my window. My faux screams of pain, became real screams of terror! I made myself a promise that I would not play any more jokes on the mom while in a moving vehicle. Not out of sympathy for her, but out of concern for my own self preservation.

Fourth & Final Story.

My mom is terrified, absolutely, totally, completely, ridiculously afraid of snakes. Now I grew up near a holding pond, that had little gardner snakes. Not poisonous or anything, but just enough snake to scare the living shit out of her. So I was playing with one when I was a kid, I guess I was about 10 or 11 or something like that. I don't remember exactly what happened but I managed to stick this snake into my mom's bag of clothes pins that she kept in the back yard for hanging up clothes. And I proceeded to forget that the snake was in there. And my mom brought the bag back into the house and put it away. So the next day she wanted to hang up some clothes, so she went in the cupboard to get the bag and what did she find? He clothes pins were moving, so she stuck her hand in there and she damn near had a heart attack. Now being a young kid and not wanting to die prior to puberty I wisely kept the fact that I had put the snake there to myself. Oh yeah, she ran away from the bag screaming and called my grandfather to come and get the snake out of the house. So for years she thought that this little snake had managed to crawl into the bag on its own and she had accidentally brought it in with the clothes.

The next part of this story is tough, because I am not sure that words could do it justice. But I'll try.

So when I was 24 I got married. We had the ceremony and blah blah blah, and we get to restaurant where the party is going to be. And my auntie, God bless her big mouth, says, "Hey isn't there something you should tell your mom" She wheels around and looks right at me like I am about to tell her that this is really a shotgun wedding and my new bride is 2 months pregnant. If I remember correctly, I think she balled her fists in order to pummel me if that was in fact the case.

I looked at her, and related the story of how the snake really got there.

All I can really say is her jaw hit the floor, the look of surprise and utter disbelief is pretty much indescribable.

When she finally regained her composure she unclenched her fists, called me few choice names, and started laughing about the whole thing.

Luckily, this episode taught me what the statute of limitations is on crimes against my mother. 13 or 14 years. Which is good because I have a few things that will be fun to tell her in 7 or 8 more years!

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Who Lost What, Where?...

Ah, Ladies and gentlemen the douche baggery continues unabated. So here is the latest.

The other night, somewhere in Afghanistan, excuse me AssCrackIstan. Someone, lost something, somewhere. I don't know what they lost, I don't know where they lost it, and I don't know who lost it. All I know for absolute certain is that no one, I repeat NO ONE on my FOB lost anything, anywhere. That being said how did the powers that be decide was the best way for us to find whatever had been lost? They decided that the entire fucking battalion should account for ALL of their shit by serial number!

As I said before I have no idea what was lost because they never tell you. Which seems counterproductive. Am I the only one who thinks I would have a much better chance of finding something if I knew what it was prior to beginning my search for it? It seems rather stupid to just walk around picking shit up and asking your commander, "Is this it?" But I digress.

Now could whoever this dickbag is who lost something have been goodly enough to look for it at least until the morning? Nope, not a chance, this prick whoever he is decided to let the powers that be know about this misplaced item at 2300 at night.

So all military items are numbered. I figure it has something to do with the Army's unnatural obsession with paperwork. If there is no number what are we going to write down? Just kidding, I get the numbers, they are so you know who is supposed to have what and if they have the right one or not. I get it. What I do not get is how fucking small the numbers are and where they are located.

You would think that in order to facilitate checking these items for their numbers and in the spirit of utilitarianism that the military would've put these numbers somewhere that they could be easily seen and read, and recorded. Do they do that?

FUCK NO!!!!!

Let's say for example that an item that the Army needs a serial number from is an item that has to be bolted onto something. A table or maybe a vehicle or something like that. The moderately intelligent person would put the serial number on the face of said item. Where it can be seen not only when the item in question is freestanding but also when the item is installed into whatever the hell it has to go into. Where does the Army put it? On the underside of the damn thing so that you have to remove each and ever mother fucking one from the bracket it is installed into.

So like I said it came down from on high that we were to account for ALL of our shit IMMEDIATELY! Now taken literally that would mean wake up the entire FOB and get the numbers off all of their shit right away. Me personally, I would've been of the mind that we could probably do this in the morning but that is probably part of my problem with promotions. My uncanny knack for interpreting orders in whatever way makes them most beneficial to...me! Well, unfortunately they did not interpret that order the way that I would have and they got all of us up and got our numbers for all of our stuff at about midnight. Which is not the end of the world, I mean it sucks but I can deal with it.

What came next is what really busted my balls. Now when we first got here I was assigned to the room that is closest to the door in the barracks. Which means that whenever someone of a high rank needs something done by someone in this barracks they always choose me and my roommate. Why? Because they are lazy and cannot seem to walk down the hall and find someone else. Either that or I just do such a great job that they don't want to ask anyone else. (Yeah, I highly doubt that too)

So they got all of the numbers from our personal stuff, now they need all the numbers from the community shit. Guess who's door gets knocked on at 0100 to do this shit. I tell them ever so gently that, "I have motherfucking towers in the morning at 0700. They reply, "I don't care, we have to do this now!" Fun for me. Now after bitching up a hurricane, I resigned myself to my fate and started to help them find these numbers.

Well I could go over all the different numbers and how many times I had to read the same number, and how many times I heard, "What was the last 3 digits again? But I won't bore you with the details. Suffice it to say that it took from 0100 to 0300 to pull this shit off. Then I had to go and do, get this, DFAC (dining facility) guard. Yes folks, that's right, someone has to guard the food at night around here. I figured that we could just lock the door but apparently the powers that be want to have their hot cocoa at midnight so we have to keep the damn thing open. I still find it funny that we have to guard a building that is behind a really big wall that is manned by soldiers with guns! Better watch out, some soldier might take 3 muffins instead of two. Holy shit!

Now that I had to do from 0300-0500 after which I had an hour and a half to sleep prior to getting my ass up in the towers. Which sucks because there is a mattress up there but we are not allowed to sleep. You know what folks, this shit is so stupid that I couldn't make it up if I tried.

0700-1500 in the tower, trying in many imaginative ways to stay awake. Then I came back and passed out for about 20 minutes prior to being awakened and asked, "Did your soldier leave something in her truck this morning?" Anyone know the answer to this question? Of course she did, or you wouldn't be asking me that now. So it turns out she left something pretty important in there, something you should keep track of at pretty much all times. So I have to do something about it. Which makes me happy, because now I am out of my mind pissed at the fact that I have slept for about an hour and 50 minutes out of the last 36 or so, and I have to deal with this.

So I go and talk to her, and after wading through the ocean of excuses we just settled on a satisfactory penance for her sins and we got on with our lives. Which meant her doing a rather "shitty" round of work, and I going straight to bed. So now I feel much better.

After I slept for a while I got up and I watched "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" today, and of course as luck would have it. Pigpen showed up for the end of the movie. In fact he walked into the room just as the main character (who is a guy, and is naked) turned around to see his love interest in the movie and to show his piece to all the world. So now I am sitting here with a naked man on my computer screen and Pigpen says something and I pause the movie to see what he wants. So let's take stock here. I am sitting alone in my room, and another man walks in, and I pause the aforementioned movie right at the point where there is a buck naked man and his piece on the screen.

Oh, the look on his face was worth my brush with gayness. The utter disbelief on his face coupled with the pained expression as he looked at the screen and finally, his question "What ARE you doing?.

Forgetting Sarah Marshall DVD: $20.00

Macbook computer to play DVD: $1199.00

Seeing Pigpen's face as he tries to figure out why there is a naked man on your screen: PRICELESS

Alright, I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Jan 11, 2009

Your Questions, Answered...I Think...

Alright, In my last post I asked you guys to ask me some questions. About anything really. I asked you that mostly because with me being on guard most of the time nothing really funny or interesting is happening so I had to find something to write about or risk becoming a bore. So here are your questions and my answers to them.

Airman Mom

1. What is the morale of my unit? Depends on when you catch us and what members of our leadership is around. For the most part it is shit. But we put on a good facade when the bosses are around due to the simple fact that they don't really care if we have good morale or not they just want us to say that we do and make sure we tell everyone else that we do. They function on the age old principle of "The beatings will continue until morale improves."

2. Is there a particular smell that will always remind you of this deployment? Good question, I don't think that there is any one smell that could possibly describe how badly everything here stinks. I think it will be the combinations of horrid smelling things that we come up with around here to describe the actual smell that will stick with me the most. Some examples, kitty litter and ass, rotten eggs and diesel, anchovies asshole and 3 day old fish, and things like that.

However, the epitome of deployment smells is, and has always been, the wonderfully disgusting smell of burning shit. 5 gallons of diesel and a can of GI shit, light it up and you have the epitome of deployment smells.

3. Would I do it again? Yep, in a nano second. Matter of fact after all I have seen here and all I could be doing and we as a military could be doing that we are not I think I am going to have some unfinished business here. So I think I might have to go on home and get me a little bit of rank so that the next time I come here I can actually make some kind of a difference in not only the Afghani's lives, but also that of the soldiers around me.

Steve.

1. Do I work with Air Force guys? Well Steve, I would like to extend a hearty welcome to you, albeit early, to the suck. However, I don't really work with Air Force guys. My experience with them is limited to talking to them on the radio as they fly 8000 feet overhead providing air support while I drive around this shithole.

Joyce.

1. If I were President what would I do? Send every soldier in Iraq here, then completely close the Pakistani border. Build a school for Afghani's at every corner. Pepper the mountains with battalions of GI's and hunt these pricks down and kill every last one of them (Taliban). Then I would build a highway (paved) from every village to the big cities. And a million other things but those are the main ones. Maybe I'll answer that more in depth some time soon.

2. Am I getting much news? Nope, mostly because I ignore it. This place is depressing enough without watching the news.

3. Do I blog from a computer lab? Sort of, I write my shit on my own computer in my barracks room, and then I take it on a disk over to the computer lab and put it up.

4. Can I describe my living quarters? Sure, concrete building with crumbling concrete floors, to the point where it is mostly a dirt floor. Concrete exterior walls and plywood interior walls peppered with graffiti from all the guys who have lived here in the past. There are 2 bunk beds in each room but luckily we have enough space that only 2 guys have to live in most rooms. The bunks are made of wood, and we have whatever shelves we could scrounge up from the scrap wood piles and build for ourselves. Other than that they are just covered in ACU pattern clothes and weapons and other military shit that we have to keep track of. We actually got it pretty good as far as living quarters are concerned.

5. Did we get our warm clothing? Nope still haven't got it but we all had a shit ton of stuff sent from home to keep us warm and we have been alright, we were blessed with a decidedly mild winter.

6. Women in combat? I am an MP and we have women around that do all the same shit that I do. Getting shot at and blown up and the lot of it. Whatever we do they do. Some of them are better at it than most of us are anyways. Now they don't serve in the actual combat arms jobs but in this war everyone gets into the mix sooner or later. Unless they are fobbits of course.

As far as the women are concerned and their "skankiness". To tell you the truth I could care less what they do, and who they do it with. I mean I can't really blame them. If I was someplace where the females outnumbered guys like 4 to 1, I would be taking full advantage of that.

Kasper's Sister.

7. Sorry, I have no idea how to ship things here from England. We only have one address so that is probably the only way to get it here. (And your message has been delivered)

8. My rating scale for women? I go with the "beer" scale. It's time tested and has been proven accurate again and again. Goes like this.

Guy One: How many beers till you would hit that? (Referring to a girl)

Guy Two: One Case!

Meaning that the girl in question is not at all attractive. The less the number of beers the more attractive said female is.

How many guys cheat on their wives? Some of their wives may read this, so NONE!

How many to a room? Anywhere from 2 to 4.

Are the shitters heated? Yes, and that makes it worse. At least in winter the shit would freeze and wouldn't smell as much but with heated shitters we have to go to do our business in what has become nothing more than a shit oven. Fun for us.

Library? Nope, only what I get from the mom, and my friends and family, and all of you guys.

Air Force? Not a one.

Ignorant Redneck.

My intestines are fine. The food actually isn't horrible. I would feed it to a dog so I guess I can deal with it.

Do the mountains eat our tires? I got to admit for the most part they hold up pretty well. The mountains put a little bit more wear and tear on the tires but it is the exploding roads that really fuck up the tires. Know what I mean?

7.62 or 5.56? Good question, I would have to say that our 5.56 rifles win on accuracy but on rate of fire and power the 7.62 wins. Not to mention the 7.62 rifles don't require as much maintenance and we all know that the most terrifying sound a soldier can hear is "click"

Billy.

Yep, we still have someone burning the shit. Except now we have the locals do it. Only problem is the smell still wafts all over the place and we still get stuck with it when we fuck up.

Well folks, there you have it, your questions answered. I hope. If you have anymore bring them on. I could use the inspiration, guard cycle is boring as sin, but at least the roads don't explode here.

I am done for now, but check below I finished up the "Grandma, sit down until Frank is done singing" post.

Later,

I love you mom...