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

Feb 28, 2009

THREE SEMI-FLACID PIECES OF PINK MEAT, AND THE ADORING EYES OF THE PRETTIEST GIRL ON THE FOB...

Alright, so it’s time for another rather disgusting installment of Pigpen & Mud Puppy are bored.

So we always seem to have a bit too much time on our hands, and as such we devise many creative ways to fill that time.

And here is what we came up with for this evening’s festivities.

I don’t know if I told you guys this or not but there is a girl here who is like the penisless version of Pigpen and I. You know she has no soul and all that. So we were presented, err we created a situation where she turned the most hilarious shade of red that I have ever seen. I am fairly certain that we destroyed any humanity she may or may not have had left.

Curious yet? Well here’s what we did.

1.Pigpen threatened to show her his cock and/or balls for the entire day.
2.We went to the chow hall.
3.We procured three hot dogs.
4.We procured a cup full of mayonnaise.

Do I have your attention yet?

5.We waited for her to go to take a shower.
6.We sent two retards to watch for her to come out of the shower.
7.We made sure that they let her see them, so that when they ran away she became apprehensive about what was about to happen. (Side note: We have to sign out to go anywhere, so she is going to have to return to our barracks to sign in after having returned from the shower.)
8.Pigpen, Wonderboy, & I placed the aforementioned hot dogs into our button flys.
9.We dipped said hot dogs into the mayonnaise, simulating...you know.
10. We stood by the sign out board and waited ever so patiently.
11. Our retards returned informing us of her eminent arrival.
12. The door opened, and in unison we all greeted her, loudly.
13. She promptly turned the shade of a ripe raspberry.
14. She covered her eyes, trying furtively, to avoid staring directly at the flaccid pink meat that was staring back at her from our trousers.
15. She left post haste.
16. Pigpen, Wonderboy, and I congratulated each other copiously and we got our peacock feathers out! We deserve medals.

And with that, I bid you a fond farewell.

Later,

I love you mom...

The Day That Doc Traded His Brain For A Rip It...

Alright, so now I am going to tell you a disgusting story. So consider yourselves warned...

One day, a long time ago we were going outside the wire for something, I don’t remember what. But my buddy Wonderboy was running the truck behind me and in his truck with him was the medic. Or as we always call him, “Doc”.

So anyway, we stopped so that someone could relieve themselves and the Doc decided that he wanted a Rip It. Now a Rip It is the Army’s cheap ass, generic version of Red Bull. You know the crack in the can drink.

Wonderboy didn’t just want to give it to him, he wanted to make him work for it. So he came up with a little plan. If the Doc were willing to show me “the brain” then Wonderboy would provide him with the drink that he was craving.

Doc felt that this was a worthy trade.

Now for those of you who are ignorant of “the game” I will enlighten you. The Game, is where all these assholes around here try to, in the most creative of ways, show you their cock and/or balls. The trick of the game is to set up a situation that forces the mark to unwittingly look at said cock and/or balls. When they do, you as the winner, are obligated to mercilessly make fun of them for being homosexual and kick them in the ass twice. This game was made famous by the movie “Waiting” but has been being played in one form or another since before I joined the Army.

So I was sitting in my truck, and I heard Wonderboy over the radio telling me that Doc wanted to talk to me and he was standing outside my door. Trusting soul that I am, I opened my door to the horrific site that was our medic standing in the middle of the Afghani desert, pants down to his knees, holding his ball sack in his fist, with one nut protruding from the top of the clamp (AKA his hand). Which for anyone who has ever seen it, it really does look like a little brain, sparsely populated with pubic hairs it almost looks like a cancer patient.

So suffice it to say, Doc got his Rip It.

Suffice it to say, I got called a fag.

Suffice it to say, I got kicked in the ass...twice.

And now I am done.

Later,

I love you mom...

Feb 25, 2009

So We Went Boom Again...

Now this company has solidified its reputation with me. First of all, everyone is fine, no one got hurt. I wasn’t even there. I got put on quarters today because I’ve got the flu. No biggie, I wasn’t supposed to go along on this ride anyway.

So they went out, got about 10 kilometers out, and the road exploded. Thus far no big problem, I mean the explosion probably sucked but hey, its all a part of war. Now the shit started to come down from on high that pisses me off.

The IED went off within a stone’s throw distance of two villages. So that says to me that the people in that village are either Taliban or they know who put the IED there. Now did the command allow the guys who were out there to search these villages or do anything about the fact that one of our vehicles just went “kaboom” Nope, not a thing, don’t do anything, just RTB. (Return to base)

How can this be? These people are trying their hardest to end our lives. Why is it that we cannot go out there and find them? What is everyone so scared of? Why do we continue to do the same things over and over, while expecting a different result? (Definition of insanity!)
You want to know what really freaked me out the most? Well even if you don’t I am going to tell you. It truly bothered me that I wasn’t more concerned with this than I was. When they told me that an IED had gone off, I became concerned for the three seconds that it took them to tell me that no one had been hurt, and then all I wanted to do was go back to sleep. That is truly wrong. I couldn’t have cared less once I found out no one was hurt.

I could say that I am getting used to the explosions and what not, but that isn’t the case. The fact of the matter is that everyday that we are here I become more jaded about my command. More and more I am beginning to feel that I have more to fear from my chain of command than I do from the Taliban. All I keep thinking is that this command is not going to be happy until they do something that gets someone hurt, and there isn’t a thing in the world that I can do about that.

I mean these mother fuckers set an IED less than seven miles from our house and they do nothing about it. Here is another fact for all you good people out there, in this country you cannot operate without the consent (coerced or freely given) of the people in these villages. Everyone has a damn gun, everyone has a tribe, everyone is a suspect. Now our ability to operate is for the most part coerced by our simple fire superiority. Which I don’t mind, I kind of like having bigger guns than the other guy.

But I got a little off topic there, the truth is that we needed to roust these villages. We needed to get all up into their business. We needed to make some friends, we needed to identify some enemies, we needed to check for bomb making material, we needed to gather intel. We needed to do so many things, but what did we do? We sent out a tow truck and brought everyone home. Basically we tucked our tail in between our legs and ran home. Do you think for one second that the Taliban wasn’t watching?

Maybe someday I’ll get lucky and we’ll have one of those good old fashioned wars, where one country gets pissed off at another one and brings all it’s shit and all it’s soldiers and they go at it. But that isn’t what we get here. We get exploding roads, and a never ending cycle of bullshit.

There are two conflicting sides to this inside my head, and they are beginning to make my head hurt so I think I may be losing some of my vaunted intelligence.

First side: What we are doing! Which is next to nothing. We do the same thing day in and day out. We never make any effort to change our tactics, we never try to befriend the people, and if we do we get smacked down by the commander. We go out, drive around and then we come back, sometimes we explode sometimes we don’t. We go out, drive around and then we come back, sometimes we get shot at, sometimes we don’t. Same thing, everyday. It’s groundFOB day!

Second Side: What we could be doing. We could be helping these people, we could be learning from them, we could be protecting them from the Taliban, we could be improving their lives. We could get off our asses and get out there and fight these mother fuckers that blew up the World Trade Center, and three of our trucks so far.

But that isn’t going to happen, and for that I am sorry. I feel for the people of Afghanistan, I feel for the people back home, but I feel the most for the soldiers. Most of the guys here are what I like to call “true believers”, they are too young yet to know just how fucked up the world is, and I guess that there is a part of me that is still a true believer also.

They truly believe that we are fighting for freedom, they truly believe that what we do here is actually making a difference, they truly believe that every morning when they get up they are going to help change the world. I truly envy them. I wish I could still believe like they do.

But that is not the case, not anymore.

Later,

I love you mom...

THEY TOOK THE FUCKING EGGS! WHO DOES THAT? WHO TAKES THE FUCKING EGGS?

Small little aside from the usual. I went to chow this morning and I noticed a sign that said “No Longer Serving Eggs in the Following Ways, sunny side up, over easy, poached, and...” Basically we are now only allowed to have our eggs either scrambled or hard boiled.

What Army is this? For as long as I can remember the eggs were about the only thing that you could have the way that you wanted it. Plus, given the fact that eggs take all of 5 minutes to cook everyone could have their eggs the way that they wanted it. Hell, there are a lot of military bases that will cook you an omelette if you want one. Except here, we can’t even have our eggs Sunny-side up. All you can have here is scrambled, and hard boiled so that they can make all the eggs ahead of time and just dish the watery sacks of ass up to you as you walk by.

Can you believe this? I for one cannot. This place is a big enough bag of ass without them taking away my sunny side up eggs. “What’s this? These soldiers can have their eggs any way they want them, well that might make them a little happy. This will never do!”

But I digress.

Later,

I love you mom...

My Life Is Just Like A Car Crash, But The Stories Are Good..

Barely graduated from high school, Why? Because I never went to school.

Beat one of my best friends to a bloody pulp for calling my mother fat.

Started doing copious amounts of illegal drugs at the tender young age of 15.

Flunked out of college.

Been arrested, or at least detained by the police on no less than six occasions.

Joined the Army.

Went overseas.

Went to Mexico and learned that all the stories about Mexican police and jails are absolutely true.

Fell in love.

Got married.

Fell out of love.

Got divorced.

Got out of the Army.

Got a job tending bar. (Brilliant idea for a guy who’s stories almost invariably begin with, “So I was drunk one night...)

Graduated from college. (Summa Cum Laude no less.)

Got a job in a prison. (Kind of funny. Most people would think that I would be living there.)

Now I am here...

I guess that’s about it, or at least that’s all I am going to share right now. Mostly to keep from ruining the reputation that I have built with my wonderful readership. I gave you the highlights. I had to leave a few things out just because I don’t want to have to answer the questions they would lead to, nor did I want to arouse the interest of any law enforcement professionals who may be working on cold cases.

I got some time today, because we can’t go anywhere because about 6 raindrops fell so they grounded all the birds. And I couldn’t help but take a giant step backward and look at all that has happened over the past 15 years or so.

It’s been fun to say the least.

But I can’t help but think of home when they give me this kind of time to ponder all that has happened in my life. Easily the stupidest thing you can do while you are in a place like this, is think about home. It’s almost as though you need to forget that the place even exists in order to keep yourself from losing your damn mind. And if you aren’t careful that is exactly what will happen.

Still I can look back over it all, and there has been quite a bit, and think that whether good or bad, I lived this life that the good Lord was nice enough to hand me. The only problem now is that I realize that fact and cannot get around the idea that I may owe a little something in return for it...

I can’t write about this anymore, my head hurts.

Later,

I love you mom...

I Want To Know What I Did In A Past Life, Because Karma Is Eating My Ass...

It’s true, I am getting to the point where I believe that I have more to fear from my chain of command than I do from the Taliban. Check that, I know that I have more to fear from my chain of command than I do from the Taliban.

So apparently, the commander is tired of not having anything to write about when he turns in his daily reports to our battalion. Evidently, putting a big goose egg in the casualty box is not good enough for him. So our missions can now jump off at any time day or night, regardless of our preparedness, regardless of whether or not we have slept, regardless of anything other than the weather. As soon as the weather is good we are leaving. It could be three in the afternoon, or three in the morning.

We are basically on call, which makes me laugh because we aren’t getting the commander enough publicity with his higher ups. The word through the grapevine says that he made the wonderful statement, “I am sick of my troops keeping banker’s hours!”

Now what the fuck does that mean? I would have to say that I think it means he doesn’t want us to be able to work the same hours that he keeps. But I digress.

You know what my biggest problem is? Well I’m going to tell you. I have the shortest fuse of any white man on the planet. I have flash point anger. My fuse is about the size of a gnat’s giggle stick. But that’s just me, so it goes, right?

I whip myself into such a rage over some things. In this case I think that I am justified. When someone makes a decision that puts my soldiers in unnecessary danger, then I feel I have every right to call them an asshole.

Which is something that my squad leader doesn’t understand, nor does he know how to tell me things without sending me into an uncontrollable tantrum. Whenever something happens he tells us in such a way that you would think that the world was coming to an end. And then I get pissed. Fortunately, I have a platoon sergeant, who while he can be a dickbag, is also a lot better at explaining things to me in a way that gets through to me without causing a meltdown. So thankfully, I could go and talk to him prior to attempting ever so subtly to end someone’s life.

This place, this command, this mission (if you can call it that), everything here is testing the limits of my self control. Which, admittedly, wasn’t all that high to begin with. But if self control is like a muscle and it has to be worked out, then when I get home there won’t be a fucking thing that can get under my skin. Maybe this will actually work out for me in the end.

So now it’s the next day. And it has gotten windy, a very special kind of windy, you would think that there was a Congressional committee meeting on the mountain just outside the FOB. But I digress. So with that kind of weather we don’t have much to worry about as far as missions are concerned. I think that when I get home and someone asks me how I made it through without getting hurt, I’ll be able to tell them that the weather was bad so we stopped the war!

Now I have nothing to write about so I’ll be done with this.

Later,

I love you mom...

This Place Is Just Like A Strip Club...

Minus all the naked women and beer. Which really makes it suck. All the shitty things, but not a one of the good things.

Now why would I compare AssCrackIstan to a strip club? It’s actually quite simple. This place gets you all riled up, gets you all excited, and then sends you home with nothing.

Again today, it’s like the fifth day in a row, we were supposed to go outside the wire. I know, I know boring is good, no one gets hurt when it’s boring. Yet, I can’t get around the fact that I am about to go postal from the boredom.

The missions that they plan for us are getting more intricate, they are getting more dangerous, they are getting further outside the wire away from the safety of the FOB. Which is all well and good, trouble is we just never get to leave. Why don’t we get to go today? Apparently, there is like a chance of rain somewhere in this country so they have scheduled the air to be unnavigable at sometime this afternoon.

This is so far from unbelievable that I don’t even know what to call it. We get up, get all our shit together, are sitting there waiting for the order to go, and nothing. We get nothing. No boys, not today, take it all down, put it all away, and go back to sleep. Wait check that, we are going to have to find something for all of you to clean because we wouldn’t want you to be unoccupied.

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Fifth Graders Can Be Fun...

A person back home asked me if I would answer some questions from a bunch of 5th graders. I said sure, this is what they came up with, and this is also what I came up with in response. Hopefully, some of these questions are ones you might be curious about also. Their words are in regular typeface, my words are big and black. You probably could’ve figured that out on your own, but I thought I’d tell you anyway.

What if America loses the war?  What do you think will happen in Afghanistan and Pakistan?

Well, I don’t think that anything will change in the States if we lose this war. I don’t really know for sure that we could lose this war. About the only thing we could do is leave prior to our mission here being complete. The people that we are fighting against really have no chance of beating us militarily. All they are trying to do is wear us down, politically. What I mean is they are trying to turn the American people against this war so that the politicians won’t give the soldiers here what they need, or the time they need to accomplish the mission. If they do that, then the politicians will pull all the Americans out of here and they will win. If they don’t, then we will stay here until we can turn this country into a viable nation.

I say that we need to stay here until our mission is complete.

Do you think we will find Osama BIn Laden before he dies?

Honestly, I don’t know. I don’t know for sure that he is even still alive. If he is, then it is just a matter of time before someone finds or kills him. However, he is of little concern in the grand scheme of things because he is elderly and sickly, not to mention there are so many people looking for him that the terrorists probably can’t use him for much. There is not much he can do because the US is still looking for him so fervently. The guys that we have to worry about are all the younger guys that are rising through the ranks and are beginning to fight against us here in Afghanistan.

Will America be slaves if bin Laden wins the war?

Well to this one there is only one response. You don’t ever have to worry about that because there are plenty of guys just like me who will NEVER let that happen.

Do we know where bin Laden is hiding and have we tried to go into the caves where he is hiding?

A lot of people have been looking for him since 2001 when this whole thing started. And whenever we think we know where he is we go straight there and look around for him. Just no luck finding him so far.

What is the purpose of bin Laden hiding there and  being a terrorist?

He hides here because he needs a place that is safe from the US. He probably doesn’t hide here in Afghanistan, most likely he hides in Pakistan. Which makes it all the more difficult for us to find him because we are not allowed to go into Pakistan and look for him. He is a terrorist because he blames the US and the west for all the problems that face Islamic nations in the Middle East and elsewhere. He believes that the US, due to its greed, is destroying the world to feed its own consumption. He also doesn’t want to see any nation with freedom, because in his corrupted view Islam is the only form of government that there should be, and Islam is the only form of religion there should be. So he thinks that since the US doesn’t adhere to either one of those ideas that we are evil. Well, sorry pal that’s just not true. So get back in your cave.

Is his family in hiding too?

Actually, most of Bin Laden’s family has disowned him and denounced everything that he does.

What is your day like - what things do you do during the day?

Most days I get up before the sun comes up, I get my Humvee ready to go, I get all my weapons ready to go, I get something to eat, and then we roll out to go find the enemy. We patrol around looking for the Taliban, and al Qaeda, we go to villages to take them clothes, food, and other things that they need. We help train the Afghan National Police, and the Afghan Army, and the Afghan Border Patrol so that they can fight the Taliban themselves. We also try to keep the roads free from IED’s so that the people can move about freely without any danger.

Have you ever been shot and how does it feel?

I have never been shot, so I don’t know how that feels. However, I have been shot at and I’ll tell you that it is a scary experience. I don’t really know how to even describe it.

How did you enter into the war - why were you and your unit sent and not someone else?  Who makes those decisions?

I was in a National Guard unit in Waukegan, Illinois and another unit from Illinois, this one out of Freeport was activated to go to Afghanistan. I volunteered to go with them. I don’t really know why this unit was sent and not someone else. Most likely, it was just our turn. But those decisions are made by Generals and the politicians in Washington and Springfield.

Why did you join the army?

This is a good question. I joined the Army because I wanted to do something for my country. I wanted to go to college. I wanted to see the world. I wanted to get out of my mom’s house. I wanted the adventure of it all. There are so many reasons that I couldn’t possibly list them all. I don’t have any regrets about it though, and I have loved all of it, well almost all of it.

Are the planes being  bombed?

Nope, I think you might be asking if the planes are doing the bombing. Which they are. They fly by and drop bombs on any target that is designated for them or they drop them on targets to help us when we are getting attacked by the enemy. Most times they just fly over and the threat of getting bombed is enough to get the enemy to run away.

Do you do a lot of training during the day?

Unfortunately, no we don’t. There is entirely too much work for us to do.

And from the teacher - 

What is your mission there?  Your point of view vs. what you have been told.

We are at a remote Forward Operating Base near the Pakistani border. Our main mission is developing the Afghan Army, police, and border patrol to the point where they can fight the insurgents on their own. Sadly, we end up doing most of the fighting for them. The biggest problem is that there is so much corruption within the ranks of their government that for every two steps we take forward, they take three steps back. Most Afghanis hate the Taliban, but the problem is that they hate the government that we installed just as much if not more.

My point of view vs. What I have been told is pretty simple. We don’t get told much, we are just ordered on this mission or that mission. Never are we given the guidance or reasoning that we should get. We are left to our own devices to figure out exactly what is happening here. I honestly believe that it is a sort of institutional ignorance. They do it on purpose, if we don’t know enough then we can’t form our own opinions. Once this became a political war, which most wars are nowadays, we were doomed. There is a lot of good we could do here. However, the politicians and the senior officers (politicians that wear uniforms) don’t have any tolerance for the dirty nature of war. There is a need here for so many soldiers, but they only send us 18,000 or whatever it is. It’s becoming a modern Vietnam. My viewpoint is this, if you are going to do it, then do it. If you don’t have the stomach or resources to do what is needed then don’t even start.

What do you think of the civilian companies coming in and doing whatever jobs/functions they are doing?

I hate these guys with a passion. They charge the United States government exorbitant amounts of money to do something that soldiers could do for next to nothing. I have written about these guys in the past. They are nothing more than mercenaries if you ask me. War profiteering at it’s finest. This is a war and as such there should only be soldiers and military personnel here. The only jobs that I think civilian companies should do are those where the skill set required is so specialized that the government could not efficiently, or cost effectively provide a worker to perform that job. Otherwise, soldiers should do the work. However, the government has decided for whatever reason (I think “helping out their buddies” is a big part of it) to give soldier work to civilians, when the civilians charge a few hundred grand a year to do something that a soldier would get paid about $40,000 per year for.

Would it be OK for me to print out some of your old postings and give them to the teacher? 

Go right ahead, just make sure that any identifying remarks are removed. I still have to watch it with the whole disrespect thing. No need to get into any more trouble. That, and make sure you remove all the profanity, there is no need for the kids to have to be exposed to my language.

Some of the questions she was asking I know you talked about in older postings, and it might be easier than back and forth in e-mail.

You should probably just let her read my blog, give me her address and I’ll allow her to read. She could probably get a better picture of what I am talking about that way.

Be prepared - answering these questions may open the floodgate.

Bring it on. I just hope that the teacher and the children can handle what I have to say.

Thanks a ton for taking the time to do this!!!

No problem, it gives me something to write about other than how screwed up this place is.

Deb

Now I am done.

Later,

I love you mom...

P.S. Anyone notice that I didn’t use profanity. Not even once. That has to be some kind of record.

Feb 20, 2009

Cubs Suck, And Stephen Colbert For President...

There are few traditions that have stood the test of time quite like the American soldier and his penchant for using the local children to hold signs that make for some hilarious photographs. Now normally I would consider myself above such childish things. Uh, okay I would never consider myself to be above anything, especially something childish. As a matter of fact, that is exactly the type of stuff that I so readily jump right into.

So today we went over to this clinic. A little medical facility where the locals can come and get some free cough medicine, or deliver a baby or two. Now we have like three or four females that go there and help out the women and our resident physician’s assistant goes to help out the guys. But it’s outside the wire, barely. It’s about a ten step walk outside the gate to get there. However, it is out there so the commander insists that the medical personnel take security with them. So myself, and my team have to get all dressed up in our armor and weapons looking like we are ready to take on Nazi Germany, just to walk out there and be, for all intents and purposes, the valets that get the sick from the outside to the inside.

Well these Afghani’s for the most part are some really hospitable people, especially when you are giving them free shit. So they gave us all kinds of food, rice and chicken (freshly slaughtered, we’ve got pictures of that too.) And there was this kid there. Little guy, about 12 years old or so. He was the one that they had bringing us all this food and tea and shit. So we decided to make a couple of signs for this kid to hold while we took a picture of the lot of us. We decided on two signs that would make for the most fun.

First sign...CUBS SUCK...

DSC_0811


Why? Because they do in fact suck.

Second sign...Stephen Colbert for President...

CIMG0354

Why? Because we are going to use it and try to get our asses on TV. And did you notice that the fucking guy on the left in the back row got a hold of one of our M-4’s for the picture! I mean really? We can’t even keep track of our weapons!

And lastly, just another shot of me and one of the many dogs that I have encountered here. Just because I love dogs, and this is about the cutest puppy ever...

sharon w dog compressed

Notice the do-rag Airman Mom? And that little patch on my chest just below my chin, it reads, “American League Infidel”


I just thought that all my friends back home that are Cub fans would enjoy those pictures. That’s right Pauly Dog, the Cubs Suck, they even think so in Afghanistan!

All right, I am done now.

Later,

I love you mom...

So We Got All Dressed Up For Nothing...

Remember that part in the movie Braveheart where the big ass Scottish guy said to William Wallace that he hoped there was a fight that day because, “I hope we didn’t get all dressed up for nothing!” That is what we do here all the damn time.

We get all dressed up for nothing. Anyone who has ever tried to put on all the shit that soldiers have to wear to go outside the wire knows that it is quite an operation. Boots, long undies, uniform, patches, ballistic armor, gunner’s pants, gunner’s harnesses, helmets, gloves, knee pads, elbow pads, knives, ammunition, weapons, sunglasses, ninja masks, and all the rest of this shit. It takes forever to put on.

So this morning we got up at 0300 for some real big mission. We put on all this shit, get out to the trucks, get them ready, get all the guns, all the ammunition, all the radios, all the food, water and fuel, all the shit...and at 0445 they tell us that we aren’t going because of inclement weather.

I know why we don’t leave during bad weather, it’s because the birds won’t fly in bad weather. So we wouldn’t have any air medical evacuation, or air support. I get it, and it makes sense. However, it doesn’t change the fact that it is funny. The vaunted US military machine, the most technologically advanced military in the world, the best trained soldiers the planet has ever seen, the greatest military juggernaut that has ever walked the face of this earth...is stopped dead in it’s tracks by a little bit of rain! I don’t care who you are, that’s funny.

Now I am sitting in my room typing away wondering when we are going to do the mission that was scheduled for today. Supposedly tomorrow. Which pisses me off, because that means I have to get up at 0300 two days in a row. Apparently, if we don’t leave before the sun comes up we lose the element of surprise. Anyone besides me find that hysterical? The element of surprise? Are you fucking high? We are going to roll out of here with about 20 vehicles that weigh in excess of 30,000 pounds a piece. All of which run on diesel engines that are notoriously quiet. Not only that but these vehicles have a guy with a really big gun sticking out of the fucking roof, and they are driving out into a desert. A flat desert. For about 10 kilometers in any direction it is just flat, right up until you hit the mountains. So this humongous convoy, of gigantic trucks, with all the subtlety of an aircraft carrier is going to drive out to somewhere that you can see us coming from about 5 miles out. Yeah, we’ve got the element of surprise.

Besides all that, the commander has pissed off the locals to the point where they probably call the Taliban every time we spit on the ground.

Ah, the joys of modern warfare. Well at least all is not lost, something will happen for my team and I today. We get to go and provide security for a medical clinic that the company sponsors in the village right next to the FOB. When I say right next to, I mean we share a wall. So at least it won’t be a long walk. Not to mention, the last time we were there they delivered a baby. Which was pretty cool, I love babies.

I can’t think of any transitional devices to use here, so I’ll just tell you...NEXT Subject.

So my platoon sergeant was walking by me yesterday, and as he was going by one of the local workers was also going by, I said hello to my platoon daddy, and I waved at the local. Most of the locals that work here on the FOB are pretty cool guys. My platoon sergeant waited until after he had gone, and asked me, “Why do you wave at these guys, it gives them hope, they don’t need that, their life is always going to suck!”

All I could do was chuckle. And I hated myself for that. It’s been said that humor is equal parts truth and pain. If there isn’t enough truth, then it won’t be funny, but if there isn’t enough pain it won’t be funny either. So I guess using that logic, what he said is funny. I still wanted to punch myself in the throat for laughing.

Well maybe I’ll have something more to write about after this clinic thing, maybe today we’ll get to see an emergency boob job. Probably not, but it’s worth daydreaming about.

Tomorrow we’ll get all dressed up again and hopefully there isn’t any rain, because apparently American military vehicles, soldiers, and equipment are water soluble!

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Sexism, Only Ugly Girls Complain About It...

Why the title? Because this post is going to be one of the few times where I go out of my way to make fun of the fairer sex. There are some times when women just piss me off, and tonight was one of those times.

Now first I will defend myself from the coming onslaught from the persons minus a penis reading this. I have said in the past that, despite my mother’s ideas to the contrary, I have no problems with females in the military, I couldn’t give a shit less, so long as they pull their weight. Here, for the most part, they do. I give them some shit about their promiscuity but truth be told I would be doing the same thing if women outnumbered men like 25 to 1. So as far as their jobs, I got no issues with them. I don’t give a shit one way or the other whether you are a girl or a boy, so long as you pull your weight, regardless of profession.

Here is what pisses me off. We were sitting in the chow hall tonight and there was some special on the TV about the Hooters Girls. Now we all know what this was. It was a bunch of 20 year old girls who have asses that you could bounce a quarter off of they are so tight. Bleach blond beautiful, prancing around in a bikini held together by dental floss. It is what it is. Now me personally, I didn’t really want to watch. Who the hell wants to torture themselves by watching all the shit that makes you miss home so much? So I sat with my back to the TV. I turned around a couple of times and was rudely reminded how much this country sucks compared to the states.

Now, what pissed me off? These two judgmental bitches that were sitting there watching in rapt attention the entire program. So you have one, an amazon, about six feet tall and about 215 lbs. She would probably have made a real good linebacker in high school. With the face to match. Then you have another, who looks like Yoda! I am not kidding, she looks like 5’7” of little green jedi master. She has the kind of ears that if you threw her off the roof, her ears would catch air and she would slowly, and safely float to the ground.

I was sitting in there quietly eating my dinner and being entertained by the guy sitting across from me as he watched this whole thing with a little bit of drool coming out the side of his mouth. That, and I got some chocolate cake for the first time in a while, so I was enjoying myself. Which is a rarity around here. But then it started.

These two nasty broads started making fun of all the girls on the TV. Now there is no way around it, the girls on the TV were beautiful. If they weren’t they wouldn’t be on TV, they would be sitting in a chow hall in southern Afghanistan making fun of the pretty girls. The next five minutes were filled with nothing but vitriol from these two.

“They are so fake!”
“Her hair is not naturally that color.”
“Oh really, you wanna be a nurse when you grow up.”
“I betcha she makes some good tips at Hooters, I wonder how it feels to have to walk around like that all day just to make some money.”
“I wonder what it’s like to have air between your ears.”

And on and on, nothing but bullshit.

Now let me illustrate for you the difference between most men, and women. You put two guys in the same situation, they are going to do one of two things. They are either going to watch and quietly think (not say) to themselves, “I wish I looked like that dude.” Or they are not going to watch because they don’t derive any pleasure from looking at dudes, or if they have the juice they are going to get up and change the channel. Those are about the only reactions you are going to get out of guys. Straight ones anyway.

Ladies, our fairer sex, what do they do? They find everything, every little imperfection, pounce on it and make fun of them for it. Why? Well the only thing I can come up with is that they are jealous as all hell. Because they know that back home these girls are going to find some guy who makes a shit ton of money who will be more than willing to take care of them, while they have to do all the things they have always had to do. These girls are treated differently than they are, and they hate them for that.

Now is it right that these girls on TV get treated better just because they are beautiful? Of course not, but that is the way that it is. I have neither the time nor the inclination to tackle a million years of social evolution. Not to mention, the whole evil personality that decides you are going to ridicule ever little thing on a girl that you don’t even know is real attractive. I have known plenty of girls in my life who were one step up from a dog’s ass as far as looks are concerned, but I loved them just the same because they were awesome in their personality’s.

So many things that women do make me laugh. I don’t know if I’ll ever quite get you guys. I suppose that if I ever started to get close then you would just change it so why bother. But I’ll tell you a few more that I find absolutely hilarious.

First, this one happened when I was a kid and going to the prom, and no mother it’s not the one about, “You’re lucky I’m using silverware at all.” I asked this one girl how long it took her to get ready. Turns out it was like a fucking week. Nails, hair, dress, make up, and all the rest of it. I asked if her boyfriend had said anything about it. She said he didn’t but she didn’t care because she didn’t get all dressed up for him, she got all dressed up to look better than all the other girls, and she had accomplished her mission. (If you ask me) So ladies, let’s be clear, most guys will tell you that you look nice because its expected, or maybe you do. However, we all know that so long as you aren’t going to a funeral in flannel pajamas and house shoes most guys could not care less. If they do care, they are probably not trying to get into your pants, they don’t want you to chase away all the boys they are going to try to get to come over to the dark side, if you catch my meaning. Most guys do in fact know that the whole getting dressed up thing is not about guys, we don’t care. It’s about being better than the other girls, and it doesn’t stop when you get older, all it gets is a little more subtle.

Second, try this one on for size. Guy walks into a bar wearing a pair of jeans, work boots, and a flannel shirt. He sits down and drinks a domestic beer, quietly not bothering a soul. He spends some money and plays some music. Just stays to himself, maybe he sweetly makes some small talk with the pretty girl sitting nearby. Doesn’t come on too strong, just a little bullshit back and forth.

Another guy walks into the same bar wearing what looks to be a $1200 suit. He has the Italian shoes, well manicured fingernails, a nice tan, and the whole bit. Guy looks like a banker. He pulls out a wad of hundred dollar bills and starts buying drinks for everyone. Then he bellies up to the bar right next to the girl that the first guy is talking to.

Now I don’t really want any answers to the following questions because I don’t want to hear the myriad of bullshit excuses that all the ladies will come up with. So just answer it to yourself.

Which guy gets the girl? Oh, but there’s a catch. The first guy is a good guy, the second is a douche!

So whatever, I don’t really know where all this came from but I figure it should at least get my female readership’s blood pressure up just a tad. I started this off just wanting to make fun of these two because they were being so petty, and it went somewhere else...I am having a hard time believing that I am sitting in a war zone thinking about shit like this.

Anyway, I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Are You Fucking High...

With apologies to my dear mother, who hates my profane nature, I ask this question, albeit to myself just about every day I spend here in beautiful, now sunny, Afghanistan. Are you fucking high?

There is no way around wondering about the mental capacity of those appointed over me. I can’t help but think that it must’ve taken at least a moderate amount of brain power in order to achieve the rank that they hold. However, there must be some sort of E-8 and above opium den that they all use to concoct the missions that we go on here.

And with that, I begin today’s diatribe. We have two line platoons here. Their company identifiers are 1st and 3rd. 1st is the platoon I am in, and apparently we are the only ones here capable of going out on mission. Now at the risk of pissing some of the guys from 3rd platoon off, which I don’t really want to do. The only one holding them back from all of these missions and being fully functioning and contributing members of this company is the commander. I don’t know why but he has basically confined them to the FOB. Maybe they are jacked up, maybe they aren’t, all that really matters is that the commander will not let them outside the wire. So for all intents and purposes, we have to do everything. The only thing that they are capable of doing is watching the towers. That’s it.

So there is another thing called QRF. Quick reaction force. Their job is simple, be ready at a moments notice to go outside the wire and assist with any and all situations that are occurring within 15,000 meters of the FOB. Okay, so they are supposed to always be ready.

Now the mission platoon, which is my platoon, trades off. One squad plus one team from another squad runs that particular day’s mission, and the other squad plus the two teams from the middle squad are off. Then the next day we switch around. Keeps you from having to go out everyday, and it keeps some fresh eyes and ideas on the missions. So I think it’s a good thing.

However, since the commander thinks that 3rd platoon is a bunch of imbeciles, we have to do it all. You see QRF is supposed to be derived from the tower platoon. Yet, even with that asset the commander chooses whenever something happens outside the wire that requires some help, he chooses to send the other half of our platoon to help them. Unfortunately, he never tells us that this is what he is going to do. We should already know, “Whatever sucks the most” right? Anyway, so are guys had a broken down vehicle today. So we got notified that they needed our help. Sadly, we were not ready for this. It’s not our day for mission, so we don’t have all our shit wired tight like we should.

So we spend about 20 minutes getting all of this shit together, grabbing ammunition, guns, trucks, drivers, and whatever else we need. Finally, we are about 5 minutes from rolling out the gate and getting our boys back...

Then the word comes down from the commander that QRF is going to get them. Not us. Okay, but because the commander never lets them outside the wire the other platoon, who is supposed to be ready at a moment’s notice. Obviously isn’t. Which sucks major ass. So let’s take stock. One platoon who never goes out. The other platoon who wasn’t supposed to go out. The platoon who wasn’t supposed to go out, was allowed by our wonderful commander to get everything ready and be about 5 minutes from leaving, when he decided in his infinite wisdom to send the other platoon who never goes out. Who was obviously not ready, and had to spend all their time doing all the same stuff that we had just got done doing, except they had to do it to their own trucks. Now they spend another 20 minutes doing it and have just now left.

This is not good. There are certain things that truly anger me. One of them being when a person regardless of position makes decisions that endanger my fellow soldiers, needlessly. The FNG’s fresh out of basic training can figure this one out. The group that is almost ready is the one that should go, not the one who has to start the process all over again and complete all the work that the first group has already done. Ridiculous, we just cost my boys who are stuck outside the wire with a broken truck 20 minutes. Try sitting still for 20 minutes doing absolutely nothing, it can seem like a lifetime. Now try throwing into the mix getting shot at by some insurgent who sees you as a convenient target of opportunity. That thankfully, is not happening, but it could.

This is the kind of decision making that really makes me despise my chain of command. There is no logical reasoning that I can come up with in my head that could explain this. The only thing that keeps running through my mind when I see the commander and the executive officer, and the operations NCO’s and the First Sergeant, and all of the guys who work in an office, staring at maps, and moving little GI Joe’s around a table, and who write up all the mission briefings and the intelligence reports and all the rest of it...

ARE YOU FUCKING HIGH????

Now I am done.

Later,

I love you mom...

Feb 18, 2009

And Here I Thought I Was The Only One Thinking This...

So my gunner got a package today. Inside this package was a Newsweek magazine from February, 9 2009. On the cover, which was completely black except for the lettering, were the words, “Obama’s Vietnam, How To Salvage Afghanistan”

I can only assume that his parents thought he might like to read what was inside due to the fact that he and I have had so many ridiculously long conversations about exactly what was inside. An article by Fareed Zakaria, now I have no idea who the hell he is (I know I probably should) but apparently Newsweek is hiring some writers who either have half a brain, or grew up in Afghanistan.

So the article he wrote was called, “A Turnaround Strategy.” Well, let’s see what Mr. Zakaria has to say. He begins with a story about how some local Afghan villagers took up arms against the U.S. In the Uruzgan Valley. They fought along side the Taliban pricks that were embroiled in an intense firefight with American soldiers. Accidental insurgents they were called. Now I just pray that the locals around here don’t take up arms against us. I can see it happening, but I have kinda gotten used to them, it would be a shame to have to shoot them.

Then he hit me with another one that bothered the hell out of me. He said, “But I don’t believe it is a quagmire-yet.” Ah, how thoroughly depressing. One simple word, “Yet” can tangle my mind into a knot.

So I think I have said before, I know I have said before, that this whole thing seems like a big game of hold what you got. Which is a much lower class way of saying quagmire, so I can run with him on that one.

He goes on to give a four point plan for reversing the direction of this war, which I have to admit I don’t entirely agree with, but it makes a lot of sense.

Oh, by the way we got back on missions today and we drove a really long way out today and then we came back. I couldn’t believe it but I started thinking to myself, “You know what, I wish these assholes would blow me up or shoot at me!” You know just to break the monotony of it all. So there is absolutely nothing to write about so I’ll evaluate someone else’s writing. However, there is one bright spot. There is some General here who is investigating our chain of command which makes me happy. Nothing will come of it, I am sure, but it will be fun to watch the commander sweat for a few days. Stay tuned.

Anyway, back to this guys article. First point: Do counterinsurgency right. He was long winded and wordy with this part but the basic premise is that instead of running around here with guns blazing and killing everyone and performing regular military missions. You know, hunt and kill, search and destroy, raids and all that shit. We should be gaining the trust of the people, making them feel secure, not overreact to every provocation and becoming a productive and welcome influence in the community.

Okay, finally someone that is smart saying something that makes sense. It breaks down like this folks. I want to kill these Taliban and al Qaeda pricks just as much as the next guy. However finding them is a tough one. Like looking for one particular needle in a mountain of needles. Know what I mean? The fact remains however, that every door we kick down (if we ever got to do that), every person we kill, every air strike we call, every place we bomb, every village we roust, we create ever increasing animosity between us and the people of this country. We create the breeding ground for the very thing that we are trying so very hard to destroy.

Second Point: Strengthen the Afghan government. All that comes down to is we have to ensure that there are legitimate elections here within the foreseeable future. The government that I have seen so far is about as corrupt and inconsequential as it gets. I watched the other day as we unloaded humanitarian aid from a helicopter and tried to load it into trucks, an Afghan commander punch and kick his guys because he thought that we were taking it away from him. Anyone besides me think that this guy thought we were taking his money away from him? You could see it in his face, he was thinking that he wouldn’t have anything to sell if we took all this shit from him. Not a bad racket if you ask me. Take all the free shit they send you from the States or wherever it comes from and sell it. 100% profit. Al Capone would be proud.

I couldn’t even begin to tell what corruption goes on around here. All I can really say is that, this place makes the Illinois legislature look like a girl scout troop. Think about that.

Third Point: Talk to the Taliban. Ouch, I don’t want them to do that, but he offers some pretty convincing arguments that the Taliban aren’t necessarily the problem, its al Qaeda. So I guess that I can live with that. However, I still think that the Afghan people should be offered a choice of their government because they hate the Taliban almost as much as they hate us. Given the chance I don’t think the Afghani populace would choose the Taliban so I guess it wouldn’t hurt.

Fourth Point: Pressure Pakistan. Okay, now here is where I have to say quite simply, we have to sit right on Pakistan’s head. There is no way around it. Whether we are willing to face it or not Pakistan is where the lion’s share of this shit comes at us from. They hit us from inside Pakistan, they use it as training ground, as recruiting ground, they use it to lick their wounds in winter, they use it to hijack many of our supply convoys on routes that Pakistan is supposed to have control of. Until we control either Pakistan or we control the crossing of the Pakistan/Afghan border then we aren’t going to be able to accomplish a thing.

So I guess that I am glad that I know there are at least a few smart people back home advising that we do some of the things that I have talked about in the past. Hopefully they can say it a lot better than I can so that someone might listen to them. In the meantime all I can really hope is that this doesn’t become my own Vietnam...

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

And With This, The Misery Sets In...

Toward the end of my ridiculously long previous post I touched on something that has been bothering the hell out of me for a while now. I have kept it in check with a combination of attitude, humor, reading, and calling home, not to mention listening to some angry music and smashing things. Unfortunately, lately I haven’t been able to keep it in check any longer. So I am going to try writing about it and see if that helps.

What the hell am I talking about? Well, here’s the quote, “The fact that our war, our battle, the great test of my generation is being stolen from us by a group of bloodless, lifeless, and cowardly politicians. Fuck them guys.”

I probably could’ve said it a bit better but the words were flowing out of me at the time, and I didn’t really feel like editing myself, so I ran with it.

So the best I can do right now is to examine the statement bit by bit. I guess for continuity’s sake we’ll begin with the first part.

“Our war, our battle, the great test of my generation”

Hopefully, unless you’re brain dead that statement is fairly self-explanatory. This is the battle that we’ve got. We haven’t got another one. The days of the great world wars are over, there is entirely too much commerce going on for another real world war. So be it. I can deal with that part of it. This is the battle that was chosen for my generation to fight. We were called out on September 11, 2001 and we responded in kind. Had we been left to our own devices and not co-opted and controlled by the fucking politicians this war would have gone a lot different.

The part of that, that I cannot come to grips with is the final piece. This is the great test of my generation. We grew up in the lap of unparalleled wealth, and unabashed laziness. We were given the best of everything. Food, leisure, education, clothes, and everything else. Very few of us ever did without, and when we did, oh were we ever pissed off about it. You want to get the American public behind a war, tell them that MTV won’t be on the air again until we kick the shit out of our enemies.

Now this sucks. I see this whole thing as the test that had the potential to drag us out of our sedentary, useless, lifeless lives. Try to find a pulse in your average American, you aren’t going to find it easily. Now it isn’t everyone. There are those who want to fight, who want to win, who want to know the exhilaration, who want all of it. But there are so many more who just want things to be comfortable, who want things to be easy, who want their life to be planned, who want everything to be handed to them, who like being semi conscious zombies...

How very depressing...

Unfortunately, the zombies are the ones who run this place. They are the ones who decide our missions. They don’t want to risk any damage to their careers so they will not send us on any missions that mean anything. They don’t want to risk damaging a vehicle and having to explain it, so they keep us so far from harm that there is no way we could accomplish anything even remotely resembling a victory in battle. They are so terrified that someone might get hurt, and they would have to answer for it that they keep us here, paralyzed, doing nothing. It feels as though we are just killing time from one end of the deployment to the other.

And now for the rest...”is being stolen from us by a group of bloodless, lifeless, and cowardly politicians.”

Those are the guys I am talking about. Not only are these pieces of shit in Washington, but they are here also. We call them officers.

Bloodless, I have never met another group of people in my life who are more terrified of getting into any kind of trouble than these guys. I don’t understand it, and I hope that I never do. Prior to turning 25 I used to live to get into trouble. The bigger the better.

Lifeless, they have a chance here. A chance to truly make a difference. To change some of the things that have, and are going on here. They are the ones who make the decisions, give the orders, and ensure that things are done right. Yet, they choose to toe the line, they choose to make everything look real pretty on paper, they are the ones who chose to never risk anything here. They have chosen to bide their time, to do what they need to do to get by and nothing more, and to leave this place in the exact same condition as when they found it. Not an ounce of life in that.

Cowardly, I think I have made it abundantly clear they are just that.

Politicians. I read somewhere that the word “politics” is a combination of “poli” meaning: many, and “tics” meaning: blood sucking parasites. I don’t think you can get any more accurate than that.

And finally, “Fuck them guys”

Do I really need to elaborate on that...

I am done now.

Later.

I love you mom...

Feb 14, 2009

My Longest Post Yet, Because It's Like 4 In 1...

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, THE DICKBAG HAS LEFT THE BUILDING, FEEL FREE TO DANCE IN AISLES...

Well, what can I say about what has been going on here as of late. I could say a whole lot, especially since this blog is now private I can pretty much say whatever the hell I want, and that makes me happy.

There are so many things that are either driving me nuts or they are making me laugh, or they are doing both. So where to begin. I don’t really know so I’ll just roll with the first one that comes to my mind.

The situation with the kid and his crush is now over. Not fun for me. Apparently, the guys that live in the same room as him could not take it anymore. His head had swelled to gargantuan proportions and they just couldn’t handle it anymore. He was walking around like his shit smelled of roses, and every girl on the planet wanted nothing more than to spend the rest of their days pleasing him. So they told him what was going on.

The best part was that he didn’t believe them. He had already convinced himself that he was the pimp of the nation and that there wasn’t a woman on this earth that could resist his charms. So they had to convince him. Which, to me, is absolutely hilarious.

However, they did steal my thunder and they are going to pay for that. I just have to hatch another devious plan to entertain myself with.

Which Pigpen and I have already done, but I cannot share it with you because some of my buddy’s here read this shit. And they are all targets of this one. We’ll have to see how this one works out. Don’t worry this one doesn’t involve destroying anyone’s self-esteem or will to live so it should be more fun.

Next thing. The article 15 thing is progressing through all the military machinations (bullshit) that it has to go through. And who knows what the Colonel who is in charge of this goat fuck is going to do to them. I guess I’ll let you know when I know.

Ah, I was reading the news the other day and it came out that the Army has recalled 80,000 or some ungodly number of plates from our bullet proof vests because they fail testing and cannot meet the standard of protection that we need.

Yeah, read that one more time. The fucking Army actually bought armor plates that are used to keep soldiers from dying, that are incapable of stopping a bullet. Well that really sucks, because last time I looked these Taliban pricks were not using slingshots! I find so many things in the military and the government in general so unbelievable that I just want to vomit.

Now if you remember way back to when I first started this whole thing I wrote a post about these plates. I called it, “Fragile, Handle With Care, Do Not Drop” It was all about the fact that the military had purchased subpar body armor for us in the first place and there was a better product on the market, but it was also a humorous post because the plates (that are supposed to stop bullets) came in boxes that were marked, “Fragile, Handle With Care, Do Not Drop” Which I have to admit I found hysterical, and depressing all at once.

However, now instead of just having subpar armor, now we are actually getting subpar armor that fails testing and has to be recalled. Alright, my first question is this...

WHY THE FUCK IS ARMOR THAT HASN’T BEEN TESTED BEING FIELDED IN A WAR ZONE WHERE SOLDIERS ARE GETTING SHOT AT, BLOWN UP, AND WHAT NOT EVERY GOD FORSAKEN DAY?

Now I don’t know yet if we even have any of this armor but some guys out there do. Risking their lives everyday, volunteering to serve this nation, giving up so much, and this fucking government won’t even buy us decent armor. Makes you just feel all warm and fuzzy inside, doesn’t it?

But at least in the continuing avalanche of shit that keeps falling on us there is a small ray of sunshine for us all. The Commander went someplace else today. I don’t know where, and quite frankly I don’t give a shit. All I know is that right now he is not here. Ladies and Gentlemen the dickbag has left the building. And that makes me so very happy.

And with that I am done. I don’t want to ruin the good mojo.

Later,

I love you mom...



WHAT’S A MOTTO? I DUNNO, WHAT’S A MOTTO WITH YOU?

So today the douchbaggery came down from on high. The MP regiment or some such shit that gets signed by a General asked us for a motto that reflected the future and the “Year of The NCO”, this motto is to serve as the regimental motto for the MP Corps during the year of the NCO thingy. They even went so far as to say that the guy who comes up with the winning motto will get a whole certificate, a coin and t-shirt. So basically what the higher ups are telling us is that they couldn’t come up with anything worth a shit and they didn’t want to hire an ad agency to do if for them, so we’ll ask you guys. Well too bad for them they asked a whole bunch of people who had caught a rather horrendous case of the phuckit. If they want a motto, it’s a motto they’ll get. So we came up with some motto’s, that would be offensive even to most degenerate mind. Why don’t we get started with a few of them...(my apologies but some of these will be hard to understand unless you are here with us)


The MP Corps, Fuck The police.

Here’s your theme, where’s my t-shirt.

MP NCO’s lead the way, Pakistan here we come!

MP NCO’s, we suck, but hey at least we’re not MP officers.

Where’s the war, I got my knee pads!

MP NCO’s its tough to give orders with a donut in your mouth.

If we leave at this time, we’ll be back by chow.

MP NCO’s, What morale?

Fuck hearts and minds, we have more guns than they do.

Play time is over, let the pain begin.

MP’s, it could be worse, we could be real cops!

It’s not fraternization if she is in another squad, right?

MP NCO’s, hey you, put your PT belt on.

MP’s, you aren’t supposed to be shitting there!

MP’s, only one person to a stall please!

MP NCO’s, hey you can’t go to war without your boots bloused.

MP’s, we may not fight worth a shit, but at least we look good.

Year of the NCO, form over function, HOOOAH!

Bloused boots and 5 bullets, We are ready for war SIR!

Year of the NCO, ground guide required at all times.

MP’s, we’re like the Cavalry, except with chicks.

The MP Corps, even our women have cool mustaches.

MP=Mostly pussies

MP=Monkey penises

MP=Miss Placed

MP=Mud Puppy

MP=Monkey Phuckers

MP Corps, fuck up, move up!

MP Corps, Of The Troops, Fuck you!

MP=Man pokers!

MP=Mega-ego Problem

MP=Man pussies

MP Captains, masters of graphic design.

MP’s, Completely useless, but at least we’re trying.

MP’s, so how do you load one of these anyway?

MP’s, we don’t care if you’re a lesbian.

MP’s, where females eat as much rug as the guys.

MP’s, the prettiest girl in the company has a better mustache than all the guys!

MP women, we’re not whores, we’re just popular.

MP women, even the terps get a ride.

MP female=MWR

MP’s, still recovering from the scars of our childhoods.

MP’s, they give us all the same stuff as real soldiers.

MP’s, hey at least we’re not cooks.

MP’s, you will respect my authority.

MP=Masturbating Penguins

Year of the NCO, being used as bait since 1775.

MP=Major Pricks

MP=Misdirected Punishment

MP’s, because some dickbag had to do it!

MP’s, because 88M is too easy.

MP’s, the closest women can get to the infantry.

MP’s, because the infantry doesn’t like lesbians.

To any and all I have offended: I wish I could say I was sorry, but I just can’t, because I’m not.

Anyways, later.

I love you mom...

SOME THINGS JUST HIT TOO CLOSE TO HOME...

So I am sitting here listening to Dusty Springfield’s “Son of a Preacher Man”, and quietly contemplating my life. That is the worst thing about winter here, too damn much time to think. It snows and the air goes red and we can’t go anywhere. Not to mention, anyone who knows me will tell you, when I am left alone to think, nothing but bad things happen.

Now why did I call this, “Some things just hit too close to home”. Well I called it that because, well first of all it’s true. There are some things that we see, hear, or feel that hit just a bit too close. Secondly, I called it that because I saw something today that hit just a bit too close for comfort.

Like I say, this place affords me entirely too much time to think. Which is a bit funny because if you were to ask anyone who has known me for more than a day I used to be the type of guy that never thought things through. I was able to evaluate a situation, choose a course of action and run with it. All of which happened within a span of about 30 seconds. Now, and for the last few years I haven’t been able to make any decisions without thinking about them for so damn long that I waited too fucking long and then I missed my shot.

But these things happen, not to everyone, but they happen. Oh, by the way I could tell you what I saw but here again, that is something that I am going to keep just for myself.

You look back and you realize things, you realize what is truly important. You realize that there are debts that you owe to certain people and those debts will never be paid with money. The unfortunate part is that some of these debts can never be repaid regardless of what you do. Now comes the tricky part. How do you determine which debts are going to be paid, and which are going to be neglected? You can’t pay them all, there is just not enough life in your lungs to pay them all. So you have to decide which ones are going to get paid.

Who comes first? Why do they come first? And a million other questions...

Some of these debts you are born with, and others you accrue along the way. But the decisions remain the same. Which debt to pay, and when, and with what? These debts are born out of your life. They are not monetary debts so no bank account will help you with these. Some are to be paid in love, some are to be paid in time, some are to be paid in faithfulness, some are to be paid in humility, and some are to be paid in sweat, and some are to be paid with blood.

I know what my debts are. I know to whom they must be paid. Now comes the tricky part...

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

P.S. I know that may sound a bit cryptic, and after reading it again I don’t want to change a word of it. However, knowing the worry wart that my dear old mother can be I’ll leave you with this. No one was hurt or killed. Everyone’s fine.

WHAT I WILL REMEMBER MOST ABOUT THIS DEPLOYMENT...

The complete and utter boredom. There is no way around it, this is some of the most mercilessly boring time I have ever spent on this earth. Thank God I have this, otherwise I would probably shoot someone.

Of course the Army always gives me plenty of fodder for this little publication of mine. The latest being a “sensing session”, which is basically a gigantic bitch fest that is controlled by a few officers from battalion who come down to see whether the troops are being taken care of or not. Now the whole idea behind one of these is noble enough. I can see why they would want to do it. No commander wants his troops to be so disgruntled that they can’t function, but what actually happens when one of these things goes off is usually a huge steaming pile of monkey spunk.

So I am outside smoking a cigarette by our trucks, freezing my balls off, and this captain walks up to me. He is a Chaplain, the military’s version of Priests. And he asks me if I have an hour to spare. I couldn’t come up with any viable excuse for not doing whatever he wanted, which he hadn’t told me yet. I mean if he were a regular officer I just would’ve lied to him, however he’s a Chaplain and that would be really bad karma. Kind of like lying to a nun.

So he tells me he needs us for this sensing session. Oh joy, now we get to go in there and all the young guys who don’t know how this whole thing works will either bitch about the most inconsequential bullshit, or they will actually complain about real issues, and then it gets even worse.

Some commanders are able to accept criticism. Some are not. I don’t know exactly how this commander is going to react to the issues presented to him after the sensing session, but if previous actions are any indicator, it’s not going to be good.

I think that whichever way he goes this is going to be memorable. Which way he turns will determine a lot about my opinion of the man. Which leads me to the next memorable thing that happened, and this one freaked me out.

You all know that I got myself into a little bit of a shitstorm with the First Sergeant over my blog. He didn’t like that I was disrespecting commissioned officers. Which I guess is wrong, and I know that I did. So be it. He did, however, read the part about me thinking of becoming an officer. Which he got a kick out of, and has been giving me a load of shit about it ever since he read it. Which is fine with me, because he can get as well as he gives and that is one of the marks of a real man if you ask me.

So today he was walking with the commander and I was leaving the computer lab, and as he was walking by he jokingly raised his hand to salute me. Now not being able to resist I said, “You know what First Sergeant, when I get my commission you are the first one I am going to find to get a salute from!”

To which he replied, with no small amount of sarcasm, “I ain’t never fucking saluting you, no matter what rank you are.”

Well, allow me to retort, “Yeah, and then I’ll make you push!” To which he couldn’t help but chuckle.

Now the commander was right there for this entire exchange and by the time he turned and said something to the First Sergeant about it, which I can only imagine was a confused, “What are you guys talking about?”

The First Sergeant answered him, I have no clue what he said, but the commander promptly waved me over. To which I quietly said to myself, “Fuck!”

So putting on my most respectful aura, I walked over and began what I thought was going to another debacle in the never-ending saga that are my conversations with officers.

However, it went completely different than I expected.

He asked me what was going on. I told him about my plans for OCS. (He is obviously still totally ignorant of my blog)

He responded to that revelation thus, “I think that is a great idea, the best officers are always prior enlisted men.”

Alright, now I am off balance. This is not the way I am accustomed to officers responding to news such as this. Before I could say anything he continued.

Him: “Have you graduated from college?”
Me: Yes Sir.
Him: Are you going to continue your education?
Me: Of course, I think I might like to learn to speak Arabic.
Him: That’s a great idea, that won’t help you here though.
Me: I understand that but with the world being the way it is, and the middle east being such an important part of the world stage right now I think Arabic is the way to go.
Him: You are probably right. (That freaked me out, him saying I was right)
Me: So I am hoping to go back to school, possibly at UIC when I get home.
Him: Have you ever thought about going to ROTC while you do that?
Me: Nah, I figure that I could go to OCS when I get home so that instead of going back to work and leaving again I could just stay gone and go back to work later on.
Him: That is probably a good idea, but consider this...

Now thus far the commander who I have disrespected in some ridiculous ways in my writing has been supportive, even encouraging of my aspirations. All of these are human traits, and neither of which are abilities I thought he had, I wasn’t even sure that he was human. So I have been wrong about him on those two points at least. Next up, and this part really freaked me out, and for expediency’s sake I am going to paraphrase our conversation.

He told me that if I were to go back to college I should consider ROTC because of a few different things. First, it allows me two years as opposed to two months to adjust to being an officer, and it gives me two years as opposed to two months to alter my mentality from that of an enlisted man to that of an officer. Second, it allows me much more contact with officers who are already in the positions that I hope to achieve so it would give me a better knowledge base from which to draw. Lastly, ROTC focuses mainly on the education that officers need to perform their duties whereas OCS focuses mainly on the initiation into the officer corps, and then the education comes on the job. The point being that I would be better prepared for the challenges of being an officer with the extra time and education as opposed to the initiation and on the job training.

Well, holy jumping fucking shit balls! Now he has just ruined my perception of the world and has sent my brain into a tailspin. What I mean is this, I knew that the man had to have at least half a brain to graduate from college and become an officer and rise to rank of captain without fucking up. But I must admit, I didn’t have a whole lot of respect for his intelligence. Without being too egregious, some of the things he has done did point to an inferior intellect. However, that was a cogent, and relevant piece of advice from someone who has been through the entirety of the process of what I want to do.

Not to mention, it shows a surprising amount of concern over a soldier. I mean a commander, even good ones, are busy and normally do not have time for this sort of exchange. So now my world is not spinning as it should. My commander showed himself to be concerned, encouraging, supportive, and pensive. I had no idea exactly how to deal with this.

So I told him that I would consider what he said, however I didn’t think I could pull it off. I do have a full time job that I have to get back to. Those damn inmates aren’t going to watch themselves, not to mention I miss the entertainment.

I have to think about this some more, and I have to watch what happens for the remainder of my time here. However, there is no way around it. At least in some respects, I may have been dead ass wrong about the commander. I’ll keep you posted as to how this one plays out.

Now I am done,

Later.

I love you mom...

MISSION? WHAT IS THIS MISSION OF WHICH YOU SPEAK?

So the weather has finally cleared, which means we are back to mission status. So we’ve got a mission today, out to some village, somewhere. Go find the Taliban, uh wait, just drive out there be a big, moving target and then come back. That is basically what we do here. Fun for us.

So my squad leader busts up into my room this morning at like 0700. Now I didn’t go to bed until like 0100 thinking that this was going to be bullshit anyway, and all I have to do today is drive. Easy enough right? Well he gets us up and tells us that we have to be up and at the trucks by 0800. So I think that maybe we really get to go and have at least a little bit of fun away from our prison, err FOB, today.

So we get out there and we got everything ready only to be told that we are on fucking stand by. Which means get it all together and then begin the waiting process. So here it is 1130 now and I am about to go eat my lunch. And we still are not going anywhere. I wonder if the Taliban knows that a little rain or snow can bring the US Army to a screeching halt?

Ah, time for some sarcasm. I have been writing a little too timidly as of late. Part of it has to do with some of the things I have been thinking about, but the other part comes of the situation with this blog. So the hell with it, only you guys get to read this stuff so fuck them, am I right?

This war is really starting to piss me off. We sit here right in the middle of Taliban land. We have all these trucks, all the guns, and all these kids that are full of piss & vinegar and we don’t do a whole helluva lot with it. That just seems stupid to me.

I said before that this whole thing seems like a big game of “hold what you got”, whereas it should be a game of, “we are going to kick the ever living shit out of you and laugh as you fall!” You see I have been reading a book lately, it’s called “Beating Goliath, Why Insurgencies Win” It’s written by some guy who is a professor at the US Air Force Air War College. Now that right there is enough for me, chances are good if he is a professor there that he knows his shit when it comes to warfare.

I haven’t gotten too far into the book yet, but the ideas are thoroughly depressing so far. The basic premise is that a country that is large and powerful (The United States), sometimes loses to an inferior power (The Taliban, Al-queda, and others) due to a lack of political will on the part of our government and the people of the country.

This sucks balls if you ask me. I have already told you what I thought of Iraq (total bullshit), but this one is the good one, this is the real one, this is the one that we have to win, this is the one that we can do some good, this is the one that requires us to see it through to the end.

This is one that in my mind is the most beautiful set up for a war that there could ever be. You have an oppressed people, you have an identifiably evil enemy, and you have an unabashedly horrible catalyst or act of war with which to begin the conflict (9/11) So what the fuck is the problem?
Why is it that some segments of our government lacks the political will to defeat this enemy and win this war? And do not give me that Democrat/Republican bullshit because there are hawks and doves on both sides of the aisle.

I just don’t understand. Why there is such a debate over whether to send more troops here? Get their asses here, and we will end this thing.

In my mind there is a simple solution to the problem, it’s not easy but it is simple. Do this, bring so many fucking guys here that soldiers are asshole to elbow. Bring so many troops here that you can hardly walk without bumping into a GI. Bring so many guys that the Taliban cannot even jerk off with spooging on an M-4! (All right, that was a bit crass)

Lock it down, the border (both of them), pepper it with so many soldiers that there is no way the Taliban could get back over the border.

But what do we actually do? We rely on all our little techno-toys. We figure that we can secure the border with a bunch of those unmanned flying whatever the fucks. Well sorry folks, it is going to take good old fashioned boots on the ground to win this one. Soldiers, we need so may damn soldiers that this place has more Americans than Miami.

Once you do that, you can get to work on all the shit that really matters. The schools, the roads, the infrastructure, the hospitals, and all that shit. However, until you secure this joint, none of that other stuff is going to work, and what is more important, until you secure this joint the people aren’t going to help you because they don’t think you can protect them from the Taliban. With the current state of affairs we really can’t.

All this depresses the shit out of me. The fact that our war, our battle, the great test of my generation is being stolen from us by a group of bloodless, lifeless, and cowardly politicians. Fuck them guys.

Now I am done.

Later,

I love you mom...

Feb 9, 2009

And With This, I Am Going Straight To Hell...

So in our never ending quest as soldiers to entertain ourselves in the midst of the almost constant boredom and silly tasks that is our deployment we find many ways to entertain ourselves.

Some of them are fun, some time consuming, some ridiculous and others are well... I don't know what they are so I submit the following for your judgment.

There are two people here. One is a guy. One is a girl. The guy, named after a city and a car, is a cute kid. (I am secure enough in my non-gayness to say so) He is 20 years old and has that little boy thing going for him. So a lot of the females around here would rate him pretty highly on their individual attractiveness scale.

On the other hand you have the girl. Now if I may be so bold, she is, mentally, a female version of Pigpen and I. She has most of the same proclivities toward vulgar humor, movies and music that we do. Not to mention she has the same sick and twisted desire to monkey around with people's minds. And if I do say so myself, she is the hottest girl on the FOB, I mean she is for real cute, not deployment goggles cute.

So the guy has a huge crush on this girl. Entirely understandable. However, she does not share his sentiments. But through several acts of subterfuge I have slowly but steadily convinced him that "maybe" just maybe she does share his feelings.

Now it has risen to another level. You see her mom knows my brother, so because of that and her unusual name and my need to email her mother and say thank you for giving her such a hilarious name we (her mom and I) corresponded via email a time or two. Nothing big, just a little note here and there. Now I tell her to say hi to her mom and what not. But by others in this company this has been taken to be much more than it really is. Now I have no choice due to my personality than to use their ignorance and have me some fun.

So one day, the guy in question asked me, "What is this email between you and her (the girl) mom everyone is talking about?" Which made me laugh on the inside; I mean these people need to get a hobby or something. Really, a couple of emails between her mom and I are actually worth talking about? But I saw my chance so I went with it.

I told him that her mom knew my brother and she emailed me to let me know about it and I emailed her back. Then I told him that her mom had told me that apparently "the girl" was corresponding with her mom telling her that there was a guy here that she really liked and wanted to get to know better, and apparently that guy was he.

He actually became visibly shaken. Like he had just been told that he had just won a Hooters restaurant. Which, for a split second made me feel a little bad for being such a horrible person, but I got over it. He then asked me a few more questions about it, which I gave very vague responses to. You know the kind of response that could be taken anyway that he wanted to take it. And he left me with a gem. With a very satisfied and self-confident look on his baby face he said, "Good to know, real good to know." And he left.

Now I realized that I had done this prior to getting her consent and cooperation. So I went straight down to her place of residence and told her all about it.

Part of me was expecting a response of, "You are such a &*((, why would you do that to the poor boy?" However, she laughed hysterically and agreed whole-heartedly to participate.

Now she is going to email her mom and tell her to send me something that reads similar to what I told him about the email and I am going to save this and have him read it. Kind of a, "Remember that email you asked me about, well here it is" thing.

Not to mention I have already put up a bit of graffiti in her barracks. I wrote above one of the seats that we use to watch movies her first name followed by his last name with a giant heart around it and an arrow through it. The plan for that piece of art being, some night we will all get together to watch a movie and we will pack the house with people to make sure that every seat but that one is taken up so when he gets there he will have no choice but to sit there and find his "future wife's" married name right above him. Hopefully, he will think that at one point or another she wrote that up there dreaming wistfully about their future together.

Now I already know this is incredibly childish. However, I am incredibly immature so it would stand to reason that I would do something incredibly childish, wouldn't it? I just don't know if something like this may destroy the young lads will to live when the whole thing comes crashing down on him.

I don't really think so. I think he will think its funny, however disappointed he might be. But, as I said, I submit this for your judgment prior to her and I proceeding with our diabolical plan...

I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...

Feb 8, 2009

Have You Ever Put A Gun In The Laundry...

Yep, that's what happened. Someone, I don't know who, well I do but I can't tell you. Put a gun into the washing machine here on the FOB. Fun for all of us.

So the local national that does our laundry found a fucking gun in the wash.

Am I the only one that thinks that your laundry bag would feel a little heavy if there was a gun inside as opposed to just clothes?

Well then after that they decided that they needed to make sure that everyone had their sensitive items. A military term meaning, "anything that costs more than any soldier makes in a month". So they sent the NCO's all over the FOB chasing everyone down and seeing if they had all their shit.

Fun for me.

You should see this guy now. All running around the FOB in all his gear which weighs a fucking ton. And he has to do it all the time, every minute of every day which makes me happy because as he runs by, yes he has to run everywhere, I get to laugh hysterically at him.

Well, I know that we should keep our weapons clean but putting them into the laundry might be a bit much...

Later,

I love you mom...

Feb 5, 2009

Something Bad Happened...

And I am going to deal with it the only way that I know how. I am going to vent, to you. I could beat around the bush but you all know that just isn’t my style.

My Auntie Buddy passed away recently. My mom just told me when I called her to let her know that I wasn’t in any real trouble over this blog.

Now there are certain things in life that just hit you like a ton of bricks, and this is definitely one of them.

I’ll share a little bit about me, maybe some of it you already know. I have written so much that I don’t even remember what you do and don’t know.

But my father passed away when I was three years old and my brother was still a bun in the oven. Now when you are three you don’t remember a whole lot, in my case next to nothing. I mean every now and then I am in a certain place or set of circumstances or whatever and I’ll have a strange sense of déjà vu but for the most part I don’t remember a thing about my father. Hence the whole ghost thing. My Auntie Buddy was my father’s sister.

And my Auntie Buddy was one of my true links to my father. Someone I could always talk to about him and she would tell me what he would’ve said. She would always tell me how much I looked like him, and how he acted, and thought, and tell me funny stories about when they were younger, and she would always tell me how proud he would’ve been of me. And she loved me.

I hope that she knows what she meant to me. A young son without a father jealously clings to any connection he can find with his father.

She was always there. Always. Regardless of what was going on. When we were in trouble she sheltered us. (My brother and I) When we were stupid she told us so. When we needed it she gave us advice. When we needed a caring ear she was listening. When I wanted to stay up all night eating pizza and watching TV she was right there with me.

I would regale you with the stories of the funny times we spent together but I think I am going to keep those just for me. At least I made sure that I told her I loved her before I left. How dearly I wish I would’ve called her and said it just once more.

Suffice it to say that she was my Aunt and I loved her for that.
Suffice it to say that she was a link between my father and I, and I loved her for that.
Suffice it to say that she was my friend and I loved her for that.
Suffice it to say that I love her.

But all of life’s pain is over for her now. And for that I am thankful. I am sure that somewhere out there she is standing next to my father and watching over me as I write this. So here I sit with tears rolling down my cheeks thinking of her and wishing I could’ve seen her just one last time.

But I cannot, so all that’s really left to say is Goodbye…

I am done for now.

I love you…Auntie Buddy

Feb 3, 2009

Welcome Back To The Suck, Soldier Boy...

So I am back, well not quite back yet but I am back in AssCrackIstan, further south than anyone in his or her right mind would want to be. Only one little hop from the land of exploding roads and machine guns. And I cannot say that I am entirely disappointed. Sure Qatar is nice but Bagram is a shithole of epic proportions and at least down here you don't have to put up with people who bust you out for using the wrong shitters. So all in all I am a pretty happy guy.

We haven't done much but travel; I mean we were sure to miss enough flights that we were able to watch the Superbowl in Bagram. For all it's faults Bagram still has those huge projection TV's, and there is nothing like watching a football game in a room full of rowdy GI's on a screen the size of a tank.

We caught a little puddle hopper out of Bagram down south today. I was amazed by the fact that we got to the terminal at about 0700 today, and we were on a plane by 0900. Lightning speed in military space available terms. So now we are here, sitting in a tent as the hail comes down and peppers our tent like a really bad drum-line. Which most likely means that we will be stuck here for at least a couple of days. Fun for me.

However, it does give me the opportunity to respond to a few of the comments from my last posts, and it gives me a chance to talk about a few other things that have been eating at me but I haven't had a chance to think about till now.

First thing, the little poem that I read on the tent wall that so many of my regular readers responded to. I would hope that you all know that I didn't mean you, specifically. I was referring to the American public in general. What I was referring to was the fact that a major metropolitan newspaper in the midst of a huge financial crisis, two wars and the general fuckedupedness of the entire world at this particular moment, was still featuring Oprah and Michelle Obama's clothes as a front page worthy news story. Which is nothing short of stunningly ridiculous.

So hopefully, that puts that to bed. You guys have all been wonderfully supportive of our mission, my boys and I. We cannot thank you enough and what you do for us, the kind words that you have for us, and just knowing that someone back home is thinking of us is comforting in ways that are not easily expressed in words. So...yeah.

Then I remember a few days or a week ago when I was talking about how the guys in Bagram don't seem to really have jobs, and they just walk back and forth from their beds to the Dairy Queen and all of that. And I was trying to figure out in my own head whether I was jealous of them or what. Well as it turns out I really pity them.

If I had to come to this place and got stuck on some big ass airbase where you are in about the same amount of danger that you are in on a flight line in Omaha, Nebraska. Well then I would feel cheated. Yep, I know how ludicrous does that sound? Well I suppose it probably is, but anyone who has read my words for a while knows that I have some pretty strange ideas about the world anyways.

I mean these are the guys that go home and sit in a bar and tell all the stories that they heard other guys tell when they came back from missions. These are the guys who brag about killing people and getting into firefights and IED strikes and ambushes and all that shit. (Note: all personnel reading this should be advised, anyone who actually has been a part of all that shit, will probably never tell you unless you are a mental health professional, or a close friend) These are the guys who look at the guys who have been out there and they feel somewhere deep inside that they are not quite as good as they are. Well that is why I pity them.

I mean who would want to say that they went all the way to AssCrackIstan to do paperwork, or direct traffic, or load real soldiers baggage, or hand out water, or whatever. I am not saying that those are not all necessary tasks that need to be accomplished, they certainly are. However, I wouldn't want that to be why I came here.

Now being the introspective guy that I am, these feelings truly disturb me. If I go off on a pass to a nice place where I can have some fun, make some new friends and drink a few beers and all the while there is a festering guilt in the back of my mind about not being somewhere else. Especially somewhere else like here.

This place does strange things to your mind; there is no way around it. You sit and think to yourself, beer in hand, "I wonder what my boys are doing right now?" I hope that they are Ok, I hope that nothing is exploding, I hope that no one is shooting at them, I hope the commander is not being a dickbag, I hope that the platoon daddy hasn't gone back on the rag, I hope.

But it's not only that, there is so much more. Here, there is always something going on. Now a lot of what goes on here is complete and utter bullshit, but there is always something going on. I wonder how well I am going to be able to deal with free time.

Here, life really means something. There is an urgency to it that you don't get at home. Why is there urgency? Pretty simple concept, here lives end a lot quicker and more violently than they do at home. (For the most part) Every time you roll out that wire you might be coming home in a box, or at least minus a few pints of blood or a limb or two. I am not being cavalier about this, I am just trying to say that when you exist everyday with death hanging over your head you get real comfortable with it. Now I am not saying that we are in firefights all day everyday, or that we are blown up by IED's every 5 minutes or anything like that, far from it. But it does not change the fact that just about every day I have to do things that could quite possibly end my life. At first it wasn't exactly fun, after a while I got used to it, and now it's becoming a comfort. Which I do believe is enough by itself to get me committed. But I digress.

So I guess it is definitely not this place that I missed. It's the people that come with it. So I guess the $64,000 question is how the hell am I going to feel about all of this when I get home? Furthermore, how am I going to deal with the drop off in intensity, and fascination that I have here? I mean there are not a whole lot of real dull moments here. Not like the dull moments that permeate life back home anyways.

But when I get home, as we all know, there is going to be quite a bit of dullness. I'll get my time off, probably about 2 months or so before I have to go back to work. During which time I'll rekindle old friendships, drink a lot more than three beers a day, sleep for 20 hours a day, and eat everything I can get my hands on, maybe fly out to Vegas or down to Florida or someplace where there are a lot of bikini's and strip joints. But there is only so long you can do that before you have to get back to your life.

Which in my case, like just about everyone else is boring. I'll get up in the morning, have my breakfast, take a shower, go to work, come home from work, maybe run some errands, eat some dinner, and fall asleep watching TV. This process will be repeated daily for the next 30 years. Jeez, when it's put like that it's just a tad little bit depressing.

I know that will be the hardest thing for me to readjust to. The difference between the intensity of life. Here, exciting (or at least it has potential). Home, same thing every day, forever. How depressing?

Well I think I have a pretty good idea as to what is going to happen. I think that I am going to miss this place. Whether I like it or not, I am going to miss it. I am going to miss all my boys, I am going to miss the action, and I am probably even going to miss the bullshit. If for no other reason than it gives me something funny and interesting to write about.

I think that is what bothers me the most, and why I just cannot seem to tear myself away from the Army regardless of how much it sucks at times and how much shit they send me into. You just can't find this kind of stuff in the society that we have created. Now don't get me wrong, I love western civilization in all its glory. I am by no means demeaning the culture that we have created, it is simply put the greatest one that the world has ever seen.

But you have to admit that for those of us who live the standard lives. You know, grow up, go to school, get a job, get a wife, get a kid, get a mortgage, get a pension, retire in Key West, and get dead. It's for the most part, quite boring. There are always exceptions to every rule but think of how many people you know who have never left the country, and be advised, Canada and Mexico don't count. I mean I know guys back home who haven't left the Midwest.

And whereas in some cases I envy them. They never had to put up with this sort of shit, they never had to do the sorts of things that I am doing now, they never had to strap on a weapon and go find the bad guys, they never had to smell the wonderful aroma of burning shit, they never had to know the terror of an IED, they never had to feel the adrenaline that accompanies getting shot at, they never had to know the pain of looking into your mother's eyes as the tears well up and you leave to a place you may not return from, they have never known the adventure that is defending your country. Wow, wasn't that poetic.

But it is for all those same reasons that like the fobbits in Bagram that I also pity them. They are the ones missing out, not me. They will never understand the friendships that you develop in a situation like this. They will never understand just how deeply you can feel things. They will never know just how wonderful something as simple as a glass of beer can be. Their freedom will never mean as much to them as it does to me. Their country will never mean as much to them as it does to me because they never had to stand up and grab a weapon as the wolf prowls at the door. And on and on...

And to end things on a lighter note, they will never understand just how far down the volume of life gets turned on one of these deployments. Now I am only speaking for myself I don't know about anyone else, but there isn't much going on in my life other than here that really means anywhere near as much as it did when I left. Credit ratings, credit card bills, relationships, jobs, mortgages, car payments, who is boning whom, clothes, cell phones, and all the other shit that makes up the average American's life, just ceases to be important. Not to say that I am not going right back to all of that when I get out of here, because I am. But the volume on all of it just got turned down. When you can say that you have looked into the eyes of a man who just got blown up by two double stacked Russian made anti-personnel mines, then what kind of car you drive just doesn't seem to matter all that much anymore.

That's one thing that came out of here that I am grateful for, it took a few really loud explosions and gunshots to turn the noise that is everyday life down far enough that I could start to hear the music...

Well I am done for now.

Later,

I love you mom...