Sunday, May 17, 2009


You know those emails you get with the line at the bottom stating it was sent by a Blackberry? Well, this post was created on my Wii while I sat in front of my tv. Suck it Blackberry.

Monday, May 11, 2009


Yesterday was Mother's Day. I am still here in Virginia of course and away from all four (deceased mother who raised me, birth mom, mother-in-law, and step mom) of mine. I was good this year. Sent cards to all three living moms and a package home for my wife. I mention this because in years past I haven't except for my wife.

A lady in church gave a great talk yesterday about being and having a mother. It really made me think a lot about how blessed I am to have so many wonderful women and mothers around me. Nothing profound or deep here. Just something I was thinking about.


This week is week one of three where I study petroleum and water distribution. As a quartermaster officer I am in charge of everything from supply to cooks to mortuary affairs to parachute riggers to fuel and water distribution.

You'd be surprised at how interesting it actually is. I assumed that you drive up to the pump, squeeze the trigger on the handle and out comes fuel. There is SOOOO much more to it than that.

Did you know that you can fit more gas in your tank if you fill up in the cool morning than in the warmer afternoon? That despite what the Myth Busters say, a cell phone actually can ignite fuel vapors? That algae can grow in gas tanks that sit unused for awhile?

There's all kinds of other little cool things I learned. Others have said this is boring. Perhaps I am just weird.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Gory, Gory. What a Helluva Way to Die

Yesterday I got my dates for airborne school. I'll be in Fort Benning, GA from Sept 14th - Oct 2nd. I'm excited. Enjoy this video. The cadence is classic.

UPDATE: If you want to read the lyrics to "Blood on the Risers" click here.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Know who rocks?

I do.
At Guitar Hero.
On the easy level.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

End of Cycle

Late last week we finished the school here in Oklahoma. I'm still here finishing out the equipment turn-in and out-processing, but training is done (except for the STD briefing we had today with all those fun pictures).

Our last week was spent out in the field. The hours were funny and a lot of the new soldiers complained about a lack of sleep, but it was no big deal to me. The second-to-the-last night we didn't go to bed until 4am. The next day we finally went to bed at 10pm and got up two hours later at midnight. We then went out on a 10-mile hike with 50 pound packs, weapon, field gear, etc.

I had no problem with it or anything, but found it funny to actually wake up 4 hours earlier than when we went to bed the night prior. Just glad the school is over. I'll be making my way to Florida on Friday to meet up with Jenn on Monday for a couple days of Walt Disney World fun and then up to Fort Lee, Virginia.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Still . . .

Here it is 14 years later and people still place momentos around the site of the bombing in Oklahoma City. When I was there I thought about that a bit, but then remembered that two years ago when I visited the Vietnam Memorial in DC a park ranger told me that many tons of items are left at the site each year and the park service doesn't throw any of it away. They have huge warehouses and just keep and store it all.
Don't know what that means to me, but it made an impression on me that somewhere in the big, crazy government at least a committee of people understood that lives lost meant something to our citizens and to respect that, all momentos would be kept and not discarded.

Murrah Federal Building

Two weekends ago I went up to Oklahoma City to visit Dan (good friend growing up) and Becca (step sister). We saw the sites there (read: Bass Pro Shop, downtown drinking district, and worlds first Sonic Drive-in). Most importantly we went and saw the memorial for the Murrah Building bombing.

I was on my mission in Ukraine when it happened so I never really heard much about it. Didn't even really learn that much while I was there as they charge an arm and a leg to go through the museum to heaven forbid, learn something. I did get a feel for the place though and sometimes that means more.

In the picture above you see the "chairs" representing each person who lost his/her life there. I didn't realize that they are sitting where the buidling was. I didn't realize they tore down the building and these trees are planted essentially in it's basement. The foundation in places is still in place and the site even though downtown was surprisingly tranquil on a freezing cold Saturday.

I found most haunting was a small area in front of where the building was. There were stairs and sitting areas, and places to hang out that were all original to the building including signs from 14 years ago which when you say it that way doesn't sound so long ago. However, there was a small grassy are there that was fenced off with a 4' fence. A sign read something like this: "This area was the playground for the children who attended day care at the building. Several of them died on the day of the blast." Now, go hug your children.

Land Nav

A couple of weeks ago we did land navigation training and testing. This is basicially where you are brought to a place in the "back country", told where you are on the map, given a list of coordinates you need to locate, and told how long you have to find them in.
It is your job to map the coordinates, plan your best route for finding all points (i.e. shortest, least amount of hills, easiest, etc.), discover which direction/asimuth (in degrees) it is to each point, discover how far each point is one from the next, and then navigate to each point using a compass and your known pace count (mine is 54 left foot falls for 100 meters).
I have done this many, many times and feel completely comfortable doing it both at night and in the day (as the test always includes both). So, I left feeling good, found all 8 of my points after covering 5.5 km or so of pretty arduous hiking terrain and assumed I had found all 8 correctly--only 5 are needed to pass. My score card was graded. I had found 3. Baloney. I found all 8. I was told that was not the case and that I would have to stay out there another 5 hours for additional training and get up again the next morning at 2:30 to retest. Baloney.
I did it and got all 8. I seriously think the grader was just messing with me. During retraining I was asked what I needed help with. My answer was, "nothing. I know what I'm doing." So, they gave me another practice paper and sent me out. I got all of those right as well. I seriously think that guy just wanted to mess with me and make me come out again early in the morning.

Sunday, March 08, 2009


Two days ago we were doing training on different weapon systems. We came to the Mk-19 which is basically a machine gun that shoots grenades. Pretty cool. The cadre member who was instructing us asked, "Who here has shot this?" A number of us who have been in the military for a while raised our hands.
He next asked, "Who has just seen this before or seen it in use?" Several others raised their hands and one said, "I saw it on that Transformers movie. It was pretty cool in that."
Ladies and gentlemen, the future leaders of your United States Army.