Friends- a funny comparison

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Get upset if you’re too busy to talk to them for a week.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Are glad to see you after years, and will happily carry on the same conversation you were having then last time you met.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Never ask for food.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Are the reason you have no food.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Call your parents Mr. And Mrs.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Call your parents mom and dad.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Bail you out of jail and tell you what you did was wrong.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Would be sitting next to you saying,”Damn…we screwed up…but man that was fun!”

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Have never seen you cry.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Borrow your stuff for a few days then give it back.
MILI TARY FRIENDS: Keep your stuff so long they forget it’s yours.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Know a few things about you.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Could write a book with direct quotes from you.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will leave you behind if that’s what the crowd is doing.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Will kick the whole crowd’s ass that left you behind.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Would knock on your door.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Walk right in and say, “I’m home!”

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Are for a while.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Have shared a few experiences…
MILITARY FRIENDS: Have shared a lifetime of experiences no Civilian could ever dream of…

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will take your drink away when they think you’ve had enough. MILITARY FRIENDS: Will look at you stumbling all overthe place and say, “You better drink the rest of that, you know we don’t waste…that’s alcohol abuse!!” Then carry you home safely and put you to bed…

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will talk crap to the person who talks crap about you.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Will knock them the hell out for using your callsign in vain.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will ignore this.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Will forward this.

And ya know, with a few notable exceptions in my life, this is pretty much true… sigh…

My retirement job

This is what I want to do when I retire to Hawaii…

I want to be the guy that grooms the beach! Great working hours- 0200-0700, no pressure, no bosses!

Just ride around on my little tractor and groom the beach on Wakiki…

Be done by 0700 and on the golf course by 0800; yeah, yeah, that’ll work 🙂

Hmmm, now I just have to marry someone rich enough to actually afford to LIVE in Hawaii…

Since we are six days into this trip, I was asked how my body clock was holding up. I think it’s on permanent snooze at this point; I don’t know which end is up! Of course the Friday night fireworks (real fireworks on the beach at Wakiki) outside the window last night just after I got to sleep didn’t help. Talk about a RUDE awakening!

It’s now 1900 and I’m craving breakfast, this morning I was wanting a steak… Since we are having our one good meal of the trip night, I guess I’ll get a steak tonight and hope I want eggs in the morning.

A little bit of history- Anybody want to take a guess at what this is???
It is being refurbished to be part of a museum-
It’s the original WWII control tower at Ford Island, Hawaii. It is going to be refurbished as part of the new museum at Ford Island. They promised NOT to patch the bullet holes.
Seriously folks, if you get out this way, take time to see Pearl Harbor, the USS Arizona, The new Olkahoma Memorial and the USS Missouri and WWII museum at Ford Island. This is an eye opening set of places and history that is very important in our country. Sadly, soon we will not have any WWII Veterans left who were actually there.

This is a goody…

In a news conference Deanna Favre announced she will be the starting QB for the Packers this coming Sunday. Deanna asserts that she is qualified to be starting QB because she has spent the past 16 years married to Brett while he played QB for the Packers.

During this period of time she became familiar with the definition of a corner blitz, and is now completely comfortable with other terminology of the Packers offense. A survey of Packers fans shows that 50% of those polled supported the move.

Does this sounds idiotic and unbelievable to you?

Well, Hillary Clinton makes the same claims as to why she is qualified to be President and 50% of democrats polled agreed. Yet she has never run a City, County, or State.

When told Hillary Clinton has experience because she has 8 years in the white house, Dick Morris stated “So has the pastry chef”.

The plain facts are that NO ONE is prepared to be the President of the United States- There is no prep school or qualification track…

What we really need is someone who will return the US to it’s roots, dump the PC crap and clean up the immigration problem with mass deportations after they build a wall across Texas and Canadian borders.


Now the crap really starts…

Is it just me, or has the whole politics, running for office BS just gotten totally out of hand???

The positioning yesterday and today by the MSM and the politicians was just ridiculous! Also, the dirty tricks campaigns are now in full swing-

One egregious example was the supposed ready to withdraw comment by Fred Thompson- Even after he went on a number of programs to deny it, the MSM was still carrying it last night. Guess ole Fred has some people worried!

Huckybucky was winning the Iowa, but all you heard was how far behind he is in New Hampshire, and how badly he will do in other states…

Romney was back peddling like he’d stepped on a snake, “Oh, we didn’t think we would win in Iowa, we’ll be happy with a Silver…” Or words to that effect.

On the democrap side, I really thought B. Hussein Obama was gonna do a Dean when he found out he won, and of course Billary is waving Iowa off now as inconsequential…

Which reminds me- Who in the hell decided Iowa and New Hampshire are the designated states to ‘determine the election’?

It makes MUCH more sense to me to have national primaries all on the same day, that way you would get a much truer vote, we wouldn’t be submerged in all this rhetoric and the primaries could be held in May so we would only have six months of this crap instead of 2 years.

One nice thing about all the election signs, they make great target backers for the range 🙂

Oh yeah, just heard on the news that some climatology researchers are now saying we are due for a major cooling spell, potentially lasting through 2040 or 2050! Maybe Time can re-run the 1970’s global freeze headline again…

On an admin note:
Sadly due to spammers, I have had to increase security for access to the comments on here. Sorry folks…

I’m going to be out of pocket for a couple of weeks, so there may not be much blogging till I get back.

Happy new Year!

May you get a clean bill of health from your dentist, your cardiologist, your gastro-enterologist, your urologist, your proctologist, your podiatrist, your psychiatrist, your plumber and the IRS.

May your hair, your teeth, your face-lift, your abs and your stocks not fall; and may your blood pressure, your triglycerides, your cholesterol, your white blood count and your mortgage interest not rise.

May New Year’s Eve find you seated around the table, together with your beloved family and cherished friends.

May you find the food better, the environment quieter, the cost much cheaper, and the pleasure much more fulfilling than anything else you might ordinarily do that night.

May what you see in the mirror delight you, and what others see in you delight them.

May someone love you enough to forgive your faults, be blind to your blemishes, and tell the world about your virtues.

May the telemarketers wait to make their sales calls until you finish dinner, may the commercials on TV not be louder than the program you have been watching, and may your check book and your budget balance – and include generous amounts for charity.

May you remember to say “I love you” at least once a day to your spouse, your child, your parent, your siblings; but not to your secretary, your nurse, your masseuse, your hairdresser or your tennis instructor.

And may we live in a world at peace and with the awareness of God’s love in every sunset, every flower’s unfolding petals, every baby’s smile, every lover’s kiss, and every wonderful, astonishing, miraculous beat of our heart.

Happy New Year 2008!

Random Airport Observations…

Well, the Christmas travel is over, and I survived the trip…

However, I did get to spend a ‘little’ extra time sitting at the airport waiting for an airplane to show up (Like 7 hours)…

Soooo, random observations:

Why oh why do people think it is so cool to bring their dogs, especially the small yappy ones, in their cars? When the owners get out to help the family member leaving, there goes the little mutt, out in traffic, damn near causes a wreck because the idjit owner tries to chase it…

Then there was the lady with the cat hidden in her purse- A guy brings a large Black Lab in to put it in the crate; dog smells cat, pulls away from owner, barges through the line to the handbag with the cat and barks. Cat proceeds to come straight up out of the bag, run across numerous people, closely pursued by dog, pandemonium ensues! The cat finally landed on top of the reservations counter, the Lab was up on the counter with his front legs, and both owners were yelling at each other (and I couldn’t get to my damn camera)!

There was also a sleazy boyfriend, dropped off the girlfriend; kisses hugs, promise of undying love, she hadn’t even cleared the doors, and he was on his cell phone, “Hi honey, I just dropped my cousin off, can I come pick you up now?” This was at 0600.

There was the obligatory Bleach Blonde Bimbo (BBB), she of the pneumatic chest and pneumatic hair and other body parts… There were about 10-12 people in line, she walks to the front of the line and tells the lady, “I just HAVE to make the 0800 flight (it was about 0745); so you need to help me first.”

Of course the rest of the line went off, along with the CSR, who politely told her she had to get in line and wait her turn. Of course, BBB immediately threw a hissy fit, screaming at the CSR and calling everyone in line the B-word according to sex…

When the deputy showed up, the BBB claimed she was wronged, the CSR cussed her out and wouldn’t help her, etc. Numerous people still in line were calling BS, and told the deputy what really happened.

The Thousands Standing Around (TSA) were being their usual obnoxious selves, SSSS’ing an 86 year old lady for extra security checks, because she only had a expired passport for ID, since she no longer drives. Obvious security concern…

Another one was telling a Soldier in uniform that he had to take off boots, belt, BDU top, etc. to get through the machine, and that his pack would have to be searched, because they ‘thought’ there might be some liquids in it. Another obvious security concern…

Finally got through the gauntlet, TSA was still tearing the Soldier’s pack apart, and trying to tell him that it was too big and he would have to go check it. I saw him later, so he did finally get through, but I’m pretty sure he missed his flight.

Sooo… get to the gate, and no airplane, and one not expected for one, then two, then four hours. WX hold and crewing issues because of DIA and ORD tied the system in knots.

A nice little old lady was sitting near me, and her phone would ring about every 15-20 minutes. Turns out her son was calling to see if she had left, and wanting to know if she wanted him to come back and sit with her. She got pretty annoyed at one point, and told him she was ONLY 90 and could take care of herself!

Bravo to her! I hope I’m that feisty, hell I just hope I MAKE 90…

Anyway, we FINALLY got a bird and off we went. Many more stories, but since this a ‘family’ type blog, I will refrain from commenting…


Okaaayyyyy… We made it through yet another Christmas…

Contrary to Larry the Cable Guy, ‘most’ of the greetings I heard this year were Merry Christmas, not Happy Holidays; maybe, just maybe, the PC police lost this one…

There is nothing like the pleasure of watching the Grandson tear into his presents, ripping the expensive paper and bow and trampling it underfoot. Ah, payback… 🙂

On a lighter note, Christmas dinner was excellent, even if the kids did cook it. Oldest daughter cooked her first turkey on her own, and it was actually good! Of course, I am now at the point that I don’t want to even SEE another %^&* turkey until next Thanksgiving…

Crass commercializm is yet again rearing it’s ugly head, with all the after Christmas sales, my only question is- Who can get up, much less move after eating the obligitory 3.2 lbs of turkey, plus trimmings, plus desert???

Oh yeah, and why is it the Christmas present I bought for $159 is now $89 on sale? Hmmm, now if I can guess the Grandson’s size, I can go shopping today and get good prices for Christmas next year.

Oh yeah, Discovery channel had a special on fruit cake yesterday, according to the manufacturer, their fruit cakes only last 6 months, not years…

Well, after a round of turkey sandwich, pie, etc. the tryptophan is kicking in again, so I think I’ll go take another nap…


Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all!
Please take a moment today to remember those who are far from home defending our freedom.

Rest easy, sleep well my brothers.

Know the line has held, your job is done.

Rest easy, sleep well.

Others have taken up where you fell, the line has held.

Peace, peace, and farewell.


Merry Christmas or PC Greeting- Your choice

Greeting A:

Please accept with no obligation, implied or implicit, my best wishes for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low-stress, non-addictive, gender-neutral celebration of the winter solstice holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the religious persuasion of your choice, or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasion and/or traditions of others, or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all. I also wish you a fiscally successful, personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year 2008, but not without due respect for the calendars of choice of other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make America great. Not to imply that America is necessarily greater than any other country nor the only America in the Western Hemisphere. Also, this wish is made without regard to the race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith or sexual preference of the wishee.

Greeting B:
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


Been there, done that . . . . And I have multiple copies of my “Certificate of Completion” to prove it . . . . Mine was Jan 1972.

This was posted recently on a “Fighter Pilot” board. It will be very familar to a lot of us that have been to Warner Springs.

A SERE-ing Experience for Tens of Thousands of US Military Personnel by Cdr. Frank ‘Spig’ Wead [“Spig” Wead is the pseudonym of a retired Naval aviator who served in the post-Vietnam era.]

Water-boarding, like many other interrogation techniques, could be torture in the hands of a sadist. But — as the following article demonstrates — it can be an effective interrogation technique and an essential tool of training, as it has been for US Navy and Air Force pilots.

“Train like you Fight, Fight like you Train” is the motto of the world’s most elite pilots, the US Navy’s. Based on lessons learned from survivors of the brutal North Korean and North Vietnam torture of US military prisoners of war, the Department of Defense ordered all branches of the services to implement comprehensive Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (S.E.R.E.) training programs. Every member of Congress should be extremely well versed on the military S.E.R.E. programs since they have had direct oversight and funding of these programs for over 40 years. Viewing the most recent Congressional hearing, one must assume that they are ignorant of or intentionally misrepresent the very programs that they fund and support.

My personal experience with S.E.R.E. training came as a junior pilot flying the F-14A “Tomcat” at NAS Miramar, California. The US Navy S.E.R.E. program requires all Aircrew Members and members of Special Operation Teams (SOF) to undergo both classroom and field experience in these vital techniques. Classroom and field training was accomplished by a cadre of highly trained and disciplined personnel, many of whom had been held as POW’s and tortured by the North Vietnamese.

What actually happens in S.E.R.E. in the field? Classes of 40 or more “students” are put through beach and water (swimming) survival techniques, similar to the TV show “Survivor” but without the rewards challenges. The class is then moved to a remote location to survive and evade prior to entering the US Navy run POW camp. The operation of the evasion complex is based on the trainee being briefed on the enemy position and the location of friendly forces. The object, “to make like a bush”, be patient and deliberate and use all your new taught skills to evade a large contingent of simulated enemy combatants in uniform. They speak like the enemy, act like the enemy, and most importantly train you on how to react to the enemy. While they fire AK-47’s over your head, and search for the ugly “American War Criminals” (thanks Jane), you spend agonizing hours crawling and hiding in an attempt to reach safety.

As in real life, few if any make it to safety when behind enemy lines.
When captured you are brought to an initial holding facility. Hands and feet bound and hooded you are thrown into a barbed wire holding cell. As a former football player and wrestler I felt confident that I had that “John Wayne” attitude, Name, Rank and Serial Number….nothing more.

Life and the Navy were about to teach this million dollar trained, blond headed, college, Fly Boy a new and most important lesson.

When brought into the first “interrogation”, hooded and hands bound, I was asked the basic questions, no problems…then I was asked a question
— the first among many not permitted under the Geneva Convention.
Congress, the media and some of the public have forgotten a very basic and important tenant of the Geneva Convention. Terrorists, insurgents, IED Specialists, Suicide Bombers and all those not wearing a uniform in war are not in any form protected by the Geneva Convention. I did not answer the interrogators’ questions: then the fun and games began.

Carefully using a technique of grabbing your shirt at the pockets and wrapping his fists so that his knuckles pressed into the muscles of my breast plate, the instructor flung me across the room karate style and into a corrugated wall. No more questions; around and around the room I flew, a dance which while blind folded and hooded made me feel like “Raggedy Andy” in a tug of war with two bullying kids. Following the first interrogation we were loaded into trucks, bound and hooded, head to who knows were…for the first time real fear starts to set in and you look for inner strength in your heart, training and comrades.

Arriving at the POW Camp I was kept hooded and placed in a small box, 2 feet wide, 3 feet long and maybe 3 feet high. I was left the fetal position, sitting on my butt, stripped nearly naked (just week old BVD’s) and left sealed with your defecation can inside your box. Heat, cold, isolation, no communications, and constant noise, music, propaganda, coupled with verbal abuse by your captors is the norm, 24/7.

Every twenty minutes or so the guards come by your box and rattle it, sneaking up and demanding to hear your War Criminal Number (thanks again, Jane, for the classification). No more name, rank or serial number, they want some real answers to real security questions. You agonize in your isolation as your hear other members of your group being pulled out for more “personal one on one interrogation”. Then it’s your turn. Pulled from your box you are again brought in for questioning. If unhappy with your answers or no answers, the “Raggedy Andy” dance began again with vigor in the cold night air.

Then it was time for the dreaded waterboard. What I didn’t know then, but I do now, is that as in all interrogations, both for real world hostile terrorists (non-uniformed combatants) and in S.E.R.E. a highly trained group of doctors, psychologists, interrogators, and strap-in and strap-out rescue teams are always present. My first experience on the “waterboard” was to be laying on my back, on a board with my body at a 30 degree slope, feet in the air, head down, face-up. The straps are all-confining, with the only movement of your body that of the ability to move your head. Slowly water is poured in your face, up your nose, and some in your mouth. The questions from interrogators and amounts of water increase with each unsuccessful response. Soon they have your complete attention as you begin to believe you are going to drown.

Scared, alone, cold and in total lack of control, you learn to “cooperate” to the best of your ability to protect your life. For each person that level of cooperation or resistance is different. You must be tested and trained to know how to respond in the real combat world.

Escape was the key to freedom and reward.

Those students escaping would be rewarded with a meal (apple, and PB&J
sandwich) was what we had been told by our instructors. On my next journey to interrogation I saw an opportunity to escape. I fled into the woods, naked and cold, and hid. My captors came searching with AK-47’s blazing, and calls to “kill the American War Criminal” in broken English. After an hour of successfully evading, the voices called out in perfect English. “O.K., problem’s over…you escaped, come in for your sandwich.” When I stood up and revealed my position I was met by a crowd of angry enemy guards, “stupid American Criminal”! Back to the Waterboard I went.

This time we went right to the water hose in the face, and a wet towel held tightly on my forehead so that I could not move my head. I had embarrassed my captors and they would now show me that they had total control. The most agonizing and frightful moments are when the wet towel is placed over your nose and mouth and the water hose is placed directly over your mouth. Holding your breath, bucking at the straps, straining to remain conscious, you believe with all your heart that, that, you are going to die.

S.E.R.E. training is not pleasant, but it is critical to properly prepare our most endangered combat forces for the reality of enemy capture. Was I “tortured” by the US military? No. Was I trained in an effort to protect my life and the lives of other American fighting men?

Yes! Freedom is not Free, nor does it come without sacrifice. Every good American understands this basic principle of our country and prays for the young men and women who have sacrificed and are out on the front lines protecting us today.

Now, let’s see Congress: Maybe forty or so students per week, let’s say 100 minimum per month, 1,200 per year for over twenty or thirty years?
It could be as many as 40,000 students trained in S.E.R.E. and “tortured” at the direction of, and under the watchful eye of the Congressional Majorities on both sides of the aisle. Be careful that the 40,000 of us who you have “tortured” don’t come after you today with tort claims. I heard it pays about $3 million per claim.

Congress, you need to get the politics out of the war zone and focus on your job. Gaining information in non-lethal interrogations against non-uniformed terrorists is what is protecting our country today. If you had done your job the past twenty years perhaps one of my favorite wingmen in the F-14A would be alive today.

Lt Tom “Stout” McGuinness of the VF-21 “Freelancers” went through S.E.R.E. training during my tenure. But when it came down to the crisis moment, his “interrogators” did not give him the waterboard. They merely went into the cockpit of American Airlines Flight 11, slashed Tom’s throat, and flew the first aircraft into the North Tower of World Trade Center on 9/11.
Congress, let me ask you a very simple question about your leadership and your sworn responsibility. It is a yes or no question, and you have a personal choice to make.

Would you endorse the use of a waterboard interrogation technique against a terrorist like Mohamed Atta al Sayed, the leader of the highjacking of American Airlines Flight 11 or not. The answer for me is simple: “turn on the hose.” If you answer anything else, then God help America because Tom died in vain.

On a personal note- When they raised the American Flag on the 5th and final day, 30+ grown men stood there shivering and crying like babies at the sight of the Stars and Stripes. Even today, 35 years later, I am tearing up as I write this, remembering that day…