After all is said and done, there is only one clear choice to stop the madness of the Socialism of the USA…
Scott Brown for Senate.
It has been some time since my last post, for those that followed the deployment to the heat and sand, you can understand my absence. As much as I intended on ‘sabbatical’ from the blogging world, a very troubling story arises which brings me back in. Somewhat fitting that this story about asking the USS Constitution to use “less powder’ or stop shooting all together, turn down the volume so to speak, of both the guns and colors with the National Anthem comes on the heels of the media version of Harry Potter and the Fort Hood murders. Seems that just like we can not mention “he who shall not be named”, we can not use the terrorist word as that was stricken down from the Homeland Security Director – thus it obviously is a case of workplace violence. Totally misunderstood. It’s not like there were signs or anything…
If the timing of this story with Old Ironsides were not enough with the murders, it comes days before Veteran’s Day. What should be a day of remembrance, a day to honestly thank those who heard the call and answered their Nation. However, a very disturbing trend lately has me realizing that many loose sight of what they have, and the freedom to truly live the way they want -thanks to those who have gone before us, and those who still to this day stand guard on what we chose to preserve.
Too many will walk around that day, not even noticing the date on the calendar, and when they do, the meaning of it. Not until they see their calendar and notice the odd color of the day, or the notation designating a US Holiday while they then realize “oh, it’s veteran’s day” (lower case emphasized). It originally was designated to observe the end of WWI, thus Armistice Day. In 1954 Congress changed it’s designation and to this day is for honoring the near 25 million veterans. Of course, these same folks that will forget the day are the same ones driving around with the yellow magnets showing their “support our troops” declaration. I wonder how many eco-friendly cars in Charlestown have them on their trunks, owned by the same protesters for the the oldest commissioned vessel in our Fleet.
So where does that leave us? Those still serving. If we take the advice of one of those in the condo’s, we could just modify our standards:
Sure, forget tradition. Forget all those that went before us, and just make it 9am. Heck, let do colors at noon. Why not? There really is no more enemy – we’ve already established that from here on out we are dealing with man made disasters. Perhaps we should all just pack up, go home, turn over the guard, and wish us all the best. Let’s face it, I missed the entire 6th grade of my son’s life last year while deployed for 13 months. These condo folks must have it right; everyone loves us again – no more enemies.
What is often heard at a Navy retirement, my brothers and sisters in the Marines, Army, Air Force, and Coasties I am sure could modify to their liking; the message is the same – we stand the Watch. What happens if we no longer do that?
Aye mates, for many years…
This Man stood the watch.
While some of us lay about our bunks at night sleeping…
This Man stood the watch.
While others were with their loved ones…
This Sailor stood the watch.
While others were attending school…
This Shipmate stood the watch.
And yes, even before many of us were born…
This Shipmate stood the watch.
As our families watched the storm clouds of war, brewing on the horizons of history…
He stood the watch.
Though he saw his family ashore, often needing his guidance…
he knew he must stay…
Because he had the watch.
You silence the guns, you stop our traditions, and you create feel-good terms and think you will still wake-up to the land you love (ok, the land that you presently occupy and do what you want)? We serve so that you may enjoy the freedoms that you have. We don’t do it for recognition, we don’t do it for the medals, the plaques, the money – we swore to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same. Of course, just knowing that verbatim make us a mobster in some eyes, but we don’t worry. We stand the watch. We will die before someone comes over here and tells our children how they will have to live their lives.
We have pride. We have tradition. We have standards. Our colors do no run, and neither do we. We know the history of where we have been, and will not forget who was before us, and those still with us.
Of course, one thing those in the condos should also remember – we have pretty good aim also, and if the guns get silenced, I hope the final salvo clears all powder in the mags. Wait, did I just say that out loud ?
We have your back Old Ironsides…
Hey thanks to the Comedy Tour form Armed Forces I now know where Djibouti is located – just south of Djiballs (nice one Bryan). We have a had a number of acts during this tour of duty for me here. Hinder, Scott Stapp, American Gladiators. We have had more name cancel due to last minute flight issues, etc. Although, I still say the tour stop of Kid Rock and Kelly Pickler (definitely wanted that one) was more or less Kid Rock realizing he maxed out any community service hours he had with his last stop. This latest tour was actually delayed a day, as they got stuck in Bahrain. Vice canceling, they jumped on a commercial flight and made it out.
Spending ungodly work hours, walking 2 miles+ a day in 135 degree heat that feels like a convection oven, and sucking life with little to no bandwidth on the public wifi (the Beautiful People and offices suck up the bandwidth before it gets to the troops) – life can be mundane. I won’t even get to mentioning the First Lady, family, drive-thru junk food, and commercials, won’t go there. That would be like talking about getting up at 0200 to listen to a Game 7 playoffs, but I digress.
The chance to sit back and laugh, actually howl out loud felt good. Don Barnhart, Slade Ham, and Bryan Bruner brought the house down off 11D North, at least it felt like it. And for that, we thank you for your time…
Every now and then, a story goes unmentioned; but yet needs to be told. No need to worry as this blog brings it to you in ways unimagined. It has been near month now since the departure of the 9th PSF from here at Camp Lemonier. I am sure none of you saw the homecomings of numerous Marines as they returned home to friends, family, loved ones. CNN might have been busy, along with MSNBC covering the latest great bailout to save the economy or special project needed for immediate recovery (right). Perhaps a local news talking head made it’s way to the various tarmacs as these Marines arrived – then again, I’ll bet the under on this one as well.
It has been a month since they left, and every day here is still as empty as the day before. I met a number of them the day they hit the sand. My first introduction was calling out for the Gunny while down at the surge tents needing a few of his Marines to come and clear out extra supplies from the Induction Season with the Chiefs. Of course, at the time, Sergeant Vince Reynolds thought all hell was about to come down with some Navy Chief barking out for a Gunny. See, to many of them, Navy Chiefs – in fact Navy in general has never given them a warm and fuzzy. I’ll touch base on that subject at the end. Vince got me to Gunny Chris Smith, who in turn got me a few Marines pronto (again, every service needs to move like a Marine when directed). They were greeted with coolers full of sodas, Gatorades, food; Christmas in September? Until the berthing was ready, this group was packed into a surge tent, minimal ventilation, and double stacked. Take 150 people and put them in a room for 60, with 130+ heat. The bond began, and we were friends from day one.
This was the finest group of professional and friendly Marines I have ever truly been associated with in my life, let alone my career. Their actually job? Within less than 48 hours, the 9th PSF can land, install, and have a perimeter set for security and run an airport. Unlike the People’s Republic of Massachusetts whose mantra is “don’t kill the project” – they hit the group running, get the mission, and make it happen. However, here in DJ, they were completely out of their MOS and element. They provided the Security for the ECP=Entry Control Point. For those Squids, the Main Gate.
Being used to the traffic on 93, I would often be up early and head to Club Ray. Get out of the house before 0630 and you make a 45 minutes drive with traffice 20 minutes before the rest hit the highway. Work ethics carried here. I would be in the office, out of the CLU around 0530ish. Galley for breakfast to go. Mostly cereal vice bacon and eggs – (I think someone guessed that of me once). That time of the morning, I would see the night shift coming down the “main street” heading to the DFAC. (Yes, I said DFAC, get over it). I made it a point to say “thank you” as they went past. About a month or so of these exchanges, one of them stopped and asked “Chief, why do you say thank you every morning”? Plain and simple. Not enough people thank a Marine for the job they do. I slept soundly in my CLU night after night. No on attacked, no one threatened me – because they did the job they were tasked. Simple…
Professional? I can take a good portion of the Al Gore Internet to list all of them by name, but I don’t want to keep it from all of those on Welfare spending all the time to find a job to better them self and no longer be dependent on my tax dollars. But a few need to be mentioned by name. The CO and XO along with their immediate staff of Company/Platoon Leaders were nothing short of phenomenal (please, don’t start reciting the “Classic Poem” in your head now). They “get it”. Jay Testa is still trying to recover from the infamous photo op veiled as a Goat Roap. John Parris has a lifetime pass on any attempt at making a body disappear from evidence on that trip as well. Gunny Large organized the departure of Hercules and his partner. However, all of this pride and professionalism from every one of the troops came from the Sergeant Major James Martin. My career, and more importantly, my Sailors careers will be better just from knowing this man. Hard ass and gentle all wrapped in one Scottish Package (I may not have much longer to live with that statement), eh MacMartin? No one cared more for their people, or made sure the bull*** kept away from letting them do their job. The job is what they did – admirably.
I mentioned earlier about Chris and Vince. Along with Warrant Officer Scott Light and James, these 4 individuals were my family while here. Deployments away from family and love one suck, but saying good bye that morning after spending 7 months together have left me empty. Someday, they will be on my porch in Red Sox Nation. Of course, another toast to Vince making NCO (finally) with a Sam Adams and not a 1664.
So why am I writing about this? I ask anyone who is reading – take a minute of your time, and send an email of thanks to the 9th PSF. Everyone has heard the saying “Thank a Marine” – well do so. The SGTMAJ will ensure all his troops get your warm wishes. Too often people will drive around with a bumper sticker of yellow ‘supporting the troops” on the back of the minivan, only to be heading to a PTA meeting to vote on restricting access of military recruiters in the High School. Well, an email of thanks means more than any sticker might display. They did their job, not the one they are trained for – and exceeded. I have less than 5 weeks to make it home safely. I hope I do so. The Puerto Rican National Guard arrive this month to take over the Physical Security now that they left (the 218th Army has been covering until then).
If you are looking for a silver lining to them departing, I can tell you this – Camp still owns Camp.
Please – send a letter of thanks to Sergeant Major James Martin today and let him know they are heroes, and sadly missed by someone still.
Ok – I will honestly admit when my son first showed me the first Charlie the Unicorn, I wanted the 5 minutes or so it took to see it back in my life. However, it was like a car wreck on the highway; you know it is there, you know you should not rubberneck, but you slow down and continue to watch. Needless to say, I have not only seen 1 many times, but 2 as well.
Stop everything, because three has arrived, and bottom line; the song will remain in your head for sometime. Just remember – Starfish loves you.
For those of you living under a rock, spending all your time tagging pictures on Facebook, or watching nothing but Adam replays on youtube for his performances on American Idol, then you have no idea about the headline stories coming out of Africa these past few days. What began a few days ago has now reached epic proportions of unrest and danger here in Djibouti. Right now, we are heading into day 5 of this tragic situation and no resolution is in sight. I can not begin to tell you how many hours of sleep have been lost trying to get a resolution to this matter, but it may come down to Congressional Action, Presidential involvement – US Navy SEAL Teams, Army Delta Force. Hell, launch them all; planes, helo’s, get the destroyers involved. What ever needs to be done, it needs to be done NOW.
Ever since Monday, MLB launched their new version of MLB At Bat for the iPhone advertising that for $9.99 you could get all radio audio of every game, home or away team. To date – nothing but errors. They are blaming this on some digital equipment stuck in US Customs. Well, we are now 3 games into the Season and I have yet to hear a Red Sox game this year.
This is serious stuff over here. If this is not solved soon – we launch at noon.
BAM – Home opener against the Bills. SEP 14. might as well cancel any and all meetings at Club Ray on the 15 before noon. Can you open the season any BIGGER than the return of Brady to Moss ? This is huge and I am counting the days. Africa will soon end, and life begins again.