Saturday, January 24, 2009

Check Out My New Unit

I'm new at this whole blogging thing, so in case you've "backed doored" into this blog, please go to to check out the rest of the brood I'm proud to be a part of. (Well, most of the time anyway!)


Friday, January 23, 2009

Christmas at the Arms Room

“Holy Crap are those things brand new?!“ I said it before I realized it. I walked into the arms room vault and suddenly recognized what I was there to do. All my years in the army I had never seen/smelled brand new weapons, right off the truck and out of the box. It felt like Christmas. A pyramid stack of boxes, one for each soldier. I lovingly opened boxes, ripped open bags and pulled out the new M4’s. For me it was that slightly euphoric feeling you get when you get behind the wheel of your first new car. I closed my eyes and the smell of the freshly oiled weapon (minus the smell of carbon) was something to savor. I guess the Army gives you an appreciation for things that are a little weird and most people never get lucky enough to understand. That M4 is about to become my new best friend for the next year or so and I wanted to introduce myself properly.

As I held the small weapon in my hands my mind flashed back to a time I was working security at a check point, and the Iraqi Police station across the street got mortared. I fell/flew forward toward the ground as the bits on concrete and debris rained down. But alas the whole diving for cover thing didn’t quite go as planned. The front sight post of my very cumbersome M-16 got hung up in the wire of the Hesco barrier maze, and I hung there thinking ‘This is Not good‘. I really wished I had the smaller and less cumbersome M4 that day.

So I’m trading in my M16 jalopy for a slick new M4 and couldn’t be happier. The old 16 and I shared many miles but now I’m looking forward to where my new compact is going to take me.


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Not Just A Great Band From The 70's

Well, my fellow 211th members and I have been through a lot over these past couple of months. Blood, Sweat and Tears...most of us have experienced 2 out of the 3 at some point during our time together...but yesterday we hit the triple. Bloody Sunday I think would be an appropriate thing to call it. It was I.V. stick day.

Now, having been with this group for a while, I've learned that I can trust them. (well, most of them!) They've pulled me into a second story window, yanked me to my feet when I'd fallen and couldn't get up (some of this equipment is crazy heavy!) I've seen them clear rooms, hurl grenades and fire machine guns with the greatest of ease, but somehow putting my very small veins in their medically untrained hands didn't seem so appealing.

It was an unspoken thing but as I glanced around the room at the faces of my team mates I could see the look of doubt in their eyes. I think they were doing the same thing as I...coming up with a whole new assessment of each other. Wondering who to put their trust in... Instead of the usual criteria soldiers tend to judge each other by (the strongest, fastest, smartest, etc.) a whole different evaluation was happening. We were thinking back trying to remember who hadn't winced at the bloody power point slides, didn't make vomiting sounds when the demonstrator got his IV, and most importantly, who stayed awake in class. I.V. stick day is definitely not for the faint of heart. The partner picked for this exercise became just one step short of a blood brother...that's a lot of bonding to be volunteered for.

I got pretty lucky because I got SGT Zoeller for my partner. He may have blown my vein but he has really soft and clean hands. (and I got him back!) So all in all, the Combat Life Saving Course was just another notch in the 211ths belt. Can't wait to see what new adventures the future holds.


Wednesday, October 1, 2008

This is Just A Test

Testing, testing - Is this thing on?