Thursday, November 13, 2014

#4--He Hid It Under A Towel

One would think that if a person had shit themselves that they would try to come up with as discreet a way of disposing of their underwear as possible.  Well, perhaps most people but not everyone.  Where there’s some folks that would get out the bottle of laundry detergent and clean the offending fecal matter off in the shower and then properly launder said underclothes.  That’s what most right thinking people would do.

Hell, some folks would just do well of wrapping their shat upon undergarments into a plastic shopping bag and tossing them in the nearest dumpster.  If I ever crapped myself, I would want to get rid of the evidence as soon as possible.  I wouldn't do it in a manner that aroused suspicion.

Much to my dismay, I have borne witness to people soiling themselves and then trying to hide it on more than one occasion. The first such occasion being when my division was gearing up for what we were being told was a fairly big personnel inspection.  I have no earthly idea why this one was such a big deal other than the RDC’s told us it was.  That being the case, everyone in the division went into overdrive making sure everything was as perfect as it could be.  

Now, the inspectors come in that day and start looking at everything.  No matter what branch of the military you happen to have been in, you know that you've never felt more scrutinized during one of these things.  I never actually saw it happen, but if you were told to memorize the heating instructions for a Hot Pocket; at some point in the inspection somebody would be asked to tell the inspector how long the box said to keep the damn thing in the microwave before eating it.

So we’re all standing there and out of nowhere we hear what could loosely be called a mixture of whispering and yelling at the same time.  None of us dare to look over.  However, our ears do perk up when we hear somebody say “is under your towel supposed to be where you stow your dirty laundry”?  We finish up the inspection and after which we ask some of the people near the origination of the noise what happened.  Apparently one of the guys, whose name was so unpronounceable we just called him Wojo, had taken a pair of underwear that had seen several better days and hid them under a towel.

Let me elaborate.  To save the embarrassment of taking a pair of underwear that he may have fouled and put them in for laundry, he just hit them under a towel.  A towel that immediately looked to the inspectors as if it were out of place.  They see the small lump under the towel and find a pair of shitted up briefs.  Boy, when we heard this we all remembered about how our RDC’s had told us if anything stupid happened during the inspection we were going to get this shit beaten out of us.

Getting beat, for those that don’t know doesn't actually involve getting beaten up as most understand the definition.  What it did mean, is that we were going to get exercised within an inch of our lives.  But we thought that it was just an empty threat to motivate us.  Christ were we wrong.

About an hour and a half after eating dinner, one of the RDC’s jumps up and yells at us to push all the bunks back to the walls.  Uh oh.  He then instructs somebody to shut all the windows.  This is a building with no air conditioning.  While it was still in a town north of Chicago, it was still about eighty five degrees that day.  For the next hour and a half, we were engaged in a PT session so intense that condensation was forming on the ceiling and falling gown upon us.  Was literally raining in the building.

Every single one of us had to do this, except one…Wojo.  His motivation to never do something stupid like that again was to take his pair of shitted up underwear, tape them to a broom and hold them in front of his face while marching around the barracks.  I’m not certain which of us had it worse that day.  The situation was almost like in Full Metal Jacket when Pyle stood there and ate the doughnut while everyone was doing pushups.  Needless to say, he never did it again.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

#3-Live From An Undisclosed Location Pt 2

...We come back from shopping about three hours later and the wife goes to scan through Facebook and sees about fifteen messages from him, all containing variations of “are you there” in the general body of the message.  This sets off the crazy person alarm bells.  I mean Christ, I just talked to him for forty five minutes a few hours ago.  What the hell is going on here?  My wife immediately gets into full on private investigator mode.  Now the both of us are even more concerned as to why this potential nut was so cryptic about getting our number.  As it turns out, before calling us he had gone through our entire Facebook timeline which had to have been at least the last nine months of status updates.  We found one spot where we may have left a comment to a friend about our new phone number.  There’s no fucking way I’m letting this nut into my house now.

                For the rest of the day, it seems like every other hour we’re getting another Facebook message from this guy.  I politely send him a note saying that we’re not exactly the types that are on Facebook all the time so leaving multiple messages is probably not the best course of action.  Fast forward to the next morning, where I am awakened by the phone ringing.  The VA tended to call early so I think nothing of it.  It’s Brian.  Creepy goddamn Brian.  We had a late night watching movies with our son so the time of the call to just sit and shoot the breeze was a little ill-timed on his part.  I look at the clock and it is literally three minutes after nine.  I ask him why he is calling so goddamn early and he seriously told me that it was after nine which was the time I said it was alright.  Which got me to thinking did this nut seriously wait like he was at the starting line of a goddamn footrace until Mickey’s little hand was on the nine to dial my number again?

Now, if this creeped me out you can imagine how much this creeped my wife out.  I try and tell her that I don’t know what the hell exactly happened with the guy in the years since I’d spoke with him regularly.  I send him a Facebook message later in the day telling him that his coming over for dinner when he was in town was still cool.  That may have been the last time I heard from his ass because as it turned out my wife is a great judge of character.

She quickly surmised that the guy probably wanted someone to go out and get loaded with while he was in town.  Yeah, with a wife at home I’m going to go out and play wingman to some guy that’s divorced with two or fifteen kids depending on accounts.  I quickly broke off all communication with the guy and my life has been relatively quiet ever since.

#2-Live From An Undisclosed Location

When you leave the military, especially if you were only in for four years you tend to leave quite a bit behind you.  Moore often than not, they are simple things like uniform items.  Even friendships you've made while in the military tend to fall to the wayside.  Sure, everyone collects everyone’s phone numbers and emails like you are in high school or something.  However, just like high school most of the time you never even open that address book ever again.

I was like that for a great deal of time.   Combination of memories that weren't so great mixed in with the fact that people in and people out of the military are on entirely different schedules.  You try and stay in touch, but no matter how hard you try it doesn't work out too well.  Except when you've got someone that won’t leave you the fuck alone.

Let me give a little bit of background here.  When I got out of the United States Navy, there were one or two friends that at the time I probably would have been friends with outside of that scenario.  One of which actually to my surprise kept in semi-regular contact throughout the years.  By semi-regular, I mean asked me for money whenever his wife threatened to leave him or something.  The crazy bug hadn't hit him when we were both stationed on the same ship.  Or maybe I just hadn't seen it yet.

Flash forward to the late summer of 2010.  It’s nearing the end of the summer and my wife and I are planning a trip out of town when all of a sudden the phone rings.  The caller ID says that it’s a phone number emanating from some kind of government building.  Great, the VA is calling to cancel an appointment.  Nope, instead I pick up the phone and on the other end of the line is a familiar voice.  It’s Brian, my old buddy from the navy.

Now, to this day I have no goddamn clue for sure how Brian got a hold of our phone number.  We’d only had it activated for a few months at the most.  Wasn't listed in the phone directory.  Hadn't published it accidentally anywhere online.  I say hello and the conversation goes on for a few minutes.  Turns out he’s going to be going on leave about a month and a half at the time of the initial conversation and wanted to know if we could hang out.  I say sure, why not?  What could possibly go wrong?

A hell of a lot could go wrong.  I excuse myself from the call for a moment and tell my wife who has called because to tell you the truth, I hadn't given out the phone number to anyone.  She’s still sort of thinking it was the VA.  Suddenly the light bulb goes off over my head and I ask him where exactly he’s at and how he got my phone number.  He tells me his location, which for purposes of national security I’m not sure I can disclose; so we’re just going to go with Branson, Missouri.  When I press further and ask him how he got our number he simply tells me the magic of the internet.

Now if you want to creep an old friend the hell out when you contact them for the first time in years be sure to tell them that.  This will surely get you an invitation for dinner.  About a minute after asking him this he abruptly tells me that he has to go.  Nothing sketchy about this right people?  Well, he calls back five minutes later and the conversation continues where I proceed to ask him again, more forcefully how in the hell he got our phone number.  He finally tells me something along the lines of he looked through one of our family’s social media accounts.  I say alright, and then begin to get even more confused because I know neither I nor my wife would willingly do something like that.

The conversation ends with him asking me what times are usually good to call and I inform him that I’m usually up by nine in the morning so any time after that was fine.  We then make loose arrangements for us to do something when he’s in town.  I hang up and the first thing my wife asks me is whether or not Brian is a potential mass murderer.  I tell her that he was pretty cool and that I can’t quite figure out why he was being so mysterious about getting our number.  So we end things at that and before leaving to go grocery shopping we accept his friend request.  This is where things get fucking strange....


The motivation for writing is different for many people.  For some, it’s because they have this artistic burning desire.  The author has in their mind a great story that they believe will entertain or enlighten people.  Me, I want a Winnebago..

Now, let me backtrack a bit.  Sure, I have what I believe to be some things that might entertain or enlighten you as a reader; but my true motivation is a Winnebago.  If you happen to chuckle at something I’ve written or decide to make some grand life change then an extra gold star for me.  There’s a fairly good reason for all of this.  In the summer of 2014 my wife and I traveled to Tampa, Florida.  For those of you outside of the United States, that’s where the oranges come from; and the alligators.  And some of the cocaine.

Now, we are traveling through central Florida and my wife looks out the window.  She sees a giant patch of land consisting of nothing but recreational vehicles.  I turn into a goddamned five year old and begin to tell her how amazing RV’s are.  Yeah, I’m writing this book so I can someday own a house you can drive.

Truthfully though, that’s bullshit.  At least ten percent of what you are about to read is.  Personally, I draw inspiration for the garbled nonsense contained within these pages from the fact that a few years ago Oprah grilled a guy for writing a biography when it was really mostly bullshit.  When it came time for this guy to come on her show and promote the book, she grilled him till he was burnt to a crisp about why he claimed to be an astronaut at the same time that he said he was a lumberjack in the Yukon.

So that’s where the general theme of this work is coming from.  If I were to sit and give you a complete blow by blow accounting of my life I wouldn’t even be able to afford one of those little campers you set on top of the back bed of a pickup truck, never mind a big ass RV.  Trust me, I asked my wife and she said she would rather sleep in the forest under a tarp than one of those things.  That being said, I plan to do my best to entertain you.  If you somehow learn something from this experience, than it was purely on accident.