Simmer, Boys

The powers that be sat in their cloud hammocks, digesting holy grapes, dismissing scantily clad virgins who at the time were fanning them with gigantic palm fronds, and quickly hatched a clever scheme.

"Say there, why don't we have our little minions don all of their gear and walk around for an hour and a half or so in 105 degree weather?"

"Mmmyes, marvelous!"

A thunderclap later, we were outside. Full kit. Drink water, girls. The purpose was to demonstrate that we really want to drink water, so that when we one day roll out of the gate (assuming that there really IS an Iraq and I really DID take the red pill), we will be able to withstand the horrid heat and blasphemous amounts of constrictive gear that will magically save us all from exploding pintos and ninjas with throwing stars and whatever else lurks around every corner.

Wasn't too bad.

Oh my, where has my sense of chronology gone? Earlier in the day, we took a couple strykers out for a little drive around the FOB for one reason or another. So we fueled the big green monsters up and wandered seemingly aimlessly around until we were good and hungry.

"That's more amazing than the miracle of drying paint. What did you see?"

Well I'm glad you asked. There were very narrow roads, foolishly narrow, logic-defyingly narrow roads. Perfect for accomodating a monstrously large combat vehicle with a big ugly birdcage jutting out several feet in all directions. I would say that the city planner should be shot, but knowing this country, its probably already happened long ago.

Along these narrow roads were palm-type trees. Groovy. Little shrubbery and vegetation here and there and some actually bits of flora that could pass as flowers. There was also a beautifully disgusting lake most likely filled with the type of sludge that would probably preclude you from ever coming back into the United States, should the fetid water ever touch your skin.

The sky looked the way it always does around here. Blue, mainly up top. The horizon is always a sandy haze, and it goes up for quite a bit until it fades into almost clear sky. The scope that the haze encompasses sort of reminds me of playing with a colander when I was young and equally stupid. Don't worry, I don't expect that one to make much sense.

Black Hawks flew overhead, all of this painting a lovely picture, irrefutable evidence that I am deployed to another planet. And all of this spectacle coming together, well it couldn't possible mean...

Why yes it does. Yes it does indeed. We drove alongside a palace. Nothing too huge, but pretty damn spiffy, with all the traditional Middle Eastern design. Same color as the sand. This world would be so monochromatic without us here. I guess that's what this war is about. Stirring up the color scheme to make this place more aesthetically pleasing. A fine reason if you ask me.

That aside, as we drove down these roads that were tighter than a politician's sphincter, cars would pull over as far past the curb as they could without mashing into tropical trees and we'd eek our way past them.

At one point, we were crossing this little bridge, and someone in the oncoming lane feels that they too should cross this particular bridge at this juncture in time. Thanks, guy. Both of us are crawling, hugging the curbs. There's inches between us, if that. On my right is a speed limit sign. My vehicle commander is frantically issuing conflicting orders, "Go, stop, right, left, FUCK!"

The sign snags on the cage armor that makes our vehicles such a lovely sight to behold. It twists the top sideways, and we creep along. It snags again on another part of the cage. My VC finally decides that there is nothing we can do, and must push on so as not to hold up traffic any worse. So I commence driving.

From what they told me, the sign, the pole, and a chunk of concrete were all ripped out of the ground. Good. Fuck you, sign. Stay out of our way. We informed our next chain of command about it, so whatever, its out of my hands.

I almost hope someone really important reads this and yanks my license. Hahahaha.

EDIT: So there we were, eating dinner in the chow hall. Ten minutes goes by and I'm staring at my friend across the table from me with the evil eye, which makes him slightly uncomfortable and susceptible to small bouts of awkward laughter, when a loud BANG! echoes through the DFAC (Dining Facility).

EVERYONE is instantly silent, all looking in the same direction the noise came from. A thousand reflexes. For those of you familiar with the Metal Gear Solid games, where the ! appears above the head of an alerted enemy, it was pretty much that on a mass scale.

A balloon popped. Happy Cinco De Mayo.


  1. Anonymous said...
    Don't ever stop writing on this blog, no matter what "they" say!!!
    I can't tell you how much it means to me, and I'm sure others who read this.
    A 4/2 mom
    Anonymous said...
    This is my favorite post to date. You have the gift of writing. You make me proud. So you shall have some cookies. Watch the mailin 7-10 days. Love you
    Jenni said...
    uh oh...Mom's making cookies! don't worry, i'll sample one to make sure they're edible ;)
    Anonymous said...
    Oh Oh, Your Mom is sending cookies. Good thing you are already in Iraq. In many countries that is an act of war. It certainly is against the Geneva Convention. You may want to alert those people who hunt for WMD's.
    Be good
    Uncle David
    Anonymous said...
    a friend turned me onto your blog....she said you had a way with words, and i have to agree.
    you have quite the talent ~ i'll have to stop in here more often
    take care
    "tool fan diane"
    Anonymous said...
    You're becoming an icon around here. I never pictured you as a cult, but then again after reading your myspace blog I guess it's possible! Your care package has turned into a care crate. I never knew women in Spokane liked to bake so many cookies! Keep up w/ the great blogs.

    Aunt Sandy
    HOOCH said...
    "I would say that the city planner should be shot, but knowing this country, its probably already happened long ago."

    Once again i give you Hooch's chosen quote of the day. By the way i just went to the board today...e-4P sounds so stupid...i would have logged on myspace but well....i'm lazy....the sky is blue and yes the pope is catholic.
    Anonymous said...
    i am about a lifetime late in reading this, but good GOD you are hilarious.

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