Monday, January 30, 2006

Fun and Games

Dear Gang,

Sometimes you try to find a laugh out of everyday ordinary events. There are folks out here who don’t have to try hard--it just happens. Yesterday , for example, we had some Army Blackhawks out front that needed fuel for their helicopters. They called me and requested what we call “Cold Fuel” (that’s where a truck brings out the gas while their engines are shut down). Not a problem, I find out how much and call the “Truck Stop” to bring the required fuel out. Now here is the fun part.

The truck arrives with two Marines. One pulls the hose out of the truck while his partner is up at the control panel. When the hose is fully extended next to the fuel port for the Army Crew chiefs to fuel the plane, the Marine on the control panel charges the hose with fuel. It’s not something you would notice or be able to see since it’s a big round hose, but once it’s charged and full of fuel, it weighs about 500 pounds. You normally would hook it up to the fuel port first then charge it. Are you catching my drift yet? These two big Army Crew chiefs go over to pick up this hose that only one Marine has just pulled out and they can hardly move it now. They call for the third guy to come over and help them. Sweat starts to glisten across their brows as they man-handle this hose up and maneuver it to the fuel portal on the side of the aircraft. These boys are tuckered out by the time it’s all said and done.

They disconnect the hose and the reel on the truck rewinds it back into the holder. Moving down a hundred feet they come to the next chopper. The second Marine pulls the hose back out again and the Army guys are looking at each other like, “Oh man, not again, what a pain!!!” Actually I think the words that came out were more like “The Son of a Bitch weighs a ton!!!” The young Marine is standing there watching them shaking their heads as they look at the hose. He moves them aside and says “let a Man do this” and acts like it’s a lot to move (but in reality, the hose isn’t charged or heavy) and connects the hose to the plane. “Ok, that’s how it’s done here,” he says. Then, he moves off and his partner charges the hose and fills the plane. The Crew chief, not to be out-done, takes it off and just about loses it because now the hose is charged and weighs 500 pounds again. Down it goes on to his steel-toed boots which extracts a fine explosion of choice #$%^&%$#* words. Once again, our Marine hero helps guide the retreating hose back into the truck. I don’t think the Army guys ever realized they were being had!!

We have a young Marine in the office who is smart, but falls for some of the games we play. The other day I was going to scavenge some pieces off an old wrecked Russian jet fighter out in the scrap yard. “Hey Leghound,” I call over to him as he is sitting at his post with a walkman on full blast. He turns around, eyes begging to get out of the office because I banned video games on the office television, and says, “Yes Sir?” I say, “the Gunny and I are going to pull some parts off of the old Russian Jet. Do you think you can go down to the Air Traffic Control guys and see if they have a left-handed metric crescent wrench?” He repeats the instructions and the fun begins.

An email had been sent out earlier to the different shops requesting young Leghound to be spun in circles on this errand. He ends up at two other shops, frustrated because no one seems to have a “left-handed metric crescent wrench, you know, the only kind you can use to work on those crappy Russian birds.” Disappointed, he returns empty-handed. “That’s Ok,” I tell him, “no big deal.” We waited a week and then tasked him with finding “100 yards of flightline.” He figured that one out pretty quick when they took him out to all the planes on the “Flightline” and he realized it’s not rope.

The classic today was when VMU (Unmanned Aerial Vechicle squadron) called over asking for a fifty-five gallon drum of “prop wash” to take care of their planes. Only this was a buddy of mine on the phone. We made it sound genuine so the bait was taken. “Hey Leghound, could you call over to the Squadron and see if they have some “prop wash” that they get from the rotors that we could use?” This took about 15 minutes until someone started laughing at him on the phone and busted our little fun. It’s definitely the end of the deployment when we play these games…

Now when you leave this place, sometimes you leave a little present behind for the next set of guys. One group put two cups of milk up in the rafters of the tent by the lights overhead. You couldn't see the suckers up there, but after about 2 days of 112 out, the milk started to pump out the most insidious putrid smell as it wafted down to the occupants below. They thought there were dead rats or dogs under the floor boards until one sharp set of eyes spotted the cups up around the top of the tents. I know the homeward bound bubba's were laughing all the way back to the states about that one and bets on how long it would take the others to find the source of the smell.

Then there are other surprises that you might find in your rack (bed) at night when you return. There is a Nurse here named Naomi, a petite very active nurse who is full of hot air and likes to pay visits to your room at night. Sometimes you are there and photo's are taken while you sleep, and sometimes while you are on leave, these photo's of Nurse Naomi keeping your bed warm will be mailed to your house. Even though she is full of hot air, strangely enough, she doesn't say much. I have attached a picture of her above hanging out in the rafters waiting for the next victim to pounce on. I'm happy to say that the nurse is still a virgin as much as she tries and that is only because she stays away from the Grunts on base!!
Ah, life in Iraq. This makes it go by so much faster…take care and I’ll talk to you later. OOOOHhhhh RRRRRRhhhhaaaaaaa

Semper Fi,


Dear Gang,
You know, call signs and acronyms are abundant in the Military and the Marines so I thought I would talk about that today for those of you new to my blog. This will help you non-military types understand the lingo that you may encounter out there in Cyberland when reading other MilBlogs.

As a pilot, you usually get a call sign for doing something stupid or its part of your name somehow. I think I could write a book based solely on this topic. As a former KC 130 pilot with the last name of Bell, and the type guy whose love of Mexican food causes massive odiferous odors to exude from my orifice, well, there you go...TacoBell. There is a flight surgeon running around out there named “Warf” because of his bad hair transplant, his head looks like the security officer from Star Trek TNG. Poor guy never figured out why he was always losing at poker when it was his night to host the game… in his office and his examination mirror was right behind him.

We had a Sgt. named Reilly, but we called him ripsaw because he could tear through anything and get the job done. Of course there was Major Ward, “Wardo”, and his constant copilot, “Muscles” (liked to work out and he was big too). Then it’s not to hard to imagine why some are called what they are, there is “Toecheese” (smelly boots-socks-feet, “Cocheese” (part Indian), and “Chowhound” (would eat your hand if it’s too close to his tray). With a last name like Flanagan, of course his call-sign is “Father” but we can’t forget the best one like “Wedge” (because he was the simplest tool known to man). Others I recall were “Rainman”, “Sticks”, “C.B.” (chatter box, she talks a lot), “HeHaw” , “Chuckles”, “Chunky” (puked in his helmet bag in flight school and it’s stuck since). I always liked my buddy Malcolm’s callsign “Roth La Doad”, (red on the head like a dick on a dog) or my old roommate at another base, “YFB” –Young Fighting Blanch. Then my other buddy there “Tattoo” a Huey pilot, remember fantasy Island (ZZZeee Plane Boss). We call our young lance Cpl “Leg Hound” because he’s like my Colonel’s old dog, which would take off chasing the UPS van and not come home for hours. This kid will get the keys to our vehicle to make a short errand, then three hours later he’ll be spotted on the other side of the base with the windows down, head bouncing up and down, cover tilted to the side and country music blaring. We were just short of having the QRF (quick reaction force) plant him down face first on the deck for grand theft auto. We ended up putting a BOLO (Be on the look out) out on all the radios for our LegHound.

Then you are running around trying to figure out the chat stuff on the computer such as “Mams” military aged male suspect and BB’s are Burka Babes. BBGW’s refers to the gals washing their clothes along the river banks but that is in hopes that they would take it off and go swimming (never happens) then they would be Burka Babes gone wild. “Tits” (kids who are doing the dirty work digging IED holes hence Terrorist in Training), “NP” no problem, “TY” thank you, “C/S” call sign, “ISO” in support of, and of course ETD/ETA not to be confused with IED or IDF (Improvised Explosive device/In Direct Fire). SAF should sound like special armed forces but means Small arms fire while the “TIC” is troops in contact and CBRU is cancelled by requesting Unit.

The “head” is a bathroom, “deck” is floor, “hatch” is a door, “butts” are cigarettes, “Smoking deck” is a place to smoke said cigarettes. The chow hall is just that, the hodgies (really Hadji’s but Hodge is a buddies name) are either the name of the guys working in the chow hall who are really “TCN’s” (third world country nationals) and the “LCN’s” (Local country Nationals, Iraqi’s in this case) or the guys lobbing rockets at you. I prefer Chucklehead for the bad guys, although, Ass clowns has been tossed around a lot. The Hodgies or TCN’s who have the market on the haircuts here are really from Tibet and nice guys. They give you a hair cut and short massage which we call the Hodgie Man Massage, not to be construed with “HML” Hodgie Man Love stuff that goes on, another subject. (read a book called the Arab mind)

Skids are Hueys, and slicks are Cobra’s and the CH-46 is called a Phrog (Frog) and they are all located on the Lilly pad, their tie-down area. You’ll hear guys talk about the “Big Voice” which is the alarm that goes off when we get rocket attacks. All time is in the 24 hours fashion 0100 is 1am thru 12pm then add 12 to the twelve hours so 1pm for you is 1300 for us. We run on Zulu time which is English time but we’re 3 hours ahead here so “C” time is Zulu plus three, most confusing if someone tells you the VIPs are showing up at 1300 and the entire staff is out waiting for Senator X to arrive only that was really 1600 local… you can see the problems that arise from that. Well I hope you gained a better understanding of our language here, not as hard as say German, but it does takes a bit of getting used to. Everything here is "GTG" good to go, so you guys have a “kick butt” day and I’ll talk to you soon.
Semper Fi,

Friday, January 27, 2006

Bad Timber

Dear Gang,
There is a fellow back home In California, who is doing his job. Writing. I would say that he is very successful and with his last little OpEd piece, will get a lot of attention for a long time. I give him credit because he did his job, right, wrong or indifferent on how you feel, emotions aside, he has you talking. Now I feel sorry for the S.O.B. because what he wrote might be the straw that broke the “Camels” back for some guy that has been over here in Iraq fighting and he might go pay this nameless person a visit one night. I believe that he wrote this to get people fired up and mad on purpose. Why? The Attention of course!!! My Mom said “doesn’t this make you mad son?” And I can say “No”. Now, would I waste my urine on the guy if he was burning in his wrecked SUV out in L.A.? Probably not, but then again, I’m trained to help everyone so I might toss a couple of drops on him before I rescued his sorry “I hate the military, don’t know what is going on in the world” Ass.

Since he is now nameless, we’ll call him Mr. AssClown. I have more respect for the Anti- war guys who have actually been embedded with the troops here and taken fire. At least they have an understanding of what’s going on. We are fighting religious nuts over here. They have no uniforms, they follow no politics, they are just crazy religious Zealots (Chuckleheads) who are willing to give their life up for no good reason. They would kill this nameless Assclown in a Los Angeles minute (might take hours if you count freeway time) and every other none believer because they are not the same religion.

I have no problem with Mr. Assclown running his pie-hole and spewing madness, he is only doing what he has the right to do in the U.S. and what we as the Military are paid to protect this right for him to do. We have a Government, a President and leaders who allow this form of free speech to happen. If you don’t like something, then change it!! Get out and vote to make a change. That is what they have done here in Iraq. They voted to put the person in power who they feel will help them best. That is a privilege we have as Americans, but so few take advantage of during the elections. Too busy I guess, maybe the traffic was too bad; it’s easier to bitch out loud at Starbucks while you’re drinking you low fat double diet Pepsi latte’ with just a hint of Madagascar spice while you watch Communist News Network on cable television.

I will get off my soap box now, but really, just treat this nameless indigent like the tree in the Forest… if no one is around and it falls, does it make a noise??? You guys have a great day and if you are reading this Mr. AssClown, I understand you were doing your job, but try to remember the next police officer who pulls you over, just may be a former Jarhead, so keep your anti-military comments to yourself during that stop. But if you ever desire to see what we do and feel the urge to strap on a flakvest, we’ll be here for you 24/7. OOOOHHHH RRRRRRhhhaaaa MARINES!!


Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Redman and Rotten eggs

Dear Gang,
Well in the light of my glass half full, here is a post that hopefully will bring a smile to your face. This happened three months ago and is a bit of old news. The hardest part about writing is to make sure I don’t violate any operational security directives. That’s why you may only read the mundane side of life here and not the action. Although if I was in charge of the country, I would take all the bad guys from the prison a couple miles away and make them form a nice chain gang. Can you imagine, HOT PINK jumpsuits, chained up together in a line picking up trash on the highway?? That would cut down on two things, the amount of chow we have to ship in here to feed these punks (can’t feed ‘em when they’re dead) and clear the road of IED’s. Now we can also offer our criminals the same choice, go to Iraq and clean up trash and if you survive a year of this, we’ll give you a pardon. Most won’t make it…how can they survive without their cable TV and A.C., at least they could have the Man love from these guys over here (women are for babies, men are for fun). This would go over like a pregnant pole-vaulter of course with the ACLU and every other group. But this is wishful thinking and the subject of many “what if?” conversations we have over here.

I have a buddy over here and for security sake we’ll call him “Jim Adams”. We served together in Okinawa almost 12 years ago and I was on hand for him to be promoted to LtCol on the 1st. He is one of the most talented writers out there and one day he’ll put a screen play or book out that will go straight to the top. I would love to write about an incident that almost made his promotion to Major impossible years ago but that would take about 5 pages to give it justice. Let’s just say that my sense of humor and ability to disguise my voice caused the NCIS unit to look into my friend for a letter that was written by him to the editor of Stars and Stripes oh say Dec 25th 1994 for those of you able to pull those papers up on line. Since he is reading this on line, I will have to get permission to tell about it since it involves the Base General taking a special interest in “Jim” and his natural talents.
I was able to catch a Helicopter over to his base the night before and smoke a couple of Cigars in “Club 9” which is nice but very small. It was a great time and I enjoyed taking an all day walking tour of his base. Lots of old Iraqi stuff there (found an AK-47 ) and cool trash all over. The return home to my base which is very short normally took me on a tour of every base we have here and lasted four hours. Here is what it’s like to ride in the back of a CH-46, the twin rotor helicopter. My wild ride home.

It’s night time when you arrive at the Flight line, ear plugs are issued and you wait until the engines are started. They crank up the APU (Aux power Unit) which causes this giant flame to shoot out the back of the aircraft. Once the engines start, the rotor blades slowly begin to spin. It always amazed me that the blades never hit each other. Two sayings come to mind,” a helicopter is made up of a thousand moving pieces in close formation”, and “I would rather have Venereal Disease written in my health record then Helo hours in my pilot logbook.” Once it’s started you move into the back via a small ramp that goes up and down. Now see the -46 has open windows up front so the crew can man the machine guns there, thus allowing a constant breeze into the back of the bird. Really bad when it’s 110 F outside, decent when it’s in the 80’s and downright freezing in the desert nighttime when the temps hit the 50’s to the 30’s. As you sit on these red web seats (very uncomfortable) you are weighed down with the 30 odd pounds of body armor, gun, helmet etc. I put my goggles on and ear plugs in expecting to catch a nap before I arrived. There is a constant hum of the engines, and as the blades turn they make a sort of dull thud report, almost like a machine gun going off only it does this in cycles. I’m just getting use to this rhythm, when the MACHINE GUNS do go off. They are blazing .50 cal rounds down and the first thought is “cripes, there is only coke can thick aluminum behind me, please Lord if I’m shot, make it a John Kerry wound” Well it’s ok; they were test firing the guns to make sure they worked right.

We go to another base to pick up some people including this big burly Army guy who they put on my left side closest to the cockpit. This turned out to be a good thing because I was expecting a short flight but ended up on the round robin that lasted four hours with about 40 degree wind howling into the back of the cargo section where we all are. Not thinking I’d be stuck on this ride from hell, all I had on was my uniform and the flak jacket with my helmet. After freezing the first hour, I dug into my bag and grabbed my spare socks to use as mittens, then my tee shirt to wrap around my head, that did ok, but my legs were two ice cubes, so I pulled my towel out and put that around my numb stubs. OOOOhh much better, even better was having this Army guy sitting there as my personal wind deflector. Lessons learned, yes it’s not super hot in the day here and that means it’s cold as heck at night in the desert and since the temperature drops 2 degrees per thousand feet in altitude on average, that means better bundle up or you will be thawing out for the next two days. Next stop, this Iraqi soldier gets on the plane. Now this guy has a helmet about two sizes to big, a small flak vest and really bad breath as he leans over to my face and yells “we go where?” Me, thinking I have some chewing gum in my bag somewhere. “Where are you going?” He screams back, “where we go?” now I’m really thinking about the gum to give him, “Where do you need to go?” He snuggles in closer and says, “I go where we go”, well there you are, along for the ride, not much more you can say about that. I turned on my flashlight and looked at his papers just to be clear where this guy IS going. The -46 takes off again, next stop, the hydraulic pump comes on adding another whine to the already loud cargo bay. My eyes are closed, I’m trying to think of that time I broke down in Rota Spain on the beach, that was a good time…please warm up. I smell something like a cross between two day old chewing tobacco and foul rotten eggs. I open my eyes and peek out of my makeshift face cover from my tee shirt. It’s my buddy to the right of me with his face right next to mine. “WE HERE”, no no no, “NOT HERE” I scream back, wrong stop for him. My Army buddy gets off that stop which took away all of my cover and concealment from the wind. Now I’m really cold.

Finally I was able to dig out the pack of Big Red gum some supporter out there sent to us and gave him a piece. This was good but his teeth were chattering so bad, I think he probably bit his tongue once or twice. They are nice guys, bad breath but nice guys. After taking a long hot shower, I brought my body core temperature back up to normal allowing my manhood to drop back out the deep recesses of my body. Life is good… Anyway, that’s what you might expect if you take a long chopper ride...
Until next time,

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

"Bada Bing"

Dear Gang,

I have received requests before to talk about the “Bing” and what we have here. First of all, I live and work in a tower, not a pretty tower but never the less we call it home. On top of this old control tower there were tons of busted air conditioning units, scrap wood and basically left over junk from when the Iraqi’s had this joint. When my boss showed up here last year, that is where they would smoke cigars at night and drink near-beer.

Of course being the creative, improve your spaces, Bob Villa has nothing on them type guys, they decided to build a bar. Not any bar, but an all ranks social hangout where you could enjoy great company, have a pleasant view of the base and get away from the doldrums of everyday life here. To start they had to chunk all of this crap off the top of a 100 foot building down into an abandoned parking lot in the back with a big metal dumpster there. It all had to come down, that took a day. Then there was a big pile of wood left over from when the Army vacated, so they dug through that to find the right pieces to form a roof, but with the high winds, it would fly off like a sail, so next came a frame around the roof. They attached cammie netting, built benches and a bar, but what to name it???

The crew here watched all 5 seasons of “The Soprano’s” on DVD and decieded to name it “The Bada Bing”, the strip club on the show. There is a kid downstairs who is an incredible artist and he freehanded the painting of the Bing girl and boom we have a bar. This place complete with music and a T.V. became the hangout on the base. My Aunt in L.A. thought that we were getting drunk everynight here when she saw all this pictures of me with a "Becks" in my hand. Little did she realize they weren't real beer...

When I arrived in Oct on this base as the AirBoss, I thought about what great digs these were but it needed some fun stuff to go along with it. So I designed coins and shirts that folks could buy to remember it by. We have had many famous guests up there to include Ollie North (although he refused to have any pictures next to the girl on the wall), some MWR cheerleaders and some gals called the Perfect Angels.

Now Marines across this A.O. all have a place to hang out but I can say without a doubt in my Military mind that ours is the best!! One base has a place called “Club 9” where they smoke cigars and chip in to drink near-beer. It’s Club 9 because they put it in building 9 and it’s about 4x4 tiny closet room so after about an hour in there, your underwear reeks of stale cigar smoke. Another base I was stationed on, would go on top of one of the buildings and watch helicopters fly by to land from there.

I can tell you that as a “Staff guy”, I am to old to kick in doors, so I contribute in different ways to the war effort here. When I go back to the states, some of the fondest memories I will carry with me are up at the “Bing” watching a College football game on Saturday nights with the sounds of generators chugging along on one side of us and choppers flying by with the “Womp, Woomp, Woooomp” as the blades pound the air into submission.

I can guarantee you that there are Marines and Army Soldiers improving their spaces and making a nice little “slice of heaven”. Those of you who have served will probably have flashbacks of the great place that you hung out too. A place where you blew off steam and deals were brokered. This is what makes guys so tight. When the next AssClown on TV says that morale sucks over here, look him in the eye and ask him if he ever smoked a Cee-Gar at the Bing!! You all take care and keep up the fantastic support WE see from here!!! OOOHHHH RRRhhhaaaa


Sunday, January 22, 2006

Sand in my Crack

Hey guys,

Saturday afternoon here and the winds have picked up to over 30 miles an hour and that creates giant sand storms across the desert. I thought we would be ok with the rain that has fallen in the past couple of days, but as my weather guys explained to me “Sir, the high pressure system forced warm air down onto the desert and dried things out, hence a “mild” sand storm”.

Because of this, fine dust is pushed through every crevice and hole in the buildings/tents/cans etc so that you always have a layer of dust on all of your items including the food you eat. People ask if it’s hard to breath, the answer is it’s so minuscule; you just kind of get use to it. It happened pretty fast and the visibility dropped down to about a ¼ mile which grounded an Air Force C130 from Alaska.

The crew was asleep in the back waiting to pick up some passengers and didn’t realize they were socked in till they looked out the front window and couldn’t see the control tower next to them. Running into our building to call their command, you could hear the stress in their voice “Sir, I did know what to do… this might not clear till the morning and we're scheduled to depart back to Alaska in the morning… Yes Sir…but Sir, that’s not fair, can’t you hold the flight? Really Sir, 3 months out here is way too long” the female copilot was more worried about getting to the gym on base in Kuwait to do her yoga one last time, the others were a bit down. All of us here loved it. See, Marines come out here for either a 7 month tour or one year. The Air Force stays for 3 months then heads home. The C17 guys out of Charleston only spend two weeks at a wack out here. (Tax Free four years now)
“Hey Captain, don’t worry, we’ll hook you up with a nice place to stay here” Stay here!!!! You could see the look of dismay on his face as the thought of being the only crew to have spent the night on a forward operating base crossed his mind. Actually he was probably thinking about all the extra medals he and his crew would get being here, maybe the Bronze Star or a John Kerry Purple heart. He looks up and whines some more “Sir, we appreciate the offer but we’re out of here as soon as the weather allows.” I mention to the Cpl that we’ll probably receive a bunch of IDF rocket attacks tonight because the Chuckleheads in the local town know a giant sky pig is stuck on deck here. Maybe we should move her over to some obscure part of the airfield so they don’t miss her and blow up our building “this time”.

“This Time???” Now they really want to leave. I’m just kidding of course but you are allowed a lot of room when you’re messing around with the Air Farce. “Hey did you guys bring your flak vest out of the plane?” Now the worry lines are building on this guys face. We turn on AFN, which stands for Armed Forces Network but if you watch it, you would think it’s Air Force News. “Hey, check it out, “Tora,Tora,Tora” is on, grab a seat, I think you’ll be here for awhile. Five hours later the dust calms down enough for at least a ½ mile of vis and these guys, within minutes to go before their second duty day crew rest waiver expires, run to the plane faster then Sen. Murtha can change his mind, start engines and boom they are out of here!! I believe they would have been the first crew (Air Farce that is) to have actually spent the night here since the war. The weather did cause me to cancel my visit to see Capt B. but we’ll reschedule that.

When the jet guys divert in here, they love it!! We go up and smoke Cigars up on top of our Tower that we fixed up called the “Bada Bing”. Life is good, but then again, these are Marine fighter pilots and easily entertained. All Marines put on their Green trousers before they put on their Gold Pilot wings, that is what makes us different. We all love being Marines!!! OOhhh RRRhhhaa.
I hope this picture comes through and you get a feel for the dust here. You guys have a great day and I’d like to thank Captain B for his extreme patience in helping me with my “Code” on the blog. I owe ya brother!!!

Semper Fi,

Saturday, January 21, 2006

The Turtle and the Hair

Dear Gang,

Another day in paradise but with the news of the young journalist gal that is kidnapped over here, it makes me think “Why?” Who in their right mind would allow their daughter to be over here wandering around? I mean if your daughter has to be Iraq, and she is a Marine, that’s one thing, but to come over on your own… might as well sign your insurance policy over to me and say goodbye. These guys are thugs, terrorist and have no regard for life as we know it. If your neighbors’ kid decides he or she wants to visit Iraq and write about it, at least give them a chance and send them to boot camp so they can carry an M-16 A2.

Well, I know we’re getting to the end of our tour when I start noticing the small stuff. We have a little PX on base and the other day the Colonel wanted to stop by to pick up something that they didn’t have. Walking around the isles I spy a couple of things that made me say “Huh?”
There right in front of me was a doggie bed. You know one of those little round padded doggie beds for Fido that looks like it belongs next to the fire place in New England with “Savannah” the lab curled up inside. Now, I’m puzzled because the last time I looked at the base order of rules, having a pet of ANY kind was illegal. Plus, having seen the wild dogs around here (packs of them) and what they eat (everything including humans) it’s a wonder the Iraqi’s don’t like them. I wouldn’t touch one let alone let this flea bitten desert dog in my hooch to invest it. Heck, you might end up having this thing gnawing on your leg for a midnight snack. That was something I wish I had my camera for, great shot of what we need here.

Then the Armor All, you know for tires? Haven’t figured that one out since when it rains, this place is just giant mud hole. The water doesn’t have anywhere to drain so it just sits on top of the ground and turns the moon dust into muck. At night, it looks like left over mixture of brown snow and slush after a big storm on the salted highways in the Midwest. It’s everywhere and all the vehicles look like my cousin just finished mudding them as he does in the hills of Tennessee. Don’t think Armor All is something we need here.

Gift certificates to Outback steakhouse… that’s something else you can’t use here either. Leghounds Grandmother sent him a gift certificate and said go enjoy a nice dinner on her. When he read that to us, it caused a big chuckle in the office to think that he could just cruise out in town and pick up a blooming onion. I know she meant well, but I think it expired the end of Dec 05. That was pretty funny.

Haircuts. The temperature has dropped here lately and it’s in the 30’s by the middle of the night. We all have what we call a high and tight, which exposes your head enough to the elements. Well the other night, the gang decided to shave their heads. I come upstairs to see the bald, shaved heads. “Hey Sir, you wanna join the club?” asked Leghound, as I walked into the office. I just stop and looked at his bootcamp shaved head, glance over to the Ssgt and Cpl S. Some people shouldn’t have shaved heads unless they are losing all their hair. These guys don’t look good sans hair, as a matter of fact they look like turtles. I can remember having a shaved head in boot camp and the sound your bristles of hair make as they rub on the pillow case. It sounds like sandpaper scratching the cloth. I have to reply to the guys, “What club is that? The idiot I shaved my hair off in winter time club?”, “no, I think I’ll pass”. Shaved heads out here might be good to locate the lice from the illegal dog you have in your room but I’ll take a rain check.

I’m heading over (if the transpo works) to smoke some Cigars with Captain B. who is located on a base not far from here. Talk about pull, he is hooking me up with the VIP can which is nice, he won’t have to hear me snore!! I’ll send out some photos when I get back.
Well guys, have a great day and I’ll check in with you later.

Semper Fi,