He never forgave her, not really.
They discussed it almost every week for over 50 years. They only stopped talking about it when he died.
He could have worn his seatbelt on that day and he would have walked away from that accident. He could have gone back home to his wife, to their not-quite argument over the lost swords. They wouldn’t be listening to Over the Rainbow by the Hawaiian guy at his funeral, but he was stubborn.
Stubborn as only a child of the Depression could be. Stubborn as a man who raised himself, who fought in WWII and Korea. He left the wars with a ringing in his ears that only got worse over time; but he never complained.
He never truly complained about anything. He didn’t complain when a misdiagnosis kept him from the airborne in WWII or when that missed opportunity sent him to occupy Japan rather than fight in Europe. He didn’t complain about his later alcoholism or the awkward intervention from his wife and adult children, nor were there complaints about the Petit Mal Seizures that struck only once or twice a year with no warning. The randomness of the seizures made them impossible to predict, so he didn’t worry about them. He didn’t plan. It was what it was.
He had one of those seizures the day he died. Continue reading
Official disclaimer: nothing in this post reflects the views of the Department of Defense, the Army, the Marines, etc. This is only the unofficially terrible, wrong and poorly written opinion of one person who happened to have served at some point since 9/11. This is a work of fiction, but still, better to throw this disclaimer in here. You have been warned.
Beele was not pleased with the deployment. He had joined the Army, specifically the infantry, so that he could prove himself in combat. To get right down to it and quit fucking around, he joined up so he could have the chance to kill someone. But the deployment so far was a joke. The unit had deployed in December. In November, most of the tribes fighting the U.S. decided to switch sides and were now our allies, which coincided with an 85 percent drop in enemy contact. Can’t fight the enemy when they’re your pals now.
It was now February, and only one platoon in the entire battalion had even had a chance to fire their weapons. Three months in, and that was it? That was bullshit, Beele thought; a waste of his time. His platoon spent most of its time on patrol – driving out to some hillbilly, dusty Iraqi village of 30 people to ask them if they’d “seen the enemy.” Yeah right, like they weren’t still the enemy and like they wouldn’t be again if the U.S. money dried up. The platoon leader and one of the squad leaders would meet up with the local sheik and find out if anything was needed in the area. The usual answers were water, electricity and more weapons for security. The exact three things the unit had zero ability (or authorization, in the case of weapons) to provide. Continue reading
You may notice that there is no disclaimer on this article, and that is because I will be getting away from my usual heavy subject matter of politics and the Army and will be addressing a lighter topic: facing death with dignity. This week my three-year-old cat almost died from having his wiener blocked so completely by crystals that he could not piss, causing his bladder to fill to an unbearable level, Continue reading