Tuesday, February 18, 2014


When my military brothers (no sisters from our era) and I sit around we have the commonality and comradery of the shared experiences of basic training, advanced training and the military mind. Many of us went overseas, Turkey, Germany, Vietnam, Japan, etc. At times the life was difficult. We were called on to do things that did not make sense then and still don't almost 40 years later. 

None of us want to try to explain what salt tastes like to someone who has not already tasted salt. And when a person who has not tasted that salt tries to explain it to us, not only do we not want to hear it, it sometimes makes us angry. 

To look inward from my own experiences, I and most vets don't talk about the hard times unless it is to someone who enjoyed the brotherhood of the shared experiences. We want to talk to someone who understands and who will understand us. We want real communication. 

From the fires of the crucibles of these common experiences the bonds of brotherhood are intertwined linking one to another in a fellowship not often shared with outsiders.

The empathy we hold one for another creates a bond sometimes even greater than the friendships shared with our classmates from yesteryear and our loves of today. Again, we do not need to or want to talk about it. When a fallen hero is brought home underneath a draped American flag, we do not cry. We stand at attention, head bowed.  

Because we are men we curse the damned bees that sting us in the eyes. It is not with shame that we do want other people to see us bleed tears. It is because they cannot know or understand the value we put on the shared service of our brothers, and today our sisters who give up their lives for Liberty and through Liberty, for Freedom.

 I turn to the media selling news at the expense of the loved ones, and all of the rest of us who have served, "how do you feel." The microphone is shoved in closer to the hapless face, "how do you feel." When I see that my gut politically incorrect  response is, "get screwed! Serve and find out for yourself." 

I turn to the almost unbelievably attractive women who shove the microphones into the faces of the winners and losers of the Super Bowl today. I know they are not qualified for that conversation. I did not see even 1 woman dressed in the white or orange of the combatants on that field. Because it is just a game the feelings are not nearly as strong, but the are the same. 

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