Wonder what retention would be like if this was imposed?

This thing has been out for over a year and I am just NOW seeing it? What is my problem?

That is some funny crap man.

A bit of Political Hub-Bub

But not in the sense that I normally post, because I don't want to tread on toes, considering I am now a member of the Active Military and should not be getting to political.

Just because of that, I'll post a link and leave it at that.

Damn, those Iraqis really seem to be hating us Americans, aren't they?

In other news, which I'm sure is making its rounds around the Blogosphere just as the above is (though I retrieved it from other sources, my blog rounds haven't been the same since I deployed *deep sigh*), the status of Germany and its Unemployment laws really make you wonder. I can see that there was good intentions behind this, but it has certainly paved a road to hell. There has to be some moral high ground that should take presidence. I shouldn't be forced to take a job that goes against my religious beliefs for instance. Fortunately, nothing like this is going on in the US (right now) and I am comfortably employed.

I guess that means I shouldn't be moving to Germany any time soon and go through unemployment.

Vow to refrain from Boredom

Well, I'm starting to get in the groove of things, I even have access to the computer in my office as well as the all important password to all sorts of government stuff.

I feel special.

Weather is still frigid. Somedays its cool yet sunny, other times its snowing big fat snowflakes, and sometimes it stings your face and your ears lose all of their feeling. But there is always snow on the ground. Going out amidst the locals, its actually rather pretty. I hear once the snow melts we will get to see the trash. Hmm. . .

So far since I've been here, I've been outside the wire about four times. I go back outside the wire again this week another three times, which is the case with my job. I'm beginning to see that this is one of the many perks about my job. My mobility. I will get to see the region, and I will see a lot of it.

And I've been to both the Greek and the Pole/Ukrainian Camps. The Americans stationed there have it tough. We visited them on a Saturday, they were playing Halo2 on a big screen TV.

Must be tough to be analysts.

I've decided I need an Xbox. My current addiction to RedvsBlue makes me want to play Halo. And we have a lot of time on our hands during our off hours.

Actually, i also want to direct videos. I vow not to be bored here.

But apparently, with all of the jobs that are going to be piled on my plate while I'm here, I won't be.


Pictures from Kosovo

Ok, to those of you who didn't think I was serious about the Bill Clinton Worship in Pristina (which got bombed to hell in 1999).

He's also got a street named after him. Case in point.

Anyway, along with other pictures of Kosovo is the real estate around here is interesting. Granted it is winter, but there is a lot of buildings around here that have the potential to be really nice, if they would finish them. Hmm. . .

And the propping up of the floors with sticks is particularly amusing.

And these people aren't very rich, their houses are usually missing windows, but at least they have their MTV. Sattelite Everywhere.

Aside from Kosovo, I flew in here on a C130 for the first time, got a picture with my helmet looking all ate the hell up.

My weapon is my battle buddy. It is with me 24-7. I think I might get sick of it after a while, but to tell you the honest truth, as long as I am required to have it on my person all of the time, Uncle Sam pays me another 250 a month and waives my income tax so I think I can live with that.

In other news, though I saw Team America World Police about three months ago, it is just coming to the theaters here. The team we are replacing saw it not to long ago and have been quoting it mercilessly. Unfortunately, I have fallen suit. Damn them.

Movies are free here, though they are usually about three to six months old in the theaters. This will make things difficult in regards to star wars (curses).

Luckily, there is a 'cd/dvd' shop outside KFOR Main that sells Cds and DVDs for dirt cheap. The thing about them is they are generally still theaters. Yes, that's right, they are all pirated. I picked up the Incredibles and Meet the Fockers for a paltry 6 Euro. I just had to pick up a pirated movie just to say I have one. But don't worry Disney, I will indeed buy a Real version of the Incredibles when it comes out. I still haven't seen Meet the Fockers, so I can't say the same thing about it. (but I liked Meet the Parents soo. . .)

Carnival of Kitties

Now its time for KITTY BLOGGING!!!

This weeks honorary member, the mascot of Kamenica.

Um, these people technically aren't supposed to have mascots, but I'm not saying anything. Besides, this kitty was friendly. I'm sure the vets gave her the needed shots so she can hang around a while longer.


More in Kosovo

Like I mentioned before, I'm now in Kosovo. Internet is more consistant, unfortunately it is still a bit finicky. These next couple days are going to be fairly interesting, they went ahead and gave us the tour of the camp today and went over some things and now I have the rest of the day off.

Apparently, these next 12 months are going to yield a few things to us, including educational opportunities, a chance to get my butt in some serious ass-kicking shape, a mission that includes like seven countries (including possibly Italy), and a lot of free time.

The task force has designated this to be a non drinking deployment, which appears to be upsetting some people, but I don't care as it doesn't matter to me one way or the other. I don't drink. Which makes a lot of people starving for things to do. The Task Force we're replacing appears to be seriously beefed up, they must get a lot of time in the gym.

I have a feeling that Amazon and Ebay will become near and dear to me. The PX is good, supposedly the best in the Balkans and the second highest grossing one in the chain (because the other multinational forces like to shop there too, as well as eat our food).

And I've seen quite a few people in foreign uniforms wandering the region. We share this specific sector with Greece, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, and a fifth country that escapes my mind at present (only because they represent 1% of the task force here). The Norwegians are here on post too. I see a lot of Germans, Italians and French wandering around as well.

What's really hilarious is the locals. So far they appear to be really cool, and they LOVE the Americans. Its kind of an interesting thing we've got going on here. The Albanians love us because we came in and bombed the crap out of the Serbians back in '99. The Serbians love us (though they don't love us as much as the Albanians do) because we are preventing the Albanians from completely over taking Kosovo. That, and we protect their churches and other various places of importance. Long story.

In Pristina, largest city in Kosovo, they have a shrine to Bill Clinton with various signs exclaiming "thank you" and a big picture of him hanging off of one of the buildings. They love him here.

I will get plenty of opportunities to talk to the locals. They have both Serbs and Albanians on post working under contract so I'll get a chance to interact with them. They don't always speak great english, but we'll see how much Albanian and Serbian I can pick up before I leave.

This should be an interesting year. I'm looking forward to getting to work.

Questions and Answers

I posted a little quiz thing on my Livejournal.

Here are the answers. Guess I fooled a few of you.


It's Official

I am now in Kosovo.

More to come when I get some time (and it isn't midnight)


Entertaining Oneself

I was coming back from chow for the evening when I was approached by my NCOIC (sergeant in charge for you none military folk) who asked me about guard duty. As in, would I mind pulling it on Monday from nine in the morning to nine at night. That didn't sound so bad, as long as I could get on post on Tuesday so I could mail a few things home.

As I did laundry this evening, I was further informed of another problem, in how SSG D says it, "do you want the good news or the bad news?"

I basically got an hour and a half notice that I was pulling an all nighter shift tonight from nine at night to nine in the morning guarding weapons.

Fortunately, they provide us with internet access, and we can bring our own computers with us and watch movies, or what not.

I can keep myself entertained on the computer for hours, however usually at home my entire sleep schedule is out of whack. Well, if I think I'm back in the states, its only 7:30. But in Europe, its 4:30 in the morning. Which consists of me staring blood shot thinking "only four and a half more hours. . ." I've been on a nice little sleep schedule of waking up before seven on most days.

I can think, I'll be sleeping in tomorrow. I've got all day to sleep in tomorrow. Just think, I'll be on Pacific Standard Time again (if only for the day).

But I'm getting a serious attack from the z monster. So what does one do with situations such as these?

Hop online and get a Sponser membership to Red Vs Blue and plan on watching those for the rest of the morning. They even have the copies from the BNL tour last summer, back before I knew they existed and I couldn't tell what was on the screen due to the massive whitewash by the usually non-existent Auburn sun!

I also watched Napoleon Dynamite again (AWESOME!) and enjoyed it's nerdy goodness, and relished in the fact that I am in deed, a nerd. I guess I could put it back on and watch the wedding scene over again.

Then there is of course, Livejournal Memes. My friends get me started on these, I thought I would expand on them. Most specifically, this one. Feel free to post anonymously in reply.

And of course, surfing through my pictures. Lots and lots of pictures. Not only that, but I'm on a computer with a USB port! That means, downloading pictures!

Now I have a bunch of movies I picked up for fairly cheap (or at least tax free) that I could pop in to entertain myself. But I guess I'd rather post to my blog delusional comments made in an exhausted state that I'm bound to regret later.

Actually, I think I'll stick to Red Vs Blue.



It's snowing here finally. When it was warm here, it was subzero temperatures back home. Now that it's cold here, home is suffering from spring type weather.

That ok, I like snow. I'll be ok.

In fact, when it finally started snowing, I wanted to pose with my instrument of death. See how happy I am?

You know, this camouflage stuff really doesn't do a very good job camouflaging in this white fluffy stuff.

Now the question is, ask me again in a month if I mind the snow. I might give you the look of death and mumble a curse on your children.


Parental Spawned

My dad created a blog. He emailed me to let me know.

I have no idea what TWIMC means.

I'm waiting to see what else he writes.

Update - Ok, now that i think about it, its a little bit obvious.

Meanwhile, i was mentioning the whole 'dad blogging' thing to my mom and she mentioned that she didn't know why my dad started a blog. To tell you the truth, it kind of surprised me too. I don't think he knows what he's getting into. Believe me, I love my dad, but he really isn't the type to get into blogging and keep with it. He's to busy doing other things.

Computers in Hohenfels

Somebody made this suggestion. I thought I would expand on it.

I love jump drives. I just got one and between my laptop and anybody else's, I can just take things as i need to.

However, when it comes to the internet, there is one problem. Only three places have internet access.

The library (no USB ports)
The Surf-Net (again, no USB ports, and time is limited)
The commander's office (USB ports yes, freedom to surf? Nada)

I have been instructed that while I am here, connecting to the Network with my own PC is a no-go. I do it just once, my computer will be confiscated and returned to me when I get home. In a little over a year.

I think I can wait until Kosovo.



I have learned a lot in my lifetime. I still have a lot to learn as well, but one lesson that I had learned before that only got reinforced this weekend is that nobody is immune to stupidity. And there are different kinds of stupidity as well. Those who say stupid things and those who do stupid things.

Eh, you can see where I'm going with this, right?

See, I blew a trip to Neuschwanstein this weekend, due to the fact that I almost missed the bus. A trip to Neuschwanstein is even a new years resolution. I could have had it knocked out halfway through January. But NOOO!

I had to do something stupid.

We were given three simple rules. Don't drink (which was difficult for some people, as we were in Munich, the Oktoberfest capital of the world), stay in groups of two or more, and be back to the bus by 17:45.

I broke the latter two. The bus was leaving at 1800. I miss it, I had to take a train back to Munich. I made it by a minute.

I'd go into detail, but I am running out of internet time (damn these computers). Long story short, I had two trips scheduled this weekend and I blew the second because I screwed up on the first.

I'll expand on this later.

LATER - Alright, so while we are walking through Munich, eating at expensive German Resteraunts and sightseeing down the Marienplatz, I stuck pretty well with my group of two other people. Lot to see, damn I wish I had a way to upload pictures (will I be busy when I get steady internet!)

We had to be back at the bus at 1745. No ifs ands or buts about it. After Dachau (yes, I saw the concentration camp as well, very fascinating) where one soldier got caugt up in reading the information and put the rest of us behind by a good 20 minutes, the time issue was key. That, and the busdriver swore he was leaving at 1800 and not a minute later.

Anyway, we were walking back to the bus and I still had a good hour and fifteen minutes to dink around. My group merged with another, and out of the confusion, well, I seperated from everybody. Subconsciously, I think I did it on purpose.

Anyway, I wanted to find a bookstore, really bad, and started asking people about Bookstores and where there was one nearby. I was directed back to the MarienPlatz and told of a bookstore there. I went back, and found a bookstore. Seven stories of books. In german. I decided, to work on my german speaking skills, picked up book one in the Harry Potter series, auf Deutsch! I also picked up the first Movie in german too, with English Subtitles!

Can you tell I'm working on my German?

Well, in my confusion to get back to the bus, I decided to cut across the street and go a slightly different way then I came. Mistake Numero Uno. See, I was thinking american streets, which are nine times out of ten set up in a grid pattern of sorts. This is an old european city, it is built around a circle and all roads go inwards. My thought was I would just go due south and hit the main road where the bus was and catch it going back east. No, i never hit the main road, at least I never noticed it, and went not South but South West. And kept going.

After a while, and asking several people in german "wo is das Deutches Museum" and getting a long response from one about where to go in german, and I had no idea what she was saying because my german is not very good, I decided to wing it. I made it a point to ask "Sprechen Sie Englisch" after that. Becuase I was led on a wild goosechase.

Finally, after being told that I was about a 25 minute walk from the Deutches Museum, which was right across the street from the bus stop, I decided to take a taxi (becuase I wouldn't have made it on foot). My luck? The taxi driver doesn't speak much english but got the whole "Deutches Museum, mach schnell bitte!" down pretty much. He went about as fast as the traffic allowed, but I don't think I could have gotten it through his head to stop right at the bus instead of the Deutches Museum. He had to do a U turn and I threw 7 Euros at him and told him to keep the change as I booked it for the bus.

A counseling statement and no more MWR trips while we are in Hohenfels is my punishment. Tis ok, as I am forever grateful I made the bus. *sighs with relief*

I wonder if that can be my stupid act for this trip?

Nah, I doubt it.


World and States

Now to the important stuff.

Yes, I am in deed, in Germany. Not a whole lot to say about it as of yet, because I'm stuck on a military installation at the moment. We flew over here on Monday, stopped in Maine and Iceland for a short time to refuel, lost nine hours due to the time change (which truly does suck), and got bussed to a little place called Hohenfells which is not as bad as I thought it would be (people kept mentioning how much it snows and how cold it gets here, and it really hasn't been much different then Washington so far).

I used to have a map on my computer showing all of the states and countries i've been. I need to dig that out again and use it. Hmm. . .

create your own personalized map of the USA
or check out ourAlbuquerque travel guide

That is my current State Map. Some of those states are airport only states. But I'll count them anyway.

create your own visited countries map
or vertaling Duits Nederlands

And this is my current country map. Not much will be going on in the states for now. The world map will be updated regularly. This should be fun.

My Policy on Iraq

I don't know why, but I get a lot of questions about Iraq. Mainly because I'm in the army and every time I mentioned that I was deploying, most people immediately assumed I was headed to the middle east. Well, I almost went there, but I didn't go so Iraq really doesn't apply to me. At this moment.

That being said, my opinion on Iraq is mostly supportive yet indifferent. And I'll explain why.

First and foremost, I had some reservations about going into Iraq. I knew this wasn't going to be an easy war if we went in. However, I do believe that Saddam Hussein was an evil man and the prevention of the Iraqi war was by and large in his hands. I do believe that the world is a better place without him. Unfortunately we should have taken him out during the First Gulf War. We didn't. I feel we had unfinished business there.

Another thing, I do not read negative press about Iraq, or at least try to avoid it. Why you might ask? Because I am doing myself no favors by looking at all of the things that are going wrong in the war and the casualty count and so on and so forth when the probability of me going there is high, and my former unit is once again on the radar to go this coming summer. Chances are, they'll make the rounds this time.

If my views toward the Iraq war were negative and I felt that we made a huge mistake going there and I continually bashed my Commander in Chief on his policies and then got sent to go there, would that help me? No. In fact, my morale will be shot. I will be miserable and i will put myself and every one around me in danger.

We should have done things differently, we should have initially gone in there with more troops, or maybe we should have waited a little longer before going in. It is unfortunate that we have to focus a lot of our energy into this war but the fact remains, we're there now. Hindsight is 20/20, but we started this, we must finish it, and pulling out now is not the way to do it. I would rather focus on the terrorists and draw them to Iraq then have to fight them on our home turf.

I am not going to do myself any favors by criticizing the war and destroying my motivation for being there. That is one of the worst things I can do for myself. It will only get me killed that much easier. And due to the fact that I almost went there multiple times, I chose to remain positive in our outlook and focus on the good that was coming out of Iraq, and ignore the negative press. This is war. I can understand that. There will be some horrible things that will happen, but that has happened in war since the beginnings of time. The more I look at war and read about it, I begin to understand the horrors behind it, and the true irrationality behind it. War disgusts me. It is a truly horrible thing.

Nobody hates war more then those who have to fight it. But the true warrior understands the need that sometimes you have to fight for something greater then yourself. Is fighting in Iraq worth dying for? I guess that depends largely on how you look at it. You can view this as a war for oil, or you can view this as a fight to give millions of people freedom from oppression under a tyrant who butchered his own people. Maybe the reasonings behind this war are shady, but I'll view it how I want to view it. There are Iraqis who are supportive of us and want us to be there. There are some who will try to fight us at every turn. It is unfortunate that they can't see what we are trying to accomplish, and that fighting us will only make us stay longer.

And this is an all volunteer army. I knew that going to war was a great possibility if I signed up. If I have any regrets about going to Iraq or Kosovo, I have nobody to blame but myself.

Sometimes I wish things ran a little more smooth in the military, but alas it is an imperfect institution run by imperfect people. And nobody is perfect. Mistakes will be made, and mistakes have been made in Iraq.

All I can do is do my best if I get sent there.

However, right now none of this really applies to me becuase my attention is currently directed at the Balkans. Not Iraq.

So please, don't ask me my opinion on the matter. Because right now all I care about is getting through this deployment in one piece.

Then I'll think about Iraq.

UPDATE - Ok, I have an Alibi to this post. I avoid negative press, yes, but I do read up on it a little bit to learn from the mistakes of others, such as Abu Ghraib and where things went wrong and how someone such as me, a preventive medicine specialist, can prevent things like that from occuring again. That is the only use I have for the negative press, to learn from it so that I don't repeat the same mistakes, though death counts won't tell me anything unless I know how they died.

And then I go about preventing those deaths. See, that's my job.

Defining Trolls

Ok, so why do people e-mail me to insult me? I got another piece of 'hate mail' in my inbox of somebody telling me how i must feel special to feel so tough when a poor little Iraqui girl has no arms somewhere because the big bad americans bombed her house.

Ok, so that pertains to a preventive medicine specialist how?

I was telling my dad back when about Trolls when my website first got its surge of readers from out of nowhere and at the time, I thought of a troll as a big green ugly thing that waits under a bridge to try to lure the billy goats. At least, that's where I thought the monikor was derived. But my dad, who is a fisherman, explained it better to me. Trolling is a fishing term, you cast your lure into the water and you troll it through the water, trying to lure the fish into biting.

So, what do trolls do on websites like this? They try to post something provocative and usually written in a nasty manner to catch people's attention and try to get them to bite. Then once they bite, you can start this big massive argument going that really doesn't change anybody's opinion and only causes tempers to rise and people to get really irritated at one another.

NEWS TO TROLLS!!! In the military, my job is environmental science, preventive care and education. I carry a weapon in self defense only. I don't bomb people, my job is to make sure people don't get sick. I must have one of the most liberal oriented job fields in the military. Seriously. I'm not kidding. In fact, I can name at least five people that at one time was in my chain of command that voted for Kerry this last election. Give it up.

And with my next post, I'll finally address that issue of Iraq and where I stand, because I promised what's her name that I would give her my honest opinion on the matter. STOP TALKING TO ME ABOUT IRAQ AND TRYING TO GIVE ME A GUILT TRIP ALREADY!!!

(I think I prefer thinking of trolls as big ugly monsters that hide under bridges trying to lure billy goats)


Update on Ebay

I sold for $31.00 on Ebay! (well, actually it was the jacket for sale, not me) To somebody in France. My sister was pumped. She was also a hair bit shocked at the traffic I sent to her.

I did mention to her that I got some pretty damn cool readers.

Explaining 'Risawn'

I have often been asked where I came up with the name 'Risawn' and what it means. In fact, the question was posed this evening, and I gave the short version. (then the phone cut out, curse cell phones, though I don't know what I'm going to do without it for the next year, but I shall hold onto it until the bitter end!) This is the slight background to my moniker. In case you were wondering.

I discovered that I actually like to write (though at the time I wasn't very good at it, but you are never good at anything you start) in my senior year in high school and started to write a rather lengthy story in the process.

Being that my story was in a fantasy type setting, I tried to make the names as unusual as possible. I didn't want a bunch of characters named Bob and Fred running around.

About halfway through the story, I created the character 'Risawn', a character which isn't like me much at all. The name came about by putting a bunch of random letters together to get something phonetic out of the mix and the name 'Risawn' was born. As soon as I created it, I really kind of liked it.

Fast forward about June, right after I graduated. Believe it or not, I had never really played around on the internet before this. But alas, I discovered the internet and started dinking around on it. Then I discovered Email, and decided to make an email address. I thought about this character I had created and thought 'what the heck, I'll use that as my Alias' and tried it. It took.

It has proven to be fail safe, nobody else on the internet goes by Risawn. So the name became my internet alias (I don't use it in real life at all), and for the last five years, I've used it on just about everything I need to make an account for. I even got it as my domain name. If you see anybody or anything on the internet going by Risawn, it's probably me, or somebody posing as me.

So then, what does Risawn mean? Absolutely nothing. Just a name, a nonsensical word posed with a bunch of random letters, thought it sounded cool.


Ramble, Rinse, Repeat

What do you get when you take a company sized element of troops on their last weekend in the states and inform them that once they set foot on the plane heading to Germany (of all places), they will be forbidden to partake of alcohol?

You get a bunch of drunken troops.

That's why I'm avoiding the mandatory party. I'm not much of a drinker, I think I was hit on at least a half dozen times.

I guess I could go back and people watch. Drunks are fun in that aspect. But apparently this is the last time I will have internet access for real (they're taking back these nifty borrowed laptops tomorrow) and I was hoping that there would be a new RedvsBlue to keep me company tonight, but alas, such is not the case.

I guess I'll check the forecast for Hohenfels instead.

Oh yeah, posted this in the Milblog, but it warrents being here too. I don't know, Not Sorry was kind of one of those fluke shots that turned out perfect. For kicks and giggles, I wanted to see if I could do it again.

Um, Nope! My hair was doing things to me that day.

I think it's back to the barracks for me now.

PS - Thumb Drives are the greatest thing since Sliced Bread.

My Sentiments Exactly

Eh, just read this post and it tells you exactly how I feel on the matter, no point in explaining further.

You know, honestly, the democrats must really be in trouble or should take this as a hint to pull their heads out of their fourth point of contact when a highly liberal comic strip is ripping on them.

Hearing more crap on the Goober election here in Washington, but kind of gave up hope when it appeared that King County is F***** up. No surprises there. I still think Rossi should concede, and I would really enjoy it if it is proved that there was some major foul play on the Democrat's part and they gave it to him. Ah, who am I kidding? Maybe he should wait it out a little longer before giving up.

I'm not to fond of the Democratic Party.

Saturday Kitty Blogging!

Ok, so I read Time Magazine recently and discovered a phenomenon on the internet that I hadn't noticed, Friday Cat Blogging, mentioned in an article that was discussing the impact of blogs on this election.

I always wondered why so many people had pictures of their Cats on the internet.

Well, I want to take part, however I don't own a cat. And I can't guarantee that I have internet access every day, for instance, yesterday. Which was friday.

There are cats on Fort Lewis however. SO I thought I would take pictures of Stray Kitties and post them.

Look, it's a Cat Sighting!

I think I'm going to try doing this, I bet I could get pretty creative with Cat Blogging.


More from the Local Political Arena

Ah yes, every once in a while I have a concession to make.

My concession this time around? The Washington Goobernatural Election (Butchered on purpose). Rossi should concede.

The facts, I voted for Rossi, Rossi won the election and two recounts (or maybe just one, I may be a little off on those numbers and I've heard several accounts). Gregoire challenged and drug it on, demanded a hand recount, and won the final recount and with it the title of governor of Washington state.

I'm pissed at Gregoire, and if the tables were turned I would be pissed at Rossi (though not as much because I am obviously biased) However, as close as this election is, I believe that Rossi should concede (though at first I wanted him to fight) the election just to one up Gregoire and show people that Republicans aren't the whiney bastards that Democrats are. I hope that Gregoire can fix the problems of Washington State but I doubt it, and her record as Lietuenant Governor was far from steller. Unfortunately, this was in her hands from the start and I said it before. For the good of Washington, she should have conceded after the first recount instead of forking the bill on us. I don't think she'll have an easy term, especially at first considering the election was so close in a highly Blue state and a lot of people will feel like she stole it, kind of like I still do, as I don't believe that you should be allowed to hold recounts until you get your votes.

And I wouldn't be surprised if there was some dirty tricks played during this election, on both sides of the table. (my personal policy on politicians is you don't trust them)

Besides, now the Democratic Party gets refunded their money and your's truly, as a Washingtonian Tax Payer, get's to foot the bill of this last bloody recount that was insisted upon by Chris Gregoire to insure her victory.

I didn't really mind her before, she pissed the hell out of me during the recount, but I hope she really can help Washington because if she screws it up any more, it only screws me and the rest of Washington State.

And if she doesn't help things, maybe Washington can remember the mess she made of this last election that caused them to foot the bill and maybe they will vote her out of office.

The Awe of Technology

Behold, the new army.

Guard Duty includes computers, which allows for internet access while watching a bunch of wooden crates storing weapons.

Check Email (if it would work), update blog, mess with music files, watch a movie, and guard weapons, all at once.

Ramblings about nothing in General

The last few days have been pretty eventful, however most of it appears to be more along the lines of Dogtags Material.

Meanwhile, I miss my hair. It looks really good and everything when I take time to do it, however being in the military, I am forced to stick a hat on my head every time I go out doors. Which in turn produces hat head. Hat head has turned into a problem indoors at first, however fortunately I have managed to get rid of my part.

I have a feeling my part will be back.

It was actually kind of funny at first. There were a lot of people who stared at me when I first showed back up from Leave and asking what I had done to my hair. Some people even told me it looked really good. Others didn't really wish to say anything. Meanwhile, I acquired another nickname, GI Jane. I made a note that Demi Moore did indeed Shave her head for that movie, whereas I still have hair.

In other news, my sister had done something that lead to a pleasant biproduct. See, she took all of these old photographs and scanned them and downloaded them into a program with the intention of making a DVD set to music. All of these pictures ended up getting downloaded onto my laptop because I have a DVD burner on it.

The DVD was unsuccessful, but now I have a large amount of pictures on my laptop. I set my Screenserver to play these pictures and now I have pictures from home to keep me company while I'm away. And because they play completely at random, new pictures show up every time.

I'll be in Germany by next week. That happened a lot sooner then expected. And apparently, it will be VERY cold there.

Also, I'm staying in the same general area now that My dad did when he went through basic training back in 1968 (he was drafted). He brought me back from Leave and for the first time in 36 years, saw North Fort Lewis. It was kind of fun to watch him remember basic training and talk about what he did as he tried to orient himself. My favorite story arose from the old shoppette set up on stilts. One time he was caught smiling by a drill sergeant and the said drill sergeant made him do pushups under the PX. I promised him I would get pictures. Apparently there is talk that they'll be tearing these old buildings down in the next couple of years, so they might not be here when I demobilize.

Heck, I better get pictures for myself as well.


Fandom Down Under

Ok, one of the many humorous things that came about from my brief run in with fame was the following that came with it. (along with a couple dozen marriage purposals, found hundreds of links such as that)

I got an email a while back from Silent Running (a New Zealand Blog) asking if I could be their patron goddess. I laughed at the time, but didn't return their email until recently, due to lack of time. Apparently I created a stir with the New Zealand Crowd by agreeing.

Question, do these T-shirts you want me to pose in go with camouflage pants and combat boots? Because that's about all I'll be able to wear with them.
But good news, I'll have a perpetual M16 in my hand so I can pose with that as well!

PS - Julie, I think you are acquiring a following as well.

UPDATE - Now you can buy a shirt claiming to be my minion through Silent Running (who turns out, is not limited to the realm down under or so they informed me)


Hair today, Gone Tomorrow

Leaving back for Fort Lewis Today, however I needed to get one final thing taken care of before I left.

It's called my Hair. It is incompatable with the United States Military and has been a Bane of my existence for as long as I can remember wearing a uniform. Being a blonde, my hair is really fine and wispy. In other words, it doesn't like to stay put unless I cake a nice glob of Super Duper Extra Sports Gel in it to hold it in place.

And sometiems that still doesn't work.

Case in point, the following photograph. It's pokin' out. That is a no go.

So I went over to my sister's house and asked her to give me a haircut. As in, Chop it ALL off. So she did. I decided to do a PhotoBlog of my trials in getting my hair whacked.

I had to start with a picture of me before.

Well, if anything, at this point it needs a serious trim, and my roots are beginning to show.

So Chop CHOP! It came off!

There's the uneven look, but that's a bit faddish for army standards. Hmm, still we can play pranks with the leftover hair.

Ok, my goal was to get it short, while still maintaining a slightly feminine look. See, women have kind of an unfair rap in the military. The stereotype is that all women in the military are, and pardon my language, Whores and Dykes. I am neither, though I've been mistaken for both. HOwever, I didn't want my hair style causing people to question my sexuality, but make it short enough so that I could not worry about it for the next few months, besides a trim here and there to keep it within regs.

And so, it continued to come off. Strange, that is my natural hair color, I haven't seen it that color in, well, a long time. My intention was to keep it that color so I wouldn't worry about it. However, after trimming it up, I decided it wasn't short enough.

I look like a boy. More came off, and I wanted to try something where I could spike it up a bit.

The Lesbian jokes were flying, let me assure you. I didn't care, in fact, I was expecting them. My family is kind of like that. Anyway, my sister insisted I should do something about the coloring and put in some highlights, or something. Anything. I tried to withstand her due to the fact that 99.9% of the time my hair will be under some type of a cover (unless I'm indoors, and then I'll have hat head) but eventually I caved in.

That could be used as an incriminating photo if I don't watch it.

How it turned out? Um, the following. My family insists that it fits my personality and they like it. I like it too, but I think it will be a while before I can fully accept the fact that I chopped all of my hair off.

So this is the final look. My sister, who has been very successful at Ebay (with a lot of help from me, *snicker*) let me model some of her clothes with my new haircut. That was great fun.

She has a way of making people look really good. I just hope I can duplicate the style on my off days.

Click to View the Ebay Page!



In my family, there is a tradition that as a child I didn't think to much about. I just thought everybody did it, much like I thought most families were like mine and most people thought the way I did back then.

We celebrate the New Year's Baby, where we leave our shoe by the door on New Year's Eve and the next day it is filled with all sorts of goodies.

Strangely, though my grandfather who started it in our family is Swedish, the tradition is actually Greek (though the Greeks leave their shoes by the fireplace, and it is St Basil who brings the goods at midnight). However, the New Year's Baby originates from Greece as well so it all fits. I celebrate a Greek Tradition and I don't have an ounce of Greek Blood in my veins.

My mom (who's birthday happens to by New Year's Eve), had trouble finding a shoe to put my loot in. So she used a combat boot this year. Very fitting :P

Since Serbia is close to Greece, maybe I'll still be able to celebrate next year as well?

The Quintessential New Year's Post

A year ago, like every year, I put up a list of New Year Resolutions. Let's see how I did.

1- Get Website back online

Well, at the time, I had completely deleted my website. It was part of my way of coaping with the fact that the army was toying with me at the time, the whole "you're deploying to Iraq, Wait, we changed our minds." I was a bit frustrated, and I took it out on my website. It was zapped from the face of the internet. I actually put it back on shortly after New Years, however, it was deleted again sometime in September, but that wasn't quite my fault.

a) get it functional and half way interesting

That is up to debate.

2- Find a decent paying job.

I work at a slighly above minimum wage job, which actually pays pretty well considering Washington minimum Wage is at $7.10, however, this was not accomplished do to the fact that the army was, well, toying with me and their decision on whether or not they were going to Mob me. I was slated to go somewhere a half dozen times and I didn't feel it necessary to find another job. THis was accomplished sometime in November, when the Army said 'we got a job for you' and now I'm on Active Duty. Much better pay.

3 - Get at least CUSA and CAP1 paid off.

Done. Then my Sister Used the CUSA and I added more to CAP1. But they were both paid off at one time this year.

4- Run Bloomsday this year. No, I mean it!

Ran the bloody whole thing. Was hurting for a week.

5- Move out on my own, one way or another.

Eh, army killed a lot of my motivation to do this, because I didn't know what was going on. Hence, never moved out, well, until about November.

6- Jump a snowboard.

I'm getting into intermediate/Expert area, but the snow isn't the greatest here, usually it get's icy. When you fall on ice, it hurts, so I don't really focus on dare devil tactics. I can't afford to get hurt. HOwever, toward the end of last season, I had successfully gone Airborne many times without falling, but I have yet to catch serious air.

The snow hasn't been great this year so far either. I'll be missing the rest of the season.

7- Read one new book a month.

Did really well for about, oh, four months, then I got distracted.

8- Sign up for Martial Arts (I've always wanted to take a class)

I still vow to do this one day. I wish I could have when I was younger.


Army terminology, tried to sign up, the Training NCO wasn't very cooperative however. I think he had more on his mind.

10- Speak acronymics less.


11- Rekindle friendships with Suzanne, Andrea and Marnie, Carla, etc. . .

Attempted to with Suzanne, however she moved and I never got her phone number, mission accomplished with Andrea and Marnie, lost Carla's information. Damn.

12- Date at least once a month (I mean, I really just need to take a chance on the opposite sex!)

This is really quite a lost cause on me.

13- Break some bad habits of mine.

I'm trying to remember what those bad habits were.

14- And of course, it wouldn't be a new years resolution if I didn't include Lose Five Pounds.
a) Then Tone Up Body
b) And Run more. A lot more.
c) And work out more in general.

My weight has continually fluctuated by a margin of five pounds. And its right after the holidays, so I'm on the upper end of that scale. As for working out, well, that's a lost cause as well.

So how did I do? About fifty/fifty. And what do I have for this year?

1) Get out of debt - (piece of cake!)
2) Drive on the Autobahn in a Porsche.
3) Max APFT.
a) this will require me to work out regularly. I hear Bondsteel has some good gyms available.
4) Upkeep webspace from Kosovo
5) Learn how to edit videos.
6) See Prague, Budapest, Norschwanstein, etc. . .
7) Don't get Shot.
8) Make a decision on what I want to do when I come home.

Hmm, simple, let's see how I do? (of course, Resolutions are always up to change)