Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Scorpions, Chiggers & Sand Fleas

Subject: Scorpions, Chiggers & Sand Fleas
This kid is a Marine and a member of the Knights of Columbus and has a way with words.

From the Sand Pit:

It's freezing here. I'm sitting on hard, cold dirt between rocks and shrubs
at the base of the Hindu Kush Mountains, along the Dar 'yoi Pomir River,
watching a hole that leads to a tunnel that leads to a cave. Stake out,
my friend, and no pizza delivery for thousands of miles.

I also glance at the area around my ass every ten to fifteen seconds to
avoid another scorpion sting. I've actually given up battling the
chiggers and sand fleas, but the scorpions give a jolt like a cattle prod..

Hurts like a bastard. The antidote tastes like transmission fluid, but God
bless the Marine Corps for the five vials of it in my pack.

The one truth the Taliban cannot escape is that, believe it or not, they
are human beings, which means they have to eat food and drink water.
That requires couriers and that's where an old bounty hunter like me
comes in handy. I track the couriers, locate the tunnel entrances and
storage facilities, type the info into the handheld, shoot the coordinates
up to the satellite link that tells the air commanders where to drop the

We bash some heads for a while, then I track and record the new
movement. It's all about intelligence. We haven't even brought in the
snipers yet. These scurrying rats have no idea what they're in for. We are
but days away from cutting off supply lines and allowing the eradication
to begin. I dream of bin Laden waking up to find me standing over him
with my boot on his throat as I spit into his face and plunge my nickel-plated
Bowie knife through his frontal lobe. But you know me, I'm a romantic.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: This country blows, man. It's not
even a country. There are no roads, there's no infrastructure, there's no
government. This is an inhospitable, rock pit shit hole ruled by eleventh
century warring tribes. There are no jobs here like we know jobs.

Afghanistan offers two ways for a man to support his family: join the
opium trade or join the army. That's it. Those are your options.

Oh, I forgot, you can also live in a refugee camp and eat plum-sweetened,
crushed beetle paste and squirt mud like a goose with stomach flu, if
that's your idea of a party. But the smell alone of those 'tent cities of the
walking dead' is enough to hurl you into the poppy fields to cheerfully
scrape bulbs for eighteen hours a day.

I've been living with these Tajiks and Uzbeks, and Turkmen and
even a couple of Pushtuns, for over a month-and-a-half now, and this
much I can say for sure: These guys, all of 'em, are Huns... actual,
living Huns..They LIVE to fight. It's what they do. It's ALL they do. They
have no respect for anything, not for their families, nor for each other,
nor for themselves. They claw at one another as a way of life. They
play polo with dead calves and force their five-year-old sons into human
cockfights to defend the family honor. Huns, roaming packs of savage,
heartless beasts who feed on each other's barbarism. Cavemen with

Then again, maybe I'm just cranky.

I'm freezing my ass off on this stupid hill because my lap warmer
is running out of juice, and I can't recharge it until the sun comes up
in a few hours.

Oh yeah! You like to write letters, right? Do me a favor, Write a letter
to CNN and tell Wolf and Anderson and that awful, sneering, pompous
Aaron Brown to stop calling the Taliban 'smart..'

They are not smart. I suggest CNN invest in a dictionary because
the word they are looking for is 'cunning.' The Taliban are cunning, like
jackals and hyenas and wolverines. They are sneaky and ruthless, and
when confronted, cowardly. They are hateful, malevolent parasites who
create nothing and destroy everything else. Smart. Pfft. Yeah, they're
real smart.

They've spent their entire lives reading only one book (and not a very
good one, as books go) and consider hygiene and indoor plumbing
to be products of the devil. They're still figuring out how to work a Bic

Talking to a Taliban warrior about improving his quality of life is like
trying to teach an ape how to hold a pen; eventually he just gets
frustrated and sticks you in the eye with it.

OK, enough. Snuffle will be up soon, so I have to get back to my hole.

Covering my tracks in the snow takes a lot of practice, but I'm good at it.

Please, I tell you and my fellow Americans to turn off the TV sets and
move on with your lives. The story line you are getting from CNN and
other news agencies is utter bullshit and designed not to deliver truth
but rather to keep you glued to the screen through the commercials.
We've got this one under control The worst thing you guys can do right
now is sit around analyzing what we're doing over here, because you
have no idea what we're doing, and really, you don't want to know.
We are your military, and we are doing what you sent us here to do.

Saucy Jack

Recon 4th Marine in Afghanistan

Semper Fi!

"Freedom is not free...but the U.S. Marine Corps will pay most of your

A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a
blank check made payable to 'The United States of America ' for
an amount of 'up to and including my life.' That is Honor, and there
are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it.

From 4th Recon Marine Division in Afghanistan

Semper Fi', Saucy Jack, Semper Fi'


Saturday, January 15, 2011

From a retired Marine Mustang aviator-type, 1 each ................................ ;-)

'Specially for Old NFO .............................. ;-)

Subject: The History of "Aviator"

This explains it all. Aviators come from a long line of a secret society, formed around one thousand years ago. They are warriors, and here is the proof! Ground pounders can read it and weep!

A little known fact is the origin of the word, "Aviator." In the immortal words of Johnny Carson: "I did not know that."

Phu Khen (pronounced Foo Ken) 1169-? is considered by some to be the most under-recognized military officer in history. Many have never heard of his contributions to modern military warfare. The mission of this secret society is to bring honor to the name of Phu Khen.

A 'Khen' was a subordinate to a 'Khan' (pronounced 'konn') in the military structure of the Mongol hordes. Khan is Turkish for leader. Most know of the great Genghis Khan, but little has been written of his chain of command.

Khen is also of Turkish origin. Although there is not a word in English that adequately conveys the meaning. Roughly translated, it means, "One who will do the impossible, while appearing unprepared and complaining constantly."

Phu Khen was one of ten Khens that headed the divisions, or groups of hordes, as they were known, of the Mongol Army serving under Genghis Khan. His abilities came to light during the Mongols' raids on the Turkistan city of Bohicaroo. Bohicans were fierce warriors and the city was well fortified. The entire city was protected by huge walls and the hordes were at a standoff with the Bohicans. Bohicaroo was well-stocked and it would be difficult to wait them out. Genghis Khan assembled his Khens and ordered each of them to develop a plan for penetrating the defenses of Bohicaroo.

Operation Achieve Victory (AV) was born. All 10 divisions of Khens submitted their plan. After reviewing AV plans 1 thru 7 and finding them all unworkable or ridiculous, Genghis Khan was understandably upset.

It was with much perspiration that Phu Khen submitted his idea, which came to be known as AV 8. Upon seeing AV 8, Genghis was convinced this was the perfect plan and gave his immediate approval. The plan was beautifully simple. Phu Khen would arm his hordes to the teeth, load them into catapults, and hurl them over the wall. The losses were expected to be high, but hey, hordes were cheap! Those that survived the flight would engage the enemy in combat. Those that did not? Well, surely their flailing bodies would cause some damage.

The plan worked and the Bohicans were defeated. From that day on, whenever the Mongol Army encountered an insurmountable enemy, Genghis Khan would give the order, "Send some of the Phu Khen AV 8-ers."

This is believed, though not by anyone outside our secret society, to be the true origin of the word Aviator (AV 8-er).

Phu Khen's AV 8-ers were understandably an unruly mob, not likely to be socially acceptable. Many were heavy drinkers and insomniacs. But when nothing else would do, you could always count on an AV 8-er. A Phu Khen Aviator. Denied, perhaps rightfully so, his place in history, Phu Khen has been, nonetheless, immortalized in prose.

Consider it an honor to be a Phu Khen Aviator. Wear the mantle proudly, but speak of it cautiously. It is not always popular to be one of us.

You hear mystical references, often hushed whispers, to 'those Phu Khen Aviators.' Do not let these things bother you. As with any secret society, we go largely misunderstood, prohibited by our apathy from explaining ourselves.

You are expected to always live down to the reputation of the Phu Khen Aviator... a reputation cultivated for centuries, undaunted by scorn or ridicule, unhindered by progress. So drink up, be crude, sleep late, urinate in public, and get the job done.

When others are offended, you can revel in the knowledge that YOU are a PHU KHEN AVIATOR!


Monday, January 3, 2011

For about the past month .......................................

I've been assisting the Spousal Unit with our 2 gas hog vehicles; the engine was replaced "professionally" {ie, we paid over $900.00 for the engine, damn near $1,000.00 for the installation}, only to have it bucking at highway speeds. Turns out, the crank positioning sensor was put back with only ONE bolt {it requires 2}. On a '98 Ram 1500, the cps is located at the REAR of the engine - LOTS of fun removing/replacing/removing/replacing that {yes, I intended that repetition}. We also replaced the distributor, and the plug wires, and over the weekend, replaced the rear brakes.

The Rainier decided to 'deflate' the rear air suspension, so THAT made travel ............................ interesting. Turns out, it appears the electrical connections got wet, and once they dried out, the compressor worked for the suspension {it never STOPPED working on the tire inflator in the rear compartment of the vehicle}.

So, anyhoo, I'm up IN the engine compartment to access areas, when a neighbor showed up & just HAD to take a picture. Fine, but I refused to turn & face the camera. Her 'husband' {whom I do NOT speak to, and normally refer to pejoratively with an 8-letter word, or as "Mr. Charm" sarcastically} came over to ask the FodGuy some automotive question, while I was about 30 feet away - the FodGuy referred to me as his "Chief Mechanic's Assistant", to which "Mr. Charm" laughed derisively - but, here's the thing - HIS wife was driving over the summer, in an older minivan, with NO engine coolant {he had taken a hike on her for 3 months} - she'd stop when it would get 'too hot' and spray water over the engine block - *I'm* the one who told her she was risking cracking the engine block, and pretty much forced her into getting coolant. She's a nice lady, heart of gold, but dumber than a box of rocks - "hubby" isn't too much better, since he installed a 'floating floor' with nails, for someone who was paying him; he puts things {his porch} together with nails rather than screws, THAT gives you an idea of his terminal stupidity. He's been rude to me once too often; I refuse to have anything to do with him. The FodGuy thought I was mad at HIM {the FodGuy} for talking with "Mr. Charm" - I said, no, SOMEONE has to talk to him, it just will never be ME ............................ ;-)