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Changes [Feb. 14th, 2010|10:05 pm]
Well, lost the explosives job and am now going back out over the road as a long haul trucker again.
Despite it all, I actually have hope for the future. For now, I am just going to go about grinding away miles to get paid and keep my family taken care of.
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Veterans Day [Nov. 11th, 2008|02:48 pm]
[mood |thankfulthankful]

I too am amazed and honored by my fellow veterans and those who support us. In my time as a Marine, I saw many wonderful, horrible, amazing, terrifying, beautiful things. I saw nations freed, people escape oppression, others die pursuing or defending freedom. I still swell with pride when I see the flag, and nearly cry every time I hear taps. Sometimes I do.

Last year I helped bury my last grandfather in the National Cemetery. It was a wonderful ceremony that honored the service he and so many others in “the Greatest Generation” did in defense of freedom in a world gone mad. I held my mother and grandmother as they cried and tried to explain it all to my daughter who went with me. Then we flew home and nothing more was really said. Then, several weeks later, I was out early in the morning, as I am so often in my job when a radio station I was listening to was about to go off the air at midnight and they played the National Anthem. I had to pull over and I cried for nearly twenty minutes.

I cried in part because I missed my grandpa, but also for the many others like him I served with and for the wonderful opportunity I to don the uniform and stand as the shield for my country. I cried for the poor family who didn’t make it over the fence out of Cuba before they were discovered by the Cuban soldiers, I cried for the group who died horribly in the minefield trying to reach that fence, and I cried for the one who made it over that same fence to my tower and the freedom of our country. And for so many others, I cried.

I joined to go fight a war. I joined because I thought it would be “cool”. I joined because I thought I wanted to be a hero. I joined because I wanted to serve my country with honor. After I joined, I learned what silliness most of that was, but I also learned what REAL honor is.
There are moments from my service I will never forget, some of them no mater how much I might wish to, but I will never regret my service. Thank you God for granting me the honor of being able to stand by my brothers and sisters in arms and defend this great land and all it stands for. As Regan said, we are the shining city on the hill, and I was proud to keep the watch fires burning.

If you can, go down to your local veterans group and talk with some of them. Let them know how much you appreciate their service and sacrifice. Maybe they will share some of their tales with you. You will be richer for it.
And if any of you ever come across me in person, don’t be afraid to ask, I’ll share some of mine with you and we can laugh and cry together.
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What has happened to my country? [Oct. 4th, 2008|07:53 am]
On Friday, Oct. 3 2008, my government pushed the country one step closer to socialism. By passing this bailout bill to handle the credit "crisis", (if it was truly a crisis, why did they load the bill up with pork and pet projects) and knocked the feet out from under one of the principals of capitalism. If you make bad business decisions, you are going to fail.
Sadly, that rule is going to bite the government eventually, even governments can fail if they make enough bad decisions.
For right now I am going to have to content myself with doing everything I can to unelect those who voted for it even though 90% (their own admission) of us who contacted them said we didn't want this to happen.
When did we become a country where everyone is looking to the government to solve all our problems, to coddle us like invalids? What happened to individual responsibility, to taking care of yourself, to standing up for what is right, just and good? When did we start looking at our Constitution and Declaration of Independence and start saying,eh, those don't matter, they were written by ignorant people of a bygone era? When did we start thinking we could keep writing blank checks and we would never have to pay them off? As it stand now, (even before adding in the 700 billion from the bailout) in ten years we won't be bringing in enough to even pay off the interest on the debt we already have accrued.
What do they do with a country when it has to declare bankruptcy? Maybe we can just sell off California and New York.
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When did this happen? [Sep. 1st, 2008|07:40 pm]
[mood |contemplativecontemplative]

This weekend I had one of those odd revelations. I took the family out for ice cream across the street from our local high school while the football team was playing. Now that in of itself can lead to all sorts of reminiscing, but that was not what hit me. There were several of the schools cheerleaders also getting ice cream and it shocked me just how young they were.
When the heck did that happen? When did the objects of so many of my favorite fantasies turn into little kids and go and ruin it all?
Then, something else came to me, I'm the same age my dad was when my brother and I were in high school.


I spent much of the rest of the weekend contemplating just how much time I've spent here on this earth and all that I've seen. From my first memory at six months old seeing the landing on the moon, to my first trip to Disneyland at age eight, to when I learned that oxi-acetylene in a garbage bag and a toilet-paper fuse, makes for a fun cheap BANG!
I though back to when I joined the Marine Corps, then when I was shot at, as well as the many other countries I've set foot on.
Then there was the moment I laid eyes on the woman destined to be my eternal companion, the day we were married, our first child, second, third, the day I almost lost her as she went through cancer surgery.
The list goes on and on. I guess I really am this old. In just over four months I will turn 40. Oh well, for the most part I have been having a blast. Time really does fly when you're having fun.
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Have I mentioned how much I love my job? [Aug. 23rd, 2008|08:56 am]
[mood |giddygiddy]

Yesterday was a 14 hour day that was highlighted with two different shots.
There is just something deeply gratifying with seeing things get blown up.
I worry that I may have some sort of psychotic illness as it brings me great joy. Fortunately I don't feel the compulsion to blow some things up just to see them go BOOM! However, if I get to see it happen, it sure makes me happy.
This month so far has been many great shots. I love my job.
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Writer's Block: Lame jobs [May. 24th, 2008|07:51 am]
[Tags|, ]

What's the worst job you've ever had?

Hot tar roofing in southern California during August. I only managed a week before I simply couldn't do it any more. The boss said most don't last out their first day.
The only thing I can think of that could possibly be worse would be to drown in a vat of curdled milk.
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Memorial Day [May. 23rd, 2008|08:58 pm]
[mood |contemplativecontemplative]

This weekend is Memorial Day.
For many it is a chance to drink, or grill, or otherwise celebrate the start of the Summer season.
The truly sad thing is how many people I know who have no idea what the day is actually about. It is not about picnics, it is about remembering and honoring our fallen service members.

Have I mentioned that I was in the U.S. Marine Corps? Yes, I am a veteran.
Now Memorial Day has meant something special to me long before I joined. Who knows, maybe how I felt about it is one of the things that led me to eventually become a Marine.

I humbles me when I think about many who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the defense of our country. While I am glad I never was called on to lay down my life, I was willing and ready to.

How odd that sounds if you have never shared the feeling, "I am willing to die to keep others safe and free." Yet that is what drives most of us who join the armed services. In that, I include police and fire fighters too; their commitment and sacrifices are just as great.

It is almost frightening to have such feeling and urges in you that would drive you to step in front of a knife or bullet to save another, or even drive you to take a life in the defense of an innocent. Yet that is what is inside most who serve.

So this weekend, take a moment to reflect on those who paid the ultimate price that we could live in this marvelous land of freedom, blessings and opportunities. From the Revolutionary and Civil wars, through two World Wars, Korea and Vietnam and even our brave men and women of today in Afghanistan and Iraq, remember and honor them.

And if it brings a tear to your eye, it's ok, don't fight it. Even the greatest of men have cried contemplating the gift they gave us. Many of them probably cried contemplating the same thing before it was their turn. After all, they loved us too.

It truly is as the Master said, Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
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Still not dead yet. [Apr. 20th, 2008|08:56 am]
[mood |energeticenergetic]

Ok, I admit that I have been neglecting my journaling. I have no real excuse, I've just been lazy. Well, to be honest, I just haven't felt like it. It is hard to say you're being lazy when you work 12-20 hour days.
I have the best job ever.
I am no longer a long haul trucker, (was fun to see the country, but living out of a truck just wasn't for me) but I now deliver and set off EXPLOSIVES! I am how most every night to be with my family yet still get to drive and see new places. True, most of the time I am going out the same places, but much of the time I get to see some really great scenery, at least on the way back. You see, the one down side to my job is that most of the time I have to leave REALLY early in the morning, as in midnight, two or three AM. Sometimes I even have to leave the evening before to get to a site out of state.
Also, I just got my best friend of 19 years on with the company as well. Now where as I LOVE MY JOB! (you should see the reactions I get at 0200 in the rain when I yell that) He merely tolerates it as a way to earn money and have the weekend to be with his kids. (divorce)
However, he just got to see his first open air blast out in the oil field and I think he may be hooked now. True, it was after a VERY long and rough day, (20+ hrs) with a lot of climbing up and down grades and over big rocks packing fifty pound bags (over 300 of them) to get the shot loaded, but in the end, those 10-30 seconds of thunderous explosions and flying rock make it all worth while.
I love my job.
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Back to normal. [Jan. 6th, 2007|09:16 am]
Ok, other than having to wait a week to get our car back, everything seems to be back to normal.
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Worse than I could have imagined. [Jan. 3rd, 2007|04:10 pm]
Well, we just got back home from our trip up to my family in Washington. All in all, it was an unmitigated disaster. The motor home was a nightmare to drive, there were at least three (that I know of) major fights, and on our way home we hit a deer and totally wiped out the front of our car, stranding us in Pendleton, OR for two and a half days. We had to wait till Jan 2nd for anything to be open so we could get home. We ended up spending over a thousand dollars rending a U-Haul and a rental car to haul our broken van home, and of course, I missed two extra days of work. To top it all of I have the worst cough and head cold that I just want to clear my sinuses with a shotgun.
Other than all that it was a Happy Christmas and a Merry New Year. Actually, we did manage to have some fun together, if nothing more than laughing at the absurdity of it all, and watching the kids destroy the hotel room.
If this comes off as overly sarcastic, forgive me, I have had less than 4 hrs of sleep in the last 36 hrs, and that was on a couch.
Let’s just say that I seriously doubt that I will be offering to do any more favors for my family for a while. Aw, who am I kidding, they’re family after all. I am just going to have to start extracting more serious repercussions for my services. I wonder how they would react to my demanding blood, in advance, two pint minimum?
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