Appalachian Patria

Appalachian Intellectual. To me that means plain thinking. I am A Non Commissioned Officer in the Army Reserves. Let me say...My views expressed here are mine and not those of The U.S. Army, Army Reserve or my fellow brethren in The National Guard. This is entirely Sua Sponte. This is My Thinking. I'm single and in my mid 30's. Politicaly, I'm a Libertarian. (Again, Sua Sponte.I do not represent the Libertarian Party.)I love my native Appalachia, Rock n Roll and...I love God.

Location: Brevard, North Caroilina

I started blogging for two reasons. I was concerned about the changes to the area I live in, Southern Appalachia and I was about to go to the war. I was in Iraq in 06 and 07 and now Kuwait in 11 and 12. Blogging was a means of documenting my experiences and hoping it would help gain clarity. I don't feel that way about it any more. It's said people write blogs because they are frustrated, that's why people read them too. That makes us sound apocalyptic. Are we? Let it be said, what I say here is of my own thinking. This is entirely Sua Sponte and not an official representation of the U.S. Military or the U.S. Government as a whole.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

An Explanation Of Many Kinds.

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There's probably this notion out there that I don't like Yankee's. This is not so. Some of my best Army Buddies were from up North. I'm loyal freinds to someone from Up State New York(Shout out Amy!). If their good people then that's fine. In time they may grasp The Southern Thing, and certainly as long as their not Carpet Baggers. The modern day Carpet Bagger comes and pushes his way into your culture, imposes his values(or lack there of) onto you. All this time he's looking down his nose at you while turning the place into what he tried to escape.* Some are even from the South, but, Suburbia. All Rural area's are plauged with this, North and South.

I don't consider all people from north of the Mason Dixon Line Yankee's. For instance people from out west are just Non Southern. Doesn't mean that their bad people, just more of a tendancy for forms of Heatheness. If that's a word.

But, if I was to point my finger at Non Southerner's and Yankee's I'd have three more pointing at me.
I just felt it needed some explaining.

Administrative stuff
I'm planning on adding some links. A couple of Blogs, local Papares and Rock Bands. I wanted a DBT Banner, but, there not small enough. I don't link other Mil Blogs because there's a ring you can hit spin on when ever you want. I don't want anyone to think I'm endorsing some one either. wich leads me to a post by Alway's Question. He noted that he links for both left and right sided Blogs. "This is how dito heads of all ideologies become inbred in their thinking", he said. I agree, as I commented wer'e often preaching to the quire.

I was tempted to go see Hank3 play in Asheville tonight. Just the first half, but, there is packing to do for Ft. McClellan this week and I better hang onto some cash. Not that I spend much, but, going on Oders for 26 day's, I better be prepared. I'm leaving Tuesday afternoon. I don't know how often I'll be able to post. There's tow Transplantavanians, other wise known as my Dad and Brother, an hour or so down the road, so, that's a possibility. I may do a journal type thiing like I did at Ft. Lewis. Though I feel a majot Hill Billy Rave coming on...

If your just stopping in, dance around the campfire, hang around a while. If you want to hang out, read my first post, Kituah. Don't worry it aint long.

* an almost mirror coment I made on The Peanut Queens Blog. I found her through Sage. Go check them out.

It has often been observed that something of the frontier still lingers on in the culture of the South. Partly this came about becauseof the isolation of the South during the Civil War, and partly it is because of the bitter poverty in the South for many decades afterwards. Southerners continued their frontier ways after such ways were abandoned elsewhere becuase they could not afford any other. Is it stretching things too far to see a hint of the Southeastern Indian in some of their heritage? Is there something of it in the Southerners love of hunting and fishing? And is there something of it in the Southerner's admirattion of wild and reckless bravery?
Closing paragraph of "The Southeastern Indians", Pg 501, by Charles Hudson.

Rock and Roll around my head fifty watts happening...
Appalchian Intellectual

Saturday, August 20, 2005

I done Up And Volunteered Myself, Edited

Latley I've only kept up sporadicaly with anyones Blog. But, the other morning I stopped to check in on Red Geargia Clay. It appeared the boy had been hit with a Book Meme. I noticed he listed T.E. Lawrence's "Seven Pillars Of Wisdom" as one book impressing him most. It made an Impression on me too. I agreed with him and since he was not taggin but asking for Volunteers, I, in a sense I volunteered myself.

1.How many books have I owned? There is no real telling. Bunches upon bunches.

2. The last book I bought was? "In The Red Zone, A Journey Into The Soul Of Iraq", by the late Steven Vincent. He was an Art Reporter who saw the World Trade Centers fall and later went to Iraq out of pocket, not as an Imbed or working for a News Angency. As I was reading it he was shot and killed in Basra and his Lady Interprator, Noir, was seriously wounded. He was a big supporter of Democracy in Iraq, but even his writings shed a dim light for hope in that. From his writing I liked him personaly, may he rest in Peace. Maybe Noir can come to here and live without threat.

3. The last book I read was? See above. So...
3a. The Book I read before that was the Draft version of FMFM-1A, Fourth Generation Warfare, by Bill Lind and the 4GW boy's.
3b. Before that I read "Lost In Translation, a Combat Advisor's Story, Vietnam", by Martin Dockery.
3c. And before that was "Not A God Day To Die, The Untold Story Of Operation Anaconda", by Sean Naylor(It's up there with "Black Hawk Down", by Mark Bowden). I'm Currently re reading FMFM-1A.

4. The books that have left an impression on me: There are so many. Some that come to mind are...The 1985 version of FM22-100, Military Leadership. "The Seven Pillars Of Wisdom", by T.E. Lawrence, The Book Of Proverbs, both the Living Bible and The King James Version..."Open rebuke is better than secret love"...Not to mention Eclesiastes. History, Myths and Sacred Formulas of the Cherokees, by James Mooney. About Face, by the late Col. David Hackworth, The Travels Of William Bartram, by William Bartram(slightly lesser is A Journey into The Carolinas, by John Lawson). Enders Game, by Orson Scott Card(and Enders Shadow!) and the countless books I read as a kid on Mountain Men and Indian Warriors. One to add, for variety and it's true, was The Secrets of Seduction by a lady named Venus Something another. I loaned it to Horse Slayer, but, he must have never read it.

Two to add after thinking about it. "Boyd, The Fighter Pilot That Changed The Art Of War", by Robert Coram and "Rising Tide, The Great Mississippi Flood Of 1927 And How It Changed America", by John M. Berry. The latter my Ex picked up in a discount store over In Pigeon Forge, meaning it didn't do as well. It deserves much credit. 800 plus pages, but, very interesting reading. You'll have a better understanding of a Complex South.

In the same spirit of Dave I'll ask for Volunteers. It may work better that way.

I plan on getting some posts caught up soon since I'm going to be away so much over the next 20 odd day's. Bare with me...hang in there.
Appalachian Intellectual

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Fog, Dog's, Skunks and Punks

I couldn't get it up front, so I linked it.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Goat Rope

First things first. I've set my profile for e-mail. (Amy, if your there, you would be proud). So! Ladies, send your Flirtations, Marriage Proposals and Bikini Pictures!

So What About Drill
I said that, "Ol' Hill Billy me" would complain about the heat. So, let's get that out of the way. I believe God meant some places for temporary use only, and during the Summer, Columbia South Carolina is one of them. I don't know what the tempature was. I could have sworn I saw an E-7 down the Firing Line burst into flames. The ground there ain't fit for nothing. It is all sand on top of a kind of whitish dirt. It won't grow anything but Long Needle Pines and Scrubb Oaks. Just plain ugly. The Sun reflects off of it, making the heat worse. It's not as bad as Iraq(I've been to Egypt, remember it well) but, with the humidity it realy competes. The Indians went there in the Winter Time to hunt, otherwise was smart enough to leave it alone.

What about Goats?
Fiasco's are nothing new to the Army. As long as there have been Army's, there has been Fiasco's. Soldiers, and variations there of, have come up with unique names for such things. Goat Rope is a polite one. If you ever hear a guy mumble "Charlie Foxtrot", he's a Joe. "Goat Rope", Goat F@!k, Cluster or Barn Yard Orgy...there the same. This weekend had the flavor of Goat. I'm not going to get into it too much. There was a Communication Malfunction and the Range was not completly set up. la di da...The Domino effect kicked in. But, Bright Side up, all but a few Qaulified. This may shock many of you...we have M-16A1's. The M-16A2 has been out nearly 20 years. The Weapons are in need of work. Sometimes they have to be refitted. Many are at least 30 years old. It's also a suprise that the Army has ammunition for them. There's a differnce in the Barrell's, so a difference in Bullet weight. The one that I shot...yes, you wind up just signing for any old Weapon...started out with a fairly tight shot group. Even being as consistant as I was trying to be, when I Zeroed the Rifle, the Shot Groups got bigger and bigger. Still, I managed to knock down 34 targets out of 40, so it wasn't all bad.

Tree's A' Fallin'
Thursday I sat down on The Big MC's porch while he ran inside. We ride togethor. He has great big tre's in his yard. He said a branch fell off of one as he sat there in his porch. His son had just left the yard. As I was sitting there I heard a tree fall at an old Home Site about 350-400 yards away. No one helped it. We rode by the place and darn if there wasn't a dead White Pine leaning into a White Oak. A good wind will put it across his road. We stay at a SC National Guard Facility on the back of Ft. Jackson. We can rent a humble room there for $9-13 a night. Sunday Morning as we were going up the Highway when we crossed a hill to see several cars stopped in the road. When we got there an old rotting Pine had fell across the road. Everyone there was either in The Air Force or The National Guard. One guy was hooking up a "Come Along" to the Tree and his truck. Me and The Big MC(AKA Jolly Red Head Giant) Threw the broken top peices into the ditch and drove around it through the grass. No one followed suit...

Eat More Goat!
Applachian Intellectual
(Willy to some)

Wednesday, August 10, 2005


Twice The Citizen
Unfortunatly today several National Guardsmen from Pennsylvania were killed in Iraq. A week ago several Marine Reservist from Ohio. These are certainly unfortunate events and I sympathise with their Families and their Brothers In Arms. Today on ABC World News that pretty lady, Elizabeth Vargas announced them as someone who didn't expect to be there. I doubt that. Often the Media petray's Gaurdsmen as Volunteers for Natural Disasters. Not nesascarily so. Though going to War is more so in the back of someones mind, certainly no one goes to a Tactical or Support Unit, such as a Postal Unit, thinking it could not happen. Before Iraq and Afghanistan Reserve and National Guard Units were pulling much of the Peace Keeping Duty in The Balkans. The Desert Sheild/ Desert Storm events are within the memory's of each Service Member alive today. Gaurdsmen and Reservist are not stupid. Though we expect to be in a fight where the Nation depends on us (Iraq is arguable) we know fully with the Downsizing of the 90's and fewer of us knowing a failure to reform that the Pentagon was becoming more and more reliable in the Reserve Coponant. We're "Twice The Citizen".

Investment Or Not
Armor Units didn't expect to patrol on foot due to a lack of Infantry. Most units didn't expect to be rushed through gambits or redeploy so quickly. The assymetrical nature of the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan certainly threw many for a loop. For years with a few adjustments Training was directed at a more conventional enemy. In 1998 as I was going through my Infantry Phase of Advanced Non Commisioned Officers Course(ANCOC) the Instruction was based on a book from 1988. Yeah, some high tech toy's were being handed out, but, everything pretty much remained the same. As well, despite the new relaiance on the Reserve Componant little more was being invested into them as far as deployment plans.

Drills are no longer Drills. We are supposed to call them Battle Drills. No one does but your Commander. Drills are still Drills. Up unitl this time nothing has realy changed about them. I suspect that is about to change for me. Drills are made up of Unit Training Assymbaly's, UTA. A UTA is half a day, say at least four hours. That UTA counts as a full day of Active Duty on Drill Status. So, 8-10 hours of Drill counts as two day's. That makes MUTA's, M being for Multiple. A Saturday and Sunday is typicaly a MUTA 4, Friday Night a MUTA 5, Friday Day, MUTA 6. One UTA is one Retirement Point, MUTA 2, two points, etc. Soldiers are paid by deviding their base pay(E Grade and Number of years of Service) by 30 timed by the number of Training Assymbaly's. For Example a MUTA 4 is equal to the pay of four day's of active duty. You get four day's pay for two day's.
A note on that. last month when I took a one day trip to Ft. Jackson SC I was paid for one day of Active Duty. After taxes, my gas, and my room(wich was cheap) I only cleared about $25.

It's time for Drill and we are pulling a MUTA 6. Friday Morning me and my Buddy's will be there standing tall(and looking good!) This Drill will be spent on the Firing Range under the unforgiving South Carolina Sun. Not knowing the orcast for there, tempatures are often pushing 100 degree's this time of year. When I was there last month the Heat Index was 103. Ol' Hill Billy me will come back complaining of the heat.
This is the last time I will post until next week. Tommorow night I will be riding south with the Big MC( a buddy of mine) catching up on our month and so on. I'm telling you this for a reason.

Assigned Reading
I most often link something from Defense and National Interest, It's good stuff in my opinion. With the Internet and other Media Outlets there is no shortage of people giving their opinion. In some cases spewing out Group think. Iraq being a very hot topic, this article is about as real as expectations a we can get. I warn you, it's a long read for some. About four pages of print. I do suggest you read it though. As a note to it, as Willaim Christie see's Iraq becoming a place for terrorist camps and Raids being conducted by Spec Op's, that was the strategy I discussed with Twister in October 2001, as Afghanistan is concerned. Allow the targets to have a safe haven giving them a sense of confidence where they can become vulnerable to raids by Special Forces, Rangers and Black Op Groups occasioanly large enough to be supported by the 82nd Airborne and Marine Expeditionary Forces. Like a Cat toying a mouse.

4GW Militia?
Have something that you could contibute to Civil Defense? Retired Military? Ham Radio? Organastional skills? Maybe this article and this one too may intersst you. It would probably never happen until Al Qauda or MS-13 cause us trouble.

Like I say, I'm going to be away so you have a few day's to read this.

Appalachian Intellectual...tired of typing....

Monday, August 08, 2005

A relic From The Past

A Relic Of The Past. Starting in the late 1890's and up until WWI Appalachia had a Logging Boom. Rail Roads, mostly Narrow Gauge, were built to haul the Timber out. The Tree's were massive. The American Chestnut was the dominate species, during the boom it was killed by a blight.(Progress is being made on this Tree!) The rusty object in the picture is a rail from the Rail Road that ran up the Davidson River, Transylvania County NC in what is now The Pisgah National Forest. Posted by Picasa

Looking down the Davidson River. Late last Summer it was a torrent from Tropical Storm Frances. Some of the trees to the right are a sign of that. This is one of the first tributaries to The French Broad River. Frances gave the Mountains a "Hundred Year Flood", our last was Tropical Storm Burrell ten years before. Burrell produced more rain in my memory(14 inces in Rosman NC), but, Frances gave slightly higher flood levels. Perhaps due to ground saturation, but, the Flood Plain of The French Broad has been tampered with more since then. Still, Frances destroyed more trees along the Davidson than Burrell did. Appalachia is a world of Micro Climates(Both Biologicaly and Socialy), one side of the Mountain may get more rain than the other.Posted by Picasa

Just For Janie. There are no blloms left when summer winds down.  Posted by Picasa

Friday, August 05, 2005

I Suck At Hackie Sack

Me, Twister and a buddy of his, "The Robster" went to a Morrocon Resteraunt during Bele Cher in Asheville this last weekend. You have to be carful having Sweet Tea in a Resteraunt not ran by Southerners. It may not be to your liking, but, it wasn't bad. We had a real sweet Waitress that was just plain pretty, poor girl, being from the Psuedo South*, said she liked Unsweetened Tea.We first stumbled around the street playing Hackie Sack and finished off with a show by The Drive By Truckers. I suck at Hackie Sack, but, we had fun with all of the differnet people coming up and playing with us for a few. DBT put on a great show, even if they didn't do any of the Gangstabilly and Pizza Deliverance stuff. As I was leaving after the Trucker's Show, I came across Brad, the drummer of the band. He's from the Upstate of SC and I was forced to live down there once. Turns out we went to High School together. He was a couple of years behind me. I went into a bit of a Giuerilla Add Campaign, but ptting a slip of paper with my Blog Address in tip jars. As I tod Brad, I don't mean to be a Publicity Whore, but, if your one of those folks showing around th campfire, hang around a while.

Appalachain Intellectual
Note: no, folks, this is not the lost post
* AKA Florida
**This is about the only time I'll show someones face. The lady "said" she didn't mind. I've seen her dance before and she's very talented, not to mention very beautiful. .Posted by Picasa.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Fog, Dog's, Skunks and Punks

This is a recreation of the last lost post...
Foggy as all get out

August Mornings in the Mountains alway's have Valley Fog. Up on the Mountian it will be clear, but, down below it's thick. Especialy close to the River. The Fog burns off anywhere from going on 10 until Noon. Noon is rare, but,it happens. Once the Fog is gone, watch out, Appalachia's notorious Thunder Storms are building. It's Dog Day's and sometimes they just sit there with their Thunder and Lightening and can realy put down the Rain.

Napalm Sticks to Kids, Lightening Sticks to Dogs
Bosco hates Thunder and Lightening, fears it greatly. I've seen her hiding from it 45 minutes before I heard the first crash. On my way home Thursday before last it was storming in different parts of the County. I imagined in her mind she can see Lightening wrapping around her body and repeatedly slamming her into the Earth. Like a Youngin' flinging a knotted rope into the yard. I could imagine her a wailing..."Argh Argh Argh". Up in the air she goes and back into the ground until she repents for killing the kids Guinea Pigs that time. Or maybe Lightening just doesn't like dogs. Lucky for her the storms didn't hit at the house.

Skunks, You've Gotta Love 'Em
Walking into my Civillian Work Place the other Friday morning I could faintly smell a Skunk in the air. The hoods in the lab were on so they would have that smell(a sulfate I beleive) sucked in. Latley at work we have been finding the scat(Turds to you heathens) of some Varmint on our back dock and parking lots. We have the notion it's a Skunk. My Dad caught a Baby Skunk when he was a kid and they kept it as a pet. They finaly had to get rid of it becuase it was spraying things that would get around it at night.
The year before last, just getting back from Annual Training, I went to see Hank Williams III play. I picked up a freind, Horse Slayer to be exact and he was drinking. The boy just up and decided to drink, I think it had something to do with a girl. I told him he couldn't have it in my truck. So, he pours it out. Partly in his drive way and partly in my truck. He's all apolegetic. I just hope I don't get stopped. I don't know what he was drinking, but, it stunk to high Heaven. Then at 0200 when I'm gettin home here comes Bosco chasing a Skunk, tail raised spraying as it goes, down the drive way past me. I didn't bathe her in Tamato Juice or nothing, just wouldn't let her in for a week.

Punk Rocker Attention Defict Disorder
Hank III is much like his Grand Daddy. He puts on a great show. The first part is all Hill Billy, the second is Death Metal, wich to me is wasted energy, but, that's me. At the end of the second show this Yankee Fellar came and grabbed Horse Slayer demanding he apologise to his wife. Horse Slayer did a good job of de-escalating the situtation. He had stopped drinking and was almost sober, thank goodness, and agreed to apologise to The Yankee's wife. So, here is the girl standing there pouting like a Punk Rock Version of Rosy Odonell(except about 6' tall) as Horse Slayer politley apologises. People, the girl's lips were stuck out and all. There's even empty beer cups around her feet. It looked like something out of a bad B Movie. Well, Yankee Fellar stands there like a tough guy as we walk off. I asked what all of it was about and he said the girl was flirting with him and he flirted back...He was drunk mind you...she kept on and he stopped. Well, old Rosy wanted some attention and tried getting some Drama going.
It's a long story, but, the other night I was in the Smoky Bar with him where he ran up a $15 tab and tipped the Waitress $20 because he has a crush on her. She's young, but, I know she can spell LOSER.

Well, I hope you have enjoyed this installment of Appalachain Patria.

Appalachian Intellectual...A higher sense of Humanity

This Bites!

I just sat here in this sweaty chair and wrote a real cool post(By Ed's Standards) and lost it becase the "Recalctranet" disconneted before the entire page no Cooky for me! And you missed such a wonderful poor heathens
Appalachain Intellectual

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

It's Serious

Be Aware!
I have preached on being vigilant, and securing our Borders. It's time to listen up. The situation is serious. We need to secure our borders before invading Iran or Seria. I don't like either one of those countries either, but, we are being invaded everyday.

Rules are Rules....
Previously I mentioned in a post that I was VERY concerned about the Security at Sea Tac Airport(Seattle). I saw it, my buddy saw it and Al Qauda has seen it to. I said that I would say more on it later. (For some reaon, if I say I'm going to write about something I end up never doing it.) When Leaving and going thorugh Security my buddy is behind me..."Oh Shit!"..."What is it", I asked.
"I've got my Gerber Tool on me". A gerber Tool is a Multi Tool, Pliers, knife, etc.
Uh Oh, our bags have already been checked in.
"Is there a trash can?"
"No, don't do that!"...I could see Security going Ape with him throwing something metal and black into a trash can."Just give it to Security".
He stops a Gaurd. "Here, forgot this in my pocket(We had been up all night waiting to clear Barrackas at 2400hrs-1200AM), give it to your boy. It's a good tool"
The Gaurd shakes his head..."I can't do that. they will fire me! We have to destroy it. Wait! Are you going to Iraq?"
We both laugh..."Yeah, but, not today!"
The Gaurd shakes his head..."We have to destroy it, sorry, we have to go by the rules".
So, the Gerber Tool was destroyed. So a Caucasion with an Appalachian Accent, Military ID and nearly 24 years of Serice had to throw away a knife. Not hardly a radical Muslim.
It wasn't the Gaurds fault. The man was polite and apologetic. They only followed the rules, and us being Military we know about that.
But, who ever made up the rules was dumb.

Semper Vigilans!
Appalachain Intellectual

Monday, August 01, 2005

Polar Bears. I saw this a long while back on Soldiers For The Truth, courtesy of Uncle Sams Canoe Club(U.S. Navy). I just thought it was a cool picture and figured I would throw it up here. Posted by Picasa

Laurel Blooms. A while back I posted a picture of this stuff telling how it is Rhodadendrun or actualy Ivy. But, in these hills we have it switched and calling it differnet means your not from here. Bee's make honey off of it, It grows in great big tangling patches and likes damp slopes. The leaves are poisinous. Don't let your Goats eat it. They bloomed nearly a month back, I finaly got this posted. Wich reminds me there is a big favor I have to do for JB. Posted by Picasa