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, April 27, 2008

Lonely Places

"Liberty, according to my metaphysics is a self-determining power in an intellectual agent. It implies thought and choice and power."
John Adams

That's Big Mountain Branch that feeds into the North Fork of the French Broad River in Western Transylvania County NC. I took this picture back in March. The banks are covered in Dog Hobble. A ways up from this spot a road is proposed to cut across it from the Cherry Field section of Transylvania County to Balsam Grove. I don't know how I feel about that. The road would cut across a seldom traveled section of the Pisgah National Forest. It could open Balsam Grove and Silverstein up to complicated development and tourist could find their way back into some of the lonelier places of the County. Cars are built smaller but roads are built bigger these days.
Yet, Hwy 215 winds like a nervous snake across the top of The Gloucester Gorge into Balsam Grove. Once a road I simply know as the Turnpike went across Big Mountain from Cherry Field which is the most direct route. What ever came of it I don't know. It involves the government and government rarely ever makes sense.
That Forest Land is our land. It's yours and you may have never been here before. It doesn't belong to politicians and bureaucrats sitting in their castle keeps. It's the peoples land. Sometimes that's good and sometimes that's bad.What will be the determining factor will be the almighty dollar. As long as politicians feel they can get away with spending other peoples money they will.

The issue has been quite for some years. It ain't dead though.

I Turkey Hunted back in there yesterday. They've got the ground tore up. I came across Bear sign as ell. A Bear was struck there back in fall and it was some race. There's Coyote sign back in there as well. It's a fine country with tall stands of White Oak. It's a lonely place.

The Appalachianist

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

An Intellectual Pursuit

I spent Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Ft. Jackson. I ran into several people that I was in Iraq with, including a girl from the unit we relieved. She worked the J4 in Baghdad and after a few minutes of conversation I remembered her. I was in that office for a couple of hours.

Running into several of the old hands I learned that someone I thought was back as a contractor had had a change of plans. He is still in Rogersville Alabama. Yet, one girl from Atlanta is now in Baghdad.

I’ve got one friend that got completely out and is now talking almost like thinking of going back.
Thinking of it, now that someone I know is back at TND I can get a more honest assessment on how my old Habibi’s are doing. Shlonek? Shaku Maku?

I got a haircut in Columbia Friday morning. Two of the lady barbers were talking. An acquaintance was having some fidelity problems with her husband. At first it was just chatter to me, but, something caught my attention in the conversation. One lady responded to a comment, “you mean she got back bone?!” The other lady replied, “No, she just got a temper”. So I went through a brief intellectual pursuit…

73’s The Appalachianist

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Sewing Worth

He who wishes to exert a useful influence must be careful to insult nothing. Let him not be troubled by what seems absurd, but concentrate his energies to the creation of what is good. He must not demolish, but build. He must raise temples where mankind may come and partake of the purest pleasure.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I saw on ABC News this evening a Preacher out in Missouri had his congregation wear bracelets, and each time they complained they had to switch it to the other hand. He wanted them to stop complaining. Apparently it's working.

I'm a believer in not complaining. Not to be confused with saying it like it is.

In the words of Vic Chestnut, "Live by the scam, die by the scam".

It's spring...And a beautiful one at that.

The Appalachianist

Sunday, April 13, 2008


That's me, Christmas Eve Night after being out looking for a cache of stolen weapons.
Last week a friend called me and no sooner than I said Hello he chimed into me, “Do the Iraqis take a two hour lunch?” For a minute I flashed back in my mind of getting some Iraqi up out of bed in the middle of the day because answers needed action. “Some times three”, I answered. “How do they expect to get anything done? Are they lazy?” Before I could offer an antidote he answered his own question… “They’re lazy”. “By our standards, yes”, I replied. I had not spoke of these things…Things there became the way things were and I have just not completely discussed it with anyone. Only in bits and pieces… “Where did you learn this?”
“I heard it on the radio”.

As an Advisor I had to be impartial to a culture that I often had to work around. If I was to do what I had been sent there for I served to masters, the Iraqi People and the American People. Rubbing one Iraqi Officer the wrong way could set things back a year. I would sometimes think my homeland came from cultures clashing and my home town was stuck between beauty and dysfunction.

I went onto explain how in time the Iraqis were convinced to work through those times when something was pressing. But in the Iraqi view it was too hot and they needed rest. Then on the other hand they would sit up all hours of the night. When they wanted something they would find a means, and when they didn’t they would find a means for that too. Again in my mind I flashed back to one of my interpreters telling me a man needed fifteen hours of sleep on his day off.

I don’t live where I have to worry about my family may be blown to shreds while shopping for groceries. For the greater part Christians get along here. We don’t feel the desire to shoot each other and blow one anther up. I see the Iraqis as a dramatic people caught in a dysfunctional cycle. I seen them hurt themselves in allot of ways, but, I don’t feel I can judge them for it.

When it comes to Iraq there is so much I could discuss, and a neutral audience is rare.

I learned that someone I was on Taji with is back there. In an e-mail we talked about something, I threw my two cents in and was told it would be passed on to CMATT. That makes two that I was with that are back there now, one as a Soldier and one as a Contractor.

Also I learned of someone that was in 3rd Range BN at the same time as me being killed there in 05. Rest in Peace, Ranger Horrigan.

Also a shout out to Ranger Bruce Fisher A/3/75 late 80’s. Scott Oates is looking for you. I wouldn’t mind hearing from you myself.


The other Saturday morning I got up and drove through the pouring rain to Blairsville Ga. where I took my Technician Class test for an Amateur Radio Operators license. As a Tech Class Operator I’m on the 2 Meter Band from 144-148 Mhz. This is what I intend to use for Hunting from now on. I’m a HAM.

I reckon I’m back to Blogging and clinging to Religion and Guns.
The Appalachianist