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.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

A Long Time Ago

All of this talk about General McChrystal in the news has taken me back some. I once knew him as Captain McChrystal in my early days of 3rd Ranger Battalion. He was the Commander of Alpha Company and I was in HHC. I was a Cook in those days and I came in contact with everyone. At the time I would have gladly traded with one of my buddies as a Rifleman in a Fireteam...They did fun things and got weekends off, as where I just worked all of the time...But, through coming in contact with everyone I learned allot and gained a perspective on things that I won't put into words.

My buddies that were in the "Line Comapanies" did live a hard life.

In my memory, Cpt McChrystal was a popular Commander, so was his First Sergeant, 1SG Laws, a Vietnam War Ranger. All of us young kids held them in great respect. Alpha Co. was a crack Company. I don't know by what and who's standards, everyone claims some degree of greatness in the Military, but, at the time they had been dubbed the "best Infantry Company in the Army". There was obviously some chemistry in the Company. There was a reference to them as "Alphabots" for having a almost robotic mannerism. Veterans of different Ranger Bns will usually chuckle and say that every A Co. in the Regiment is kind of like that. I'm no one to say that it's true.

Before I got Mobilized for Iraq I corresponded with a guy from A Co. from those days and ran into another while I was at Ft. Knox this summer. Gen McChrystal is still popular with those guys. I say that because they speak positively of him. Rising so high in rank doesn't do it. There is a common notion that Senior Officers...And many Senior NCOs are out of touch. Being in charge doesn't make you popular. It's being you that makes you popular. And I've learned that having first hand knowledge doesn't make you right if you only look at something from one angle.

There is no man that was in that Bn at the time that I can glorify. At 20 "glorify" to me had a hint of blandishment, at 41 the word is vain. There's no man that I respect that I could do that to.

One of the figures that stands out the most from that era of my life was "The Purd"...My Company's 1SG. 1SG Purdy. He was later promoted to CSM. Stories still abound in circles from people that knew him or knew of him. Some actually show the different sides of him. Some stories I've not known whether to believe or not. Several years back he wrote a piece that was put on Col. Hackworth's web site. It's a popular...That word again...Rant article, posted in frustration by...I was going to say Soldiers far and near, but, "all sorts of people" is better. Soldiers are people. I see more of it than a rant. I've found advice in it.

All of the stories say, in some way, he was a tough Son of a Bitch...That he is. He WAS called a relic from the past and allot of people thought he was crazy and I'm sure they still think he is. People can believe what they want, but I will tell you something. He was no premodonna, he was no chest beater and when he spoke everyone listened.

Rangers Lead The Way!
The Appalachianist

Friday, September 18, 2009

Another Post About The Rain

Not much to look at there but an open can of 'Coon bait. I'm on my Cracker kick and it's appropriate. It ain't raining outright, but an upper level low siting down towards Texas has been giving us rain off and on again. It goes from gloomy to rain back to gloomy. I've seen it stay cloudy for nearly a month before. Ont time I was out riding the kids up around the Davidson River while their Mother was at home wraping their Christmas presents. They had both fell asleep on me. Suddenly, I saw the moon and stopped to show them. They thought there was an animal in the road. Just hadn't seen clear skys in a while. Parts of theis county is considered tropical rain forest.

That Song brings back some memories...
The Appalachianist

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Useless Stuff

Since I posted Southern Bitch in a JukeBox Player, and it plays automatically, you are just going to have deal with that. Muting it is your prerogative.

I checked, you get a full play of the song, Cracker is good about that. However, the first five seconds of the song is NSFW.

Useless Stuff - Cracker

Does it really matter to you what I did with my time this weekend? Does the little details of my life concern you so much that you just come and check in? Darn I hope not. One thing that stuff like Facebook and Twitter has done is to compel people to broadcast to the world that they ain't doing a damn thing. Update Status: "I'm watching TV"..."I'm making my bed"...Nothing exciting and they have to tell you about it.

Someone once said to me that I put everything on this blog. No, I don't, didn't then, didn't while I was overseas, and I don't now. I don't think that was ever my intention. I dabbled with the sort-of-online-diary thing once but that would only be something to be misconstrued and be like begging or attention. As a result, this blog has been everything from a square dance to a mosh pit and will continue to do so. But, there are people out there so out of touch and self centered...Hence, hubris...That I will...Or is do a better word?..."Tell you about my life as a Citizen Soldier and my Appalachian roots." That is because to me, it's cultural survival.

I'm not going to talk about the Army. I would complain. Do you want to read me complaining? Which, reminds me I have something to take care of in the dreaded Defense Travel System...I'm not going to talk about it...I'd just complain.

What I will tell you though, is that I've had some long nights this weekend and last. Two nights in a row I trudged up the side of a mountain between the hours of 0100 and 0200, sweat pouring off of me, watching for snakes and all the long thinking how amazing it is that dogs can see so well in the pitch black. I turn my light off and can't see my hand in front of my face...Twister said to me once he didn't think the Jungle in Panama had too much on Laurel and Ivy thickets...The dogs are ahead barking nearly every breath. I catch mine, cross the rocks, make through the thicket and into the big timber. I could be at home asleep. I could be laid up with a gal. I could be hearing music. But, those Hounds put out a sweet sound.

God put us here with the intent we live out some adventures. That's one reason I love my dogs so much. It ain't self glory. It ain't all reflection either. It ain't a statement of a cause as it is a statement of the truth. It may not mean a hill of beans to you, but it does to me. That's all I'm saying.

It's training season and life is good.
The Appalachianist

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

I used to think there was nothing to do...

Special Thanks to Southern Bitch.

I first heard this a few years back, about the fall of 2004. Poetry of our patheticness or rally cry for common sense? Oh, I guess that's for one's self to decide. Maye it's just coordinated noise...Who's John Gault anyway? But, I can't help but think about it when I see what's going on today. We've got busy bodies left and right trying to synchronize every facet of our lives. Where are our principles? Where are our fundamentals? Well, I think we're just spinning around like a top until we can figure that out. At least we're sill spinning. That's the bright side.

You wonder why kids are fucked up today...

The Appalachianist