Thursday, April 23, 2009


Firing RPG's at the Heavy Weapons Range


Not sure if any of you know why I decided to leave the job, some do, but here it is.
I still loved the job, but there was nothing else I wanted to do at WPD. My time was up. I used to see guys bitching about this and that, although I was elsewhere for about six years, so I didn't have to put up with the day to day buffoonery, I was still there more than I had to be. And I enjoyed it. Had a good career and worked with some fantastic people. So I had to exit, stage left and make room for others.
But the bigger reason was this. When I used to go on raids, SWAT or drug or anything else, I always got the rush, that adrenalin rush that cops get and look forward to, when you go through the door, (first, last, it doesn’t matter). I’m sure street Cops get it when they go into that great unknown of stopping a car in the middle of the night, (if you don’t your lying or you should re-evaluate). Most dangerous job in LE, the front line officer, I mean SWAT you’re geared up for it, any other specialized unit too, that’s what you’re trained for, right?

But the rush….

Acceleration of heart and lung action
Paling or flushing, or alternating between both
Inhibition of stomach and upper-intestinal action (digestion slows down or stops)
General effect on the sphincter
Constriction of blood vessels in many parts of the body
Liberation of nutrients for muscular action
Dilation of blood vessels for muscles
Inhibition of lacrimal gland (responsible for tear production) and salivation
Dilation of pupil
Relaxation of bladder
Evacuation of colon
Inhibition of erection
Auditory Exclusion (loss of hearing)
Tunnel Vision (loss of peripheral vision)
Acceleration of instantaneous reflexes

That’s the clinical definition, but you know what I’m getting at.

It wasn’t that we had a ton of SWAT call outs, (WPD Operators, you know what I’m talking about), but when you spend pretty much your whole career wearing black, you’re bound to go on some call outs. Drug raids however, well, I lost count. Towards the end after about three or four years with SOG and six years with HIDTA, my heart rate started staying the same, unless there were stairs. I started thinking that maybe that wasn’t a good thing. I was maybe getting complacent and that’s not good. Bomb calls, yes, but there just weren’t that many. Always got it when we were under a 900 ft ship though, but then they stopped calling.
Oh well. So that’s why I decided to leave, wanted to find the next thing. But you know what? Couldn’t find it. Not that I didn’t try, but there just isn’t a big calling for what I wanted in RI. So after a year of learning about the dark side of RI politics, I flew 7000 miles from home to get that rush again,(uh oh, sounds like an addiction). That might explain the whole jumping out of a perfectly good airplane all those years ago, (right Dave?)

Every time we leave the wire here, ( leave to FOB), there’s that rush, it doesn’t last the whole trip, but certain things you see or hear, perk you up. So, if any of you junkies over there are missing something, there’s plenty of work in this vast wonderland called Afghanistan.

Hey, do you know the difference between a fairy tale and a war story?
a fairy tale starts with "once upon a time" and a war story starts with
"no shit, there I was"

See ya

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


I was surprised to see this on one of the local roads. Not the fact that these fine gentlemen were wearing reflector vests, but that they were behaving much like the crews back home. Standing around talking. The only thing missing was the one or two cops standing with them. I guess details are the same the world over. Except instead of laying pipes or lines, they’re probably planting IED’s. Just kidding.
Is this camel loaded or what, and no, that’s not me behind it.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

I hope you all had a lovely Holiday. The bunny didn't make an appearance here, could be because he couldn't hop so well wearing body armor and a kevlar helmet.

We had a local taylor make us some outfits called ManJams, ( that's what we call them). Taylors the short guy in the middle. Very comfortable and breezy. Faces blocked because of OpSec, you all know me, so....

That's me and George, my roommate with the local weapon of choice.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

of beards and wake up calls....

Yes, I'm growing my beard, but I don't have squat on this guy. That, in the words of Eddie I., is a Huge F*** Off beard. I don't think I'll let mine get that long, but close.Actually, facial hair is a sign of wisdom to the Afghan's. So it's not just my being lazy and not wanting to shave. This fine Gentleman is the Principle at the local school.

Hey, we've had two more of those Boom in the Night incidents since the last time. Both friendly, but about a week ago at about 0200hrs, (that's 2:00 am) I was jolted out of a nice sound sleep. I got up and went to the radio room just in time to hear that it was Outgoing. Someone opened our front door, right when another went off. Now our base is pretty big and I'm not sure where they shoot them from, but it was pretty frigging loud. Crack then boom. Then two nights ago, again. But, I could hear a lot of guys up and about. Not like last time. The funny thing is, I didn't move, just opened my eyes and listened. Couple seconds later, I heard the Outgoing. How's that for complacency. What can I say, I was very comfy. Six shots that time.

Friday, April 3, 2009


Well as most of you know, I had surgery not too long ago, and it’s not an excuse, but I wasn’t working out much before I left for January. I figured, hey, if I wanted it bad enough, then a quarter mile run with gear on shouldn’t be too hard. It was, but I had it in my head that once I did it, that I wouldn’t have to run again. Didn’t matter how much it hurt later, it mattered how important it was. So I did it and the other tests they had, then didn’t do anything else in Virginia.
In my defense, the days were long and we didn't have access to a gym. I know, I know, you don't need a gym to run, there was no time Dammit. That's it about that.
When I got to Kabul and had to walk up the hill on the base to the armory, I was out of breath. Now granted I was at about 6000feet, and my house back home is about 93’ above sea level, but I was walking for Pete’s sake. So I started going to the gym on the base when I got up, mostly focusing on cardio. After about two weeks I was running and breathing, you know getting acclimated. So when I got to my current location, I started working out with the troops. Did I mention that I’m the third oldest guy in my building. Doesn’t matter, pain is a crutch. About two weeks in, I was riding in the back of a Cougar, 36,000 pounds of rolling steal. It was crowded so I didn’t have a harness and the driver, well the driver sucked. First time driving at night, black out conditions. I got thrown around like a rag doll. But hey, pain’s a crutch right. Took it easy for a few and got back into it, then back to working out with kids that were born when I was still wearing cammies.
Anyway, the good friends back home are doing Cross fit to get ready for an upcoming event, or the revolution, whichever comes first. Could be just to stay in the shape they need to be in. They have a Blog too, but its by invite only. I asked the Master of Pain if I should do it here and he said stop whining and start exercising already B****! But if you know anything about Cross Fit, first you need to be in shape before you can do it. I brought it up to the guys I work out with and one guy had done it before and came up with some stuff. We did it and the MOP posted it on his Blog. But like I said, since its closed to the general public, you can’t see it, SWAT excluded of course.
If you care this is what we did;
4 stations1 minute each station;
HMMV wheel drag
Pushups (10), flutter kicks (20), repeat till minutes up
BP bar press, while jumping
Box jumps
Rest for 2 min
Second set of stations
HMMV wheel flip
10lbs each, shoulder fly’s (killed, not sure the titanium’s ready)
Pushups (10), mountain climbers (20), repeat till minutes up
Running, switching feet up on tire? get it?
Rest for 2
Third set of stations
Sprint for 20, rest 5 sprint 20 rest 5, sprint till minutes up
Stand on tire, hitting with sledge hammer
Throw sand bag full of big ass chains
Four corner jump
Rest till heart monitor got back to normal, repeat as needed, ( we did it twice) can barely type.
So anyway, I’m a work in progress and by the time I come home, maybe I can go to NEST with the boys.
This picture is our fire pit/smoking area. Ciao