More Bad News

I was at a conference this morning when I received a phone call with the news of three deaths and one wounding in our unit. I do know that my husband is okay and I am anxiously waiting to hear from him. I went into Fort Drum this afternoon for the spouse briefing on the incident and my heart goes out to the families affected.

I pray for the morale of our soldiers over in Afghanistan and the morale of the wives and other family members anxiously awaiting their return. According to CNN, an upsurge in attacks have occurred this year throughout Afghanistan by fighters from the ousted Taliban regime. Our unit is part of Operation Mountain Lion, a campaign by 2,500 U.S. and Afghan forces in the eastern provinces of Afghanistan.

* Originally posted at The Sour Patch Kid Experiment (deleted 2007) on June 22, 2006.

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Driving in Northern New York

I have lived in northern New York for over a year now and during my time I have developed a set of rules for use when driving in and around the Watertown/Fort Drum area…

NORTHERN NEW YORK DRIVING RULES

  • Please, if at all possible, do not use your turn signal. It is best to let other drivers experience the surprise and anticipation of what you are planning to do next.
  • When you change lanes, please try to be talking on a cell phone…if you smoke, have a cigarette in your free hand. If you drive a stick shift, rest the cell phone on your shoulder as you shift gears while changing lanes…your cigarette should be hanging out of your mouth as you yell obscenities to those honking at you because you failed to use a turn signal.
  • Your New York Yankees car decal should take up the majority of your rear window…if you can see clearly behind you when looking in the rear-view mirror, your car detail is not big enough.
  • If the speed limit is 55mph, it is advised that you either go 50mph (or below) or drive 75mph (or higher). Any speed between 50mph and 75 mph is unacceptable and you are guaranteed to get passed on a dotted-line highway.
  • When going below the speed limit on a dotted-line highway and you are passed, give a look of genuine surprise to the driver of the passing car.
  • When making a right hand turn off a highway, come to an almost complete-stop before turning extremely slow into the parking lot. This ensures that the traffic behind you will have to slow down from a speed of 55mph (or below) or 75mph (or below). It is best to ignore the swear words and hand gestures directed your way.
  • When in a parking lot, drive around for at least 15 minutes in attempt to find the closest space available. If you do park in a spot located at the back of the parking lot…you will more than likely receive quite a few looks from people waddling into the store.
  • A motto to live by in Northern New York…you can NEVER have enough “Calvin pissing” window stickers…they only add to your class and sophistication.

* Originally posted at The Sour Patch Kid Experiment (deleted 2007) on June 19, 2006.

2500

Today, United States Military confirmed the death toll in Iraq reached 2500 service members since March 2003. According to the Pentagon totals, there have been 1,972 service members killed in action in Iraq, and another 528 died from other non-hostile causes. There also have been 18,490 troops wounded in action, including 8,501 who did not return to duty.

So far, five U.S. soldiers have died in Afhgnaistan, according to the Department of Defense Press Release. Not included in the total are the two Fort Drum soldiers that were killed in Afghanistan this week. CNN.com did not cover this news but luckily, BBCnews.com did. I assume there is a blackout on communication until all of the families are notified because I have not heard from my husband since last week.It is my guess that the average American is jaded by the news of Iraq and Afghanistan and would much rather hear news about the offspring of Bradgelina or Brit-Brit and K-Fed but I can’t help but feel frustrated that the average American has no idea just how many men and women are dying overseas. Maybe I am wrong…

* Originally posted at The Sour Patch Kid Experiment (deleted 2007) on June 15, 2006.