Saturday, September 10, 2011

Where were you? What did you think?

This is another post that will be part Nice Guy part Sailor. I apologize if any foul language offends anyone.

Right now I'm a heinz 51 mix of emotions. Humble one moment, angry the next. Somber now, and ten minutes from now, seeing red and wanting vengeance. Last night motivated, this morning, holding back.

Let me bring you back ten years ago this evening. I was on the USS Cleveland returning from a 6 month deployment to the Persian Gulf. The sun had set, we were 4 days from arriving home to our friends and family, and in an overall very happy mood. The movie Pearl Harbor had just been released and we had the chance to watch it. We called it Movie at Sea. We opened the Hangar Bay on the flight deck, put up a huge white sheet, and watched movies. I sat with my mom and enjoyed the movie. I was appreciative that my mom was able to share being out at sea on a US Naval Warship with her only son. It was a beautiful evening in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

That was 12 hours before our Captain told us about the Attacks. It was the last peaceful/non war time freedom I had.

on the morning of September 11th, 2001, We were set to have an awards ceremony at 0800. Our Captain was always early. He was a great Commanding Officer. He took care of our crew. He wasn't this hoity toity officer who made people wait because he was the boss. He was the kind of officer that made sure his crew was happy. He was the kind who never kept us waiting just because he felt like it.

SO, on that morning, 0800 came and went.... 0830 came and went. Somewhere around 0840, the captain came on the 1MC (Ships loudspeaker). "Cleveland...." This was the first sign of something wrong. Whenever he spoke to the ship, he was always chipper and ALWAYS Said "Good Morning or Good Afternoon or Good evening"... Instead we got "Cleveland.... The awards ceremony will be cancelled this morning. There has been a terrorist attack in New York. I don't have many details right now, but the news is playing on the Mess Decks. Please make your way there. We're most likely going to get the most relevant information there in real time than what I'll get from my chain of command."

My initial reaction? WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?!?!?.... I walked to the Mess Decks and watched in horror as I saw two planes fly into the Twin Towers. I saw the people jumping to their deaths. I saw friends who had family back in NY go white in the face and try to reach their family. They had no luck since most of the phones were over capacity. I watched them worry themselves grey. They were in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and had NO WAY to know if their family was ok.

I watched the mood of the ship go from disbelief, to shock, to horror, to complete anger. As much as we wanted to go home to our families, at that point, there was only one thing that every sailor on that ship wanted.... They wanted the blood of the extremist radical pieces of shit spilled in every country that they belonged to. They wanted to inflict the most cruel, harmful, inhumane damage possible to those who caused this tragedy. I went from being the laid back, nice california guy to someone who couldn't wait to get behind my .50 cal Machine gun and make sure someone was on the receiving end of my fury.

I didn't care if there would be collateral damage. I wanted the whole god damn middle east turned into a glass parking lot. I wanted the radical fucks to be tortured until they shit themselves. I wanted them to endure so much pain that they would denounce their god and burn in hell. I wanted nothing more than to find one of them, throw them in a pig pen and have their bodies defiled by the swine in the pen with them. after that I wanted to find every last one of them, cut their eyelids out, and MAKE them watch naked women walk around. I WANTED them to know that their "Heaven" that they so desperately wanted was now wretched out of their possession. I wanted them to feel an ounce of the pain that over 3000 families felt that day.

Do I still feel that way? YOU BET YOUR SWEET ASS I DO! But now, I want them to feel the pain that over 10,000 familes feel every day. If you're here after reading my Bio on twitter, Yes, James 3 is my favorite book in the bible. YES, I do believe in forgiveness. But even now ten years later, I cannot forgive those who inflicted so much pain, loss, and fear into our nation. Even with OBL killed, Even with Saddam killed, I don't feel a sense of relief or retribution. I can only hope that their "GOD" is a false god and they do spend eternity in a lake of fire. I hope that their 40 virgins are Madelin Albright, Nancy Pelosi, and Hillary Clinton. Hell, I hope one of the other virgins is Strom Thurman while we're at it.

Is this post WAY out of the norm on this blog? Yes. Do I apologize for the way I feel? NO.

For the following three years after 9/11, I was in a constant state of alertness. I was in a constant state of not knowing if another attack would happen. I was in a constant state of feeling as if the last time I saw my family would be when I went home on leave. I was in a constant state of anger because our country didn't deserve this. I was in a constant state of sorrow for the familes that lost loved ones. and over the past ten years, I've constantly thought of every family who loses a soldier, sailor, and airman because of the war that was a result of 9/11.

Yesterday morning, one of my friends on FB shared this audio clip. To say that the anger I felt ten years ago welled back up within me would be an understatement. Now All I wish for is that countries that still harbor terrorists would be turned into a big glass parking lot, Donald trump buys it, turns it into a big whorehouse with a moat filled with pigs.

I tried to swallow all these feelings over the past week. But I just can't anymore. I've already heard too many times "Why do we have to care about what happened ten years ago?" I was only in junior high when that happened, I don't care." and the absolute most ignorant statement I've heard this week: "I think that spending a day remembering 9/11 is a waste and an interruption to football". Really???? To those people I say this... The only reason why I don't beat the ever loving dog shit out of you right now is because it's illegal. even then, it's almost worth it.

Lets hope an pray that an event like 9/11 doesn't happen again, and we don't have a memorial for such an atrocious event like this in our future.


The cranky, angry, sailor (but still Nice Guy)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

why 9/11/11 has an ever increasing role in America

This is a warning for those with sensitive ears and eyes. I'm not writing today as the "Nice Guy". I'm writing as the Navy Veteran who served during Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. If you are easily offended.. you might still want to read on. If you are proud to be an American, share this post with everyone you can. I hope this might wake people up just a little bit.

We're still 8 days away from the ten year mark of 9/11/2001. I don't think it should be called an Anniversary per se because ten years ago our nation experienced the most horrendous attacks our nation has ever seen.

As with other national holidays, Memorial Day, Veterans day, and 9/11, people take it more of off from work than realizing those who made the day off possible. I'm the kind of man who isn't ashamed to cry openly when I hear the National Anthem, God Bless the USA, and Taps. Every year for the past 11 years, on those days I weep openly, genuinely, and with a heavy heart. and Sadly every year I end up back at home with my blood boiling.

Why? Because for each person I hear say "God Bless our troops", I hear "WOOHOO Let's go get drunk!". I often hear it from ignorant college students who have no idea what it takes to make these holidays possible. OR, I hear it from adults who should know better but don't know or don't care. When I hear people talk like this or god forbid they choose to protest at a cemetary, all I want to do is walk over to them and punch them in the face.

I want to scream at the top of my lungs right in their face "Men and Women have died for the past 200 years for your right to be fucking stupid and disrespectful. I fought for 4 years for your right to "freedom of speech". I spent holidays away from my family, friends, and loved ones. There are families now who have an empty chair permanently at their table for the rest of their lives. All for your right to party hard or protest against them."

So on 9/11/2011, 11/11/11 (Veterans Day), and Memorial Day, please listen to me when I say this... IF you don't understand WHY we have these holidays, don't appreciate WHY we have these holidays, don't understand WHO gave up their life for these holidays, don't know the families of those who gave everything to have these holidays, or just DON'T care WHY we have these holidays, do me this favor: Pack your shit, pack your family, and get the FUCK out of my country. If you won't stand behind our troops, PLEASE OH PLEASE, Stand in front of them so you take the bullet or IED hit... not them. IF you appreciate the freedom of speech but don't appreciate that freedom, do one of two things; Shut your damn mouth or MOVE to a country other than ours.

Remember, living in this country is a right. Not a privilege. If you live in this great nation, then stand up, take off your hat, cover your heart and say the pledge of Allegiance, sing the national anthem, and be QUIET when you hear Taps. This isn't the United States of America and mexico and canada and europe and asia. When you live here, there is but ONE flag you pledge allegiance to. It's the flag that drapes over every casket of every american who has given their life for this country. If you want to fly a different flag, take it to the country it came from because it doesn't belong here.

Bottom line.... If you get the benefits of living in this great nation, show some damn appreciation for it or get the fuck out of our country.


The Nice Guy/ Navy Veteran 2000-2004

Thursday, September 1, 2011

#peopleofwalmart UGH

Have you ever watched the show "What would you do?" Hosted by John Quinones on ABC?

Today, I found myself in a situation just like one of their scenarios.

I had to run to Walmart to pick up a few items for the house. I should have turned around when I first walked in realizing it was the 1st and it would be PACKED full of people who were cranky and in their pajamas at 2 in the afternoon.

Instead, I trudged on and got 6 of the 7 items I needed. Then I headed towards the health and beauty section to get some shaving cream. That's when the trouble started. from at least 50 ft away, I hear this lady yelling at her child. Saying things that would make a sailor blush. The little girl was maybe 7 or 8 years old.

I slow down and watch and listen. The gist I got was that the little girl needed to go to the bathroom and kept asking her mom to take her there. Apparently, the mom was more interested in finding the right shampoo and conditioner for her hair than listen to her kid complain that she needed to pee. Well, I guess the mom took too long and the little girl wet herself.

This is when the mom had an full on nuclear explosion. She mad her daughter get out of the cart and starting yelling for everyone to hear "Look at this kid... She chose to pee her pants in the middle of the store. I think everyone should come and look and make fun of her. Maybe she won't do it again next time!"

Right at that moment the little girl looked up at me through miles and miles of tears. expecting more and more people to look at her with judgemental eyes and receive more ridicule from the people that were congregating. In that moment, I thought about every single time people made fun of me in school and the kid who was bullied who is now and adult decided to stand up for the underdog.

I walked over to the mom and politely said "Ma'am, can I talk to you for a second?" she responded... well, shouted "WHAT, Do you think I'm a bad mom for doing this?" I replied "Your daughter had been asking you to take her to the bathroom and you chose not to. I have a three year old. when he says he needs to pee, I take him right then and there. You see how much you are hurting your daughter right now? She's balling her eyes out and is probably feeling about the size of an ant. Please, for her sake knock it off, take her to the bathroom to clean up, and apologize"

Apparently, what she heard was "You're a douchebag who doesn't deserve to be a parent"... well... That's what I was THINKING. She started yelling at me, then back at her daughter more about how she was so embarrassed because of her daughter now. How she would be "handled by papa when they got home", and how she was going to go buy her diapers since she wasn't grown up enough to wear underwear anymore.

This is when I had enough. I told the lady I was going to stand between her and her daughter until a manager had come over to talk to the lady and that she needed to not talk to her daughter anymore until either the manager, cops, or CPS showed up. So as I'm waiting for a manager to show up, other ADULTS start coming over to ME and saying "dude, mind your own business" and "This isn't your fight or your child, leave it alone".

I was dumbfounded. How could OTHER adults allow this to happen? Is it easier for them to ignore it and say "Glad it's not me"? Is it easier for them to just blame it on the child and say "Mom must just be stressed and her daughter drove her over the edge?

At this point, I knew it was a battle I was going to lose. Too many jaded adults who sided with Mom and not the child. I was able to back the mom away enough and then turn around and squat down and tell the little girl "I hope you are ok. IF this is the normal way of life at your house, tell a teacher at school. You don't deserve what your mommy is doing. God Loves you, I've never met you before and I care about you. Tell your teachers so they can help you ok?"

God I've never felt so helpless before. What more could I have done? Called CPS myself? Called the cops?

I felt that childs' pain to the core of my soul. I quickly grabbed my cart and checked out all the while choking back years' worth of tears for the pain I felt when I was bullied by classmates. I went to my car and sat there for a while and just cried and prayed for that little girl.

I remembered reading a chapter in the book "Real Dad Rules" by Dan Pearce. It was called "Real Dads speak softly and with kind words". I thought about his post "Congratulations, you just broke your child".

I thought about Dan while all this was happening. I took away from this that not just Real Dads, but REAL PARENTS don't berate their children. Real parents don't make their kids feel insignificant. Real parents LOVE their kids and shower them with kindness and compassion.

I'm still struggling with myself over whether I should have stayed and called the cops or CPS. Should I have stood by that little girls' side and risked her safety to stand up to her mom (and eventually "Papa")? I'll wrestle with this trouble for a while to come. Go hug your kids, Go show them you love them more than anything in the world. Tell them you love them. Kiss them in public (that's a good kind of embarrassment), lif t them up and help them be the best they can be.

I'm off to shower my son with love.

The Nice Guy