Tuesday, January 12, 2010

the deployment dilemma


I'm sure most of you that read this blog know that when I move to Colorado I'll be deploying a few months later to Afghanistan. This will only be my second time getting deployed since I joined the Army. I would like to think that I have started a few good traditions. For example before I go out to another country its vital that I amp up my personal technology inventory. Some might ask "Why would that be important?" To these people I say why not?!!! Technology Rocks!!! Another tradition that is integral to getting deployed for me is the consolidation of the socks. I only have two different colors of socks that I wear when I go but I have so many its daunting sometimes.

However the reason for this post is the most vital of all the deployment traditions! What instrument will I be mastering while I'm gone? As you know the last time I deployed I learned how to play the bagpipes which by the way I will most definitely be taking with me when I leave. But since the United States Army has afforded me the opportunity to spend a period of approximately 12 months of potential instrumental enrichment. I had better use it.

So I thought I would ask the people that know me what they think my next acquisition of musical ability should be. I thought perhaps I might become more proficient at a current instrument I already own like the violin. I can play songs on the violin but not well or with any hint of aesthetics. Or perhaps I could take a keyboard and increase my slight piano skills. On the other hand I could make a new instrument purchase with something I've never attempted before ( Tobi says the french horn is a no-go.....drat!!). One instrument I've always been curious about is the Banjo. It looks fun but I've never really gotten to sit down and go to town with.

I would love to hear what different ideas you have.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

GAS GAS GAS!!!!!!!

Yes here I am, still here, still alive. Its been a very interesting few months. I would say I haven't blogged because I'm too busy. But its more like too lazy......that's close don't you think....you know.... too busy not doing anything like write a little blog every now and then.

Every once and a while the powers that be whom are in charge of the Army decide that there hasn't been enough fun yet for the year and choose to give us opportunities to get some extra excitement. This weeks version of awesome fun was a chance to experience chlorobenzylidenemalononitrile. Yes I know Awesome!!! Right?? Now before you all go to the store and get some of you own your going to need a couple things a nifty suits called JSLIST or Joint Service Lightweight Integrated Suite Technology. The other nifty thing that you will like to have is a Pro Mask or gas mask for people who speak human not Army. When you combine them all you'll look like this.



Here is the order of events. First you get your gear all together, put it on, and make sure its all sealed. Then you all shuffle into a room (gas chamber) and fill the room with the chlorobenzylidenemalononitrile or CS Gas after witch you stand around making sure your mask and suit are working correctly with no leaks and things like that. After determining that your mask works and will keep the nasty...but awesome.... gas out of your lungs and eyes you do this.


Yes you take the mask off. The reason being how can you possibility appreciate how awesome CS gas is or how well your mask can keep the awesomeness away from you unless you take off the mask?



After a few seconds you start to have a new understanding of how much more comfortable regular air is to breath instead of the chlorobenzylidenemalononitrile. One problem I have when breathing the CS gas is I have a hard time thinking of much else other than how awesome the gas is. Knowing this a kind fellow walks around asking you questions of things we should know like name rank and all that jazz. Unfortunately my memory is a little shoddy to begin with sometimes so this is what you end up getting when you combine both the gas and a bad memory.




In the end you can't spend all day having all the fun. Other people need there chance to join in. So we all file out and have nothing but awesome memories to remember the whole experience by.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Happy Birthday Grandpa!!

Presenting a classical rendition of well wishes for Grandpa Wilkinson by Alec and Cora.


video

Thursday, January 29, 2009

W'hell'C


Well once again its been a long time since I last put anything on my blog. Some day I was just bound to get around to it. Other than my wife telling me that its my manly duty I'm writing today about something that I have been putting off for the past year or so. Its called WLC or warrior leadership training course. Basically if you wanted to break it down. Its a two week opportunity to be treated like you are back in basic training. Fun right?

But it could be worse it used to be about 30 days long but the Army reduced it down to 14. So all went well I made it through all the fun and excitement and now I'm back. Some of the things they had us study were: how to teach a class in a military manner, how to conduct a physical training session, land Navigation and tactical leadership.

I would have to say that the thing I enjoyed the most was the land navigation exercise. Basically they give you a map and a compass then stick you in the middle of the woods and make you find four points that they give you via an eight digit grid coordinate. Then you have to find your way back to the gathering area. They also required that we wear a whistle and our cell phone because people have gotten lost in the past. Fortunately I know how to use a map and compass so I didn't need to use the whistle or the cell phone.

Unfortunately I don't have any sweet pictures from any of the actual training that I did mainly because digital camera wasn't on the "approved" packing list. But Tobi did get a few pictures of the graduation.


(Me getting my diploma from Commandant Fernando Rodguezramos and Sergeant Major Peter Ladd)


We did however have one celebrity in attendance The Princess Peapod!!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

"Born to be Wild"


The Army has a lot of pros and cons. Pros are things like health care, job stability and a different a pair of gloves for every occasion. Cons are things like mandatory workout at 6:30 in the morning, silly training classes where the instructors tell you what they are "TOLD" to tell you and then show you how "things are really done". Leaders that think they are gods gift to the Army and expect you to agree. Did I mention working out at 6:30 in the morning?

Well this week I got to participate in one of the best things that the Army offers soldiers. (In this Sergeant's opinion) This week I took the Motorcycle Training Course. In the civilian world this class costs about $150 and you have to do it on the weekend. But soldiers get take the course during the week and its free. Now you might ask (and so does my wife) why would I take a motorcycle training class if I don't have a motorcycle?? The answer to that is you don't even have to own a motorcycle to take the class. Sweet, Right?!! Well the class was very fun and I learned a lot. Especially since I've never actually ridden a motorcycle. I learned how to ride one and become pretty proficient at it. The good thing about the class is that they dumb it down for all riders. If you've never seen a motorcycle before or you've been cruising with the Hell's Angels for 20 years your going to learn to be SAFE.

Waiting in line to run the bike course

Me on the Hog

Sunday, September 14, 2008

IT'S YOUR BIRTHDAY!!

Hey its my dads birthday!! HA-ZA! Well at least on the fifteenth of this month. so I thought I would do a post for my dad. so here are some pictures of him.

Dad with little baby Cora

Dad gearing up for war

Dad with Cora on his lap and nose hair trimmer in his nose

Dad fixing Megan's veil

Dad with his little female clone

Dad with my little lovable stinkers

So there you go that's my Dad.
I love you Dad. You are the father that I will always strive to be like. I can only hope that I can be half the example to my children as you have been for me. Also how's the nose hair trimmer working for you?

Friday, August 29, 2008

musical

So recently I became aware of a little musical show that was broadcast strictly on the internet. The name of the show is Dr. Horrible's Sing along Blog. Its just a short little musical about a supper villain wannabe thats trying to make a name for himself in the supper villain world. Very funny! Anyway my daughter the little princes Cora one day decided that she really liked some of the songs in it and she has even learned one.