30 April 2008

That soldier has big "ones" but....

From the Soldier side: After reading Grumpy's blog about our great Medics......
One day in 2005, one of my teams was going out on a mission in Baghdad. I wasn't on the job that day....but they had a lot of good soldiers with them...as a matter of fact, they were all good soldiers.
As they headed for their mission....they heard gun fire. Did the security team leader turn the convoy around and head home? Nope.

The drove to the sound of gun fire....and saw an Iraqi police squad was being shot at by A.I.s (Asshole Insurgents) and one of the I.P.s (Iraqi Police) had been hit in the neck.

The Security team leader, was also a C.L.S. (Combat Life Saver-- advanced first aid) and jumped out of the Hummer and ran to the injured I.P. Picked up the I.P. and carried the I.P. back to the Hummer and put him into the back seat and began treating his injuries. They hauled ass to the next camp and the I.P. was treated by US medics.

That security team leader was a Female Soldier...and in my book I'd have her go with me any day.

More fun tips for deployments.....

From the Soldier side: Something we did in both Iraq and Bosnia to make time go by...if a person left on a "special" computer on whilst they stepped out of the room to eat, go to the potty or whatever, that allowed us to "remind" them that they violated a rule...Log off the damn computer dummy rule. If they were still logged on, we could send e-mail out to other Army folks. If the soldier who made this error was a male, we'd send e-mails to other male soldiers that read something like this: Dear Bill, I miss you. I can't wait until this deployment is over so we can get together and date. I miss your ...bla bla bla. I'm sure you get the idea. We had a similar concept for those who left a digital camera lying around. We'd take the camera and take a picture of some body part that you usually didn't show in public. Then return the camera to where we found it....then wait until the dummy went to show some (usually female) soldier all the great pictures the dummy had taken. I was that dummy who left his camera lying around a few times. I learned not to do that with some of the folks I worked with. Very embarrassing.

26 April 2008

COMBAT COMICS, help survive a deployment...

From the Soldier side: SGT Grumpy (at: http://sgtgrumpy.blogspot.com/) was talking about his tips to survive a deployment. He's asking for good practical jokes that can be used. I have a few simple rules about particle jokes in combat zones:
1.) You don't want any good guys to be injured or killed (no explosive devices!)
2.) You don't want to get an Article 15 or some other punishment
3.) You shouldn't play one on someone of lower rank unless they really deserve it
4.) You want to involve as many people as possible in the "Delivery" for more enjoyment
5.) You have to survive to be able to tell about it, so if someone bigger than you kicks your ass, you failed.

Spring, 2005, Baghdad, Iraq. I was assigned to a Regular Army unit for my deployment. Over my years in the Army and National Guard, I was always under the impression that the National Guard was full of dummies. Not true. The Regular Army unit I was attached to for my tour was full of more dummies than I had ever seen in my entire life. The biggest dummies were E-7's and above....some of these were certified morons! None of them ever left the camp, but all got Bronze Stars!

We had a female First Sergeant who was useless. She wanted to hold company formations outside every morning at 9 AM. Most of us who had any infantry training thought this was a real bad idea in a combat zone. One random mortar round in the right spot would take us all out. But the First Sergeant didn't listen. (rules of war, don't bunch up, and don't look important)

So, when spring came around and it was time to change our clocks... she reminded us: "Bulldogs, now don't forget to change your clocks tomorrow. I don't want anyone to be late for my formation." (We were B Co, so she called us "Bulldogs" we changed it to "Bullfrogs")

I convinced the First Sergeant that for the time change, in the spring, you had to "spring back" and in the fall, you "fall forward." She thought that made sense.

So, the next morning she was out in her formation 2 hours before anyone else. She ran around waking everyone up, including the company commander....who figured out she was an idiot.

When I showed up, she looked at me and said: "SSGXXXX, I thought you said we spring back and fall forward?”

I looked at her with a very straight face and said: “First Sergeant, I always get that mixed up, did I get it wrong?”

Future piratical jokes: What to do when a fellow soldier forgets to log off on his/her secret computer.

24 April 2008

HIT & RUN, HIT & RUN, HIT & RUN.....again and again

From the Cop side: After returning from Iraq in late 2005, I returned to my civilian police job. I had discovered that there were several things I did in both places that helped me with the other job.
One thing I really wish we had for our civilian police department was a heavily armored vehicle (with a good sound system) that we could use to stop cars that didn't want to stop.
This type of vehicle would have been really handy early one Saturday morning whilst I was working on patrol.
We were short of officers early that morning due to illness. I was the only officer on duty when I got the first call: " vehicle into a fence in front of ....."
It was a fairly common call on this one street because it was so hilly and narrow...easy to miss the turn and hit the darn fence. So, it was not a big deal until a few minutes later the dispatcher said:" the silver Honda is driving away...without it's bumper."
Now we had a hit and run....still not as exciting as a mortar attack in Iraq, but something I should hurry up to.
However, before I could get to that first call, I got: "vehicle into a fire hydrant at....." Now a fire hydrant was a little more important than a little old wooden fence....it could cause a lot of damage etc. So I was diverted to that call...then: "the silver Honda is driving away...with a flat tire."
Now, by this time I'm sure you've all figured out it must have been the same car...right? (Silver Honda). So I suggest to the dispatcher (who was kind of new) that she put out a B.O.L. on the Honda in case it made it into another jurisdiction. Done. BOL sent out to other departments.
Meanwhile I get to the fire hydrant....which is spewing thousands of gallons of water into the street and sidewalks. The FD rolls up and I look for a good witness. Of course all I got was "It was a silver Honda...."
So, I drove to the first crash site and found the Honda bumper---with the license plate.... and had dispatch run the plate.... a local person. I head to the suspet's house.
And of course before I can get to the suspect's house, I get another call of a few parked cars that have been hit by...you guessed it, the silver Honda.
to be cont.

23 April 2008

What causes PTSD?

From the citizen Soldier side: Many people I know asked me after I returned from Iraq: "Are you OK CI-Roller dude?" (well, my friends don't actually call me that, but that's my blog name...so I'm going with that)
I looked back at these @(#$)@!## people and said: "What do you mean, am I OK?"
They wanted to know if I had PTSD from Iraq. So, I'd ask them: "I don't know, how in the #*&$# can you tell?"

I'm just kidding. I can usually explain that PTSD is not a problem I have. ..until I have to deal wit some kind of Federal or State stupidness. Take for example going on line and trying to get information about Educational Assistance for college or something for a vet. Now, try the California Army National Guard web sites....first of all, California doesn't have crap for their Guard or Vets ...not like many other state...Calif sucks. They post e-mail addresses for people to e-mail for help...but the e-mail addresses don't work and bounce back...

IT just gets worse. So, then you try to call and talk to a person...then you get a voice mail system that would put most hospitals to shame...with and endless loop to nowhere. I give up...I'll just be stupid...why do I need a degree?

Oh, then when you talk to someone at some of the Military Friendly colleges, they tell you if you're on active duty, there is likely tuition assistance you can use. Well, the last two times I was on active duty, I worked 8 days a week...sometime 16 hours a day...often in the field with no computer access...so how in the hell was I supposed to take college classes in Bosnia or Iraq?

Then there's the friend of mine who's trying to get a job. The problem is, she spent her life raising her kids, so she has no recent job experience. She's one of the smartest people I know and very honest etc...but nobody wants to hire her.

No, I don't have PTSD...I just need a cup of coffee, and for the California Army National Guard to hire more people like our full timer who's the only one I know who can actually get anything done.

21 April 2008


From the Soldier side: Most, but not all members of the United States Armed Forces know that they are obligated to follow a Code of Conduct in times of war. There is the official version, and of course, there's my version.

Article I.
I am an American, fighting in the forces which guard my country and our way of life. I am prepared to give my life in their defense.

My version: I am an American, fighting in the forces which guard my country and our way of life. I am prepared to TAKE A life in their defense.

Article II
I will never surrender of my own free will. If in command, I will never surrender the members of my command while they still have the means to resist.

My version: I will keep fighting until I run out of ammo...then I'll use my weapon as a club, use my pocket knife, rocks and poke out eyes until I'm dead and can't fight any more. If my leaders quit, they suck.

Article III
If I am captured I will continue to resist by all means available. I will make every effort to escape and to aid others to escape. I will accept neither parole nor special favors from the enemy.

My version: I ain't going quit...see #2 above.

Article IV
If I become a prisoner of war, I will keep faith with my fellow prisoners. I will give no information or take part in any action which might be harmful to my comrades. If I am senior, I will take command. If not, I will obey the lawful orders of those appointed over me and will back them up in every way.

My version: I hope you're catching on...they won't take me alive.

Article V
When questioned, should I become a prisoner of war, I am required to give name, rank, service number, and date of birth. I will evade answering further questions to the utmost of my ability. I will make no oral or written statements disloyal to my country and its allies or harmful to their cause.

My version: You know, but if they do catch me because I got knocked out or something, I ain't saying shit.

Article VI
I will never forget that I am an American, fighting for freedom, responsible for my actions, and dedicated to the principles which made my country free. I will trust in my God and in the United States of America.

My version: We fight for the soldiers next to us, not God, country or Iraqi freedom. We won't let our buddies down.

Now...isn't my version easier to remember? And doesn't it make more sense?

13 April 2008

Rubber Boy....on Mushrooms

From the Cop side: I think one of my fans (P) awhile back asked for another cop story. It's so hard to beat some of the crap you see on TV and movies, but a true story where you can laugh at it is good I guess. Here's one.

I was working what we called our "Day Shift"...12 hours between 0700 and 1900 hours. We worked long shifts 3 or 4 days a week with the concept that every other week we'd get 4 days off in a row. Almost never seemed to happen...with overtime shifts, court, training and stuff always coming up.

The town I worked in as a cop was fairly small with a small PD. But, we worked close with each other. So, if one cop yelled for help, everyone came flying over to help. It had to be that way...and even the officers and deputies from nearby agencies would come because we did the same for them when the needed help.

It was a Friday night...about 20 minutes before the end of my shift. We had a "cover" shift that come on at 1700 hours, so they usually got the calls at the end of our shifts to keep us from having to stay late with a report. This was the case.

The cover officer was given the call of: "Strange juvenile waking up to homes and saying strange things to whoever answered the door....then hitting them and running away."

Oh, wow. This sounded too good to miss, so I headed over to the neighborhood to help find the miscreant. The officer who got the call arrived in the area before I did and checked....he cleared the call "U.T.L." (Unable To Locate) and began to drive away. I just rolled into the area as he cleared the call, so I drove out in a different road...just minding my own business.

It was getting dark (October) and as I was driving down a narrow one way street, something jumped out of the bushes in front of my patrol car. It was a guy about 16-17 years old. I stopped so I wouldn't run over him and he walked up to my window. He said something like: "Is my mom alive?" and started to walk away.

I realized he was the knucklehead that we were called on, so I got out of my car and called for him to come to me. He ran back in a flash and got right up to me and began asking if the sky was on fire or something. He was not acting normal, even for that part of California....

I asked: "Dude, what are you on?" and he said: "Mushrooms!" as he began to run away.

I grabbed his arm and tried to cuff him without hurting him (he was only a kid...and high) but he pulled away. I did a leg sweep and put him on the ground with one arm behind him. But, no matter what I did, I could not get his other arm into the handcuffs...it was like he was made out of rubber!!!! His lower torso turned almost 360 degrees while I was holding down his upper body. I was not worried....I was laughing so hard that I had a hard time calling out for help on the radio.

Because I couldn't speak clearly when I talked on the radio, everyone figured I really needed help since I almost never asked for back up. When the troops arrived, they found a 200 + pound cop on top of a skinny little rich white boy on mushrooms ----with both of us laughing our asses off.

We got him hooked up, but for some reason he decided to try to kick us when we stood him up...so we had to take him to the juvenile hall... after the hospital. His mommy called and asked if she could just take him home....after all, he had only taken some mushrooms...... I suppose the mom was an old hippie or something....

I got off work late that night. But, it was still better than being in Iraq.

11 April 2008

COMBAT COMIC Goes to his 4th WAR!!!

From the Soldier side: I just got word from a National Guard buddy of mine who moved to New York (I guess that makes him a Damn Yankee) last year. His name is Joe. He was in our Calif guard unit for many years and I went to Bosnia and Iraq with him. He's one of the funniest people I know and I recall some good stories.

One time in Bosnia, Joe was working back in the main office at Eagle Base. We wanted to go talk to a local dude, but the dude's file had a note in it that we would need permission from the main office before we could contact this dude. We really wanted to go talk to this dude, so I called the main office.

Joe answered the phone...they were busy watching a DVD in the office and I could tell I was disturbing him, so I told Joe about the dude we wanted to talk to...Joe, without even looking up his file said: "I don't give a shit, go ahead and talk to him."

We really should have had approval from the boss, but I didn't care...so we just took Joe's OK and rolled with it.

Joe was originally in the Regular Army 82 Airborne...he went to the Gulf War... He came home, got out of the army…then joined the Calif Guard, then went to Bosnia, Iraq and now he's in Afghanistan with the New York National Guard. I will pray for him and hope he survives his fourth war.

If anyone wants to send him stuff, e-mail me and I'll give you his address.

08 April 2008


From the Soldier side: (sorry no photo today--there are none that could depict some of the stupid people in the Army National Guard)
I've been sort of busy the last week or so...when our unit goes to the weapons ranges, they like to have me run which ever range had problems the last time. So...this time I ran the pistol qual range.

I do this for the police department and it's a lot easier. Let me compare:

For the Army we have to ask for ammo months ahead of time
For the PD I make a call and they deliver it in a week or so and send a bill
For the Army we have to have several people go to the training camp a few days ahead of time and sign for barracks, ranges, ammo etc, then have a bunch on the range helping those shooting
For the PD I throw the ammo, targets and whatnot into the back of a patrol car and drive to the range (stopping at Star Bucks on the way) and run things by myself
For the army we have to account for all the expended brass and turn in the empty boxes and junk
For the PD, I take all the left brass, boxes etc and throw it in the trash can
For the Army I have to listen to the supply puke tell me how they may have to do an investigation because out of 1,250 rounds, we lost one brass case
For the Army I actually saw someone load bullets into all his magazines backwards...wow

I am so glad I can retire from this soon...oh yeah, they said I may have to go to Kosovo next year....(how many times do I have to tell them I'm broken from Iraq still?)

I should have joined the Air Force