Category Archives: Personal

Muskogee War Memorial and the USS Batfish

This is one of those happy accidents that you have to be ready for when traveling. For our trip to Oklahoma, I wanted my kids to learn about the different Native American tribes. After some reading and research, I decided on the Five Civilized Tribes Museum in Muskogee. In hindsight, I should have focused on the Cherokee in Tahlequah. The Five Civilized Tribes Museum consists entirely of “Andrew Jackson moved us here, here’s some art.” The art was good but unsatisfying for the left-brains of the family.

A pamphlet stand for area attractions included one for the USS Batfish. A submarine in land-locked Oklahoma? This deserved further investigation.

The USS Batfish is a Balao-class submarine.

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Filed under history, navy, Personal, ships, World War II

Tulsa Air and Space Museum

The Tulsa Air and Space Museum was a nice find.  A retired American Airlines MD-80 is parked outside, and an F-14 Tomcat is among the aircraft inside.

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The museum pays homage to Oklahoma aviators and astronauts, including a large display about Wiley Post, Will Rogers, and their ill-fated flight in Alaska.  Another display described the last B-24 built at the Douglas plant in Tulsa, the “Tulsamerican”, which later went down in the Adriatic. Art deco pieces of the old airport building are preserved, as well as a couple of old Spartan airplanes. Oklahoma astronauts include Apollo 10 and Apollo-Soyuz commander Thomas Stafford, Skylab astronauts Owen Garriott and William Pogue, and Shuttle astronauts Shannon Lucid and John Herrington.

Mr. RFH liked this, the Jumo 004 turbojet engine for the Me-262.
Jumo

The kids liked the interactive displays and the knowledgeable docent.
mini me
back

Last but not least was the planetarium, which had a number of shows. I liked this display, an Eagle project made of a couple of thousand Rubik’s Cubes.
2000 rubiks

They also had up-to-date stargazer news, including the rendezvous with the Dawn mission to Ceres, the solar eclipse earlier in March, and updates on the James Webb Space Telescope.

On the same road, not far from the museum is Evelyn’s Soul Food Restaurant. This was a nice place to have lunch then return to the museum.

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Filed under history, Personal, planes, space, World War II

Intolerance

Of gluten.  Here is a primer.

It’s all about dogmatic feelings of victimization.

H/T Keith M.

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Filed under anthropology, Around the web, Humor, Personal, Splodey, stupid

Those Who Know, Know… Part 2

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I almost spit out my coffee.  Carol is awesome.  Just awesome.  These days, she makes Shane look like Stuart Smalley.

H/T to Boston Maggie via Twiddah.

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Filed under Around the web, Defense, girls, guns, Humor, leadership, Personal, recruiting, Uncategorized, weapons

Sometimes it IS the club’s fault….

It isn’t often that I can relate to a professional golfer.  Mostly because they usually don’t lay the sod over a 70-yard flop, or three-putt from ten feet.  That, and I am a lot more settled with the idea that I am not very good at golf.  I am not a club-thrower, either, but I do understand the urge.  As does every other golfer, including Judge Smails.

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Mr. McIlroy, unlike me, has a brand new custom-fit 3-iron waiting for him this morning, free of charge, that Nike started building before the ripples in the pond had spread.  Maybe that is another reason I don’t throw clubs.  I can’t afford it.

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Filed under Around the web, history, Humor, Personal, Uncategorized

What Sox and Jackass are Plotting for the Rest of the World

You’ve been warned.  A world where bastid cats outnumber humans six to one…..  A whole enslaved class of people whose menial tasks include cleaning litter boxes and opening cans, vacuuming up hair, cleaning cat-barf…..

They MUST be stopped!

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Filed under Personal, Sox, Uncategorized

Thank You For Your Service

Last night’s post on servers and service was actually inspired by this post from Doctrine Man over at The Pendulum.

“Thank you for your service.”

I paused momentarily at the words, and looked up from my lunch to see who was speaking. An elderly woman was reaching out to put her hand on the arm of an Army captain, with a look of sincere gratitude in her eyes. It’s a scene that plays out in every airport across the country as a thankful public expresses their appreciation to members of our Armed Forces.

It happens to us all at one time or another. For me, it tends to be a humbling experience, maybe even a little uncomfortable. This is my chosen profession, and I’ve never felt a need to be thanked for my decision. But I also recognize that for many, they need to express their gratitude for the sacrifices we make, for what we give of ourselves for our Nation. So, when I’m approached, I stop what I’m doing and take a moment to acknowledge their thanks and remind them that I also appreciate what they do to support our forces and how much it means to all of us. Courtesy is a two-way street.

Do go read the whole thing, as it is a tale of appalling behavior by not just a serviceman, but a commissioned officer, a chaplain no less!

As JoshO commented on last night’s post:

wasn’t there one of these a couple years back where the waitress made a big stink online about getting stiffed on the tip and it all turned out to be bullshit? Here’s hoping that this is something similar…

Unfortunately, DM’s post shows it is all too plausible.

Generally, when someone thanks me for my service, I reply that it was my privilege. And it was. Military service may sometimes be an obligation in America, but it is not a right. That I was fortunate enough to enlist and serve is a blessing that many will never enjoy.

What thanks does my nation owe me? Well, they paid me on the 1st and 15th of every month, provided me with housing and food, health care and dental care. The nation has granted me certain benefits through the VA and the GI Bill.

What thanks does the citizenry owe me?

None.

Now, that’s not to say I don’t appreciate when citizens take the time to either thank me personally, or veterans in general.

And I’ll certainly admit that on Veteran’s Day, when Applebee’s offers me a free meal, I gladly take them up on their offer (and I most assuredly tip the waitstaff, generally about what the meal would have cost me normally).

And there’s nothing wrong with asking if an establishment offers a discount to veterans or servicemembers.

What is wrong is thinking an establishment should offer a discount or any other preference to veterans and servicemembers.

Our troops are asked to endure a wide range of hardships, from the obvious, like going into battle and risking injury or death, to the more mundane things in garrison life that are annoying and that no civilian employer could ever dream of enforcing.

That unfortunately leads some servicemembers to think that they are special. That they are “the true 1%’ers” gives them some special place in society.

But most of us recognize the key word is “service.”  Merriam-Webster provides quite a few meanings for the word, but the one most applicable to veterans is this:

contribution to the welfare of others

We would all do well to occasionally remind ourselves that we served to support the nation, not that the nation served to support us.

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Filed under Personal