For Veteran's Day and Memorial Day too

Bloody hell. I missed my annual posting for Memorial Day and now Veteran's day has passed as well.

First, to honor Veteran's Day in the Geek Way, Wired's Geek Dad has a list of Geek heros who were real heros as well. http://www.wired.com/geekdad/2009/11/geekdad-salutes-our-veterans/

Well, to maintain my haphazard tradition of posting military poems, I found this one by General George S. Patton, Jr., called "Through A Glass, Darkly". It is a bit long, but I post it here anyway.


Through the travail of the ages,

Midst the pomp and toil of war,

Have I fought and strove and perished

Countless times upon this star.

In the form of many people

In all panoplies of time

Have I seen the luring vision

Of the Victory Maid, sublime.

I have battled for fresh mammoth,

I have warred for pastures new,

I have listed to the whispers

When the race trek instinct grew.

I have known the call to battle

In each changeless changing shape

From the high souled voice of conscience

To the beastly lust for rape.

I have sinned and I have suffered,

Played the hero and the knave;

Fought for belly, shame, or country,

And for each have found a grave.

I cannot name my battles

For the visions are not clear,

Yet, I see the twisted faces

And I feel the rending spear.

Perhaps I stabbed our Savior

In His sacred helpless side.

Yet, I've called His name in blessing

When after times I died.

In the dimness of the shadows

Where we hairy heathens warred,

I can taste in thought the lifeblood;

We used teeth before the sword.

While in later clearer vision

I can sense the coppery sweat,

Feel the pikes grow wet and slippery

When our Phalanx, Cyrus met.

Hear the rattle of the harness

Where the Persian darts bounced clear,

See their chariots wheel in panic

From the Hoplite's leveled spear.

See the goal grow monthly longer,

Reaching for the walls of Tyre.

Hear the crash of tons of granite,

Smell the quenchless eastern fire.

Still more clearly as a Roman,

Can I see the Legion close,

As our third rank moved in forward

And the short sword found our foes.

Once again I feel the anguish

Of that blistering treeless plain

When the Parthian showered death bolts,

And our discipline was in vain.

I remember all the suffering

Of those arrows in my neck.

Yet, I stabbed a grinning savage

As I died upon my back.

Once again I smell the heat sparks

When my flemish plate gave way

And the lance ripped through my entrails

As on Crecy's field I lay.

In the windless, blinding stillness

Of the glittering tropic sea

I can see the bubbles rising

Where we set the captives free.

Midst the spume of half a tempest

I have heard the bulwarks go

When the crashing, point blank round shot

Sent destruction to our foe.

I have fought with gun and cutlass

On the red and slippery deck

With all Hell aflame within me

And a rope around my neck.

And still later as a General

Have I galloped with Murat

When we laughed at death and numbers

Trusting in the Emperor's Star.

Till at last our star faded,

And we shouted to our doom

Where the sunken road of Ohein

Closed us in it's quivering gloom.

So but now with Tanks a'clatter

Have I waddled on the foe

Belching death at twenty paces,

By the star shell's ghastly glow.

So as through a glass, and darkly

The age long strife I see

Where I fought in many guises,

Many names, -- but always me.

And I see not in my blindness

What the objects were I wrought,

But as God rules o'er our bickerings

It was through His will I fought.

So forever in the future,

Shall I battle as of yore,

Dying to be born a fighter,

But to die again, once more.


Is Halloween dead? It seems to be in Maryland...

No offense to native Marylander's, but are you from a different America? I have only been in this state about 2 months, but I find it hard to believe I will last a full year.

Halloween came and went this year, but it was very disappointing. We were ready to rock. The kids had matching Power Ranger costumes (their choice). We had candy. We had pumpkins-I even carved three into Jack O'Lantern's (Named for an Irishman, I am sure). Not a single trick or treater was sighted in the neighborhood. We took the kids out shortly after dark, but not very late (around 1900 local time). Out of about six doorbells, only two people answered their doors. They had treats to hand out, but still seemed genuinely surprised to see anyone out and about. We took our now thoroughly dejected kids home in the slight drizzle that just seemed timed for the sad music part of our day. We turned on the TV and couldn't even find the Great Pumpkin on TV. It was like we were in the old Soviet Union. In Russia, you don't scare people, Russia scares you! Bah, I can't even do humor, I am so depressed.

Maryland, you are on notice. We have a few more holidays in the near future. You better get ready to celebrate like you're in America or we kick you out of the union. My family will relocate if we have to. Virginia is starting to sound nice.

So much for Goth Christmas 2009.