Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The Life and Times of Herman Jackson, Issue 4

As the pair approached Earth’s atmosphere Herman took a deep breath and closed his eyes. He knew that his father would protect him and guide him through safely.

“Hold on, Herman. Do not let go of me for any reason.” George said sternly to the boy, and with that, the father and son rocketed towards the blue planet.
Orange and red flames erupted around their insulated space suits. George had to trust in the coodinates typed into his armpad because his vision was completely obscured. The entry angle was correct and their suits were holding up splendidly. George accelerated.

Finally, they were free and floating above the Poacific Ocean. “Herm, it’s okay. You can open your eyes now.”

Herman, carefully and slowly opened his eyes. “Are we through?”
“Yes, son. Take a look around. This is where you are from.”
Herman stared down into the ocean. Never in his life had he seen so much water. He was amazed at how blue it was and how he could see the ocean life swimming below. “Wow. Dad, this is great!”

With a chuckle his father slid back his face plate letting the salty air hit him. He breathed in deeply. “Try it Herm. It’s the smell of home.”

Herman slowly reached up to slide his plate back as well and, somewhat nervously, pressed the button. The breeze hit him squarely in the face and the scent of the sea was unlike anything he had ever experienced.

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Life and Times of Herman Jackson, Issue 3

Herman and his father sat and absorbed the scenery of the blue planet for more than an hour. They watched it’s slow rotation and marveled at the cloud patterns dotting the landscapes. No matter how much time passed, Herman’s father, George, was still amazed at this world. Invisible strings attatched to his heart pulled him back to the place he was raised.

“Herman,” George said to his wide-eyed son, “traveling through Earth’s atmosphere is a…unique experience. The combinations of things that allow humans to live on this planet make entry and exit a bit uncomfortable.”
Herman swallowed hard. He had heard about failed entries into this atmosphere in school. The boy knew his father would protect him, but that did only a little to assuage his fears. With a deep breath Herman grabbed his father’s hand and said, “I’m ready, dad.”

George, beaming proudly at how brave his son was, pressed a few buttons on his arm computer and their jetpacks ignited and began propelling them towards the home of the human race. He gripped his little boy’s hand tightly knowing that in just a few years, the opportunity to hold his son’s hand would be gone.

Herman was all George Jackson had and the reverse was true. Herman’s mother died from cancer three summers ago and left the father and son alone. Before that, George had always put his adventuring career first and his family second. When his wife, Shelly, was diagnosed, things changed in a hurry. Suddenly, George began to realize the responsibilities he had been neglecting to further science and exploration. His priorities immediately shifted and husband and father were infinitely more important to him than Space Explorer. Shelly was terminal when she was diagnosed, but she made it long enough to see the shift in the man she loved and new that her baby boy would be well taken care of. Safe in the knowledge that her husband would have everything under control, she let go and the illness took over.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Honor those who Honor Us

*This entry will contain explicit language – If you can’t handle or accept that, skip and come back next week for a new entry.*

I am so furious right now.
This government shutdown has me up in arms and pissed off in a way I didn’t realize that I could be about something that doesn’t directly concern me. The thing that has me so irate is that our military may not get paid.
One more time for effect:
Seriously, what the fuck is going on?
These men and women sacrifice so much for this country and our sometimes re-fucking-tarded foreign policy and it is blatantly disrespectful and completely unacceptable for our (yeah right) lawmakers to withhold money these troops have earned.

I have never been truly man (I don’t mean that in a sexist way) enough to join any branch of our military. I flirted with the idea a considerable amount, but I never did it. To me, my family was more important. That’s a selfish way to be, but it’s how I am. I can contemplate making sacrifices – including the ultimate one – for our safety and well being, but right out of high school I was too chicken shit to do anything. Then I had nephews. “I don’t want to join because I don’t want to miss out on them growing up.” Then I got married. “Well, obviously, I can’t join up as a newlywed.” Then we had Grayson. “I need to be around to take care of my son.” Then Jackson came along. “I’m a family man. I need to be here for them.”

As you can see, I’m chock-fucking-full of excuses. I regret not joining when I was young and didn’t have so many factors preventing me from doing so. I regret never having the testicular fortitude to grapple with the fact that I’ll miss my parents and my brother and sister.

What these men and women do for us is far and above what most Americans would consider. Who wants to miss out on their baby’s first words or first steps? Hell, who wants to miss anything with their children? Plus, our forces leave behind their husbands and wives. Their siblings. Their parents. Their friends. All they can grasp onto is the man next to them. Their family becomes their platoon and their unit.

We expect these brave men and women to sacrifice for us. To put themselves and their families through these hardships, and now we’re going to withhold their meager fucking pay? I’m not sure if you know this, but most of our armed forces don’t make much money. Truthfully, you can probably make more money running a women’s clothing store. These men and women do this for pride and for honor and it pisses me off to no end that the children of these people are going to suffer because our motherfucking government can’t remove the collective head from their asses.

This whole situation is ri-goddamned-diculous. The last thing we need to do is bite the hand that protects us.
I do not agree with everything (hell, much of anything) that our government does, but this is the lowest pile of horseshit I’ve ever heard of.

Pay our troops - and thank our troops and our veterans. It’s because of these people we are able to have the lifestyles that we do. Our men and women in the Army, Navy, Airforce, Marin Corps, Coast Guard, Reserves, and National Guard (and anything else I’m missing) have more guts and more honor than any clothes-shilling armchair blogger – and more than everyone else who had never served as well.

Honor their sacrifice and take care of these people and their families.