Monday, February 13, 2006

Things I Learned in the Army

I've never been in the Army, but my dad was during Vietnam. He has some interesting stories to tell. This is a picture of him with my daughter a couple of years ago when we were camping. He was out visiting last weekend and read my blog (Mike and Peter, you should be glad he has a good sense of humor), and so I asked him to send me this story, which is one of the most memorable from my growing up years. And you might be able to see where I get my sense of humor from.

So, without further ado, here's the post from my dad.

As a non coffee drinker I share the following anecdote: While in the Army it became my turn to go in early and make coffee. I checked with my wife to find out how much of the brown stuff to put in the top basket thing with holes in it to go along with the 2 gallons of water. When I opened the lid and peered into the aluminum pot I was surprised to see how dirty it looked. In the Army we were told that everything needed to be clean and polished. So, like a good soldier, I proceeded to clean and polish with cleanser and steel wool. All the time I wondered how the others before me were able to get by with such seemingly unclean procedures. But, I knew the results of my labor would be impressive to the officers and noncoms who were actual coffee drinkers.

They were ALL VERY IMPRESSED ! The colonel even "invited" me into his office to discuss whether I was member of the U.S. Army or possibly an enemy insurgent bent on disabling the entire 525th Military Police Battalion.

After my little chat with the C.O., Major "Mac" called me in to let me know I would not need to "prepare" the coffee anymore. Something about the chemistry of aluminum, steel wool, chlorine cleanser, coffee and ignorance being a bad combination. I seem to recall him saying everyone would be safer, if I just disarmed land mines in the break room.

Have a great week everyone. And get some writing done!


Jeanne Damoff said...

Cute picture! And fun story. Please tell your dad he gets 50 points for laughs and another 50 if he promises to stay away from my coffee maker.

Jennifer Tiszai said...

You know one of the first things he taught my kids to say? "No coffee!"

Of course he doesn't know that my son, who can't read, can spot a Starbucks before I can.

Peter said...

Jeanne - obviously, my daughter gets her "cuteness" from me!

I always thought it somewhat strange that Jen's dad never liked nor drank coffee. I, on the other hand, do not know how anyone can survive without 2-3 cups by 7am. Being in his early 60s, and being in the shape he's in, well, he will probably outlive me!

...and its a good thing that I read this story on my wife's blog, considering its the FIRST time I have ever heard of it! ;-)

Dineen A. Miller said...

LOL, this is cute. I like the way he saves the punch until the end. That must have been some rancid coffee. LOL! I have a dad who served in Vietnam too. Wonder if they knew each other? LOL!

Jeanne Damoff said...

Right, Peter. "Obviously." No wonder you have bruises on your arm.

I skip the 2-3 cups and make a bee line for the espresso machine to whip up what is fondly known around these parts as "Jeanne's bucket o' latte." The gorgeous Giorgio has learned not to position himself anywhere between me and said machine. He may be bigger than I am, but I'm much more determined.

Jennifer Tiszai said...

See, determined women outpower, outwit, out-whatever men every time.

We had an espresso machine until someone forgot to clean it! But we now have 2 coffee machines side by side. One is for tea, which I start the day with before moving to a couple of cups of coffee and then Diet Coke. I haven't met a caffeine I didn't like.

Which reminds me, my husband used to have the teapot full and waiting for me in the morning. And now I have to do it myself. He's obviously been slacking, and I need to rectify that before it becomes a nasty habit.

michael snyder said...

I love any story that incorporates coffee and humor. Solid writing too. Somebody get that man an agent and bring him to Mt. Hermon.

I agree with Jeanne, cute picture.

I'm going to refrain from egging on my oft-bruised pal, Peter...except to mention that if he and I were characters (and trust me, sounds like we could be) in a 90's MTV cartoon, one of us would be nudging the other, snickering, and saying, "She said rectify..."

Sabrina L. Fox said...

LOL. Very funny, Mike! Ah, anyway... love the story, Jen. Your dad sounds like me. I remember the first holiday my parents came for dinner after we were married. My mom asked "where's the coffee?" I said "probably at your house" I couldn't make a cup of coffee if my life depended on it. Now tea...that's my weakness.

Jenny said...

Noting sticks with a girl more than stories from her daddy. And that's a great one, Jen. Okay, how to apply the moral of the story -- if you do someting bad enough you won't have to do it again? Where can I use that one? I'll figure out something.
Abundant blessings!

Peter (yes, she's still married to me) said...

Following Jenny's moral of the story, I plan to spray weed killer on the lawn, break numerous plates and glassware, and forget to get something for my wife on Valentine's Day/her Birthday/Christmas/and my favorite, our wedding anniversary. The sad part about this, is that I am guilty of all of the above at least one time in the past! Yikes.

I was going to respond to Mike's impersonation of a certain MTV cartoon character, but this is a family blog. "Breakin' da law, breakin' da law" (that's 4 U, Mike!)

And finally, the best coffee I have ever had was the one time my wife poured a cup 4 me with just the right mixture of cream and Splenda. Love her!

:-)Ronie said...

What a great story! Way too funny.