Thursday, August 28, 2008


This is hilarious and I don't exactly know why.

Do me a favor and spend five minutes on The Onion. You'll feel much better.


Disappearing act

In third grade, my dad walked into my classroom with flowers for Valentine's day, threatening to sing to me in front of my peers. Geesh.

In middle school, he drove me to school one October dressed as a cow then proceeded to see me off with a kiss on the cheek and a wave of his udders. Mortifying.

My sophomore year in high school a man dressed in a gorilla suit interrupted my Spanish class with a birthday song and candy. Thanks again dad.

What else do these special father-daughter moments have in common besides the fact that they scarred me for life?

Well, they all made me want to want to disappear, of course. Too bad the technology wasn't there...yet.

Good news for those still struggling with embarrassing dads. The Army is developing materials that could render people and objects invisible, according to the Army Times.

Have a fab Thursday.


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

True hero

Harry and Helen Gray are the first individuals to donate to the National Infantry Foundation at the 5-star level

I got first dibs on this story about a WWII vet who recently gave $2.5 million to the National Infantry Foundation.

For those of you who don't know, the foundation is building a National Infantry Museum in Columbus. Expected to open March 20, 2009, the 185,000-square foot building will boast an IMAX theater, restaurant, classrooms and world class exhibits all in commemoration of the infantry soldier.

Monday, August 25, 2008


Check it out y'all.

There's a link to my Moore/Galloway story on the LZ X-Ray Web site. Look toward the bottom of the page, to the right under "We Are Soldiers Still."

Yippee! That's what I call blogress.


(By the way, that's literally the first time I've ever typed, let alone said, ya'll).

Still Soldiers

The line outside the PX at Infantry Hall this morning for Moore and Galloway's book signing.

Twelve-year-old Maxwell Carlisle and his dad, Lt. Col. Tom Carlisle, ask Joe Galloway and retired Lt. Gen. Hal Moore to sign their copy of "We Were Soldiers Once...And Young." The Carlisle's also purchased a copy of Galloway and Moore's new book, "We Are Soldiers Still" at Infantry Hall's PX.

Retired Lt. Gen. Hal Moore and Joe Galloway sign copies of their new book, "We Are Soldiers Still" at Infantry Hall.

Retired Lt. Gen. Hal Moore and Joe Galloway were at Fort Benning today to sign copies of their new book, "We Are Soldiers Still."

It's the sequel to the 1992 best seller, "We Were Soldiers Once...and Young," about the Nov. 1965 battles at Landing Zones X-Ray and Albany in the Ia Drang.

Here's the quick story I posted online when I got back from the signing.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

We Are Soldiers Still

Hi and thanks for checking out my blog. Though some topics stray from the theme, mostly what you'll get here are military-related stories relayed either from my own experience as an Army wife and military reporter for the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer or various sources floating around the web, being whispered in my ear or popping up in my e-mail in box.

As I promised, here's the book tour information for "We Are Soldiers Still: A Journey Back to the Battlefields of Vietnam," by retired Gen. Hal Moore and Joe Galloway, authors of the 1992 bestseller, "We Were Soldiers Once...and Young." If you want, you can check out this interview done by Rick Journey from Fox News in Birmingham, Ala.

Remember, these dates are subject to change so make sure you confirm the appearance before you ride over there.

Book Tour Info (subject to change) ALABAMA & GEORGIA (Moore and Galloway):
August 19: 6pm Alabama Booksmith in Homewood (2626 19th Pl. S, Birmingham 35209)
August 20: 11am-130pm Maxwell Air Base (Squadron Officers School)
August 21: 7pm Books A Million, 2243 Tiger Towne Pkwy, Opelika
August 22: 11am-2pm Fort Rucker Aviation Museum lobby
August 25: 11am-130pm Fort Benning, GA., Infantry Hall (I'll be covering this one for the newspaper. Check out the story which I will post here Tuesday!)
August 26: 6pm-8pm Columbus GA City Library (I think I'm going to pop into this one too not for work, but to chill with the general and Joe.)

TEXAS TOUR (Galloway):
September 2: 7pm Borders Books, 19720 Preston Road, Dallas 75230
September 3: 11am-1pm Fort Hood at Main PX on Clear Creek Rd.
September 4: 7pm-9pm BookPeople, 603 N. Lamar, Austin 78704
September 5: 7pm Barnes and Noble, 18030 Highway 281N #140, San Antonio 78232
September 6: 1pm County Historical Museum, (behind the Fire Department half block off US Hwy 77) Refugio 78377

September 9: Lecture and reception and book signing, Marines Memorial Club, 6pm (time tentative) San Francisco
September 11: 4 p.m. lecture, reception & book signing Miramar Marines Air Station
September 12: 4 p.m. lecture, reception & book signing Camp Pendleton Marine Base, Oceanside Calif.

CHICAGO TOUR (Moore and Galloway):
September 17: 5pm Reception/Signing at Pritzker Military Library downtown
September 18: 730pm Barnes & Noble, 55 Old Orchard Center, Skokie IL 60077
September 19: 7pm (time tentative) 1st Infantry Division Museum, Cantigny, 1 S. 151 Winfield Rd., Wheaton IL 60187

Sept. 20-21 book signings/events in Seattle
Sept. 22: Book signing Fort Lewis, Wash., main PX
Sept. 23-24: Portland lecture & book signing events.

WASHINGTON DC (Moore and Galloway):
November 5: luncheon & book signing 12 noon at Union League Club in Philadelphia, PA.
November 6: evening event & signing at Army-Navy City Club, McPherson Square, NW DC.
November 7: Ia Drang panel discussion at annual history conference of American Veterans Center in DC.
November 8/9: bookstore signings. Visit with and sign books for Ia Drang and 1st Cavalry Division veterans at 1st Cav hospitality room, Hilton Hotel Crystal City, in Arlington VA.

November 13: Joe speaks at fund-raiser for U.S. Army Historical Museum in Carlisle, PA
November 14: Museum dedicates its outdoor Vietnam War exhibit centering on recreation of Landing Zone XRAY, Ia Drang Valley

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

We Were Soldiers Once...and Young

I'm about to give retired Lt. Gen. Hal Moore a call to interview him about his new book.

Many of you have probably heard of "We Were Soldiers Once...and Young" either because you read the book or saw the movie starring Mel Gibson. Gibson played Moore in the movie, by the way.

Well, Moore and co-author Joe Galloway have penned a sequel called "We are Soldiers Still."

They'll be in Columbus promoting it on Fort Benning and in the city's main library.

In other Benning news, I covered two deployments last night. Read about them here.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Jessie just called me from Boston with the bad news that LeRoi Moore, saxophonist for the Dave Matthews Band, died from complications due to injuries he sustained in an ATV accident in June.

After checking the band's site, I confirmed what she'd heard. Here it is:

LEROI MOORE 1961-2008
We are deeply saddened that LeRoi Moore, saxophonist and founding member of Dave Matthews Band, died unexpectedly Tuesday afternoon, August 19, 2008, at Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles from sudden complications stemming from his June ATV accident on his farm near Charlottesville, Virginia. LeRoi had recently returned to his Los Angeles home to begin an intensive physical rehabilitation program.

Several things came rushing to my head as I struggled to process this news, especially in the wake of such an evil day. First snippets from the many times I've seen LeRoi in concert got me thinking about how I missed his presence when I saw the band in July.

Next I wondered if they'd play their final shows of the tour. Jess is flying to LA tomorrow to visit some friends and see one of their last performances this summer.

Finally, I let the possibility creep into my mind that this could be the end of DMB.

I didn't verbalize it at first, but once I knew Jess was on the same page, I almost cried at the thought of it.

That sounds silly, I know, but to understand the relationship I have with this band is to know me from the time I was 13 or 14 years old.

My point is, RIP Roi. You're already missed.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Give me a break

Even if it is the airline's policy, if you were working that counter would you make them pay?

Good lookin' out, Em. Thanks for sharing.

My lovely lady lumps

My body is literally covered in bruises and bumps from playing soccer FOUR DAYS AGO!

Does this mean I'm getting old?

In defense of my nagging injuries, all true athletes are damaged goods, even this one.

Watching the Olympics last night, I realized just how beat up everyone is.

I am by no means comparing my measly knee sprain, sustained while playing in a co-ed soccer game, to those injuries endured by Herculean Olympic athletes, but I am saying that shit happens to the best, and worst, of us and for some reason it makes me feel better (and less old) to be a hobbling 26-year-old.

So, the good news is I've only sprained my ACL. I'm out for the rest of the season but I'll be able to play in the fall. I'm going to start rehabbing myself over the weekend (after taking a few days off) by jumping on the bike and doing quad and calf-strengthening exercises.

Oh, yeah, and I have to wear a really annoying brace.


Monday, August 11, 2008

Irresponsible reffing

I think I messed up my knee playing in Sunday's soccer game.

Three times the same man pushed me down using very aggressive and illegal tactics and he didn't receive a yellow card from the ref until the third assault. Well, that's all my knee could take apparently because I went down and felt something pull.

The pain wasn't bad at the time, though, so I finished the game, got an assist then guest played for another team in need of players.

This morning I woke up in great pain. My ankle and knee are swollen, I have charlie horses on both quads and various cuts and bruises on my knees and elbows.

I understand there's a certain amount of risk involved in playing sports and I welcome that. I like aggressive play, but this guy was just dangerous and by "this guy" I mean the ref.

It is the ref's job to know the rules of the game, which he didn't, and make sure there's no illegal shenanigans like kicking, slide tackling, pushing, etc. (Yes, I said shenanigans)

I don't know where his head was, but it certainly wasn't on that field and now I'm paying for it.

I'm visiting doc in a box tomorrow to get a referral to someone who can tell me what's wrong. I'm afraid it's this.

So I'll keep you all updated.


Friday, August 8, 2008

Keeping in touch

Up until recently, contacting Morgan in Afghanistan has been surprisingly convenient. That changed Sunday when I failed to hear from him. Monday came and still no word. No e-mail, phone call, Facebook or Skype messages.

Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday came and went. Each day lasted an eternity. I couldn't concentrate at work, couldn't sleep, felt sick, felt weak.

Never allowing myself to fear the worst I told everyone who asked about Morgan that he must be out on a mission because I hadn't heard from him in awhile.

This morning a "937" number popped up on my phone. "Thank God," I thought. Tears streaming silently down my cheeks I told Morgan how worried I was and asked him to please try to let me know in advance when he'd be unreachable for days in a row. It's a request I don't know if I have the right to make. It's also one he doesn't have the right to grant. All the same, I felt reassured.

It's a good day. Happy Friday everyone.


Thursday, August 7, 2008

Rakan's story

On a cold, January morning in 2005 a vehicle careens toward a pack of American soldiers in Iraq. Fearing for their lives, patrol members open fire.

When the smoke clears, the soldiers discover the suspicious car and innocent bodies inside are riddled with bullets. One victim, 12-year-old Rakan Hassan, has been shot in the spine. The boy's parents are killed in the attack.

It was a mistake. A terrible mistake and medics worked feverishly to save the child. He lived, but doctors determine he was paralyzed from the waist down.

In September 2005 a group of humanitarians, to include U.S. Sen. Ted Kennedy, flew Rakan to Boston to receive top medical care. He does and learns once again to walk.

But this story doesn't have a happy ending. How could it when you're talking about a child who's life has been shattered?

Read it here.

What do you think? Has anyone read "The Kite Runner" or "A Thousand Splendid Suns"? I highly recommend both.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Home Depot Heroes

Home Depot Honors Fallen Soldiers With Great Prices On Tools

This is tasteless and terrible, but also very funny.


You've heard of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but did you know there's something called pre traumatic stress disorder or Pre-TSD.

That's right. Check it out.

Musings on a Sunday at work

It's Sunday and I'm at work. Blarp.

There's little going on (knock on wood), but I did come across this column on The Onion's Web site.

My favorite line: "My Kate is truly one of the sweetest, fattest, smartest people I know. She's not only my enormous wife—she's my enormous best friend."

I hope to one day be Morgan's enormous best friend.


Friday, August 1, 2008


Happy Friday!!!

So Jessie Capp., sent this to me about a week ago and I just didn't listen to it until about 5 minutes ago. It's Stevie Nicks performing "Crash into me," by Dave Matthews.

For those who don't know me, I'm a ridiculously big DMB fan. Jess and I have been going to see them live since we were in middle school. The last show I went to was July 7 in Atlanta. Jess flew in from Boston. Dave played "Crash" and I might have cried.

So good to see you last month, Jess. Thanks for your many years from friendship and love.

In military news...I'm headed out to interview a man who's been in uniform for 50 years. He was in the Army then, upon his retirement, he became a JROTC instructor at a local high school. He's retiring this month. Should be a pretty cool profile.

Have a great weekend.