Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Old Friend, New Clothes


Had a soldier come into our quarters at NTC with something that definitely wasn't an M4 from a distance, and had to go look at it. I was suprised to see this current version of the M14, tricked out like a mall ninja's wet dream. The big difference being that these add-ons will see use somewhere besides the range. A fair number of the 11Bs were given these fine rifles based upon their qualification scores during the last range qual. These troops are now squad designated marksmen, something I both envy and approve of. Envy, because properly set up this rifle will take out a hostile far beyond the effective range of the M4 gopher gun most of us are saddled with. Approve, because at least someone has something with both range and individual accuracy you can't get with an M240B machine gun. This is the man and gun you go to when Akbar the part-time sniper pops of rounds from his Enfield or Mosin while nicely ensconced in his ROE off-limits compound full of women and kids. Lucky dog.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Odd, But Not Ugly



I was watching some of the younger troops playing a video game last night, and noticed the main character running around with something like the image above. It reminds me of the older FN-FALs when they first came out. There's something about walnut that adds elegance to any firearm, no matter how utilitarian it started out. This particular set of furniture runs about $240, which is low enough to start me considering upgrading my rifle at home.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Welcome To The Slide Show

Where you'll have a multitude of vacation National Training Center pics inflicted upon you. Hey, you're the one who showed up here voluntarily. Now you get to see some of the non-sexy side of the military experience. It's like being a janitor with an assault rifle!

Waiting for the flight out. This is the Army's version of hanging out in the airport. Not seen, the concrete catch basin for fuel and other liquids percolating in the 90 degree + temps, and the Sergeant Major coming over to tell everyone to put their uniform tops back on. Dignity first, people!
Lunch is served! And a "complete meal" it was, if you're into sodium induced high blood pressure and diabetes.



Welcome to the rotational unit barracks at Camp Irwin, where only the finest hardened foam is used on our beerfest tents/barracks. Two things to remember: don't use an open flame around the quarters, and don't lean against the wall.

Just some of the exciting prizes to be found out in the local desert.

The FOB wiener wagon mascot. There's something disturbing about a hotdog offering itself up like that.

More later, depending on the whims of the local internets........

We Don't Need No Stinkin' Free Speech


So Juan Williams is canned. Probably as much for fraternizing with the enemy (Fox)and soiling his political purity as for having the temerity to suggest that anyone has the right to feel anything other than approving of a different belief system. Richard Fernandez has pretty much called it: blasphemy is back.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Ugly Gun Sunday


Where there's a will, there's a way.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I'm Overstimulated



Spent several hours today as part of a squad policing up garbage from a fenceline around a huge vehicle maintenance area. We're told this part of what every unit rotating through NTC/Ft Irwin is required to do as part of cleaning up after itself. Given that a lot of the plastic I was picking up disintegrated as soon as I handled it, I think someone just got their full-time troops out of a crap detail by having us do it. On the upside, at least I was able to treat someone for an allergic reaction to whatever plants half the trash was stuck in, making this the third day out of twenty-five here that I've done something related to being a medic. This kind of stuff makes looking at foot fungus during sick call almost exciting.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

I Will Not Leave My Post Until Properly Relieved



Tonight, I have the grave responsibility of guarding the latrines from all those who would soil its pristine porcelain as most of the company prepares to depart.

None shall pass............so to speak.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Organized As Always......



the Army has kept things interesting here. No computers were allowed here, we were told. Not true. It will really simulate the field experience; also not true (it sucked worse than Iraq in 2003. That's saying something). Last, you'll be back in MS by mid-October.... As a reward for being able to stay out of trouble and do my job at the same time, all without the need for adult supervision, I have been awarded an extra 10 days of duty at lovely Fort Irwin to medically support a maintenance team. Which is a pleasant way of saying I will stand by in case one of the mechanics cuts/smashes something, in which case I will bandage it and drive them to the post hospital. Sadly, this will probably be more pleasant than what the rest of the unit will be experiencing in MS, so I'll gladly take this opportunity to review my Dari language book, learn how to operate a PlayStation Portable, and meditate while appearing attentive.

I need to buy more books and PSP games, I think.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Ugly Gun Sunday


How to take an elegant little revolver, and make it look cheap in one easy step.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Ugly Gun Sunday



Yeah, it's stock. There's just something about the pattern that reminds me of an old oil slick in a mud puddle.