• Member Since 17th Jan, 2012
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"The point is not who will let me. The point is, who will stop me?" - Ayn Rand (Howard Roark, "The Fountainhead")

More Blog Posts18

  • 4 weeks
    Another Decade Bites The Dust

    I waffled on whether or not to post this blog because after I finished it, as I felt like it had served its purpose as the only form of journaling that I’ve enjoyed. Plus, it’s like therapy for me. Then, as I was perusing YouTube, I came across a video.

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    0 comments · 12 views
  • 5 weeks
    Warmest Wishes to All

    Happy Hearth's Warming, Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Happy Festivus, Happy Festag, or however you choose to celebrate, venerate, or mark the passage of this final season. Here's to all you, wherever you might be, and to all your memories and endeavors. May they be comforting and triumphant for all of time.

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    2 comments · 14 views
  • 10 weeks
    Off Into the Sunset

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    1 comments · 32 views
  • 15 weeks
    Climbing Out of the Pit

    I have so much I want to say, but my powers of articulation still haven’t caught up to the range of emotions that have been roiling through me since yesterday evening. It’s not really sadness; not anymore. Even with all the feels that yesterday brought out, I think it was more of a sense of hollow resignation. We knew it was coming. I knew it was coming. Do you know that sensation of anticipation

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    1 comments · 50 views
  • 15 weeks
    The Hurt is Real, Because the Feeling Were True

    Six hours since The End and it’s only now really starting to settle in that this thing which has been a constant in my life for the past 8 years is finally over. And I only realized near the end that the Heartmender HQ server had a bunch of folks in a voice chat watching it all together. :facehoof: :fluttercry: :pinkiesad2: I’m going to be kicking myself for while for missing the rare

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    2 comments · 38 views

Bootcamp Finale: Taps · 10:09pm Aug 5th, 2019

“Taps, taps. Lights out. All hands turn into your bunks. Maintain silence about the decks. Taps.”

(The northern shore of Hawaii at sunset, a couple of days before getting back out there to chase the horizon.)

When you can catch the unicorn that is a watch rotation which allows you to spend a full 7 hours in your rack, the “Taps” call is a sweet, sweet lullaby. The technical description is that Taps is a bugle call played at dusk, during flag ceremonies, and at military funerals. There is a similar word, “Tatoo,” which signals that Taps will be occurring in 5 minutes. 

Here we are, folks — the final segment of Bootcamp. I read back through the previous sections before sitting down to tackle this last piece. I was amazed at how much I glossed over or didn’t include in some of my descriptions. Part of the reason is the usual answer of classification and so on. But I think a lot of it is just that after 14 years, I’m so steeped in this life that it’s hard to think outside my box anymore. 

When I went about trying to explain the traditions and quirks present in the Navy, it quickly became apparent that we on the inside take for granted the knowledge that we’ve attained over the years. These are years spent marinating in a broth of caffeine, seawater, marine and aviation fuel, haze gray paint, and emotions ranging from complete apathy to screaming rage. Just as I worry about the growing divide that creates a gap between civilians and the military, I also wonder about the reverse: the need to keep in touch with our civilian neighbors. The street runs both ways, after all. I’ve heard civilians call us “the mindless underachievers of the country” because they (falsely) assume everyone in a uniform couldn’t cut it in higher education or skilled labor circles. And I’ve heard uniformed members call civilians all manners of names because (falsely) “they don’t deserve to guide the fate of a nation they’ve never pledged to die for.” There are common grounds upon which both sides stand, and our focus ought to be on the similarities that bind rather than the differences that divide. But that is a topic on the purely human side of the equation. The political side is a different animal.

I will say that my own opinions on how a government might be better run align somewhat with Robert A. Heinlein’s books Starship Troopers. Allegations that the political viewpoints within border on fascism aside, there is a stimulating appeal to the focus and order created by a nation aligned through the sole societal stratification of being either a “civilian” or a “citizen.” It’s appealing because, according to the book, those who have served the state are the best qualified to direct the country because they have demonstrated a vested interest through civil service. That, in itself, is a hotbed for contentious discussions of which I’m not unfamiliar. So that’s all I’m going to say on that subject.

Now for a moment of serenity...

No, I said “serenity” not “Serenity.”

That’s better. This is either sunrise or sunset somewhere far from land. I can’t tell which it is. Either way, it was a lovely sight.


Okay, moment over.

It’s been a nice project to get these thoughts out somewhere other than the walls of my own home. Though with genuine honesty, I visit this site more often than any other, so it might as well be something of a home away from home. I’ve downloaded text versions of story update or printed off copies to take with me during underways when I knew that access to the outside world would be spotty or simply unavailable. A few ebook versions also occupy space on my phone. The “Big 5” of the Fallout Equestria universe (the original, Project Horizons, Pink Eyes, Murky Number Seven, and Heroes), many of the works by Monochromatic, Crystal's Wishes, and The End of Ponies to name a few. But being a reader within a community and being a member of that community isn’t the same. To partially quote Bilbo Baggins: “I don't know half of you half as well as I should like...” And I should like to remedy that situation. It’s a long road for an asocial type, but I’m working to change that.

So what’s up next? Well, a promotion at the end of this month is the first step. After that is a wall-to-wall schedule of underway exercises and training classes from now until I pack up for parts unknown later next year. Unfortunately, that already puts my ability to attend EFNW 2020 squarely in the crosshairs to be torpedoed. Unless something changes, my one shot at meeting people in person is already shot for another two years. 

And as of this week, I need to stick it out for another six years, and then comes the next big decision point: 𝅘𝅥𝅮 should I stay or should I go now?𝅘𝅥𝅮 

I can’t answer that question. Not yet. One thing, in spite of all the variables and uncertainties, that I can undeniably say is true, is this: My father was right. This is one hell of a view.

(view from the bridge of the actual ship whose model I built in my story last segment)

Thanks for hanging out with me, folks. For those that read even a single paragraph, I hope you learned something new. If not, I hope you at least enjoyed some of the pictures. It’s been fun. And now, the real work ramps up. I am SO looking forward to this next project. And just because I believe in the mental and emotional, if not spiritual, power of signs... 

A little seed drifted into my truck through the window one afternoon while waiting to pick my wife up from the airport. It landed right on my pocket notebook as I was jotting down some story details. I’ll take that as a literal sign that I’m planting the seed of a worthy tale. Now to make that come true. See y'all around.

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Comments ( 2 )

I'll look forward to great things from you.

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