Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Did I just write this?

I got some really good packages this week. A couple days ago I got that game I have been wanting from my friends back home. I haven't got to play it as much as I would like yet... mainly because the first attempt I made to play it ended when the power went out :( No big deal I am getting used to it. It is funny to hear the curses from the new guys down the hall whenever that happens.
I didn't mind so much this time. I just broke open a chem light and lit a couple candles and started reading more of "The Gunslinger". I just got this book 2 days ago and am 2/3 done with it. For me that is amazing... I am flying through it... I don't mean to break any of my old English teachers' hearts, but this is like the first actual book I have read and I am now 26 years old LOL. I am not ashamed to say it. I have always had trouble with reading ever since I was little. It is weird how things change... I guess I can't say I have never read a book, but the longest book I have ever read is probably "The Time Machine" and its not a fraction of "The Gunslinger" in length.
It's funny now looking back I am a totally different person than I was when I was younger. I think I had A.D.D. but they just didn't have a common name for it then. I am sure that if I were to go back in time to meet with myself, "Little Luke" wouldn't even recognize me and not because I look to different (other than a few stress/laugh lines) but because I am a completely different person inside for the things I have done and seen. I should point out that I am not talking about the war changing me either because it hasn't or at least I haven't experienced any "major" life changing events... yet. I am just rambling anyway I am sure everyone experiences these same thoughts at some point in their life.

Back to reality...

I got to see Episode III of Star Wars tonight in the auditorium on the FOB... It was an excellent movie way better than the first two disappointing episodes as I am sure all the critics are saying. They could have shown more of Natalie Portman if you ask me though ha ha. She reminds me of a girl I dated once. She looks like her that is. Can't say that I know Ms. Portman or anything. But hey, maybe someday she will google herself and find her mention in my blog and want to meet me. Hey, anything can happen.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

A New Holiday for Iraq

I propose a new holiday for Iraq...
Lets start Monday and this new holiday will last until the end of the month. It will be called. The National Kick the Crap out of an Insurgent Time... (or some Arabic equivalent). I am sure there is a word for that.

By the way... I was told I am not getting to go home next month for leave for sure, so thats a bummer. Maybe if this new holiday works out the Coalition Forces can pull out of Iraq and I wont need leave :p

Friday, May 20, 2005

Update about my leave time... Kinda...

Try to guess what kind of mood I am in.

As some of you know I was planning on taking leave in June. I was hoping to be home for father's day and my birthday and was led to believe that there were no problems with my dates I chose.
I just found out last night that I have been bumped out of my leave slot by someone else. I am not sure when I am going to get to go on leave now.
The way my company does leave is they ask everyone what reasons they have for going on leave at a certain time and try to weigh each reason to see who should go. During that time. Leave slots for the next month come out toward the end of each month for the company. This means if you didn't get your leave you get bumped to the next month and your reason's for going are weighed against the soldiers that had reasons to go in that month. This causes you to keep getting bumped to the next month because your reason for going isn't even valid any longer. My birthday and father's day aren't in July so I have no reason for going on leave in July. This could keep happening until the end of our deployment causing me to miss out on leave all together.

Some soldiers are having problems back home and are taking leave early to try to fix these problems. Here are some examples of things that are happening:

  • Wives cheating on husbands

  • Wives wanting divorces because they can't take being alone

  • Wives cleaning out husbands bank accounts

  • Power of attorney/mother cleaning out son's bank account

I am not saying that these are not valid problems that need to be dealt with but this is just my platoon. I am talking less than 30 guys. Thats a pretty high percentage. This is pretty messed up - how can there be this many problems. I don't think I am going to ever get married after looking at this. We are not even half way through our deployment how can things be this messed up back home. I know that none of these people doing this stuff are going to be reading this but if they were, I would tell them to grow up. There should be a law or something that puts people like this behind bars or something. If anyone knows anyone doing something like this to a soldier that is deployed; I think I speak for every soldier man or woman when I say feel free to beat the crap out of them.
As far as my leave time goes... I have no idea when it will be. They tell me I could still squeeze into June, but I doubt that... I will keep you all posted...

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Since the show was only an hour long I decided to do some fishing after it was over,

Attention! Toby has left the building!

Me and Mikki D at the USO concert

Toby Keith live in Baghdad!!! It was pretty cool even if it was only an hour and the band couldn't make it. This was my first actual day off since I have been here :). Got to take a trip to Victory which is pretty cool cause I don't get out of the IZ too much if at all. They have a huge PX there that has way more stuff than the one in the IZ.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Online shopping can be a pain

Today I went to buy this videogame from an huge online bookstore that will remain unnamed Amazon.com. After finding out that they will ship items to APO addresses I was excited to get on and start ordering some stuff I want. Mainly this videogame that I have been wanting for a few months now.
Anyway I find the game put it in my "Shopping Cart" and get ready to check out. As I put in all my information and hit the checkout button and it says "Some stupid error message" there is a problem with your information...
After looking into the matter I found out that there is a few different items that Amazon will not send to APO addresses and here is that list:

  • apparel

  • camera and photo items

  • cell phones and service

  • computers

  • most electronics items

  • hardware

  • housewares

  • kitchen items

  • magazines

  • outdoor living items

  • software (including games

  • tools

I think they just need to put up a disclamer that comes up if you want to buy something that says. "If you have to use an APO address you can't get anything cool." I mean come on what does that leave?

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Field of dreams...

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Here is a picture of our internet setup. It is cool that we all had the skills and equipment to get this set up. It's slow but better than walking across the FOB and paying 2 dollars an hour.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Been working on my blog

I just recently added a cool picture to the top of my page. I put a cool counter on the side bar too. I also put some clocks that have my two favorite time zones on them... Well one of them is a nice time zone anyway... Oh and I put some links to my buddy's blogs. They don't update them as much though.
I know this is really too obvious to be writing about but I have nothin. Although I do have plenty of things that I can't write about. What a rip off.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Links to my pictures

Well I was going to post some pictures on here from when I was in Ft. Dix till know, but then I thought that it would probably be best if I just send the links to friends and family that ask for them. So if you want to see them let me know and I will send you the links to them.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

More Missions

I just wanted you all to know that I have been getting more missions lately. That is why I have not been online as much. This will probably be a regular thing now. No more staying up till 3 to talk to people back home for me.
I also wanted to address something I have been hearing from you all back home. It sounds like the news has been making it look like there are more and more attacks lately. If you ask me there have been fewer attacks and bombings. I used to hear them all day long when I first got here. Now if I hear any there is maybe one or two in the morning and that's about it. We have also been stopping more and more car bombs before they do any damage also. Just remember that the news only reports the bad stuff and never the good. If anything maybe the few bombs that have went off lately have just got lucky and done more damage than usual.

Friday, May 06, 2005

I had to post this because if I had a dump truck this is exactly the paint job I would give it...

Just a cool picture I took the other day. Posted by Hello

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Someone bring me an ID10T form

Okay, just in case I start to sound harsh when I talk about the idiot that got his weapon stolen yesterday. Here is some backup for my opinion.
First of all, from what I hear, this guy lost his pistol on 3 different occasions. Once in Ft. Dix, Once in Kuwait, and yesterday here in Iraq. This last time he left it in the gym where someone obviously stole it. Just last week while he was at the PX he had a negligent discharge in the clearing barrel and that is a major screw up.
Now our higher ups are making all sorts of rules like. You have to take your weapon to the bathroom that is 10 feet from the door of our building. Yet you are not allowed to take it all the way across the FOB to the GYM. That's rediculous... Get this you don't have to bring your weapon to the shower trailer that is right next to the bathroom one that you do have to take your weapon to. One E6 joked around by saying lets just bring towels with us everywhere and leave out 9's in our rooms. Then we can just say we are going to the shower or the gym at any point when someone stops you and asks you where your weapon is... You know I really haven't signed the paperwork for re-enlistment and this kind of BS is definitely making me rethink signing back up.

Looks like I am not going to get much sleep

Five minutes after I published that last post we got a mission. I had to kick my guys out of bed and we had to get moving cause we had to leave in 15 minutes. We got ready in record time. Just about the time the first truck was pulling out we got the word to stand down. Man! I think someone is just messing with me today.
Some of the other guys from my company are here today so I got to visit them for a while. It is nice to see them it's almost like a taste of home for some reason.

Running on no sleep

Last night shortly after my roommate and I fell asleep. We were woke up by my half asleep squad leader telling us that he needed to see our weapons... This happens when someone loses their weapon. Don't ask me how looking to see that everyone else has their own weapon finds the moron's that lost his. I don't know if that sentence made sense but you know what I mean. Apparently one of the guys from the wonderful unit we are attached to lost his weapon and we had to suffer along with them... It is funny when the unit that you are attached to that usually hardly counts you as a platoon when it comes to supporting you all the sudden remembers you when there is stupid stuff like that to do.
Then, I had just gotten back to sleep and I got a knock on my door again "Health and Welfare inspection" I was like "You have to be kidding me..." So we get up and my squad leader reluctantly searches our room for any contraband we might have stashed away. I only wish I had something I wasn't supposed to have mainly alcohol cause I probably would be drinking it right now considering how crappy a night I had. So after that was all said and done I went to bed yet again.
I didn't even fall asleep this time cause I couldn't get comfortable before my squad leader came in again... (it was probably an hour and a half later about 0545) "Sorry guys I just like messing with you." Obviously he used a more colorful word in there and was being sarcastic. Even he was getting annoyed by having to get up so often. He then explained to us that we had to go out and search for the missing pistol that had still not been found out in an area of the FOB that I don't think I have ever seen anyone walk before. Obviously it was going to be a waste to go out there but we did it anyways... So we take this half mile, hands across the desert, walk down and back shuffling our sorry feet the whole way, making comments about the stupidness of the situation, cause we are all getting ridiculously P.O.ed at this point.
Obviously we didn't find anything I don't know if they have even found the weapon yet. It is probably in the guys room and he just didn't look hard enough for it before he said it was gone. Either way he should have never lost it... All you have to do is put a lanyard on it and attach it to your belt. The only time mine ever comes off my side is when I am doing PT, showering, or sleeping. It is things like this that make my platoon look bad... Even though we are not the ones that do stuff like this we are attached to the unit that is. There have been many even stupider things that they have done and we get lumped into the consequences by association. I probably shouldn't even comment on those things though. It just really ticks me off that anytime they do something wrong. The blame falls on everyone including us, but when something good happens, they take all the glory. Granted they are doing a lot of good things for themselves that affect us like getting new bathrooms put in etc., but if it was just our platoon that needed new bathrooms; we would never get them.
Anyways I just had to get that off my chest. I drank a Red Bull energy drink this morning at chow and I am all fired up I guess lol. Speaking of that on the way to breakfast today I noticed that the wind was so strong last night it bent the metal supports on the welding tent that the contractors us. It tore a couple of the legs right out of the ground and they were cemented down. I thought about going back out there and taking pictures of it but I really am starting to feel tired again from lack of sleep. I am going to like reading this one later to see if it even makes sense. I think I am going to go back to bed... Hopefully we don't have a mission anytime soon.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Watching a movie...

Excuse me if I am distracted while I am writing while watching the movie Resident Evil 2. Me and my roommate have been borrowing a portable DVD player since my xbox is a POS. Other than that we have been playing a lot of volleyball to pass the time. We played for 4 hours strait yesterday and today we played 2 hours. I hope the guys don't get burnt out on it cause it ls pretty fun... It is nice to do something besides play Fight Night 2 on my friends Xbox. Can you believe that I have watched the whole movie and this is all I have written? Thats funny