"Lend me my sword, ho!"--Shakespear

November 08, 2003

This sucks. Every year, Notre Dame is Norte Dame and Navy is Navy. And they're all heartbreaking. In recap, 27-24, ND. Julius Jones MVP. And Ty Willingham looks way too happy for somebody that just won to keep his job. Navy deserved this. Navy didn't get it. Again. Damn.
USNA just ran one of those ads that colleges do during football halftime. I wish I'd gotten to go. For those of you that don't know, I was three weeks from Induction Day before my medical clearance was revoked. Everything happens for a reason, I guess, but I wish that wasn't one of those things.
Hey, during halftime I saw that Matt (the paratrooper of love) over at Blackfive.net joined Lt. Smash in linking to me. Thank You, Matt, thank you LT, and thank you to anybody visiting me because of them. If you don't want to read all of my Navy-Notre Dame fodder, scroll on down, I promise it gets interesting.
Stream of Consciousness Notes
This post will be updated continuously during the Navy-Notre Dame Game

NBC announcers suck, they're beyond pro-ND. And the contract with NBC is so exclusive, I can't mute them because the radio is 30 seconds behind. Dang...
I love the option. Paul Johnson is a gutsy coach, too--who else would go for it twice on 4th down in the 1st quarter? Sure, the 2nd one didn't make it, but wow. Go for the jugular...
Why hasn't Kyle Eckel gotten the ball yet? The slotbacks are doing great, but he is the heart and soul of the offense. And wow, the way Julius Jones has been running, they can't afford too many more mistakes like that 4th-and-4 that was fumbled and still almost made it. That's the story of Navy-Notre Dame, almost there.
ARRRGH! These guys are so biased. I may call the game to myself, and just watch in silence.
It sure would be nice if somebody besides the safeties could tackle Jones. Oh Damn. He broke a tackle, reversed the field, and was gone. Why, oh, why, can Navy not tackle? You don't have to be a big guy to do that. They say Ty Willingham has a Jesus medallion on his shoelaces today. Bad news for you, Ty, to quote R. Lee Ermey, God has a hard-on for Marines because they keep heaven full. And guess where Marines come from?
Ok, blown tackle=7 points. That's ok; Notre Dame is still BAD, and Navy hasn't really gotten into their gameplan yet...
Tony Lane is a god. What a back... 65 yards! Can-you-top this? I never would have run option to the short side of the field, but OH did it work. So much for needing to get Eckel in... Navy still needs to stick to their game plan, though. You can't always count on stuff like that. Option football at it's best, ND just blew their assignments, and BOOM! 7-7
NBC just ran some footage of Paul Johnson chewing out the offense after that big-play touchdown. What a competitor, he's still not happy. And what an accent. Yeah, he's from Georgia.
Wow, Navy's defense is waking up. If they execute like they did against AFA, they'll take ND apart...Of course, all those Irish penalties are helping.
Wow! A deep incompletion! Where was that last year? On dropped pass in that game, and Navy would be trying to get a 2-game win streak instead of break a 39-game one.
Is it just me or are the Mids that traveled with the team louder than the ND fans right now? Block that kick, block that kick...
Penalties, penalties...How undisciplined is ND? Two on one punt play took them all the way to inside their 10. Ouch for them.
Now this is the Navy D that I am used to seeing, fast, disciplined, and opportunistic as hell. Way to stop 'em and get position, guys.
Roger Staubach likes Craig Candeto. Call it a good sign. Maybe I'll have to stop hating NBC for putting THE MAN on the phone...
The Mids really are louder than the Irish fans. If ND loses, they deserve to with that kind of support.
Navy got the lead on a field goal. What a confidence boost, to be leading Notre Dame in South Bend. Hope it holds. Worth noting: the holder for field goals is Craig Candeto, the 1st string QB. Wonder if PJ will use that...
While I'm rambling, did you know Roger Staubach is is real estate now? Seems like a lot of USNA grads get into that.
It's ABBY! I swear I just saw my favorite plebe on TV...
And another missed FG by ND... Navy still leading 10-7. And they'll get the ball back in the 2nd half. But that's a ways off. They could conceivably score, and with Navy being Navy, they could run out the clock in the process. Who am I kidding? Navy can burn 7 minutes on a drive when it is clicking on offense.
I think Kyle Eckel just got the ball for the 2nd time all game. Instant 3 yards. That's what he's good for, 3 almost guaranteed, and he can run people over. The Brigade calls him the diesel.
Wow, Navy threw the ball. Funny thing is, it was to Eric Roberts, the slotback. I'm not sure that Paul Johnson knows he has wideouts. And know what? The way they run, I don't care.
Fumble. ND recovers. Navy will be Navy, this is why they only won twice last year--a whole lot of offense, and they keep putting the ball on the ground. Wonder what PJ'll say about this.
Hmm. Ticker says OU beat Texas A&M 77-0. Wow. And Miami lost. Happy times. Any SEC team gets rooting over almost anybody with me.
This game is getting less about ball control and more about field position, I think. What's the difference, you ask? It doesn't matter who has the ball; it matters who has it in the right place, because nobody is playing inspired offense right now. Defense, however...ND is what I'd expect from ND. Navy is playing great. And that is what they need to stay close...
ND got a TD... Ok, well, Navy deferred, so when they don't score in 15 seconds, they'll at least get 1st strike in the 2nd half.
Ok, well, not all that I'd ask for, but Navy is giving all ND can handle. It can still happen, but that option has to get rolling.
Game on. Time to see if Navy's Offense wakes up.
Tony Lane is having a great game. Kyle Eckel, on the other hand, is chugging along-- He really needs to get going. Seems like every play now is to set up a slotback outside.
This is the 3rd time Navy has gone for it on 4th--gutsy stuff. Especially when it works. PJ is a genius.
Hey, ND has a player named Bible. Go figure.
Notre dame is really keying in on Kyle Eckel. If he doesn't break some yardage soon, PJ may go away from him. And that would be bad...
This Navy defense is outstanding. They're aggressive, well coached, and smart. They are keeping Navy in this right now. Another great stop, more field position for the offense.
Craig Candeto is one heck of an option QB. Maybe not as good as Chance Harridge, but he DID outplay him head-to-head. With him playing solidly, and the slotbacks having the games they are, Navy may not need Eckel to get going. But that security would be nice...
And it was written...Eckel just broke one, and ran over some Irish in the process. Look out, ND fans, the Diesel is coming...
Touchdown Navy, Touchdown Eckel. Chant it with me, Navy fans: Fire it up! Fire it up! Fire it up!
17-14 Navy. This is going to be good...And Eckel is warming up. (Evil laughter)
The time of possession stat just ran. Navy: 7+ ND: 1-something. Bad, bad for the Irish. This is Navy-Ball, and it kills.
What is happening to the defense? They had been playing so good, and now ND is putting together a sweet little drive... With any luck this won't hit paydirt, but it is sure looking like it. I am bracing myself.
Touchdown. Julius Jones is THAT good. I HATE ND, but he is the real deal. I think he could carry the ball 50 times a game, like Chris Perry did last week for Michigan. And you know what? ND would win a LOT more games that way.
Navy's 4th fumble, and only one lost. Wow, they are dodging bullets like they're in the Matrix
STATUS: 21-17, ND ball, 0:30 in 3rd.
This game is looking better and better. If Navy has has one more defensive stand, and gets two of their uber-drives at some point, they'll win. ND just has to score, I think.
Josh Smith is making play after play after play. Talk about impressive....
Ok, there is the 3-and-out; now to see if the Mids can get in the end zone.
Penalties, penalties: Notre dame is playing, as Ty Willingham earlier called it, Very Dumb Football. This'll cost them the game.
Craig Candeto is proving himself again and again. What a football player. Two consecutive keepers for 10 yards each.
Navy ran a pass!!! Wow, that was unexpected. Apparently to Navy, too--the reciever fell down 1 yard from the end zone. Love that option mentality.
False start, Navy. Wow. This is rare, but they have had 2 false starts inside the 5. Dang.
Well, there is a weapon for this: Kyle Eckel. Welsome back to the 1-yard line, gentlemen.
Touchdown Navy, Touchdown Eckel.
Ty Willingham has better get out that Jesus he tied to his shoe and start praying. 24-17 Navy.
Julius Jones, Julius Jones. He'll be a heck of a pro... but right now he's flat carrying this ND team. Navy needs a stop, bad.
did I just see blood on Bobby McLarin? I woundn't doubt it, what a determined player. He has a Boxing glove on under that tape over his hand where he broke it.
Hmm. Ok, ND will score this drive. Count on it. And then Navy will need one of those soul-crushing scoring drives that take 5 minutes off the clock.
Ok, so ND hit a FG. Must be nice after missing 2. Tie game; wouldn't it be cool if this hit OT?
ANOTHER FALSE START!!! Navy is shooting itself in the foot. Instead of 3rd and 2 they have 3rd and 7. Wow.
Converted. ND is so focused on the option and looking for the slotbacks: Navy hits a wideout. Beautiful.
This field is so slippery. I think three rimes I have seen either team slip and fall. And now it is too important.
Josh Smith is about to be my MVP for this game... these last 60 seconds will determine everything.
OK, barring a big play, my MVPs are Julius Jones for ND and Josh Smith for Navy.
Notre Dame is really knocking on the door now. This is why they are Notre Dame; talent on talent on talent. Navy is so close though. They really deserve this, they are overdue.
Ok, here it is. FG with practically no time on the clock. So ND wins, or we see OT. Cross your fingers, guys.
Wow, PJ is pouring on the ice. He is going to burn all of his timeouts here. Well, you can't save them for OT, if you get there.
If this goes in, I will blame it all on the offisides on 3rd and 2.
It's good. 27-24 as time expires.

November 07, 2003

Anacostia Naval Station and Ft. Dietrick, MD, both confirm Anthrax-positive on whatever it was that set off the alarm in the mail processing aboard the Navy Yard yesterday. As a result, 10 DC post offices, mine included, are shut down until further notice. Lovely. Oh well, I was here for Anthrax '01; guess I'll do fine this time, too.
Swapped out the babe of the day again. Ther are some UGLY cheerleaders in the NFL...
Looks like the economy is coming back, the jobless rate is falling, and payrolls are rising, for the third time in a row. It is IS the economy stupid. Be interesting to see the spin that gets put on this by the magnificent seven (plus three) (there are only 10 democrats running now, right?). Beyond that...
A lot of the blogs I regularly visit are running the A-Z survey; figure I'll follow suit.

A-ACTOR (favorite) Hmm...For sheer space in my DVD collection, Harrison Ford. Nobody comes close to the Indiana Jones and Jack Ryan.

B-BOYHOOD IDOLS: Wow, think back... gonna have to go with anything military. Schwartzkopf is a good answer, given when I grew up. Him, Troy Aikman, and Emmitt Smith.

C-CHORE YOU HATE: Cleaning up after the rest of the ****ing slobs around here. Eventually I'll post what will now be known as the 'wax paper incident' and you'll understand.

D-DAD'S NAME: Mike. He's Awesome.

E-ESSENTIAL VIDEO IN COLLECTION: Video? What's that? My essential DVD is A Few Good Men.

F-FAVE ACTRESS: At the moment, Charlize Theron. But that'll change.


H-HOMETOWN: Finchville, KY. Home of Finchville Farms Country Hams. They auctioned off last year's blue ribbon for $250,000 at the Kentucky State Fair.

I-INSTRUMENTS YOU PLAY: Once upon a time the trumpet, but not any more.

J-JOB TITLE: Student. Will be replaced by 'dark lord of the social studies department' as soon as I get a degree.

K-KIDS: I'm 18; what the hell?

L-LIVING ARRANGEMENTS: A dorm room. It's sweet.

M-MOM'S NAME: Laurie. She's awesome, too.

N-# OF PEOPLE YOU'VE SLEPT WITH: Depends on how you mean that. Either way, it's classified.


P-PHOBIA: Social situations. If you're not my friend, I meet you only on my terms.

Q-QUOTE YOU LIKE: Quotes rock. But for now, I'll use Halsey: "Hit hard, hit fast, hit often"




U-UNIQUE HABIT: I talk to my cat. In her language.

V-VEGETABLE YOU REFUSE TO EAT: Whatever is in front of me at the moment.

W-WORST HABIT: Cleaning up after all these slobs.

X-X-RAYS YOU'VE HAD: Everything. Head, chest, legs, arms, hands...

Y-YUMMY FOOD YOU MAKE: Brownies. I do that a lot, and I do a lot of breakfast food. Burgers or steaks on the grill, not to mention I am the shlushee king of the dorm.


November 06, 2003

Read this letter. Big thanks to Matt at blackfive.net for pointing it out.

LTC Kim Orlando was laid to rest Friday where he had told his wife he always wanted to be buried among the rows and rows of soldiers interred at the Veterans National Cemetery in Nashville, Tennessee.

In typical 101st Airborne Division fashion, the "Screaming Eagles" pulled out all the plugs to honor a great soldier, leader, husband and 43 year old father of two. As a military Police Battalion Commander, he understood the dangers of Military Operations in Urban Terrain (MOUT). He knew where the most danger potentially would be on the night of 16 October, and that was where he was. As ground forces often have to do, he was eyeball-to-eyeball with bad people, displaying the unrelenting determination and absolute resolve of the American Soldier and this countries' commitment to the Global War on Terrorism. The firefight was brutal and intense. The results are now history. The 716th MP Battalion recovered their dead, evacuated the wounded, accounted for sensitive items of equipment, redistributed ammo and continue with the mission.

Friday, I was present for this outstanding American's memorial ceremony at Fort Campbell Kentucky and burial in Nashville, Tennessee. What happened on the approximately fifty-mile funeral procession from Ft Campbell to the Cemetery is something I want to share with everyone, and something I'll never forget. I wish everyone who wears a uniform, or has ever worn a uniform, could have seen this.

Thanks to the Chiefs of Police and Sheriffs Association several law enforcement agencies quickly volunteered to assist with the funeral as it would proceed down I-24 South to metropolitan Nashville. Two other great MP noncommissioned officers, SSG Bellavia and SGT Grilley died in the firefight with their commander. SSG Bellavia has a brother on the Hendersonville, KY police department. In an effort to alert motorists and share the information with more local law enforcement, the plan was apparently announced via the NCIC computer system for general knowledge of police and emergency responders.

I haven't seen as many Fire Department, Police, Sheriff, State Trooper cars and motorcycles since the Watts riots. The show of support for our fallen soldiers was overwhelming. And it was a good thing, since the procession was at least two miles long. But the story doesn't end here. Kay and I were in the back of the procession on I-24 watching the myriad light show disappear forward over the horizon southbound. A news helicopter was paralleling the convoy. Then we noticed the first exit/on ramp was blocked with a law enforcement vehicle, driver standing outside and saluting as the vehicles passed. What a class act and great show of support. But then, the next ramp had a similar sight...and the next, and the next. And there were fire, EMT vehicles and emergency responders of all sorts. Lights flashing, people standing outside, lined up, with headgear removed or saluting. The Kentucky troopers and law enforcement stopped at the state line, and Tennessee showed how much their native son's sacrifice meant to them. More vehicles on the overpasses, waiving American Flags, displaying the POW/MIA Flag. These were units from small towns along the route, coming out to the interstate to show their support to a fallen soldier who was at the tip of the spear in the GWOT. To them, he and his troops had gone after the people who had inflicted such tremendous losses on our police, firemen, EMTs and civilians in Pennsylvania, the Pentagon and the World Trade Center. It went on and on...it was about an hour drive. Then, we saw a sight that knocked our socks off. In the distance we could see two large hook and ladder type fire trucks on an overpass, literally spanning the south-bound lanes. One had the ladder extended straight up...and waiving in the wind from it as the hearse and procession went under was an American flag that had to measure at least 30 feet by 50 feet. Enough said....that message was loud and clear. A big "thank you" to each and every one of them for their show of support to our soldiers and the armed forces of this nation. One Team, One Fight.

In loving memory, respect and eternal gratitude for their devotion to duty and ultimate sacrifice to their country: LTC Kim S. Orlando, SSG Joseph P. Bellavia, SGT Sean R. Grilley. National treasure of the United States; soldiers that saw their duty and did it.

Very Respectfully,

Rex Forney

Colonel, Military Police Corps
Chief, Army Advisory Group
325 Chennault Circle
Maxwell Air Force Base, AL 36112-6427

It is still raining here today... Just like it was yesterday. And just like it will be tomorrow. Oh well. I don't have class, so I could care less what the weather is. Just get the snow here. I know my experience with the white stuff pales in comparison to most of these Yankees, but I at least have seniority for my room, with Isaac being from Hawaii. Hope he doesn't think that gives him an excuse in the forthcoming snow war, though.
Once again, the babe of the day is updated; a visitor to my room suggested I add a stud of the day, or something to that effect. I don't know what that would do for MY morale, but if the rest of you equal-opportunity people want one, I guess I'll cave. Drop me a line.
Saw more stupidity in the Washington Post today. Dean wants out of public financing. GOOD. I don't want my one dollar a year going towards that man anyway. I will just send my primary campaign bling-bling over to Dennis Kucinich(Spelling?), or maybe Al Sharpton. Make life interesting. Microsoft is offering a bounty for virus authors. Great, give the geek world another reason to fancy themselves Boba Fett (Badass of Star Wars fame). Help me.
Navy actually made the front of the sports page today; I guess somebody finally noticed that they are 1st in the nation in rushing and 6-3. Oh, and a last minor Mid-note, collegefootballnews.com (these guys are GOOD) are picking Navy to upset Notre Dame for the 1st time in 39 years. This could rival the Army game for defining the season...
Anyway, I have some guests; I will never turn two women away from my door, even if they do want to watch "The O.C." Bracing myself for (pop)culture shock.
Come one, come all, witness the wonder of the George W. Bush news ticker...

November 05, 2003

Another quiet day here. Some rain this morning, and again tonight, but nothing too bad. Updated the babe of the day; can you believe this girl is 18? I went to the wrong high school...
Did anybody else find Howard Dean's comment about the Confederate flag and the generated response funny? I mean, wow. How PC do we have to be these days? I get offended at "NASCAR Dads", not at this stuff. All Dean did was repeat in a public forum what had sounded logical, if a little off center, in a strategy session. At least he hasn't forgotten the south exists, like many of his ilk do.
Now, you all may ask, why do I defend Howard Dean saying something stupid? It's because I love my country, and think that the President is doing a decent job, albeit with two distinct factions in his cabinet. Therefore, I will support the Democrat least likely to actually challenge our resident cowboy at all costs. If you love your President, change your registration to Democratic and vote for Dean in the primaries... If you want to see a close election, vote for Clark.

November 04, 2003

Kentucky has a new governor. Good luck and congratulations to Ernie Fletcher, the first republican governor in a generation. Also, the my-state-is-better-than-your-state game has a whole new level: Ritchie Farmer is Ag commissioner. If you don't know who that is, search for Pitino's Bambinos and enjoy the show.
Today was a day like any other day, except that it didn't suck. I finally got excited about on of my history classes (History of The American West), we were talking about Custer and the 7th Cavalry. Nothing like a little strategy and tactics to get your blood flowing. Then there was my next class, Basic American History... That will always suck. I never knew one could cover the Revolutionary War without actually teaching it. Oh well, I know it, I will only be upset if he tests us over it. And I know he wont, because all we get graded on there are papers. Deep breath...
Beyond that, fairly normal day. Used part of my recently-deposited poker earnings to buy the M*A*S*H* movie as well as volume one of the TV series. So I have been living it up with Alan Alda for a while now, but not to worry (parents) I got all my reading done first. Did a Safeway run, and kept it under twenty bucks for the first time in recent memory. Of course, it remains to be seen how long that lasts me.
In the news... ABC.com says that most Iraqis believe in democracy, but don't think the country is ready for it. Good that they believe, bad that they underestimate themselves, and worse that the pollsters are already over there. Can't wait to see the first returns on who the Iraqis think should win the Democratic primary.
Speaking of the Dems...I hope the quack (as in idiot doctor) gets the nod. If Dean runs against Bush, one astute move by the President makes it the second coming of Dukakis. Just wait... He's too far left. He has an identity, and that is good, but he is way out of line with a large chunk of the country on too many things. Why this guy is not mentioned in the same breath as Al Sharpton, I do not know. Now Clark... He is scary. The only bad thing I have seen of him is the problems the State Department had with him in Kosovo, they kept an FSO on him at all times to prevent him from saying or doing anything stupid. Of course, that seems right presidential to me.
Oh, and check out the Morale Boosters, they're a lot of fun.

November 03, 2003

Somehow in my BCS-induced rant, I failed to mention two of the biggest things to cross my desk today: Most importantly, a Chinook carrying American soldiers on their way to the airport for leave was shot down in Iraq. God bless these brave men, their souls, and their families. My prayers are with them, and yours should be too. Hopefully the press won't insult their memories by using this to call for the 'end of the occupation'.
Also, the Post says that Tariq Aziz is telling everything he knows. Including that Saddam was told by the French and Russians that if he held out long enough they would negotiate a settlement. With friends like these.....
Ahh, the party...It was great. Being home in general was, but the party especially. Got to see Mark, (who, at his own request will not be known as "Mark, the guy who got hurt in Iraq"), and my uncle David, who is retired USSS, and Dave Jr., Mark's older brother, who was a West Pointer as well. Not to mention the other hordes of Rays... Got to play with Mark's daughter, she was a year old Saturday, and moves FAST for a little kid. My duties were primarily carrying a bottle and trying to keep up. Which is harder than it sounds. If it helps the description, Dave Jr., after a few beers, was referring to her as Marvin Harrison. Cute baby, fun party, and GREAT to see Mark.
On other things, I had the great pleasure of watching the UK-Arkansas marathon game and the VT-Miami game that night; the UK game was a heartbreaker, but to see Miami lose, and be sitting next to a VT grad during it was especially sweet. The Hurricanes are like the Yankees, only with more parole officers. The only guy I can respect on that team is Jarrett Payton, and that is solely because of his father.
Speaking of football... The new BCS poll is out, and I am ready to scream. FSU is ahead of Miami, even though they lost to the 'canes... VT is behind Miami still after destroying them, and LSU is not top-5 after the schedule the SEC presents? Florida is better than everybody thought, and the Tigers are gonna pay for it. Not to mention Ohio State is still top-5 after barely escaping every team on their schedule but one? Unbelievable. Here is MY top 10...
1) Oklahoma. They could beat the Atlanta Falcons, Arizona Cardinals, and be close with the San Diego Chargers
2) USC. I hate the Trojans, but they are that good.
3) Virginia Tech. They're the real deal, and I would love to what an angry bunch of Hokies could do against West Virginia given the chance.
4) Miami. They're thugs, and if you ask me, you can KO them early.
5) Florida State. About time Chris Rix came around, even if he had to pick on Notre Dame to do it.
6) LSU. Beat Auburn while they were hot, killed Georgia's title shot, and got beat by (underrated) Florida.
7) Ohio State. Obligatory nod to the champs, and the most undervalued player in the Big 10, Craig Krentzel.
8) Michigan. Chris Perry is going to make up for the absence of Maurice Clarett in the NFL draft.
9) TCU. They're undefeated. They're also in C-USA. No BCS for you....
10) Purdue. Plays very good teams, and plays them well. Bonked against Michigan, I'll forgive them.

Oh, and Navy won this week. The best rushing offense in the nation strikes again. So long as they don't turn it over, or get away from running it like they did at the end of last year's game, Notre dame is going to have a BAD, BAD Saturday for the first time since Roger Staubach was a Midshipman. In front of Touchdown Jesus, too...