Have you ever participated in a distance walking, swimming, running, or biking event? Tell your story.
Yes. All Courtesy of Uncle Sam. I’m a United States Army Veteran and road marches and running were my way of Life from Nov. 1977 – Nov. 1981. I was in excellent physical condition back then and easily completed every physical task. I did do one of those corporate sponsorship cancer walks a several years ago. I think it was a 5K. I was younger then so it was doable now I get winded just going up and down the subway stairs. I don’t have the stamina or energy I had when I was younger.
No swimming as I can’t swim and my bike riding came to an end after childhood. I have vision and balance issues so bikes are not my friends.
Optional Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?
I’m grateful to have gotten through the week and made it to Palm Sunday which I enjoyed. I’m also grateful that the weather in New York has finally warmed up. I’m looking forward to Easter.
This incident has become fuzzy in my mind over time but I remember it occurred while I was stationed at Ft. Campbell, KY. That would have been around 1980/81. My MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) was as a 75D aka Personnel Records Specialist. From time to time I was sent TDY (Temporary Duty Assignment) to other bases in a supporting role to soldiers on maneuvers.
Once I was sent to Ft. Polk, LA or as my fellow troops and I liked to call it at the time Ft. Puke! If you’ve ever been to Louisiana you know it contains a wide variety of scary horrific wildlife and creatures that must be left overs from the prehistoric era. Snakes, scorpions, bats, etc….
Of course once I received my TDY orders and paperwork I packed up my duffel bag thinking that it would meet me on base. Boy was I wrong! I made it to Ft. Polk but my duffel bad did not. I wound up having to hand wash my underwear as I had no change of clothing. The Commanding Officer assigned a female officer to take me into town to buy some new clothes until my duffel bag could be located.
Eventually to my great relief the duffel bag was found and once again I had clean uniforms and clothing. Who knows where it had been for between 24 and 48 hours. Perhaps riding around the luggage carousel at the airport aimlessly until a staff person picked it up, contacted the base who had somebody retrieve it so I would not be naked!!
I had hoped to write a happy post. Something positive and uplifting for this Veteran’s Day but unfortunately with the results of yesterday’s presidential election there is not much good that can be said.
Those of you who served in the United States Army remember this Oath of Enlistment.
I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.” (Title 10, US Code; Act of 5 May 1960 replacing the wording first adopted in 1789, with amendment effective 5 October 1962).
Forty years ago I raised my right hand and recited this Oath.
What happens when that enemy is not only domestic but has now become the Commander in Chief aka President of the United States of America. A man who is a well known sociopath and narcissist. A man whose evil rhetoric and divisive tactics split the nation into two camps. A man who if we allow him will bring if not World War Three but a Civil War where we will be maimed, lose property, jobs, life and limb.
I have to admit being that I work for a museum which mainly attracts the 1%, the wealthy, rich upper-crust of society who don’t give a damn about the working class, immigrants, Black Americans or any peoples of Color I went through my workday numb with interspersion of break times where colleagues sat in equally numb silence or made half-halfhearted attempts to console each other. A Filipina co-worker and I just hugged.
I especially look to my Jewish co-worker who is the voice of reason in all situations. We highly value and respect his opinion. He did give me some hope as did one of my Caribbean co-workers that maybe the Trump Nightmare this man eating bone crunching terminator machine will not completely destroy America as we know it.
As I watch the tourists, visitors and people who live in the white-bread world surrounding neighborhood laugh, joke, play with their kids, be happy I realize that they could be happy because Trump becoming president will not touch their world and in fact will probably make life better for them.
Most of the low echelon workers security and custodial are populated by immigrants, Muslims, people of Color, Hindus, you know the folks that Middle America, Republican Conservative America loves to hate, blame and make us scapegoats for all that is wrong with this country. We are the ones who secure, clean and console but are taken for granted.
We gather together hanging onto any words of hope or solace in this one of the saddest most depressing events in recent U.S. history. Huddling closer and closer attempting to create some type of safety net. But inside is that little voice of fear. We may not show it because we can’t after all we are not supposed to have any feelings or emotions only be subservient to the ruling majority. You know that Remains of the Day stiff upper lip type of thing.
For me the most heart wrenching thing as a U.S. Army Veteran is that the deed is done and there is little or nothing I can do to turn things around.
I fear another Middle Passage. The return of Slavery and Jim Crow. Or perhaps it never really left and was only waiting in the wings for the right actor to make an appearance on stage for it’s horrible reanimation. I Fear: Another Trail of Tears. Another Nazi Germany. Internment camps like the ones where Japanese-Americans were forced into during WWII. More police shootings or innocent Black people.
It also troubles me that many who voted for Trump live in the so-called Bible Belt. Well what Bible are you reading. You do know that Jesus was a Jew who live in a multi-cultural polytheistic society and no where in the Gospels where he is attacking his Greek, Roman or Egyptian neighbors or devaluing their belief systems. In fact Jesus saved most of his most scathing remarks for his fellow Jews/Hebrews specifically the Pharisees and Sadducees. Here is where Jesus got angry with hypocrites.
New International Version (NIV)
Jesus at the Temple
12 Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. 13 “It is written,” he said to them,“‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.
Those who voted for Trump who is more of an Anti-Christ than a Christian have filled Presidency with a Thief!!
I am stunned, appalled and scared to death of this upcoming Trump Presidency. The KKK is going to be in the White House as of January 2017. I’m old enough to remember the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. Folks this is real and is no joke.
The Healthcare law will be repealed, Civil Rights laws be dismantled. Every Black, brown, Jewish, Asian, Muslim, Native Americans, Hindu, Buddhist, all immigrants should be afraid. After all a year from now none of us may be here. My brother Stephen has Autism. There goes all the goods, services and programs for Disabled Americans.
We are going backwards to the 18th and 19th slavery Jim Crow days. My ancestors are weeping. I’m terrified!!
President Trump will keep his promise to Make America White again.
But after all the “Others” are gone what will America do then??? This man has sold you a bill of goods. He gave you poisoned Kool-Aid and you drank. Remember every decision, every choice has consequences. I hope that you can live with yours.
I have to admit that joining the Army afforded me the opportunity to deviate from my strict upbringing and experience the wide world of sex, drugs and partying. I was not allowed to date until I was 17 and even then my Dad chaperoned my dates. So when I went into the military I had a kind of unchecked freedom in which to turn every No-No to a Yes-Yes. I had yet to realize the difference between friendship and Love. As they used to say back in the day I was Wild. Not to the point of having a child out of wedlock because that would have brought shame and disgrace to my family so I chose not to bring any kids into my free-wheeling lifestyle.
Also I knew that I did not want to get married. Ever. I made the decision when I was young to remain single. Being a Woman does not automatically make you a good candidate for marriage or motherhood. Being strong willed I’ve followed this Life of Singledom course with very few regrets. Occasionally I do wonder how my life would have turned out if I had gone the traditional route but after giving it some serious thought based on my personality for me to have pursued marriage or being a Mom would have been a disaster for all involved.
Now where does the word Jeopardize come in? Well often when you are young you jeopardize friendships with the opposite gender by introducing sex into the equation. After living in an abusive domestic violence relationship for seven years with my common-law husband I finally got physically free (he left me) in 2007. However it took years before I was mentally or emotionally free and to tell the truth I am not the same person that I was before I met him nor will I ever return to that open trusting young woman that was me.
I have dated a little (very little) in the last few years but I’ve learned that it’s best for me to remain friends with men and not engage in intimate behaviors. I’ve only deviated once to take a chance with a man whom I was friends with for several years and again disaster. Now we are no longer friends. Sex will ruin friendship every time.
I have one particular divorced male friend with whom I used to work with until he retired last year. We still talk on the phone about once a month and I emailed him when anything interesting happens at the job. Of course initially there was that sexual attraction but now that I’m in my 50s and he’s in his 60s we know better than to make mistakes which will destroy a great friendship. I really enjoying being able to talk with him because we have the same core values, we can discuss a wide variety of topics, he gives good advice and has a great perspective on Life.
Romance is something found in books, theater plays and movies. Real life is totally different. The Divorce rate in America is I believe 50% that includes Christians also. Therefore I’ve never seen any good reason to join myself to some man’s Life and exclude and deny my own goals, dreams and aspirations. As a Woman you always have to weigh what you gain in a relationship against what you will have to give up. Usually as the woman you put aside your wants, dreams, and desires to fulfill his. Having been through that many times I always sided with Me as opposed to him therefore I am not wife material.
I’m glad I’m no longer in my youth excepting my bodily aches and pains. In that case I wish I had my 27 year old pain free body back!! LOL!! This 57 year old body mocks me on a daily basis!
With aging has come not only knowledge but wisdom. The dumb, stupid, foolish mistakes of my youth are behind me. I don’t compete with other women young or old for the attentions of men. Of course I enjoy hearing and getting compliments from men. What woman doesn’t? (My next post will be on that subject.) But my perspectives have changed. Menopause has simmered down my hormones. The desire for sex decreases. With my hectic crazy work schedule if offered the choice between sex and sleep I’ll take sleep. By myself. Alone.
I can’t say what the future holds. Will I meet the man of my dreams and yes I still do dream but on the other hand I’m not looking for him because one of the graces of old age is to accept Life as it is and not to relive or try to revive a youth that no longer physically exists. Inside I still have the excitement I felt when I was 18 getting on my first plane ride to Ft. Jackson, SC for Basic Training and AIT. When I’m alone walking through New York City streets, Central Park or any Botanic Garden I still marvel and wonder at both creations of man and God but now instead of acting on impulse it’s a quiet awe, reverence and respect and quiet Thanks to my Creator for allowing me to make it thus far and prayers as I travel to my 60s and begin the next phase of my life.
With your answers, please remember we are in the SYW world and which may not always match our reality.
Are you left or right handed?
If you had only one TV, would you prefer the TV in the living room or another room?
I don’t have a TV in my current location. No room. I can’t afford a TV or the high cost of Cable Television. I did save my Mom’s small TV after she died but that is in storage. Now I’m used to not watching or having a TV so even if my housing situation improves I doubt I would purchase one.
Have you ever participated in a distance walking, swimming, running, or biking event? Tell your story.
Thanks to Uncle Sam who had me marching, walking and running long distances Yes. I served in the U.S. Army from 1977 – 1981 and believe me like that old TV commercial used to say soldiers do more before 9:00 am than most people do during an entire day. Good Old Papa Tango or PT!! CQ banging on your door with a metal stick at 5:00 am so you can make a 6:00 am formation. We ran in boots sometimes our Jump Boots. No fancy sneakers or running shoes. Usually the Sgt. is running alongside the formation calling Cadence. Most of these songs raunchy but you got used to it. They weren’t there to pamper your ears. Here are two of the cleaner Cadence songs from my Army Days.
I was in the 569th PSC, Augsburg, Germany and the 101st Airborne Division (Screaming Eagles)!!
While working at my former company I did participate in one of those Heart or Cancer walks. Can’t remember which one. Maybe once I retire if it is physically possible I might start doing some 5K walks. No running. Bad arthritic knees.
Complete this sentence: Love is… .
My brother Stephen Vincent Palmer
Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?
My one week vacation for the first week in May got approved!! Hooray!! Now I will be able to be with and help Celebrate my brother Stephen’s 55th Birthday!! Yippee!! I am also Thankful for a wonderful Palm Sunday and yesterday Easter Sunday. Looking forward to the month of April and hopefully warmer weather for the New York City area.
Pinpoint a moment in your past where you had to make a big decision. Write about that other alternate life that could have unfolded.
November 1977 to November 1981 when I joined the United States Army. This gave me the opportunity to not only serve my country but travel to Europe and meet people from all over the United States. I did my Basic and AIT at Ft. Jackson, SC. I was posted at the 569th PSC in Augsburg, Germany and at the 101st Airborne Division located at Ft. Campbell, KY. During my four years in the Army I also went TDY (temporary duty) at various bases inside and outside the U.S.
The Army reinforced the sense of discipline, accountability and responsibility that my parents Edward and Mable Palmer had already implanted within me. I received an Honorable Discharge and am very proud to be a U.S. Army Veteran.
September 1995 when I decided to move forward in earning my BA at Marymount Manhattan College. My Dad Edward G. Palmer had just passed away that year May 13, 1995 at age 65 and I then became responsible for both my mother Mable Palmer and my brother Stephen Palmer. I felt I needed to get my BA as being a College graduate was both my Dad’s desire and mine but I was just too busy running around living free and easy. Once my Father died I inherited his responsibilities and I felt that college would give me an up in terms of critical thinking and advancing my then career.
Being a student was both exhilarating and challenging. At that time Marymount Manhattan College was a private Women’s Catholic college which had just begun to admit men on a limited scale. Therefore the classes were small and the professors took a personal interest in the intellectual and educational development of each student. By the time I went to MMC all the instructors were secular not the Nuns that had preceded them many years before. The professors and the Dean were dedicated to helping Ladies succeeded especially returning Women students like myself.
At that time I was 36 years old definitely not a teenager but an adult who worked full-time and a caregiver. I did briefly attend Marymount Manhattan College around 1987/88 but being in my 20s was my wild & crazy period so I did not stick it out even though I was doing very well in school. Not to say the professors were easy on the students in terms of work load. There were tons of novels and other books to read and 25 page research papers to write on a bi-weekly basis. I suppose it was stressful but a positive stress. An intellectual challenge and I rose to the occasion.
Entering college as an adult I knew that I wanted to major in English literature unlike an 18 year old who is inexperienced with the world in general and probably has very little work experience. At age 36 I had already served my country as a soldier in the United States Army and had many years in the workplace. Many people including some relatives kept asking me “Why are you majoring in English? Are you going to become a teacher?” My answer then as now is I Love English literature and I knew I could pass and no I had no intentions of becoming a teacher.
My Mom who was still living at the time never asked me any ridiculous questions. She was happy that I cared for her, went to work, studied hard in school and went to church. Mom was proud of me and my accomplishments. Sadly my mother followed my Dad into the hereafter August 1998 at age 68. Neither she nor my Dad ever got to see me graduate from Marymount Manhattan College May 2002 when I was 43 however their spirits spurred me on to successfully complete a difficult year long course called Women in Urban Leadership, make the Deans List in 1999 and graduate Cum Laude. Both my parents were born in 1930 at a time when racism, lynchings, discrimination and Jim Crow ruled America. They felt that my generation as the first generation to benefit from the Civil Rights Movement could and should uplift the race through education. My accomplishments were not just for me but for my parents, grandparents, aunts and great-uncles who never had those opportunities.
Marymount Manhattan College opened up a new world to me, helped develop my writing skills and gave me confidence in those writing skills. During this time the then Dean Joan Brookshire said to me that I had a gift for writing. My professors male and female built me up and I felt a sense of accomplishment. So for me returning to college was probably the best decision of my adult life.
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