Monday, October 01, 2012

Hu-aaah! (That's What the Soldiers Say)

Today I went to listen to a lecture given by General Martin Dempsey, who is the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff: our nation's highest-ranking military officer.

 It was an hour well-spent.  There were parts of the lecture which I did not understand, military lingo and such, (and this is why I go to these lectures at K-State: I come back home and research that about which I am not well-read or well-versed.  This lecture was no different.)  I did enjoy listening to him.  He has spent ~ 38 years in the military.  He is married to his high school sweetheart, who has followed him around the world on his military tours: years living abroad, and I doubt that the Rive Gauche was included in those tours.

After his lecture, he had a Q & A session.  I always love listening to these, because I know I am not at all capable of quick-thinking-all-verbal-hands-on-deck.  (I am not a Bill Clinton fan, but I was AMAZED at his ability to parry any and all questions thrown at him when he came to K-State a few years ago.  That man is intelligent.)  General Dempsey was wise and funny.  And he was very compassionate when the widow of one young war veteran came forward to ask how the military was addressing the sad fact of post-tramatic stress disorder, and its sometime result of suicide.

There were hundreds of military in our midst this morning, and they received three standing ovations from the audience present to listen to Gen. Dempsey.  K-State is smack-dab in-between Ft. Leavenworth and Ft. Riley, and we here witness and personally appreciate the good and the difficult of military life.  Sometimes the press seems to gloss over what our military's lives are like.  Let me introduce a great Facebook link to the 1st Infantry Division: The Big Red One .  This link shows the day-to-day activities of Ft. Riley's Big Red One.

Ok.  Enough about Kansas' military.

It is autumn.  The leaves are changing and falling, and there are fruit flies hovering my wine glass.    

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