A SURREAL DAY |
January 05, 2007
A SURREAL DAY
Name: Teflon Don
Posting date: 1/5/07
Stationed in: Ramadi, Iraq
Milblog url: acutepolitics.blogspot.com
It's been something of a surreal day. The air outside is thick with the smoke from the garbage dump, where it seems there is nothing to burn besides some sort of plastic. The acrid stench gives way to the crisper smoke from the assortment of burn barrels, which are once again busy devouring remnents of unkept letters and packages from homes far away. The night sky seems impossibly bright overhead -- just a few days ago, it was nearly impossible to walk around at night without bumping, tripping, and stumbling along. Now it's easy to move. It's especially noticeable in town, where we gain next to no benefit from dousing our vehicle lights. The dim twilight is still more than enough to see by, and our trucks are large enough to stand out, even in the more urban areas. But I'm getting off track. Back to this last 24 hours.
Let me preface this story I'm about to tell with a little background: Chuck Norris is a gigantic cult phenomenon. Everyone knows a joke or two about the man: "Chuck Norris has two speeds: Sleep and Kill."; "There is no Natural Selection. There are creatures that die, and creatures Chuck allows to live"; "Chuck Norris doesn't have a beard because he doesn't shave; Chuck has a beard because razors are scared of him." References to the man are everywhere, and nearly all of them are as odd or inane as those. Whether they make sense or not, these little sayings are written inside bunkers, latrines, vehicles -- anywhere someone might think to write something.
While I was out on mission last night, one of the Bradley Fighting Vehicles that compose our security escort called up the escort commander on the radio during a lull in movement:
Red 1: Sir, did you hear they're taking one of my Bradleys tomorrow?
Red 6: Negative. Why?
R1: I guess Chuck Norris needs it for something.
R6: Say again?
R1: Chuck Norris is coming here tomorrow, and he's taking one of my Bradleys.
R6: Is this one of those jokes you guys tell all the time?
We were sitting in the truck saying to ourselves, "What does Chuck Norris need a Bradley for? Can't he just roundhouse kick the IED's away?" and "Y'know, if he'd come here three years ago, we wouldn't still be here now!".
It turned out to be true. Every soldier's hero, Chuck Norris, came to the ghetto of Iraq today. I wonder how many kids had their illusions shattered.
Tonight we went out on another mission, a short one, to clear part of one of the main routes between here and all the other military bases in Iraq. Coming back, we had a bomb explode near us. However, it was no ordinary bomb. This one was a shell, strapped to what appeared to be a roller skate, which was pulled across the road in front of us. Apparently the bad guys have been watching too many old cartoons, and called Acme to order their bomb. My truck has now earned the nickname "Roadrunner", for having survived an attack by Wile E. Coyote.
Chuck Norris and bombs on skates. That's about all I can handle for one day.