Veteran’s Day at Marie Kerr Park in Palmdale

It was simple and touching. I think at times that most of us were teary eyed….. I know I was.

Darryl Juel and Reid Grayson were older brothers of two guys I played junior high basketball with in Scobey, Montana 52 years ago…….

Even though I was not in country in Vietnam, this was for all of us who served in the era.

The AV Vietnam Moving Memorial Wall is a fully volunteer organization. They along with Vets 4 Vets in Palmdale and Lancaster are the driving forces behind this.DSC_0003

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This dear lady lost a son in Iraq in 2004. She gave me the one pin. Tears were shed.
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Darryl R. Juel
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Frank J. Costantini Jr.
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Reid E. Grayson

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Remembrance Day

The text was posted at Facebook by my friend Scott Ruch along with the picture.

Today, however you chose to call it, Armistice Day, Rembrance Day or Veteran’s Day, is a difficult one for myself and my family. On this day 27 years ago, we lost my Dad to cancer. As an Airman and then Soldier, I suppose it was most appropriate.

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember them.”

Dusty…

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Forty Five

Forty Five years ago on a Saturday morning no less, I put my right hand in the air and took the oath of enlistment from an Army 1st Lt. and enlisted in the US Navy.

“I, (Glenn Mark Cassel), 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.””

It turned into a long run.

Forty five years already……..

Yeah, I cheated and did the copy and paste from Wikipedia. It was easy ya know.

On the passing of Captain McCain

I have been watching the “conversations” about John McCain on The Book of Faces since the news of his passing broke in the news media and I must say the some of it upsets me.

First, yes I did vote for him in 2008. No regrets there. Good, that is out of the way.

John McCain served his country admirably and with distinction in the United States Navy. His last tour was in command of Attack Squadron One Seven Four which was one of the largest squadrons in the Navy, responsible for the training of Naval Aviators and Maintenance Personnel heading to A-7 Light Attack Squadrons in the US Atlantic Fleet. That is an awesome responsibility. Nuff said.

There are the rumors of his behaviour while he was a POW during the Vietnam Conflict. As far as I can see those are just that, rumors.

If individuals cannot show some form of decorum regarding his death, they have some serious issues as human beings from the point of view of this Old Retired Petty Officer. At this point, the man’s political views are a moot point. Dignity and respect should be given to his family in the manner of one’s chosen beliefs and values. I have seen comments from a few Christians that are quite frankly reprehensible at best. Some Christian behaviour on their part.  Cancer is a vile thing. It took my Dad and I have had it myself. When Captain McCain made the decision to stop treatment, it was a decision to be taken lightly. My Dad did the same thing.

When the funeral happens in the near future, I truly hope that all of us take the time to bow or cover our heads as whatever religious custom dictates in respect and reflection for a truly good man who gave his best to his country. Remember this one thing, their are those who truly believe that he was a hero. If you chose to believe otherwise, that is your choice. I will not criticize you in an open forum for that. My own upbringing and sense of values will not let me attack you.

The best I can do today. The afflictions of the years and mileage are having an impact on the thought process today.

Just remember this one thing. Only G-d can truly judge us.

ORPO sends.

Ten years ago…11 September 2007…

I know it’s a day early but I have to work tonight starting at midnight.

I turned 53 on my ballast train on the BNSF KO Subdivision in North Dakota. I had tied up the previous night in Jamestown ND. It was a spot dump and went very well and I was done before noon….

I know it was a significant day in the history of Our Republic…..but I was kind of busy.

Tomorrow is the completion of another trip around the Sun……..

After the events 8 years ago with my left kidney, I have been more or less objective concerning the attacks that September day 16 years ago…. I’m still here. If symptoms had manifested, I would have had to get my affairs in order.

To those who may get upset over my viewpoints please remember this one thing, I was facing a major surgery to remove said kidney with the “large mass.”

I will put on my kippa tomorrow and say a prayer for the memory of those lost that day and those who were lost going in harm’s way to kill the perpetrators.

Old Retired Petty Officer Sends.

May Hashem guide you in your day……………………………

Thoughts on current events……Give me a break will you folks out there!

Since the incident in Charlottesville, Virginia, there has been a hue and cry to remove or even destroy historic markers, monuments and the like that pertain to the former Confederate States of America related to perceived wrongs in regards to slavery. Seems to me that history is just that history and when it is destroyed we lose touch with those things that do in a way, define us as a Republic.

History is neither good or bad. It simply exists. Simple viewpoint on the subject isn’t it. But think about it now, when I learned history in school including three years of high school in a small town in the Canadian Province of Alberta, history was treated in an objective manner. Now days, there seems to be an agenda regarding the bad stuff as perceived by some offended group.

As most of you readers and followers know, I am Jewish. I don’t run from the past regarding this. The Holocaust happened. It is real in my family in that 57 members on my Dad’s side perished during that horrible part of the history of the world. It happened. Nothing can change that.  The things that led up to it and the start of WW II in Europe in a way were a direct result of things we now see in the news these days.

I even hear cries for……”we need a law to prevent that!” Remember, Hitler and Mussolini had the law on their side at the time. Think long and hard on that. Which now brings this thought, those same laws can be held against any and all of us………..

A simple man’s perspective.

Even in the State Capital of my Home State of Montana, a memorial fountain to Confederate Soldiers in Hill Park was removed by the direction of the city commission. I lived in Helena from 63 to 66 and visited that park on a regular basis. A piece of my childhood removed due to a knee jerk reaction by those looking to enamor themselves to whatever segment of the population.

I guess I’m done.

Memories of a Time When I was a young man.

This past Saturday, the ship that was my first duty station began it’s final journey. The Good Ship Independence was towed from the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard enroute to the breaker’s yard in Brownsville, Texas.

I reported aboard her in January of 1974 as a fresh faced 19 year old kid from the Montana Prairies. So began my adventure in the United States Navy.

I participated in the ammunition offload along with several other guys that I went through boot camp with. Then I was assigned to V-1 Division in the Air Department.

After a short period in the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, we began working up for the upcoming deployment to the Mediterranean Sea.

I freely admit that I was absolutely terrified the first time I was on the flight deck for operations.

In the latter part of July 1974 we embarked the Air Wing and departed.

We covered the evacuation of US diplomatic personnel and their families from Nicosia, Cyprus. All available aircraft were armed. We then coordinated the Search and Recovery of TWA flight 847 which had crashed near the Greek coast. It was an eye opening experience to say the least and certain images remain in my mind to this day.

Finally, we were able to get some Liberty in Naples, Italy. Cold beer and playing tourist. Other ports of call included Cannes, Palma de Mallorca and Barcelona and a few more visits to Naples.

In early January we were relieved by USS America and headed for home. The North Atlantic in January is a rough place, I should add.

20 January saw us go pier side at Naval Station Norfolk. It was a bitter cold day and along with families, friends and a band was a troop of baton twirlers who in those costumes must have been freezing.

It has been a bit over 40 years since I departed The Good Ship Independence as a Petty Officer Second Class now. I know that things change over time and a lot of places that I was stationed have gone into the “dustbin” of history.

The media outlets in the Pacific Northwest gave coverage of Indy’s departure from Bremerton this past weekend.

The following photo is from a Facebook group I belong to………

To those who have been there, you understand.

 

14 February 1979 – This Day in Aviation

This is a rather unique story from my point of view. I have been thinking about getting a glider pilot ticket as there are fields in the area that have glider operations, including California City Municipal Airport.

I had never heard of this lady at all. She was an accomplished individual for sure. I thought it was worth a post here. I hope all enjoy it.

The full story is at the link.

 

Grob G102 Astir CS N75SW at Black Forest Gliderport, near Colorado Springs, Colorado. The mountain at the upper right of the image Pikes Peak. (Jim Freeman via “Abandoned & Little Known Airfields”)

14 February 1979: Flying her Grob G102 Astir CS glider from the Black Forest Gliderport, north of Colorado Springs, Colorado, Sabrina Patricia Jackintell soared to an altitude of 12,637 meters (41,460 feet) over Pikes Peak, setting a Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI) World Record and Soaring Society of America National Record for Absolute Altitude.¹ This record still … Continue reading 14 February 1979 →

Source: 14 February 1979 – This Day in Aviation

In Memoriam of Apollo 1

I believe it was yesterday that marked the 50th anniversary of the tragedy of Apollo 1 that took the lives of Gus Grissom, Ed White and Roger Chaffee. It is still vivid in my mind.

An old shipmate of mine from days in the Argonauts of Attack Squadron 147 now works at NASA at Cape Canaveral. He was kind enough to send me some pictures of the launch pad from that day that is now abandoned in place.

Without further ado, here they are.

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24 December 1968 16:40:07 UTC, T plus 75:49:07 – This Day in Aviation

Does anyone remember this? I know I do. I saw it on CBC when we lived in Alberta, Canada out on the lonesome prairies.

William Anders: “For all the people on Earth the crew of Apollo 8 has a message we would like to send you.” In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved … Continue reading 24 December 1968 16:40:07 UTC, T plus 75:49:07 →

Source: 24 December 1968 16:40:07 UTC, T plus 75:49:07 – This Day in Aviation

Shakespeare died 400 years ago today — here are 21 everyday phrases he coined

I found this courtesy of Joy McCann from Business Insider. I never new a lot of these and I was reared in an academic household. Go Figure, Eh?

Shakespeare died 400 years ago today — here are 21 everyday phrases he coined

William Shakespeare wrote a lot of great plays, but he also coined and popularized a lot of words and phrases that we still use to this day.

 

“Puking”
“Puking”
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“The Seven Ages of Man: The Infant” by Robert Smirke, derived from a monologue in Shakespeare’s “As You Like It.”
“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms. …”

How Shakespeare uses it: “Puking” was first recorded in Shakespeare’s “As You Like It.” It was likely an English imitation of the German word “spucken,” which means to spit, according to Dictionary.com.

Modern definition: A synonym for the verb “to vomit.”

Source: “As You Like It,” Act 2, Scene 7

“Vanish into thin air”
“Vanish into thin air”
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Constantin Stanislavski as Othello.
“Then put up your pipes in your bag, for I’ll away. Go; vanish into air; away!” (Othello)

How Shakespeare uses it: The Clown says this to the musicians in “Othello” to make them go away.

But some have also suggested that there is a darker underlying meaning. Act 3 in Othello is the final act that suggests that all of this might have a happy ending. It gets pretty dark starting in Act 4. So the Clown might be symbolically asking musicians and all happy things to “vanish into thin air” because there’s no more room for them in the play.

A similar phrase is also found in “The Tempest.”

Modern definition: To disappear without a trace.

Sources: “Othello,” Act 3, Scene 1, “The Tempest,” Act 4, Scene 1
“There’s a method to my madness”
“There’s a method to my madness”
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Polonius from “Hamlet.”
“Though this be madness, yet there is method in ‘t. Will you walk out of the air, my lord?”

How Shakespeare uses it: Polonius says it in “Hamlet,” basically suggesting that there is reason behind apparent chaos.

Modern definition: The meaning is the same nowadays, although the language is a bit updated into modern terms. It is also a Bee Gees song.

Source: “Hamlet,” Act 2, Scene 2

“Wild-goose chase”
“Wild-goose chase”
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“Nay, if they wits run the wild-goose chase, I have
done, for thou hast more of the wild-goose in one of
thy wits than, I am sure, I have in my whole five:
was I with you there for the goose?”

How Shakespeare uses it: Mercutio says that he can’t keep up with Romeo’s jokes and puns. Romeo tells him to continue, but Mercutio sees the endeavor as a “wild goose chase.”

A wild-goose chase was reportedly a real game back in 16th-century England in which “a horseman executed a series of difficult maneuvers which others had to repeat in close succession.”

Modern definition: A senseless — and probably hopeless — pursuit of an object or an end.

Source: “Romeo and Juliet,” Act 2, Scene 4
“The green eyed-monster”
“The green eyed-monster”
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Othello and Iago.
“Oh, beware, my lord, of jealousy!
It is the green-eyed monster which doth mock
The meat it feeds on.”

How Shakespeare uses it: Iago says this phrase as he plants doubts in Othello’s mind about his wife’s faithfulness. Merriam-Webster writes that he may have been evoking cats, given that they are “green-eyed creatures who toy with their prey before killing it.”

Modern definition: Now “the green eyed-monster” is an idiomatic expression for the noun “jealousy.”

Source: “Othello,” Act 3, Scene 3

“Break the ice”
“Break the ice”
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Katherina and Petruchio.
“… And if you break the ice and do this feat,
Achieve the elder, set the younger free
For our access, whose hap shall be to have her
Will not so graceless be to be ingrate.”

How Shakespeare uses it: Tranio suggests if Petruchio can “break the ice,” then he will be able to woo Katherina. By using the “ice” language, Shakespeare makes Katherina seem as cold as ice. Moreover, the fact that the ice needs to be broken suggests that she is hard to reach.

But the first actual usage of “break the ice” probably comes from Sir Thomas North’s 1579 translation of “Plutarch’s Lives of the Noble Grecians and Romans” — although in this case the phrase meant “to forge a path for others to follow,” alluding to the breaking of ice to allow the navigation of boats.

Modern definition: “Break the ice” still means to get to know someone.

Source: “The Taming of the Shrew,” Act 1, Scene 2
“Wear my heart upon my sleeve”
“Wear my heart upon my sleeve”
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Iago not rocking a heart on his sleeve.
“For when my outward action doth demonstrate
The native act and figure of my heart
In compliment extern, ’tis not long after
But I will wear my heart upon my sleeve
For daws to peck at: I am not what I am.”

How Shakespeare uses it: Devious Iago basically says that if his outward appearance reflected what he was thinking, then his heart would be on his sleeve for birds to peck at — which is not a good idea in his eyes. And so he adds that he is actually not what he appears to be.

Notably, Iago’s motives for his antagonistic behavior are never fully revealed — so it is interesting that he is the character who has immortalized this phrase.

Modern definition: To show one’s feelings openly.

Source: “Othello,” Act 1, Scene 1

“Swagger”
“Swagger”
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Oberon, Titania, and Puck with dancing fairies.
“What hempen home-spuns have we swaggering here,
So near the cradle of the fairy queen?
What, a play toward! I’ll be the auditor;
An actor too, perhaps, if I see cause.”

How Shakespeare uses it: Puck, a mischievous sprite, uses the term “swagger” to mean “insolent.” It might have been a frequentative form of “swag,” which means “to sway.”

The word is also found in “Henry IV: Part 2” where Mistress Quickly gives a speech about super-aggressive men who visit her tavern, where the meaning of swagger suggests the meaning of boasting or bragging.

Additionally, the term is also found in “King Lear,” where it most closely means “blustering.” Although, here it is spelled “zwaggered.”

Modern definition: Jay Z used “swagger” and “swag” in several songs back in the early 2000s. Soulja Boy also used the word — “she likes my swag.” Since then, it has been often used in modern song lyrics.

Sources: “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” Act 3, Scene 1, “Henry IV: Part 2,” Act 2, Scene 4, “King Lear, Act 4, Scene 6
“All of a sudden”
“All of a sudden”
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Katherina in “The Taming of the Shrew.”
“I pray, sir, tell me, is it possible
That love should of a sodaine take such hold?”

How Shakespeare uses it: Apparently, Shakespeare might have thought that “all of a sudden” was a more poetic way of saying “suddenly” so he had the character Tranio in “The Taming of the Shrew” say it that way.

Although, Shakespeare wasn’t the first to use “sudden” — John Greenwood used it in 1590.

Modern definition: The meaning is the same, although we now spell it “sudden” rather than “sodaine.” The word is spelled in the modern way in newer printings of “The Taming of the Shrew.”

Source: “The Taming of the Shrew,” Act 1, Scene 1

“A heart of gold”
“A heart of gold”
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Lewis Waller as Henry V.
“The king’s a bawcock, and a heart of gold,
A lad of life, an imp of fame;
Of parents good, of fist most valiant. …”

How Shakespeare uses it: King Henry disguises himself as a commoner in the play and asks Pistol, who is unaware of the disguise, whether he considers himself to be better than the king. Pistol responds with the above quote.

Modern definition: To be extremely kind and helpful.

Source: “Henry V,” Act 4, Scene 1
“One fell swoop”
“One fell swoop”
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Macduff.
“He has no children. All my pretty ones?
Did you say all? O hell-kite! All?
What, all my pretty chickens and their dam
At one fell swoop?”

How Shakespeare uses it: Macduff says this after finding out that his family and servants have been killed. Shakespeare’s use of the hunting bird’s’ “fell swoop” imagery reflects the ruthlessness and deadliness of the attack.

Modern definition: In one, sudden act.

Source: “Macbeth, Act 4, Scene 3

“Devil incarnate”
“Devil incarnate”
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“O worthy Goth, this is the incarnate devil
That robb’d Andronicus of his good hand.” (Titus Andronicus)

“Yes, that a’ did; and said they were devils incarnate.” (Henry V)

How Shakespeare uses it: Lucius calls Aaron the Moor the “devil incarnate” — aka a devil in the flesh — after all the suffering he causes his family. Chief among them, convincing Demtrius and Chiron to rape Lavinia and framing Martius and Quintus for the murder of Bassianus.

Shakespeare also reused the phrase about a decade later in “Henry V.”

Modern definition: The meaning of the phrase is more or less unchanged.

Sources: “Titus Andronicus,” Act V, Scene 1, “Henry V,” Act 2, Scene 3
“Stuff that dreams are made on/of”
“Stuff that dreams are made on/of”
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Prospero and Miranda.
“We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.”

How Shakespeare uses it: This phrase is not as cheerful as we use it today. Prospero is saying that peoples’ lives — and his magic — are like dreams: We experience them, and then they totally evaporate without leaving any lasting evidence. “Sleep” likely refers to death here.

Modern definition: Nowadays, we say “stuff that dreams are made of” rather than “on.” And it also refers to some sort of fantasy things or life that we could only dream of having.

Source: “The Tempest,” Act 4, Scene 1

“To come full circle”
“To come full circle”
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The wheel of fortune from Boccaccio.
“Thou hast spoken right, ’tis true;
The wheel has come full circle: I am here.”

How Shakespeare uses it: Edmund says the phrase at the end of “King Lear,” highlighting how he has “completed a cycle” where his diabolical actions have come back to haunt him.

Shakespeare was also probably referencing Fate — and the “Wheel of Fortune” — from ancient and medieval philosophy, which thus introduced the question of free will versus everything being determined by fate.

Modern definition: Completing a cycling, getting back to the beginning.

Source: “King Lear,” Act 5, Scene 3
“In my heart of heart”
“In my heart of heart”
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Lawrence Olivier as Hamlet
“Give me that man
That is not passion’s slave, and I will wear him
In my heart’s core, ay, in my heart of heart,
As I do thee.”

How Shakespeare uses it: While speaking with Horatio, Hamlet says this phrase noting that if there’s a man who is “not passion’s slave” — aka, a master of his emotions — then he’ll put him close to his heart. Using the language “heart’s core” right before suggests that Hamlet means some very deep, central part of his heart/emotions.

Modern definition: Nowadays, we pluralize the second “heart” to say “in my heart of hearts.” The phrase refers to one’s inner-most, secret thoughts.

Source: “Hamlet,” Act 3, Scene 2

“Too much of a good thing”
“Too much of a good thing”
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Rosalind dressed as a man, Ganymede.
“Why then, can one desire too much of a good thing?
Come, sister, you shall be the priest and marry us.
Give me your hand, Orlando. What do you say, sister?”

How Shakespeare uses it: This phrase may have been a proverb dating to the late 15th century, but Shakespeare was the one who has it immortalized in print.

Rosalind is pretending to be a man named Ganymede while she is with Orlando, with whom she is in love. He’s also in love with Rosalind — and doesn’t know she is Ganymede — and practices how he would woo Rosalind with Ganymede. At one point, Rosalind/Ganymede suggests that they have a pretend wedding, and asks if one can ever have too much of a good thing.

Modern definition: Too much good might backfire and be bad.

Source: “As You Like It,” Act 4, Scene 1
“All that glitters is not gold”
“All that glitters is not gold”
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Portia from “The Merchant of Venice.”
“All that glitters is not gold;
Often have you heard that told:
Many a man his life hath sold
But my outside to behold:
Gilded tombs do worms enfold.”

How Shakespeare uses it: Shakespeare seems to be the first person to have written this phrase, although the idea was not new.

The Prince of Morocco, one of Portia’s suitors in “The Merchant of Venice,” much choose out the correct casket to get his bride: one gold, one silver, and one lead. The gold one has an inscription on it which reads “All that glitters is not gold … gilded tombs do worms enfold.” But he picks it anyway …

Modern definition: Basically, just because it’s shiny and nice on the outside, doesn’t mean that that’s true of the inside.

Source: “The Merchant of Venice,” Act 2, Scene 7

Shakespeare died 400 years ago today — here are 21 everyday phrases he coined