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Living life on the edge…

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No, I haven’t lost my mind. It is with my car keys somewhere in the house. photo from yahoo

 

 

Hey Y’all,

 

Another story time from way back when. This one is long but it gets much shorter if you skip the first half..

I’m sitting in my local Panera this morning thinking about all the insanely aggressive things I have done in transport category aircraft and I just chuckle at myself. I wasn’t out of control, but I was way out there on the edge.

 

WARNING

You are about to take a look behind the curtain and get a healthy dose of what is really in my mind. Skip to the article if you are sensitive, fragile, timid, and/or politically delicate.

 

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I wear clothes, therefore I am not insane. photo form yahoo

 

READING FROM THIS POINT FORWARD IS YOUR FAULT, NOT MINE

There was a Facebook post on a private group that I belong to asking if anyone feels guilty about what they did when they were deployed in a war. I think the poster was a Vietnam Veteran. He got a lot of comments, like a couple hundred or more. About a 3rd were along the lines of “I dropped bombs on people and I would do it again” implying that the guy who asked the question was less than a man, not at all helpful.

A second 3rd were the standard “Give it all to Jesus” without any love, compassion or details of how to begin to release the burden. Again, not helpful because they were avoiding the entirety of the question.

The other 3rd were super deep insights into where those guys are in their lives fifty years later. Wow, those guys have my ultimate respect. I have thought a lot about that question and who I am going to be thirty years after Iraq and Afghanistan.

I think my guilt is probably covered up by the anger and hatred that I still have. My anger is not towards the Iraqi, Afghani or Talibani. I don’t love them but I am not filled with a deep anger for them like some of my friends. My hatred is directed towards the Americans who actively promoted the need to invade both countries. I believe that the Neoconservative Political Right and Left abused their political power to do more harm to the United States than all other real enemies of our nation combined.If I could go back to anytime in history, I would go to the summer of 2000 and move to Florida so I could vote for Al Gore and help elect him President. This would have ended the ability of someone like President Trump to come into the political arena. Win-Win!

I am not trying to do a call for help or anything like that. But just being honest. I probably should go talk to a professional about it but then I would have to figure out how to live without the fire that fuels the engine.

 

YOU HAVE BEEN KICKED OUT OF MY MIND, THE CURTAIN IS CLOSED, YOU CAN RELAX

 

Until next time, keep on rockin

 

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Yes, even if it meant that there would never be a Slipknot, Five Finger Death Punch, Trivium, Amon Amarth, Parkway Drive, Lamb of God, or any other death metal group. She would probably ban Lady Gaga too. Probably an equal trade. photo from yahoo

https://robakers.wordpress.com/2013/08/19/can-i-have-the-extravaganza-please/

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Still the Baghdaddy..

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We hung this flag up for every flight. The Army guys seemed to like seeing it. Maybe it was striking because of the bright colors in a dusty, hot, tan world. photo from rob akers

 

Hey Y’all,

 

Been a while but that little thing called life gets in the way. Little story about exploring Baghdad International Airport in June 2003. Fun times during the long vacation from life.

 

Until next time, keep on rockin!

 

https://robakers.wordpress.com/2013/08/12/whos-your-baghdaddy/

Its the end of the world and I know it…

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Crap…not again! photo from yahoo

Hey Ya’ll,
 
Not trying to create any hysteria but I found this news article that isnt being reported on the mainstream media. Hopefully it is fake news but if the world crashes in the next 48 hours, remember you heard it hear first…(yea, I’m number 1).
 
Also remember that the saber tooth tiger carries a lot of parasites so make sure you get the meat above 162 degrees for more than ten seconds to kill the bacteria.
 
And if any of you show up on the front door as a actual zombie, I will shoot you but I will really feel bad about it later.
 
If we all survive, I will start doing some more story times next week. There is a lot to catch up with. If I catch any of you praying for the world to end as we know it, then we will know who to blame…ha ha.
 
Watch the skies and stay safe during the solar storm…until next time, keep on rockin
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Probably because all CNN cares about is how to impeach Trump…photo from yahoo

Back down the rabbit trail….

Hey Y’all,

 

I am a little behind schedule on story time but the reality is that in 2003, every day was exactly the same so not too many different ways to write. I was really tired. A normal day was being woke up by a runner (usually Jimmy “Cotton” Totten) and ride a bus into ops town. Then after all the required “blah, blah, blah” briefings another ride in a van to the airplane.

Then a two hour flight to somewhere. Sit for two hours. Fly two hours. Sit two hours. Fly two hours. Sit two hours. Fly two hours. and either repeat one more time or head back to home base for a easy twenty hour day in the airplane. Then we turned in all our stuff, got some food and slept only to be woke up by Jimmy twelve hours after we landed.

We did this schedule for nearly three months. No kidding. It did get better after we made the move to Al Udied and eventually we started to have a little more time to recover.

Until next time, keep on rockin!

 

https://robakers.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/moving-day/

 

 

 

Ace of the base…

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If they ever make a movie out of my life. I want Snoopy playing the lead. photo from yahoo.

 

Hey Y’all,

 

My motivation to become a pilot was all based on that stupid “Top Gun” movie. It was pretty simple, Tom Cruise got to fly fast, break the rules, pick up hot chicks and use his considerable movie skills to shoot down enemy airplanes.

 

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Less Maverick and more Big Mac. He should have gone with the baggy look with the tent sized  flight suit. Worked for me. photo from yahoo

 

Amazingly enough, my life has mirrored the Top Gun movie. Yes, I got to fly fast and low. Well, fast for a huge, lumbering, four bladed propeller driven airplane. Yes, I picked up a hot chick in a bar (my wife before she became my wife).

 

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I did good. photo from rob akers

 

And yes I broke some rules which led directly to my first and only credited “KILL!”

 

In my widest dreams, I never would have dared to dream reality.

 

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Gif from yahoo

 

Until next time, keep on rockin!

 

https://robakers.wordpress.com/2013/05/10/guilty-as-charged/

Off Course Maneuvering…

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photo from shutterstock

 

Hey Y’all,

 

New content today. This is partly review, partly real time and mostly future planning out loud. The purpose of this article is to publicly plant my flag in the ground so that all of you will hold me accountable. If you are reading this, then you know me. And if you know me, then you know that I am inherently lazy. I would prefer to sit on the couch and dream about changing the world rather than actually putting in the work, but here we are so here we go.

 

Last year, I did a year long, relatively intense, Biblically based leadership study with eight other men. Before I was asked to be in the group, I had a very strong feeling that I was stuck in that proverbial rut and while nothing was wrong, there was something more I needed to do. The study required me to read twelve books over the course of the year and we did monthly projects that aligned with the readings. The April reading was a book called “Visioneering” by some guy named Andy Stanley. Apparently, he is a big deal in the Christian world but I am not really into that world. I have enough issues to deal with so I leave the fanboy stuff to other people. I did reach out to him via email. He needs a better staff because their reply was less than encouraging or motivational. If anyone knows him, you can tell him that one day he will call me asking to join forces. I will be nice, probably, but I will really try to personally answer all my emails.

 

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photo from Andy Stanley.

 

I was deep into the book, between page six and ten when a thought flooded into my mind about Haiti. I have never been to Haiti, my wife has a couple of times but she is a better person than I am. Anyway, this was more than a random passing thought. I was a complete, very detailed, overpowering vision of what Haiti could become if there was corporation and collaboration between relief efforts and groups. If I am very honest, it still freaks me out when I think about the vision. A friend described it as driving down the interstate in a hard rain. The windshield wipers can’t keep the water off the windshield and it is impossible to see anything farther than the hood of the car. And then you drive under a overpass and everything is clear as day. A second later, you are back in the rain storm but you can’t forget how great it felt to see clearly.

 

So what have I done with this vision? I spent a couple of months just processing it. Then I spent a couple of months investigating if there were any other organizations out there doing what my brain saw. So far, I haven’t found anything like it. I have spoken to about ten people, some I knew and others I didn’t about it and no one has ever heard of something like it. I organized a small handful of people that I totally trust and asked for their guidance and prayers and they have helped me navigate the beginning steps of starting a non-profit organization.

 

The next steps involve money. In the vision, i felt a overwhelming sense that this was to be totally self-funded. I started a business to help generate some extra income. It will work out in the long term but in the short term, there are some hurdles to jump getting a logo and website and starting the non-profit and things like that. But that takes time to work into the budget. You will see some communications about Sou Vyzion from me in the future. Sou Vyzion means About Vision in creole. The domain name has been secured and I will be starting a blog soon.

 

The other thing, I that I need to go to Haiti. I need to get my feet on the ground. I need to see what it looks like. Experience what all the other people who travel there experience. I can’t fight the feeling that if I am going to be taken seriously, then I need to have been there. I need to sweat on their soil, eat their food and share in the discomfort. When I wore a uniform, I found it hard to respect a Colonel who never deployed and openly bragged about it. I don’t know when I will go, but it probably needs to be soon before life gets busier with other things.

 

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What could possibly go wrong? photo from yahoo.

 

This has been an emotional article probably because it is so personal, overwhelming, humbling, and intimating. Those are not adjectives that I work well with my persona so I will leave you with my Haiti Theme song. I think everyone needs a theme song. When we were in Iraq, my personal theme song was “Creeping Death” by Metallica.

 

Make no mistake, this is a war just of a different nature. Fairly soon after I had the vision, not sure when but close enough to connect the vision to the song, “Vice Grip” by the Australian metal band, Parkway Drive. played on my Spotify. I am a big fan of the band but haven’t seen them in concert. It isn’t Christian music and it isn’t totally over the top metal either. It is a video with airplanes and fire, so that is cool. The guys from Parkway Drive are not the long hair types so that is different, no babies or animals were sacrificed and it really isn’t dark and disturbing so it is safe for all ages and persuasions.

 

 

If you decide to save that four minutes for something else, the Chorus is:

Hope for the hopeless
A light in the darkness
Hope for the hopeless
You’ve got one life, one shot
Give it all you got

Songwriters: Benjamin Gordon,Jeffrey Ling,Luke Kilpatrick,Winston McCall
© Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd. For non-commercial use only.

 

 

 

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Together They Thrive! photo from some really brave dudes.

 

Until next time, keep on rockin!

 

 

 

 

Tabukian Lives Matter…

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I dont remember when or where this one was taken. That ASU hat certainly has some time on it. photo from rob akers

 

Hey Y’all,

 

Preloading another long set of three stories. These also document one of those days where the house of cards nearly fell.

 

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I totally understand if you choose to play outside and not read about how I shouldn’t be here today. photo from yahoo

 

99% of the things I did over there don’t really bother me. Most of them make me think that I was stupid or dumb or whatever. But this is one of the 1%, that makes my heart race and my hand shake when I think about it.

 

I mean, how many people have a real chance of death on any given day? Quiet a few, I’m sure. How many people get three real, no kidding opportunities to be dead in the next minute in a single hour? And how many of them get to experience that on their birthday?

 

I am a freaking unicorn!

 

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Saturday marks number 50. A lot has gone on over the past 16 years. Super happy that I was here for it. photo from yahoo

 

Until next time, keep on rockin!

 

https://robakers.wordpress.com/2013/04/12/happy-birthdaypart-one/

https://robakers.wordpress.com/2013/04/15/happy-birthdaypart-two/

https://robakers.wordpress.com/2013/04/19/happy-birthdaypart-three/

 

 

Vern Norrgard

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