Sunday, July 24, 2011

IBOLC Week 9: OPORD II

More. Lame. Boring.

But at least we were released this week everyday by 1400. So nice.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Movie Log 04: WIZARDS > MUGGLES

Let me start by saying that I have never been a fan of the HP movie series. Some franchises just don't translate well into film - like G.I. Joe. Who's idea was it to make that into a live action movie? HP has so much fanciful paraphernalia that when it all comes together on screen it seems a bit... weird. Hokey. And I LOVE the books.



There is too much depth, too much emotion in the books that is missing from the movies. Not to mention certain characters and plotlines: Dumbledore has never been portrayed right, and WHY did they keep that redheaded girl as Ginny Weasley even when it was clear that she was terrible for the part? Ginny is supposed to be cute, funny, smart, and brave. The one in the movie was just... there. THIS girl on the left is closer to the book's portrayal of Ginny, as opposed to the chick on the right. I found this on some harry potter website. As you can see, the bio is pretty exhaustive.



http://www.hellontoast.org/chaoswiki/index.php?title=Ginny_Weasley

But besides the fact that my favorite heroine of the HP series was done serious injustice throughout all the movies, HP7:2 just didn't do it for me. It missed a lot of emotional goldmines, brushed over the actual Battle of Hogwarts and its impact, and added scenes that didn't really add any pazazz. It was pretty much action porn (all action, no substance) which is regrettable since the conclusion of the book is so epic.

Anyhow, if you haven't read the book, go do so. The books > the movies.

Oh and Wizards > Muggles. period. Lumos!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

IBOLC Week 8: OPORD I

Lame. Dumb. Stupid. Waste. Long. Boring. Dumb.

Eight more weeks to go. Can't come soon enough.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Movie Log 03: I'll Be My Own Boss, Thanks

So firstly, the Movie Journal is now known as the Movie Log (thanks, Banks. oui oui).

Secondly, Horrible Bosses was fun. But then again, after a week of IBOLC, anything is fun. Honestly. I think that going to movies has become so much of an escape for me that I am able to enjoy almost any movie, regardless of how bad it might be. Not that this movie is particularly bad, but it's not particularly good either. And it's true what they say: the movies are better with a C O K E and some popcorn (though I prefer BUNCHA CRUNCH). And also with Jennifer Aniston.



Thirdly, the lesson. Or moral, if you will. Rather, the philosophizations of an avid movie goer and observer of society. It's mainly about picking a job you actually like.

I have always done things I felt was I needed to do, i.e., what I felt was my duty, or what I owed the group, my God, my country, my family, etc. Even when playing team sports or team video games, I would play the role that no one else would in order to ensure that the team had that position filled with someone possessing at least half a brain.

Not that there's anything wrong with that, per se, but it's not enough. It's left me feeling oddly unsure about what I even like or dislike about a great many things.

In relation to work, I've realized that you have to want to go work, at least to some degree. You can't dread it. You can't spend every moment wishing you were anywhere else. If what I'm describing is normal, but I think it's sad. That's why after the Army I'm going to do whatever I actually want to do. Not what's safe, not what's dutiful - something I want to actually do. I'll have done my duty to both God and Country - then it will be time for some duty to self. That will probably involve doing something crazy. Can't wait.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

IBOLC Week 7: Collosal Waste. I mean, Live Fire Squad Excersize

What a colossal waste of my life. I'm not sure what it was about this past four-day weekend for the 4th of July, but I came back to training with new eyes. I suddenly began to truly see how ridiculous this organization is. I am starting to keep a checklist of stupid things the Army does and will post them. But for now: a brief synopsis of the THREE FULL HOURS OF WORK I did this week. 

Monday we had off, so we began the work week on Tuesday with EIGHT HUNDRED STEP UPS. A step up is when you step up a stair and then step down. 400 on each leg, 800 in all - with our 45 lbs. ruck sack on. No big.

Then we took a quiz on stuff we hadn't learned. Who does that? Kind of like, "Here you go, here's a quiz that's worth points towards graduation." Dumb. After that we went OUTSIDE to learn how to do something we've all been taught one billion times before - Battle Drill 1A: Squad Attack.

Now, I'm not saying we shouldn't go over battle drills. We need to. It's our job. But we learned hand and arm signals, react to contact, and squad attack - with NO PRACTICAL EXERCISES- and it took us two and a half hours. I've taught privates all that and more with practical exercises in less time.

Wednesday we went out to the field to sit around all week in the hot sun and ant infested poison-ivy grass of Georgia. I'm not exaggerating. I read 600 pages of Game of Thrones on my Nook while we were out there. Wednesday we went out to the range and sat around all day except for running a demonstration lane and a practice lane with no ammunition of what we were going to do the next day. The total time was about an hour. The rest of the day I slept. And read.

I'm not exaggerating. Here was Thursday:

0600 - Wake up
0700 - Walk over to the range. got there at 0710.
1200 - Blank Fire run. Meaning, we ran the battle drill Squad Attack with blank rounds. Took about thirty minutes.
1600 - Live Fire run. Did the same things as before, but with live ammunition. Took about thirty minutes
2200 - Lights out

You see those monstrously large gaps in the timeline? You know what I did from 0700-1200? I slept and read Game of Thrones. Know what I did from 1230 to 1600? Slept and read Game of Thrones. Know what I did from 1630 to 2200? Read Game of Thrones. I couldn't sleep anymore.



And Friday:

0600 - Wake up
0700 - Move to Range
1500 - Squad STX Lane. A STX Lane is like running a mission. Go find the enemy and kill him. Usually with blanks. It took about an hour to finish. Then there was an hour of clean up and prep to move.
1700 - Move to another range and do a walk through of how to clear a bunker
1800 - Got back to HQ
2100 - Released for the weekend

Same thing. Huge gaps, huge naps. And Game of Thrones. Stupid.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Movie Journal/Log 02: CYBERNETIC BEINGS > HUMANS

Which sounds better: Movie Journal or Movie Log? Consider this a transitional title post.

Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon was up straight action jackson. Never mind the way the Armed Forces and civilian agencies worked or didn't work together in absurd ways. Never mind that Megatron is still alive somehow. Never mind that Shia Lebouf is with yet another supermodel. If you can willfully suspend your disbelief for a time, you will enjoy this ride.

The whole time I was thinking of how vastly superior cybernetic beings would be to humans. Let me count the ways:

1) SIGHT and TARGETING. Cybernetic beings would be able to immediately scan a location, target things, get technical readouts of said things, see in infra-red, thermal, and night vision, and also take pictures and video immediately  They could also filter out their screen for colors to isolate one color. Or detect only motion. Anything you could do with a computer screen you could put into their eyesight. It could calculate speeds and force as fast as the being's processor would allow. This would mean that it could deflect, repel, counter, and attack extremely accurately - never mind how accurately it could fire. And who said a cybernetic being can only have two eyes in the front of its head? Put one in the back and now times all that by three.

2) HEARING. The same goes for hearing. It could isolate frequencies, hear frequencies that humans can't, immediately record sounds and compare/contrast them to internal databases. It could calculate the location of a sound by its frequency and intensity immediately, meaning that it could, in effect, see behind itself with its hearing.

3) IMMORTALITY. Cybernetic beings, in theory, wouldn't die. As long as their memory banks/whatever computer component passes for its mind isnt' damaged, you could "jump" the robot to come back to life. If it runs out of power or connections are severed, all you have to do is put those connections back together and give the robot a boost and VOILA! it's back a la Optimus Prime in Transformers 2.

4) SURVIVAL. Apart from immortality, cybernetic beings could survive in space, underwater, and without oxygen while trapped underground. It would be able to live in places unassisted humans can't.

5) TELEPATHY. More like, wireless connectivity with everyone else around you, provided that they too are cybernetic beings. Think about it. They could send messages to each other to anywhere in the world. They could take a picture with their eyes and send it to a friend. Or record a conversation and post it immediately to Facebook. They have de facto telepathy. How much they have open or closed to other cybernetic beings would be up to their programming/choice.

That's why I plan to be at least 60% cyborg by the time I'm 50, with goal of having my consciousnesses transplanted into a fully functioning cybernetic form. How cool would that be?

Monday, July 4, 2011

IBOLC Week 6: Machine Guns and Artillery

i LUV four day work weeks.

This week wasn't very exciting so here it is, for posterity:

Machine gun theory - where to place the guns, the different types, their capabilities
Artillery - different types, capabilities, and most importantly, calling for fire. We played a huge video game to learn, which of course just validates the years of gaming I've put under my belt. The game had some terrain in front of us with targets, and we would have to call up the correct information to hit them. Probably the best training we've had so far, I'd say.


Besides that, I am loathe to report that I am one of three 240 gunners for my platoon.



You see how big that thing is? Thirty pounds of death. That ammunition is another ten pounds as well. I can't wait to ruck march ten miles with a  45 pound pack and my 30 pound machine gun. Go Infantry.