Don’t RUST On My Parade*

“Petty Officer Marcom! Your Fifty Cals are Rusty!”

50 Cal NavyA

U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate Third Class Daniel J. Mark. Cleared for release by ALBG PAO, LCDR Jeff Bender.

Lance Sailor

Marco The Sailorman

I had to  admit. Yes they were. I had tried so hard to keep ahead of the rust, but here I found myself on the leeward side of the second half of a six-month, ‘round-the-whurl-West Pacific Deployment’, and somewhere just off the coast of Somalia.

Yes, rust was my enemy, certainly never my friend—the machine guns were always mounted while we (The USS Callaghan DDG 994, full cast and crew) were Haze-Gray and Underway.

Yes, always mounted and underway:

Haze-Graying, even then

And rusty

My Guns were always supposed to be… somewhere upon the sea… this is what they were purchased for…

And subject to rust. Rust Relentless. Relentless She Be: That Sea. That Salt of the Fucking Sea

Rust.

My Moby Dick-lessness! How could I not keep Rust off my guns?

Freud certainly would have had fun with me

(Sadly, now I know why)

************

My professional life was to be found somewhere rusting in those machine guns.

And that rust you see, that rust occupied a great deal of my daily routine.

The Navy had a solution though. She had provided canvas covers to cover those guns and make them safe from rust. Alas, those canvas covers had seen better days, probably back when Pearl Harbor was just an ordinary Naval Base that no one had ever heard of.

But rust is relentless and timeless.

While scrubbing the Indian Ocean rust off’n my fifty-cals one morning I hatched a plan. Knowing full well we were soon to pull into Mombasa Kenya, after so many month at sea, I conspired to save my money:

Once in Mombasa, I would smuggle one of the moth infected, salt- digested, jig saw’d, Swiss Cheese, ‘holy’ canvas shards off the ship. I would rent a taxi, find me a young child, show him my smuggled ‘prize’, ask him to direct me somewhere, where I could find and nickel and dime (I did not have much money then, not un-life-like now) find a leather shop in Mombasa, present to the leather-maker my Holy Canvas, My Shroud,  My Naval Career, and demand, (for US Dollars), that he make me four such more yet new and brand new.

And functional.

And This is exactly what I did, and to the amazement and astonishment of my Master Chief Petty Officer and my Department Head (almost a Navy Commander… he kind of looked like JFK, now that I think on it. I  did not like particularly like him, but I respected him. Hell, he reminded me of all the things I could have been if I had joined the Nav when I was twelve instead of twenty-eight (Different story. Sorry)

The next time they inspected my Fifty Cals, they were pristine! (They did not take notice nor time to notice that the canvas covers were not exactly Haze-Gray-Naval Gray. No, more like Third-World-Rustic, with just a tiny bit of water buffalo…left over…but Goddamn sure water and sea salt proof.   

And I was so desirous that they did NOT notice, but my Master Chief did notice, yet, never ever noticing nor voicing his ‘inner thoughts’ in front of what he referred to as “Shit Birds” — ‘Officers’ — Never let on.

Master Chief never, ever let out his truth thoughts in front of Shit – Birds. This was his genius. 

And I should have been cognizant of this, yet I was so somewhat giddy after my .50 Cals had finally passed inspection, that I did not stop to think on that anyone. “Not even Master Chief had seen through my ruse” Yeah, Rite!

 I was drunk with my own cleverness and lying back on my back in my rack, curtain drawn,  congratulating me.

(Now, you must realize how the Military Mind works. I was my Ship’s Armor All–Armorer– IN Charge of All The Ship’s Small Arms! .225 Cal to .50 Cal. If it took two men to lift, wasn’t mine. But one-man-band? Yep!  I was the shit!  I was a Gunner’s Mate 3rd Class! Freshly rocked out of SEAL Training (twice now, but who counts these sorts of thing? I suppose I do) and trying to retain what little was left of my  pride and my so-fifty-caliber-called-life.)

And I loved and Respected My Master Chief. Did not ever want to become an embarrassment to him, nor to my Fellow Gunner’s Mates who worked on the “Big Guns”. (Those ones what ‘bullets’ took two and a half-men to lift)

And even more important, (anyone who has ever ‘Served’ will know this), the Military is Run On Fear:

“Oh God, Please Don’t Let Me Fuck UP!”

That kind of fear.

Well, as I was lying on my back in my middle rack right before Taps with my little blue ‘privacy’ curtain drawn back when someone jerked that sucker back.

Along with my reverie.

Yep.

Master Chief Anderson!

MY MASTER CHIEF

“Son, tell me where you found those brand new gun covers.”

Trying to lie on my side and find an elbow to lean to, I half-coughed out, feigning sleepy-eyed ignorance,

“Master Chief, I had them made while we were in Mombasa.”

(There are people one may lie to in life, but, A Master Chief Petty Officer in the US Navy is not one found amongst those people. Not if one wishes life beyond that moment of sweet deception)

“I see”, was all he said, as he yanked my curtain back shut, thus leaving me alone with my various and sundry.

I did not sleep that night. For you see, I knew I had broken Naval Regs by doing something not-in-the Naval-Seaman’s-Bible–The Blue Book–The book, inches thick as a brick,  “The Book” I had been made to almost memorize while at Recruit Training Command, i.e. boot camp.

41XgCzuhSdL._AC_UL320_SR214,320_

I had broken the rule.

In the Nav, there is a sea sailor preamble, most requisite when one wants to recount a story of ‘when ships were made of wood and men were made of iron’… “When Moses was a pup” This validates and is a ritual never broken. In other words, one never breaks the rule.

Sometime mid-morning the next day, I was summoned to the berth/office of  The Department Head of my Division, Lt. Commander ‘Kennedy’.

Shitting bricks is too trite.

I was nervous.

I gave a hearty rap on the bulkhead door as I was trained to do in boot camp…

“Enter!”

“Petty Officer 3rd Class Marcom Sir!”

“I know who you are Lance; sit down.”

(What??? Lance??? Sit Down???)

Mouth agape I sat down, speechless

“Son, Master Chief Anderson tells me you went out on your own, designed, commissioned, smuggled off a prototype, and paid for, with your own money, those .50 Cal Gun Covers. Is this true?”

“Yes, uh, yessir,” I stammered.

“Well, that shows some fine initiative. How much did you pay Son?”

“Un Sir. Doesn’t matter…. I just, well, the .50 Cals, you know SIR,  cost ten-thousand dollars each, and I thought…rust….an…”

“How much did you pay?!”

“250 Dollars Sir.”

Without saying a word he opened a little three-lock-box (OK; I made that up. It was only a one-lock-box) that he had in a drawer, carefully opened it, and proceeded to hand me two-hundred and fifty bucks.

American

I sat there, dumb founded,  a moment too long, still in shock, looking at the bills in my hand…

“Petty Officer Marcom! “

“Huh…Uh, Huh… Sir?”

“You’re dismissed!”

Jumping up, knocking my chair over,  some tears welling in my eyes,

“Yessir!”

As I saluted him and abruptly left his quarters, quite in haste.

And thus I had survived yet another day in MY  Beloved Navy.

And Just As a Reminder Kids:

Don’t Rain on my Parade: I have enuff Rain for All

 

*And this just once more a rough draft, full of error, so be kind. Trust me: there is no harsher critic of me than me. I sweat commas. But do please, I do implore: COMMENT

Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

I am gonna repost this for two reasons:

One: because I missed Thursday

(Probably because I was in a coma)

Two: because I can.

And here is the bonus:

Because I miss Jimmy ‘Peanut’ Piland.

*****

“I dreamt a dream tonight.”

“And so did I.”

“Well, what was yours?”

“That dreamer’s often lie.”

“…In bed asleep while they do dream things true!”

“Oh! Then I see Queen Mab hath been with you!”

–R&J: Romeo and Mercutio,

Queen Mab:

Ya’ll gotta watch the video “or it all just falls apart” Just saying… (Yes! I feign Texan; it is my wont.)

After a night of hard blogging and writing of drafts, and becoming somewhat disillusioned and more than daft, I perished toward my bed, reaching out for the Arms of Morpheus.

Within moments, I slipped into that nether sleep, that sleep between sleeps, that semi-conscious state of affairs. Sleep, but Not Sleep.

Then I began to dream things that should have been true. But were not true, yet so true.

Wonderful words words words! Words to sate my unnourished prose.

Words swirl’d about in my mind like so many fireflies on a summer’s eve:

““Words, words, words!. Once, I had the gift. I could make love out of words as a potter makes cups of clay. Love that overthrows empires. Love that binds two hearts together, come hellfire & brimstone.”

— “Will Shakespeare in Love”

I had it (them, those) words… goin’ on. Brilliant words. Beautiful, poignant words! All right there! Right there In My Mind. I reached out my finger to tap the “Publish” Mouse.

My finger was frozen.

It would not move.

How hard I did try!

It would not comply!

I lay there in my nether sleep, commanding.

The hand, the one digit, just the finger! Demanding!

Just move the damn finger!

Would not.

Could not.

Then I realized:

I am with Dante now.

And Mercutio is Peanut.

And Peanut was my Mercutio

Yeah, Dante

Dante ‘R’ Us

Call Me Crazy, But I Have Just Experienced a Brief Epiphany

(And yes, I know. All epiphanies are brief)

We all have our ‘About’ Pages. Who really ever reads them? (I do)

Here is mine, in case you may have missed it.

(And No! This is not some vain fantasy; just a clarification)

Cheers Y’all.

****

By Way of Introduction (UPDATED 11 July) Bugs Bunny

Hail Yes and Merrily Met!

My name is Lance Marcom and These Pages will be my Home for the foreseeable future. All are welcome here–welcome to compliment, deride, disparage, commiserate, cajole, rant, rave, fawn, frown–In short, all comments will be appreciated.

Marcom_Dubai

This Virgin  De-flowered Slut Blog O’ Mine will contain Tall Tales, Short Tales, Middlin’ Tales, Major Tales, Minor Tales…

Tales of Amusement, Tales of Adventure, Tales of Larceny, Tales of Woes, Tales of Foes, Tales of Loves Won & Lost, Tales of Fortunes Achieved & Squandered, and much more as becomes my wont… 

Tales From Texas, The Middle East, The Far East, The Near East, The Southeast, The South Coast, The South Pacific,The Left Coast, The Old World, and Perhaps Even Oklahoma…

But most importantly, I wish this to be a place for my guests to enjoy, for:

“No profit grows where is no pleasure ta’en.”

(That’s Shakespeare, Y’all.)

*****

Just For Fun Y’all, I am going to throw a new video (or quote, or some other surprise nonsense) up here everyday. Why? You may ask. 

Because I think an ‘About Page’ should be ever-changing and dynamic, just as the Person it is purported to be “About” is ever-changing and dynamic.

Therefore, I upload some of my favorite stuff here. Daily (usually)

So…  here goes for 11 July: Albuquerque (I had the opportunity to live there, once.) For, you see, my mom took a wrong turn at Moriarty… hence: young lives changed. For some forever.

Hope you enjoy.

And please do not forget to listen to what was my mantra while cooling my heels in Amman Jordan in late ’07

Baghdad!

The Best of the Hitchslap

tex flag

 

Bullshit Legal Stuff:

I Suppose it is Time (alas):

All This Shit Is Copyrighted.
Please Respect that, for:

“Good name in man and woman, dear my lord, Is the immediate jewel of their souls: Who steals my purse steals trash; ’tis something, nothing; ’twas mine, ’tis his, and has been slave to thousands; But he that filches from me my good name Robs me of that which not enriches him, And makes me poor indeed.”
–Shakespeare

Thanks,
-The Management

More ‘Shonnie’ tomorrow. Story at eleven.

Night, Night.

Addendum:

Someone once posited the idea that good posts always challenge the reader with a question (“This invites discourse”)

I cannot disagree, but by the time I finish my posts. I am all ‘discoursed out’.

That said, ’tis good advice. So, here is my million-dollar question:

“How many of y’all ever go to the ‘about’ page ‘ere you ‘follow’? I know I do. And for just one important reason: Sometimes we are misled and by being misled, we tend to ‘say’ things that are offensive to the blogger. Therefore, I like to get a ‘feel’ if you will, of the person’s blog I am about to comment all over. I do not aim for controversy, but I seem to land there more often than not.

Point is… know your audience and never purposely offend.

Peace,

Lance

The Thane of Cawdor Sleeps No More

For all you Shakespeare fans….
This is worth your time investment.

Exile on Pain Street

He sleeps no more because his decapitated head was stuffed into a burlap sack and tossed into the middle of the stage.

I used to write about plays all the time but those posts laid there unread and unloved, so I stopped. Theater can make for a dull evening out and an even duller blog post. Just look at the plummeting ratings for the Tony awards every year. But I was telling a Texan about a highly unusual production of Macbeth I saw and he requested a post. So here it be.


Kenneth Branagh shipped his high-octane production of Macbeth across the pond from its sold-out run in Manchester. It’s not your typical trod across the boards. Rather, it’s a piece of performance art wrapped in violence and Shakespearean dialogue. Playing the role of the Castle Cawdor is the drill hall of the Park Avenue Armory, a castle-like structure on Park…

View original post 960 more words

“I dreamt a dream tonight” –Queen Mab, or What You Will, Will

“I dreamt a dream tonight.”

“And so did I.”

“Well, what was yours?”

“That dreamer’s often lie.”

“…In bed asleep while they do dream things true!”

“Oh! Then I see Queen Mab hath been with you!”

–R&J: Romeo and Mercutio,

Queen Mab:

Ya’ll gotta watch the video “or it all just falls apart” Just saying… (Yes! I feign Texan; it is my wont.)

After a night of hard blogging and writing of drafts, and becoming somewhat disillusioned and more than daft, I perished toward my bed, reaching out for the Arms of Morpheus.

Within moments, I slipped into that nether sleep, that sleep between sleeps, that semi-conscious state of affairs. Sleep, but Not Sleep.

Then I began to dream things that should have been true. But were not true, yet so true.

Wonderful words words words! Words to sate my unnourished prose.

Words swirl’d about in my mind like so many fireflies on a summer’s eve:

““Words, words, words!. Once, I had the gift. I could make love out of words as a potter makes cups of clay. Love that overthrows empires. Love that binds two hearts together, come hellfire & brimstone.”

— “Will Shakespeare in Love”

I had it (them, those) words… goin’ on. Brilliant words. Beautiful, poignant words! All right there! Right there In My Mind. I reached out my finger to tap the “Publish” Mouse.

My finger was frozen.

It would not move.

How hard I did try!

It would not comply!

I lay there in my nether sleep, commanding.

The hand, the one digit, just the finger! Demanding!

Just move the damn finger!

Would not.

Could not.

Then I realized:

I am with Dante now.

This is Just Too Good: Henry V

Not my painful, plainful verbiage,

but …

Derek

What a modern science actor!

(And a really swell guy)

“Lance, there you go again…”

“Sorry! On with the show!”

“Oh for a muse…of fire!”

****************

I love Shakespeare. I love words. I love the simple fact that the only good advice my father once gave to me were the words out of his mouth: “Son, words have meaning and their coinage, well spend them well…”

Now… I am not that too heady. In fact, I am simple. Yet I do still love the coinage of a good phrase. Indeed I do.

Therefore, I leave you this. As all good Bloggers do, I desire a Stage! My Kingdom for a Stage!

Read… and… well…stay tuned.

And Kenneth Branagh At his Best

(Uh Oh! King Harry is pissed off!)

And Even Better

(and here, find the subtle wrath: you don’t wanna be these guys)

And Even More Better: “Once More Unto The Breach!”

And You Gotta Love This Guy: “In Thunder and in Earthquake”

 In my opinion this is Branagh’s finest movie

Henry The Fifth

 

Look like the innocent flower, but be the serpent under’t

Lady Macbeth!

lady macbeth

Of all the Shakespeare Female Characters

Lady Macbeth is the most fascinating:

 

 

 

 

 

 

HOUSE OF CARDS

Modern Lady Macbeth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Claire Is brilliant!

Actually Not really.

I am partial to Viola,

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viola_(Twelfth_Night)

but that is a different post.

She just is.

Just kidding

 

 

 

 

What a Piece of Work

Scrambling to post…

(Don’t worry: I really don’t mean a word of it)

Yet:

Here are two of my ‘Favourite’ Things.

(Okay: Three, or Four, or even more)

“I have of late, though wherefore I know not, lost all my mirth.”

Must See (related here) Oui, C’est la vie

I just threw this in to see if y’all were paying attention

This concludes today’s history lesson.

And yes: these will be on the test.

Cheers,

Lance

And of course there is this:

Your Humble Servant: Capt. Von Trapp, circa, 1975

Your Humble Servant: Capt. Von Trapp, circa, 1975

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And This:

If there is a greater actor than Derek Jacobi, I’d like to meet him / her.