A Departing Sting with the Venom Meant to Do Lasting Harm - Page One

[ This entry originated here » Cooking with Plutonium - Page Two (19 March 2018). ]

» I Would be Lyin' If

You know .. this thing here, where Jeff Sessions fires Andrew McCabe just a few days before his retirement date ..

AG Jeff Sessions fires Andrew McCabe

.. I would be lyin' if I said that this didnt make me think about the time when the captain kicked me off the boat ..

Nuclear-powered submarine underway surfaced

.. a few months before I was getting out of the Navy. [ Which is called EAOS. ] After a 6-year enlistment.

<ignore this intentional body-text marker>

••• today's entry continues here below •••

Today, with the advantage of perspective that comes with the passing of the years .. I can now look back and see what a blessing-in-disguise this thing was.

» Blessing in Disguise

[ Because this was the easiest job I ever had .. where I worked directly for the Squadron Masterchief.

Such slim hours I worked .. while the rest of the boat was taking it up the ass in a big way .. putting in such enormous hours.

They always seemed on edge whenever I saw them .. which wasnt very often. Weekends, mostly.

(Toni knows what I am talking about.) And yes, I was flexing at the gym there most every day .. getting in the shape of my life.

» Coolest Base in the Whole Navy

That base won the award for a few years straight as the coolest base in the whole Navy. The Admiral Zumwalt award.

It was set in a wooded setting. It was gorgeous and everything was new. Very modern living in a wooded setting.

This was deep into Washington state .. God's country as they call it there. The base was located maybe 5 miles from Puget Sound itself, where the boat was moored. We took a bus there. Ten minutes.

They were very strict there about environmental controls. They didnt want any submarine shit leaking into the water there. It was really gorgeous country there.

(I came there from spending two years in Hawaii. Home-ported at Pearl Harbor. Though we flew to Guam and picked up the boat there .. every six months or so.)

Or perhaps it is just that I was feeling so chill .. from such an unstressful job, with such slim hours. They even gave me a truck .. to haul around some worker-dudes.

» Snowblinded on an Easter Sunday Ski Trip

One time we had a day off, which we rarely got, and it was Easter Sunday and one of the guys said, "Let's go skiing." He had a van.

So we all crammed into the back of his van and drove there. It was so much fun to get away like that. It does wonders for your mental health.

It was such a spur-of-the-moment thing. It was almost like Beeker was thinking out loud, and then somebody said, "That's a great idea .. let's do it. Let's go right the fuck now."

Some of the guys had been up all night on watch. Skiing trumps sleep when you are 24 years old. Easily trumps.

That was only time I ever got snowblinded. I wasnt actually blind, but everything colored white started to acquire a beautiful ultra-violet glow around it.

It was trippy. The bright sunshine reflects off the snow and fries your retina over the course of the day. Or something like that.

And we got there early. Because we left like 7AM. That was near the end of the day when the snowblind thing started. Super-bright sunny day.

My eyes felt like somebody had rubbed them with sandpaper.

» Tequila and Skiing Do Not Mix Well

I thought I was a badass and went skiing after having a shot of tequila. This was a bad idea. Skiing and tequila do not mix, I learned (the hard way). I am kind of lightweight with liquor.

There was a trail of my shit spewed halfway down the hill. Skis and poles and a hat and a glove and whatnot.

A little kid came down behind me and picked up all my stuff. He would ski down a little farther and pick up the next item.

When he finally got to me, he said, "Are you okay, mister?" It was by far my most spectacular wipe-out.

I only had one shot .. with salt and a wedge of lime, of course. Salute.

Life on a submarine is not a natural life. Most everything is artificial. But they are huge inside. 150 guys. Some very sharp cookies.

» Time to Move On to Bigger and Better Things

But something inside of me was already moving on to the next thing. I could feel it and it felt good. It felt real good.

Tho there were certainly a number of challenges that I had to deal with. But everything seemed to work out beautifully .. in the end.

You can feel something stirring inside when a major life-change is imminent.

If you are ready for it, and if you have done your homework, and you have put in the time necessary to hone your craft .. then this can be a super-cool time.

Nuclear power has high standards. They dont just let any ol' schmuck operate their reactors. No, sir.

» The Transition from Military to Civilian Life is Disorienting

I found it difficult to deal with the transition from military to civilian life. Surprisingly difficult.

It is very disorienting. You feel like you are suddenly living in a different world. (Because you are.)

Thank God for boys from the Bronx .. when he called from Ft Lauderdale in the dead of winter and said, "Come on down .. you'll love it here. It's very relaxed .. just what you need."

That helped with my sanity immeasurably.

After the captain kicked me off the boat near the very end of my 6-year enlistment .. I could feel myself planning and adapting and preparing for the next thing.

Even though I didnt know what that would be.

Sometimes when I get started on a certain tangent .. it can be hard to stop.

I should probably lift out this section on my blessing-in-disguise and transfer it to its own page.

It's funny how one sentence can lead so easily to the next. I surprise myself sometimes. ]

But back then, I did not know this. I did not know how things were going to play out. It is much different before you know how things actually turn out.

» Stand the Fuck By

I remember being back in the engine room, standing right outside Maneuvering, when they told me, "There is a meeting going on right now in the captain's stateroom .. to decide what to do with you. So just stand the fuck by."

If the Commodore didnt feel that my argument trumped the Captain's .. then my career would have been much different. Sometimes little things can make a big difference.

I bet that Meek Mill would agree with me here.

Meek Mill: Do You Understand These Rights as I've Read Them to You? | NYTimes (26 Nov 2018)

So I naturally feel this strange sense of simpatico with Andrew McCabe .. someone about whom I know almost nothing. Doesnt that seem like such a ______ thing? (Uh, I'm not even sure what word to use there.)

For a number of reasons, I find it easy to imagine myself into his shoes. I wonder what he is feeling right now.

» Fired by a New Guy Who is Assuming an Authoritarian Position

I should probably mention here that the captain was new to the boat .. new to the position. He was the third captain that I have had on this nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine.

[ And if someone were to shoot me up with a dose of truth serum, and compel me to rate these three captains ..

.. based on the position that comes with plenty of firsthand experience that I had with each of them.

Then I would probably have to say that it went from » impressive to » disappointing to » "Oh, fuck me."

I am just saying that I am able to compare and contrast .. based on plenty of firsthand experience. ]

This is an admittedly big position. (I would not want that position, thank-you very much.)

I am 24 years old at this point. So my dick is hard all the time. Let's be honest.

I had been assigned to this submarine for 4 years .. after 2 years of schooling & training.

I know what I am doing .. to a highly nuanced degree.

See .. here is where I would get into the notion of technical vs personal-ego operations .. in a sophisticated environment. But I'm too smart for that.

But Meagan can help get you started in the right direction.

» The Sense of Insecurity that Comes from Operating at the Ugly End of the Learning Curve

And as any professional knows .. anytime you are new to a position .. you start out on the ugly end of the learning curve.

This is where the most secure among us feel less secure .. because we are trying to figure out how to function effectively in this particular environment.

It is a humbling thing, sometimes, adapting to a new environment. It takes some practice. But after a few times, you start to learn some tricks.

Maureen knows exactly what I am talking about when she writes:

It's even more unsettling covering two Republican presidents who fit this description: George W. Bush and Donald Trump.

I watched in alarm as W., who had promised a "humble" foreign policy with no nation-building and who had been a bipartisan, genial Texas governor, shape-shifted into a hyperaggressive and belligerently unilateral president. His ego and inadequacies were expertly manipulated by his regents, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, bureaucratic samurai with their own rapacious agendas.

Vice trailer (3 Oct 2018)

So you naturally expect the people around you to help keep you out of trouble until you start to figure out how this particular organization works.

I feel here that I am merely stating the obvious .. that different organizations work differently. Professional strategy 101.

» Sometimes, When It Seemed Like Bad Shit was Happening...

I have noticed in my own life that there have been times when it seemed like bad shit was happening to me .. only to see later, with the passage of time, that this was actually a good thing.

» A Departing Sting with the Venom Intended to Do Lasting Harm

There is an element of nastiness associated with firing someone right before the end of a lengthy career, no?

You can almost feel the nastiness intended in such a thing. Can't you? It carries a personal attack. It is a personal thing.

I bet that Rod Rosenstein knows exactly what I am talking about. (Is it just me .. or does not Jim Jordan look downright evil here? Like he is possessed with some kind of demonic thing. Maybe it's just the lighting.)

Rod Rosenstein responds to attacks from Jim Jordan (28 June 2018)

A departing sting that contains the venom intended to do lasting harm.

Trump says FBI is a cancer (19 Sept 2018)

The thing about such a sting is that » you dont forget them.

Peter Strzok testifies before House judiciary 12 July 2018

» Friends Who Step Forward to Stand with You When You are Under Attack

And neither do your friends.

Adm McRaven's message to Trump in support of John Brennan (at t=5:00)

Make a note of it.

Former top Intel leaders rebuke Trump over revoking John Brennan's security clearance

You'll see what I mean.

» The Value of Real-Time Documentation

As all of this historically-documented drama plays out on the world stage .. here at the beginning of a new millenium .. one of the ways that I feel myself resonating with these FBI guys ..

.. is in the area of the importance of real-time documentation.

Here I could go into mind-numbing detail. I will spare you. Except to mention how I can see into their value structure. A certain part of that value structure.

This is the end of this page. ■

This theme continues here » Page Two (19 March 2018).

Return to » Cooking with Plutonium - Page Two (19 March 2018).

Analyze this page's HTML profile » here.

Movable Type archives

Radified home

<ignore this intentional bottom text spacer, too>

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Rad published on March 19, 2018 3:19 PM.

Cooking with Plutonium - Page Two was the previous entry in this blog.

A Departing Sting with the Venom Meant to Do Lasting Harm - Page Two is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.