Saturday, May 19, 2007

Just how ornery and crazy is this Scot?

One of my rare readers, earned from my time on the Left Coast, asked me what was going on so I'll share with others that might still drop by plus ask for your thoughts.

After recovering from the campaign I started looking for meaningful work. I started back posting and yet I've been limiting my blogging lately with the thought that I'd be unable to continue in my poverty and pursuit of the dollar.

I've previously bitched and moaned about NCLB and the burdens of the cement block classroom teacher. I love the kids and teaching/learning but so far not ready to go back to the trenches.

I've walked away from playing country lawyer, largely defending the indigent from "the man" and helping resolve which spouse gets the doublewide. I talked with one of my old Circuit Judges the other day and reflected with him on how he advised me way back in the day about how practicing in Randolph County was "drudgery". I was a good criminal defense lawyer and enjoyed the work but darned if most of those facing charges aren't poor. Fighting the many injustices in the system took a toll on this lefty. Since I went to a then non-ABA blessed law school (even a lower tier than Regent Law where Bu$hCo got so much of their "talent") I'm limited in some options as well.

Politics, especially that with a Progressive orientation, was the destination. Alternatively I'd work for a non-profit or some organization doing meaningful work. Thought about lobbying even, although I loathe how the Big Mules influence so much of politics. My work this fall seemed solid and I surely worked like two Trojans the whole time I was in California. I hoped doors would be opened. Even when I've knocked, and admittedly I'm not always as assertive on asking as I might should be, they've remained closed. And darned if the wages from the left are weak. As an aside, conservative groups seem willing to pay decent wages for even marginal talent yet the care and feeding of activists on the left is an area where I'm convinced we ought to do better.

Alternatively, I wanted to try Outside Sales and/or Training in a business setting. I could be out and about plus earn a good living that would hopefully allow me to support financially the causes I believed in. I thought my people skills and work ethic and life experiences would have me snapped up even if lacking time in the corporate world. I thought being a Road Warrior would allow me, at least on most weekends, to perhaps remain on the Ponderosa and near Baby Plaid, soon to be twelve plus standing five feet and well over a hundred pounds.

So I bet on myself yet the house is now calling the wager. I'm working on small building projects and doing periodic work to keep my bread buttered. I'm resigned to the fact I'll need to seek my fortunes away from the Tin Shop in rural East Alabama. Lord if I'm not sick of Career Builder and Monster plus the whole process of chasing meaningful or even tolerable work. Still, finding even entry level positions in the big city, such as Auburn/Lee County seems to me, is a hard row to hoe. What just living takes for a single person requires more than even a so called living wage. While I'm a tasty blend of Capitalist and Socialist the reality seems to be the economy today is working for the few. I might resist Bourgeoisie life more than I should but I do think often that the markets grind up not just the Serfs but plenty of the middle class as well. Aristotle claimed all paid jobs absorb and degrade the mind. Guess we can't all be philosophers and even so he'd perhaps have a hard time getting booked and published by the corporate media masters that control so much today.

While I've got a few things still in the pipeline, I have been talking with an Army recruiter. I took the ASVAB and made an 88, although some math I've not used since over twenty years ago took a toll. My line scores are high enough to qualify me for any MOS (job) yet still doing the physical process. For folks over 40 Uncle Sam puts you on the rack and checks you out thoroughly. Some high frequency hearing loss in my left ear that they can waive but so far things look good. Physically I'm hardly the fastest runner yet I'm country strong so figure I could handle, even if a touch more seasoned that most, the joys of boot camp. My old knees might snap and pop but think they'll still work.

I'm looking hard at Public Affairs (journalism of sorts) but would consider pretty much anything except for tanks (can't be hemmed up!) should that not work out. While I enjoy tech and the like I prefer to be out and about enough to not seek that sort of MOS. The training might be enjoyable and profitable however. I could go in as an E-4 (Specialist) and the opportunities for rapid advancement are allegedly there. There is a $6ooo bonus for my education and certain MOS selections get enlistment incentives as well.

While I'm no gun nut I have grown up with weapons and my Scottish blood would likely help me be a decent grunt. Those that read and know me surely know that Bu$hCo's invasion of Iraq has been something I've long been against. I suppose there's some irony in this loathed administration opening the door for an old dog like me. Surely once Commander Codpiece is back in Crawford things will be better and yet he and his will leave our military bent and battered, from mission to morale to mechanics to ... Being part of rebuilding after the Conservatives ruin things is what good lefty types do isn't it?

I worry some about the lowered standards, such as those that allow a graybeard like me in, would perhaps allow some rough customers in that I'd have to work with yet figure Uncle Sam would cull them soon enough. I also have concerns about the gung ho types. I'm likely a reluctant warrior yet know there's a time to kill, or at least be willing to kill. Evangelicals and conservatives will be in the military as well yet I can't imagine it being as bad as I'm used to in my locale.

I am attracted to the service component of the military. I do love our nation, even if so very flawed. I'm a citizen of the world of course yet think patriotism is usually a worthy virtue.

Hardly a simple man, the satisfaction of doing meaningful work goes a long way in making me content. My recruiter and some of the others in the office were a touch tickled when I asked about post libraries. I'd be an oddity indeed around the base.

I worry about being severely disabled more than being killed yet as a father I suppose checking out is a concern. If KIA I could provide $400,000 in insurance for the boy. Being deployed and away from Baby Plaid would be tough and yet with modern tech it might be a little better than back in the day. Given his age if I went in for only four years he'd be driving when I got out. Since his mother can be a heifer at times this option might work out just fine. I've done a good job for the most part with the boy and the foundation is there. Ideally I'd have him nearby as would be ideal yet choices were made that has not allowed this to be as I'd have wished. Some educational benefits would help him as well. There are other things to boot like decent health care and my getting at least thirty days vacation.

Not sure I'd want to do a full twenty years or even a short term. But I'm looking. Partly I started this out of frustration and yet the more I ponder the more I'm intrigued.

While I'm doing this post as partly an update with an explanation of why I'm not posting much of anything I also would appreciate feedback or other suggestions. Maybe there's some therapy as well? One additional thing that bothers me is the military seems to frown on blogging. I surely know the security concerns are legit and yet posting allows this fella a chance to process thoughts that are as meaningful as anything I've ever done. So what do y'all think? Peace ... or War!

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