OCS: On Civilian Streets

They had scheduled three days to demobilize at the state after they sent us home from Fort Sill. It really should have taken less than a full day. The first day we arrived, waited around for the civilian and Guard employees who didn't want to show up--"No, the Army was not called off on account of snow"--and then sat through mini-repeats of all of the briefings we'd already endured.

It was, of course, suggested that I talk to a counselor of some kind. Again. The VA rep referred to my combat action badge as a "30% badge," being prima facie evidence that I endured combat stress. Yada yada. His tie tack was a golden set of jump wings with a star, so I was polite and attentive.

That took about 20 minutes, honestly, to go around the different tables and pick up the literature available. Then we sat around for 3 hours until the finance guys arrived to help us fill out our travel voucher.

The travel voucher form is virtually incomprehensible and way more complicated than it needs to be. We are trying to get compensated for what was basically a 15 month TDY. The finance dudes were useless; we ended up kind of muddling through it all and hoping that it made sense to someone. Complicating mine were the three TDYs I took during mobilization--all of which had to be documented and some of which I'd already been paid for. Messy. I hope that they go through the first time, though, since I'm not entirely certain how we're paying rent and eating for the month of February. We were released around 1700 or so, four hours after we started.

On Wednesday, we were to show up around 1000, sit through an award ceremony at 1100, and be released by 1230--no other tasks to accomplish. The award ceremony was only because the 1-star general insisted, and we try to accomodate those.

What actually happened is that we showed up early to help set up, sat around waiting for a while, and eventually discovered that B Co was the only company who actually brought and prepared the awards for presentation. So ceremony cancelled. THEN we were waiting around for the rest of the battalion to finish their mandatory online training before we could be released--again, B Co did it all a week ago when we were first told to.

Finally, word came down: we're done, go home. After sitting around for 4 hours, we had a small company formation, a very brief "Good war, everybody, let's do it again next year" speech, and were dismissed. </war>

So now I'm sitting in my living room. I slept in (!) until 0900, made coffee, and now we're watching what is in retrospect a hilariously awful cartoon--"Oh no, it's Tiamat again!" I spent a few hours unenthusiastically looking for work online last night, but there is very little out there that sounds like much fun for me. I don't want to go back to computer work, particularly, and there isn't much for people who are experienced and skilled at hunting down bad guys and killing them.

Time will tell. There are options out there, and I'm reasonably healthy and mostly sane.

In the meantime, I will be spending quality time with Mrs. Sig and my stupid dog. Also, Drupal 5.0 final is out, so I will have to upgrade. This means a new theme because I can never upgrade the old one properly. I don't know what I'm doing, but Drupal makes it possible.



Welcome Home

You guys can eat at our house in February.


You're always welcome to join us for the eating. Of course, with the price of gas, you could buy groceries... um, nevermind.

Sig Rent Party

...well, if the voucher doesn't go through, you can have a Detroit-style rent party to raise the funds.

Have you considered writing a book? You write so incredibly well, and the American public is desperate for literate and, yes, even humorous insights into the war.

I don't get where all these suggestions that you "talk to someone" come from. You sound incredibly lucid and in perspective when you write. Are you sure you're not just screwing with these people's minds for recreation?

You had ruminated about staying in the Guard in some capacity....has that fallen by the wayside? I'd have to believe the Army needs techie guys like you, who can also man a 50 cal. Just a hunch. If not, how about the Marines? I might be able to get you a good gig with them...the Captain is an intel guy. :)

OK, I'll stop with all the questions...it's an occupational hazard.