Assuming I can figure this out properly, I am archiving this site in preparation to start over from scratch.

I initially set this site up under Drupal 4.6 back in March of 2005. After not quite 5 years of experimentation, guesswork, not reading the instructions, and not staying current on updates (I'm not even certain which version is running at the moment, 6.something), I figure it's time to start clean, either with the current version of Drupal (likely) or WordPress or something (also possible).

The content here will (if this works right) end up on, and the new site will appear at this URL.


Don't call me "Sir."

In which Sig attempts to explain why this bugs him so very much.

Review: The Death of a Car

In which Sig reviews the entire process from "crunch" to "cry" to "total" to "Craigslist" to "vroom."

Raise a glass.

I'm not a civil rights icon. I'm not a president (live or dead). I'm not (yet) a dead serviceman, nor am I much concerned with Labor. I did not "discover" North America. I'm not a Christmas tree, a groundhog, a secretary, a boss, a pumpkin, an Easter bunny, a cupid, a leprechaun, or a turkey.

Nonetheless, I get my very own holiday. Veteran's Day is all about me--me and the millions and millions who signed on the dotted line before me, signed it along with me, and will be signing it when I'm dust.

So raise a glass, if you will (and metaphorically if you must), to Rodger Young, Roy Benavidez, Audie Murphy, Gary Shughart and Randy Gordon. Raise a glass to Jared Monti, Michael Murphy, Jason Dunham, Ross McGinnis, Michael Monsoor, and Paul Smith.

But keep it raised for Ray Joseph and Big Edge and all of the other guys you didn't read about or see on the big screen.

And then keep it raised for every joe who has arthritis before his time, nightmares he doesn't remember, scars that won't heal, kids who don't know him, and missing limbs and comrades.

Keep it raised for every joe that has ever fixed a truck under fire, every admin puke that stayed late to make sure the dependents were taken care of, and every chaplain that shouldered another man's load.

Keep it raised for every gate guard, school teacher, bus driver, lawyer, computer nerd, mechanic, short order cook, and garbage man that ever wore a different uniform.

Your arm may be getting tired by this point. It should be.


(If a raging bender at 0800 is not your style, there are some other appropriate ways you could be channeling your appreciation.)

[Addendum: And if you're Peter Jemley or Ron Arlt, today would be a great day to keep your mouth shut.]


Not that it will really make a huge difference here, since I've been posting so little anyway, but we're turning off our home Internet connection effective tomorrow. The rates went up just as we were contemplating shutting it down to save money prior to closing on our first home in a few months. I still have access at work, of course, but I don't have much time or inclination to do personal webwandering while I'm at work.

I haven't decided what I'm going to do with my web site here, which has been running some flavor of Drupal (starting with v4.7) since March of 2005. I am looking into some method to archive it in a static manner such that I don't need to pay the (very small) extra premium for an SQL process. I may go to a more conventional (or at least, more minimal) journaling system in the future, since Drupal is and always has been rather overkill for my needs. But for now, I don't have time or inclination to write about much beyond the demands of my job. I still do a fair bit of reading online, however, and I share a fair bit of the things I find interesting, occasionally with commentary.

Prior to Afghanistan in 2006, the idea of voluntarily going without Intarweb access would be completely foreign to me. But having been disconnected involuntarily for weeks at a time, I find that I really don't have that much problem with it. There are plenty of other things to do with my time, after all. Of course, it helps that (as in Afghanistan), I know it's a temporary state. We'll probably hook up again when we get into our new place in February or March--so I can play Left 4 Dead 2, if nothing else.


Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

Watada Discharged:

The Army discharged Lt. Ehren Watada on Friday, writing the final chapter on the case of the most prominent military officer to refuse a deployment to Iraq.

Fort Lewis spokesman Joseph Piek confirmed that Watada, who had refused to deploy to Iraq in 2006 with his Stryker brigade because he believed the war was illegal, finished outprocessing shortly before noon Friday.

The Department of Justice dropped an appeal in May against a judge's dismiss key charges against the lieutenant, effectively leading to Friday's dismissal. Watada submitted a resignation request "for the good of the service in lieu of general court martial" at the end of June, Piek said.

The Department of the Army approved that request in September, and the remaining pending charges against Watada were dismissed late last week.

Piek couldn't confirm the type of discharge, citing privacy laws, but Watada lawyer Kenneth Kagan said it was granted under "other than honorable conditions."

Why aren't we allowed to call it a "dishonorable" discharge any longer?

I expect to spend a chunk of my allowance on good whiskey when we finally get rid of one of our other problem children.


An odd bit of trivia.

My custom 404-not-found page has 20,100 hits as of about 10 seconds ago. That is all.

Oops, up to 20,104.


This is what I get for making plans.

As if to mock my Bataan ambitions, I tweaked my back again on Thursday morning.

What did I do?

The proximate cause of the latest back-tweaking was, believe it or not, a sneezing fit. But in the grand scheme of things, the answer is "went to Afghanistan." I can go to my journal and identify the exact date that I first experienced back problems over there, and the intermittent problems since are all--I am convinced--encore performances.

I do just fine as long as I don't sit down for more than a few minutes. I can stand or kneel indefinitely. Actually, even sitting is just fine--until I try to get up. Getting out of the low-slung '88 Toyota MR2 after a half hour drive to work is... unpleasant.

It will go away in a few days as long as I don't do anything too stupid. Or sneeze again. In the long term, I should probably consider options that don't involve TriCare, since I have never been able to get anything more than vitamin M (i.e. Motrin) from the military medical establishment.


Because "Bataan Happy Fun Kittens and Rainbows March" doesn't flow off the tongue.

I've been thinking about it more since I've been going through photos from Afghanistan in 2006 and planning for some of my soldiers to come back from their current tour there. I'm fortunate to have been able to go the places I've been and see the places I've seen and shoot at the assclowns at whom I got to shoot; not many get those opportunities even once, let alone get paid to have them. I should be grateful that I got to go at all, not annoyed that other people are having fun without me. I should be glad to be here and enjoy my family and my friends and my nation. And I should remember, too, how much I wanted to be back here when I was over there and all of the stuff that I wanted to do then but couldn't. And I should do some of it.

Your tax dollars at work

In which Sig spends a lot of your money to stay in a really swanky place and web surf and play video games, which he could have done at home.

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