Category Air Force

Memento

I think it was called Fire Watch. I was in the U.S. Air Force, stationed at Ft. George G. Meade, an Army base in Maryland. Occasionally, we would be chosen for some duty that had nothing to do with what we were there for. I was tapped for Fire Watch in a former hospital, an […]

Coffee — Tell It Like It Is

When I was in the Air Force, I was stationed for a time at the National Security Agency. It was 1970, still part of the Sixties really, and so a great many people were enjoying marijuana and a great many others were trying to make them stop. Part of the latter campaign included articles like […]

Spared by a Barbarian

It was 1969. I had just finished language school in Monterey, California, and had been sent for Intelligence Training to Goodfellow Air Force Base in San Angelo, Texas. It was a six-week course, but we were a week late and had to wait five weeks for the next cycle. So we had five weeks of […]

Draft Dodger

August 31, 2004 I was a draft dodger. I know this because early in Air Force Basic Training, as my aptly named “flight” stood in formation, my T.I. boomed out, “You are all draft dodgers!” None of us cowards said a word in reply, so it must have been true. At the time, the summer […]

Harry’s Three Vacations

August 13, 2006 This is a story about Harry Cross, who I worked with at a civilian agency when I was in the Air Force. Harry went to the dentist every six months, had perfect teeth. He would flash a toothy smile when returning from his check-up and say, “Perfect.” But he also prided himself […]

DLIWC

In November of 1968, after six weeks of Air Force Basic Training, I was sent to the Defense Language Institute, West Coast branch, at the Presidio of Monterey. There I would study Serbo-Croatian.  DLIWC, a.k.a. “dilly-wick,” was a mystery to me, but I was so grateful to be leaving Basic, I gave no thought to […]

My Old New Glasses

November 5, 2005 I’ve never been able to throw them away, the wire-rim glasses I bought in San Angelo, Texas, in 1969. I could never look at them without a pang, a rush of fondness, a smile for an old friend. So they have followed me for 36 years, through a succession of dresser drawers […]