Saturday, June 09, 2012

Shameless Video Pluggery

A few weeks ago I taped an interview about my book, At the Speed of Foot, for The Veterans Hour", a production of my VFP Chapter here in Olympia.  The interview is a mix of Appalachian Trail and Vietnam experiences with discussion and plugs for the veterans benefit counseling that program host Dennis Mills and I provide at Coffee Strong.

It's about an hour long.  Watch what you will.

Not only does Dennis interview guests well, he also does post production editing for final release.

Dennis is the other counselor with me at Coffee Strong.  Actually it's me with him since I alternate Fridays; Dennis goes every week.  Today we learned that he passed the exam to be certified by the VA.  Now we are both certified.

Update:  I cannot  figure out how to resize the video to not overlap my blogroll.  If you want to watch without seeing links bleeding through the image, you can find the video here.

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Friday, June 08, 2012

Vietnam 1932

 A bridge on Yunnan-northern Vietnam railway.

Via Bad Attitudes I came across VietnamNetBridge and found this collection of Vietnam photos from 1932.

The world as it was.

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Thursday, June 07, 2012


New cassette, chain, cleaned derailleur and neatly done weld with primer.  Done by Tuesday afternoon.  I rode home the long way when I picked up the bike yesterday. Gears shifted more smoothly than before and it felt solid again.

Fine job by The Bike Stand in Olympia.

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Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Thin Line Twixt Reality and Fiction

After reading the piece about Condoleeza Rice in Bad Attitudes, I kept thinking that I'd heard this line in her her endorsement of Mitt Romney before. 
“The only thing that people [in other countries] dislike more than unilateral American leadership is no American leadership at all.”
And then I remembered.  It was in Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket when the Marine colonel in tells Joker, 
"We are here to help the Vietnamese, because inside every gook there is an American trying to get out."

Same-same thinking.  Same-same results.

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Sunday, June 03, 2012

Busted! Update

Found out that the "not solid feel" to my bike is a cracked frame.  The shop tells me it can be welded so that is in the works along with a new chain and cassette.  Should be back on the road by week's end.


The Judgment of Henry

Henry Kissinger cautions against military intervention in Syria.  He makes a good argument, placing it all in a strategic and context.  He is clear about what is to be feared--"blank spaces denoting lawlessness" coming to dominate the map--but Kissinger looks beyond the immediate and thinks long-term.  "Not every strategic interest rises to a cause for war; were it otherwise, no room would be left for diplomacy," he writes.  He concludes with the hard-to-argue-with statement, "A sense of nuance is needed to give perspective to the proclamation of absolutes."

 All this makes perfect sense to me.  But agreeing with the architect of the extended American War in Vietnam seems so wrong.