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3 Things..

I generally dislike memes, twitter, quiz results, and all the other shallow ephemera that constitute so much of lj - but in this case, the gauntlet has been thrown by joemorf, so I suppose I can indulge.

1. Post 3 things you've done in your lifetime that you don't think anybody else on your friends list has done.
2. See if anybody else responds with "I've done that."
3. Have your friends cut & paste this into their journal to see what unique things they've done in their life.

1. Fallen off of a mountain. On a night time patrol on Tomahawk Ridge, in Ft. Indiantown Gap, in PA, I fell about 30m down the face of a cliff. It was night and very dark, and a tree growing out of the side of the cliff fooled me into thinking there was stable ground. There wasn't. With a strangled yelp, I fell down. When I collected myself, radioed in and then climbed back up in a hurry, as I could feel that my leg was very wet with what I presumed to be blood, I discovered that I was entirely uninjured, not a scrape. I'd even managed to hang on to my rifle. There was a hole punched clean through my canteen, which had spilled down my leg. There was also a half inch dent in the radio on my back, about six inches below the base of my skull. The incident caused the spontaneous religious conversion of one of the soldiers in my squad, who quit drinking, found God and started going to church - cleaning up his act and becoming a good father to his children.

2. Completed a triathlon with a separated shoulder. (My shoulder was separated, not the triathlon's.) It was my first tri. Just a week before I'd been at a big, crazy, Beltane feast and tore the ligament connecting my right arm to my shoulder while diving over a firepit. I'd dove over the firepit many times in the past, but this time I had a cloved orange in my hand, and didn't want to let it go. By the next week, I'd been to the hospital and they'd told me it was just a sprain, so I'd be fine. So I gutted it out, swam a mile and a half, rode 50 miles and ran 9. By the time I got out of the water, my arm was useless, so I rode my bike one-armed. This is hard up hills, I assure you. My time was terrible, but I finished the damn thing. The next week my shoulder was still hurting so I was referred to an orthopedic specialist, who told me I'd separated my shoulder, and the hospital was dead wrong. The surgical remedy is crude and not likely to stay fixed, so I still have the separated shoulder, and if I stand up straight you can see the right one is lower than the left.

3. Had my girl stolen by Carey Elwes (and subsequently sworn to defeat him in a sword duel). I was dating a wonderful woman, and when she was hanging out with one of her rockstar friends, she met Mr. Elwes at some big fancy brunch. She sat next to him, and when she got back, enthused about what a huge crush she had on him, etc etc. This wasn't "I love Princess Bride, that was so exciting!" kind of talk (totally reasonable) but "I was so in love with him." kind of talk. Naturally I was a little unenthused with her - not leastwise because I have one of life's little negative associations with Princess Bride, but that's far too personal a story for this space. The very next day she broke up with me, and I understand she subsequently spent more time with Mr. Elwes. It has happened once or twice that a woman with whom I was quite enamored left me for someone who's company she preferred, but this was the first (and let us hope the last) time it was for a movie star, much less the Dread Pirate Roberts. I look forward to the day when I can have my satisfaction.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 27th, 2008 08:37 pm (UTC)
I wasn't expecting number three! I'll gladly and proudly be your second for that duel, if you'll have me.


Jun. 27th, 2008 08:43 pm (UTC)
One endeavors to satisfy. Besides, I wanted to restrict myself to only one Army story. Not everything interesting that happened to me was in the Army.
Jun. 27th, 2008 08:50 pm (UTC)
Thought of one of your stories the other day when I read an article that said "sarcasm" - both the ability to employ it and the ability to recognize it, is genetic, and a survival trait!

When in doubt, employ sarcasm, Sir!

Jun. 27th, 2008 08:51 pm (UTC)
It is the most formidable weapon in our arsenal!
Jun. 27th, 2008 09:38 pm (UTC)
I've completed a rugby game with a separated shoulder. I went on a tour of Britain with my college rugby team the year after I graduated. Since I was an alum and playing in 1st Division men's rugby at the time, I was considered something of a ringer - expected to be a leader to the younger players, front up as it were. Our first game was against some Uni team north of London, and it was freezing in April - snow was falling during the game. I was playing #8, and smashed into the opposing #8 (who was a thick lump, and asshole to boot), and felt all sorts of things popping in my shoulder as we hit the ground. We had all of a couple reserves on the tour, so I just played on. Had an outstanding game, actually.

My shoulder hurt so much, I had to miss the next game on the tour, in Edinburgh. Didn't stop me from getting plastered in the pubs that night. But two days later I was on the pitch again, playing against an English club team, and then again a day later, this time playing a lower division club in Cardiff. Three games in six days with a separated shoulder - a shoulder that has never really forgiven me for what I did to it.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )


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