Message Forum


 
go to bottom 
  Post Response
  
    Prior Page
 Page  
Next Page      

12/28/18 11:47 PM #4517    

 

Joseph D. McCarthy

Happy New Year to one and all.

And may the new year allow you to be one year older.

 


12/29/18 12:26 PM #4518    

 

David Mitchell

Joe,

Of course I would never have made it this far wthout your kind and generous advice.

 

And, as there was no dashed black line between a green country and a blue country (as our 6th grade geography books had led me to believe), but only hundreds of square miles of un-interrupted elephant grass, we managed to spend just about all the time in Cambodia that one could ask for - by accident - thank you very much.

Many times an "engagement" would draw us up to, and across the border before we realized it, and we would have to break off contact and turn around. This was long before Dandy Dick made it official. 

Where I should have spent more time was Hong Kong and Sidney, but I had to "bum" a ride with some other type of pilots to get there. Those "fixed-wing" guys actually knew how to read a compass. 

Both were frightening experiences! Twice in Hong Kong, I had to stay in "western" style hotels with a private bathroom and hot (running) water, go to Ameican movies, shop in enticing stores (including the "China Fleet Store" - where I bought a wedding diamond), found a taylor who made gorgoeous suits for about $24.00, and eat out every night at a really good restaurant.

Sydney was even worse! The first night I had to go to a USO sponsored "pig party", where I met a girl so cute I spent that night and the last three nights with, wrote to, and almost went back for. All sandwiched around three days down at Threadbow (in July), snow skiing through the "gum gum" trees, and being wined and dined buy an older Aussie couple who loved American soldiers. I tell ya, it was simply awful!  Almost more than one man could endure. I did it all for my country doncha know? 

 

Threadbow Resort - in the "Snowy Range" of Australia - July 1969     (yes, out of focus)


12/30/18 04:50 PM #4519    

 

James Hamilton, M. D.

As 2018 draws to a close I thought I would take a quick look at what has been discussed on this Forum in the past year. This post is the 2081st one since 1 January 2018.

We have addressed many topics and issues: music, poetry, theater, movies, politics, religion, sports, Woody, algebra, neighborhoods, ravines, wars, life in the military, fires, floods, hurricanes, surgeries, illnesses, liver flukes, deaths, moms, dads, marijuana, travels, adventures, writing, Appalachia, grade schools, humor and, of course, fawns. Wow, and actually, that is just to name a few.

It is my belief that we have barely scratched the surface of what our lives have encountered and what our thoughts, philosophies and feelings have been both before and after graduation from BWHS back in '66.

I look forward to what will be revealed on the Forum in 2019. I doubt there are many classes that have bonded like ours, after a half-century, in this type of format and we are so fortunate to live in an era where we can communicate in this way.

To all of you and all of yours I wish a very Happy New Year and best wishes for 2019!

Jim

 


12/31/18 12:12 AM #4520    

 

David Mitchell

Jim,

You forgot the casting ponds. 


12/31/18 01:28 PM #4521    

 

Mark Schweickart

Jim mentioned "writing" as one of our post topics, and with that in mind, let me offer this nugget. As you may recall, one of the hobby-horses I like to climb aboard each year is the NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) challenge to knock out a rough draft of a novel in the month of November. I am happy to say that I was able to do that again this year, continuing the story I had written last year, which I was happy with, but felt it was rather short for a novel. I have used December to polish things a bit. So here I am, ready to ask if any of you would like to immerse yourself in a historical novel (made up of this year's and last year's effort) that follows my heroine, Verna, a 19 year old white girl from Ohio, as she makes her way to Detroit during WWII  to work in the defense plant industry, only to get caught up in the infamous (actually, it is not at all famous, that is why I chose to write about it) race riot of 1943. Then flash forward to follow her as a 37 year old single-mother of a slightly autistic child, who finds herself compelled to put her life on hold, and journey through the South with the Freedom Riders of 1961 (another only-vaguely-known portion fo the Civil Rights struggle). 

If that sounds at all interesting, I'd be happy to send you a PDF. I could certainly use some feedback. What are friends for if not to be targets for one to impose upon? Actually, I would hope it not an imposition, but rather an entertainment that takes one into the fictional world of my main character, while also providing a good deal of little known (and I would hope, quite interesting) historical detail.

If you are wondering about the length, it is still rather short as novels go, coming in at 231 pages. If interested, send me a note at my email address: sparto@ca.rr.com

As I type this, I can just hear your reaction –- "Good grief, it is hard enough getting through this guy's posts. Can you imagine 231 pages. Yikes!"

P.S.  Happy New Year, one and all.


01/01/19 12:18 AM #4522    

 

David Mitchell

 

"We'll take a cup o' kindness yet for days of Auld Lange Syne"

Thanks to Robert Burns and his buddy, Guy Lombardo



Author: Robert Burns 1788

Should Auld Acquaintance be forgot
and never brought to mind
Should Auld Acquaintance be forgot
and days of Auld Lang Syne

For Auld Lang Syne my dear
For Auld Lang Syne
We'll take a cup of kindness yet
for days of Auld Lang Syne

We two have run about the braes
and pu'd the gowned fine
but we've wandered a many weary fit
since days of Auld Lang Syne

We two have piddl'd in the burn
frae morning' sun 'til dine
but seas between us brae her roared
since days of Auld Lang Syne

For Auld Lang Syne my dear
For Auld Lang Syne
We'll take a cup of kindness yet
for days of Auld Lang Syne

And surely you'll be yer pint Stowp
And surely I'll be mine
And We'll take a cup of kindness yet
for days of Auld Lang Syne

And there's a hand my trusty fiere
and gives a hand o' thine
And we'll take right gude willie waught
for Auld Lang Syne

For Auld Lang Syne my dear
For Auld Lang Syne
We'll take a cup of kindness yet
for days of Auld Lang Syne

 


01/01/19 12:11 PM #4523    

 

Mark Schweickart

For those of us a bit rusty with our Scottish, here's a little cheat sheet. Literally Auld Lange Syne means Old Long Since, but that doesn't communicate a meaning that is very helpful, so here's a translation from the internet.

Good old times

Versions: #1#2#3
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and good old times?
 
[Chorus:]
For old times since, my dear,
for good old times,
we'll drink a cup of kindness yet,
for good old times.
 
And surely you’ll have your pint cup!
and surely I’ll have mine!
And we'll drink a cup o’ kindness yet,
for good old times.
 
(Chorus)
 
We two have run about the slopes,
and picked the daisies fine;
But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
since good old times.
 
(Chorus)
 
We two have paddled in the stream,
from morning sun till dine;
But seas between us broad have roared
since good old times.
 
(Chorus)
 
And there’s a hand my trusty friend!
And give us a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
for good old times.
https://lyricstranslate.com/en/auld-lang-syne-good-old-times.html-0
 
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and good old times?
 
[Chorus:]
For old times since, my dear,
for good old times,
we'll drink a cup of kindness yet,
for good old times.
 
And surely you’ll have your pint cup!
and surely I’ll have mine!
And we'll drink a cup o’ kindness yet,
for good old times.
 
(Chorus)
 
We two have run about the slopes,
and picked the daisies fine;
But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
since good old times.
 
(Chorus)
 
We two have paddled in the stream,
from morning sun till dine;
But seas between us broad have roared
since good old times.
 
(Chorus)
 
And there’s a hand my trusty friend!
And give us a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
for good old times

01/01/19 02:46 PM #4524    

 

David Mitchell

Thanks for adding that Mark. The song has quite an interesting history. 

Actualy, I don't think Sir Robert Burns actually "authored" the song. He claimed he copied it down after hearing an old Scottsman sing it for him in 1788. But it seems to have been an old folk song of that culture for some time before Burns copied it down and took it to his publisher - with the promise that the odd mixture of "Scotts" words and English words would not be changed to all English.

And there are other songs and poems from early days that use the same phrase - Auld Lang Syne

This is a pure "Scotts" version

Shid ald akwentans bee firgot, 
an nivir brocht ti mynd? 
Shid ald akwentans bee firgot, 
an ald lang syn*?

CHORUS:
Fir ald lang syn, ma jo, 
fir ald lang syn, 
wil tak a cup o kyndnes yet, 
fir ald lang syn.

An sheerly yil bee yur pynt-staup! 
an sheerly al bee myn! 
An will tak a cup o kyndnes yet, 
fir ald lang syn.

CHORUS

We twa hay rin aboot the braes, 
an pood the gowans fyn; 
But weev wandert monae a weery fet, 
sin ald lang syn.

CHORUS

We twa hay pedilt in the burn, 
fray mornin sun til dyn; 
But seas between us bred hay roard 
sin ald lang syn.

CHORUS

An thers a han, my trustee feer! 
an gees a han o thyn! 
And we'll tak a richt gude-willie-waucht
fir ald lang syn.

 

And then there's this;

Happy New Year! Initially, "Aegukga" was sung to the tune of the Scottish folk song "Auld Lang Syne", introduced to Korea by Western missionaries. The Provisional Korean Government (1919–1945) in Shanghai, China adopted it as their (Korean) national anthem. At a ceremony celebrating the founding of South Korea on 15 August 1948, the Scottish tune was finally replaced by the Finale of "Korea Fantasia", which Ahn Eak-tai had composed in 1935. The new "Aegukga" was later adopted by the Presidential Decree of 1948 by the then South Korean President Syngman Rhee (or Lee Seungman). 


01/01/19 02:53 PM #4525    

 

David Mitchell

Actually, I think the real meaning of the phrase is -

"Holy crap, December is over and that means no more heath insurance robo-calls!"

 

-------------

 

Speaking of Scottland - for those of you not into football today, go see "Mary Queen of Scotts" - dark and sinister and brilliant!


01/01/19 04:04 PM #4526    

 

David Mitchell

Today would be one more of my string of 50th anniversary stories.

But I already told the story last year at this time. So if you get really bored (I mean like bored to tears), skip back to page 98 and read post #2440.

Where else could you find a heartwarming story that combines a great OSU Rose Bowl game while having the S - - - scared out of me by rats. 

 

 


01/02/19 02:32 PM #4527    

 

John Maxwell

Mark & Dave M. Great treatise on Auld Lang...sorry fell asleep.

01/02/19 09:27 PM #4528    

 

David Mitchell

Jack,

me too.


01/02/19 10:15 PM #4529    

 

Mary Margaret Clark (Schultheis)

Mary Anne McMahon Herbst asked that I share the obituary for Patty Fagan Motil's mother who passed away on December 30th. 

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her.  May her soul and the souls of all of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.  Amen.

https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/dispatch/obituary.aspx?n=mary-marcella-fagan&pid=191137809&fhid=8699 

 


01/04/19 10:40 PM #4530    

 

David Mitchell

Okay, the silence is deafening.

       (and were these guys just about the best of our high school years?) 

 

released in October of 1964 - this recording was about 1982 from the Concert at Cental Park




01/04/19 11:45 PM #4531    

 

James Hamilton, M. D.

Silence is golden (who sang that one?).

Somehow I knew Dave would break it.

I would have done it but I can't - I have laryngitis. 😞

Jim

01/04/19 11:54 PM #4532    

 

David Mitchell

Jim,

Dang it man, I waited for you!   (actually, I knew you knew I would do it)

Was't it the Tremellos? I love that song!  (Tremeloes)


01/06/19 12:08 PM #4533    

 

Michael McLeod

When I was home for Christmas somebody told me there is a high-end White Castle -- well, high end for a White Castle, I guess I should say -- in short north, where you can not only get those glorious guilty-pleasure delicacies but other things. Not sure what the "other things" are. Beer would work. I could see having a Manhattan with a bag of White Castles, which would pretty much put me in Nirvana mode. I did not have time to check the place out and at this point for all I know I dreamed it. Does such a place really exist? Could it be true?  And if so, have any of you Columbus-ites been there?

And if not -- WHY THE HELL NOT????? It's your BIRTHRIGHT!

 


01/06/19 02:12 PM #4534    

 

David Mitchell

MIke,

I believe the "Casa Blanco" you are asking about is now incorporated into a condo project at the same location it had alwasy been in Short North. You will see the photo I posted back on page 168 (#4174).

I always visit the "Castle" when I am home - usually the one up on Kenny Rd. near Henderson, but my favorite (other than the old Acadia and High location) was that one down at West 3rd and High in the Short North. I had been there just a year or so ago in it's old format and went looking for it this past fall. I was shocked to find it inside a larger condo bulding with the drive through (pictured) on the 3rd Ave. side. I did not go inside to see if this "gourmet" atmosphere you speak of prevailed, but at least I can confirm that "the holes are still free".

After driving by several times, I was almost undone at the new appearance.  

Is nothing sacred anmore?


01/06/19 02:19 PM #4535    

 

Mark Schweickart

Mike – as with Lin-Manuel Miranda, your writing is "highly over-rated."

(For the rest of you,I am sure Mike wiii get my joke above. Read his excellent article to get the reference.)


01/06/19 10:44 PM #4536    

 

Michael McLeod

Speaking of Lin-Manuel Miranda, here is my latest labor of love. The show is coming to Orlando and to Columbus - it's here this month and I think you get it next. I was fascinated with its success, culturally and creatively, and the way it connects the past with the present, and I tried to lay out how that all came about. If you are going to see the show I think it's good to do a little background reading to "prep" for it - that way you'll enjoy the nuance and history and personalities all the more. Then again you can just sit back and enjoy the spectacle and the music and the dancing. I haven't seen the touring production but everything about this show has been handled so well that I can't help but think it's a great production.

 

http://www.orlandomagazine.com/Orlando-Magazine/January-2019/Spotlight-Hamilton-on-the-Bill/

 

And Dave I am just now putting two and two together - now I remember you posting that White Castle photo.

I so remember swimming with my family at the osu "natatorium" on weeknights -- and getting White Castles on the way home. For us as kids that was, indeed, fine dining.

 

 

 


01/07/19 04:20 AM #4537    

 

Jeanine Eilers (Decker)

Dave—Lance and I are in Laos and took an afternoon cruise up the Mekong River.  Lance thought of his Army service the whole time and I thought of you.  Thank you for reminding us of military conflicts and for your willingness to serve.


01/07/19 10:07 AM #4538    

 

Sheila McCarthy (Gardner)

Mike -- Great piece on Hamilton. Very educational. Thank you!


01/07/19 10:35 AM #4539    

 

Michael McLeod

wow, Jeanine - fascinated with your trip. I'm sure it's mind-blowing and so feel free to share more about it as the spirit moves you. And thanks, Shiela and Mark.


01/07/19 02:07 PM #4540    

 

David Mitchell

Jeanine,

Wow, you two DO get around. I'd be intersted to hear about Lance's service - on or off this Forum.

 

This brings up something I have wanted (needed) to say since last May (or April) when I brought up "Cambodia".

When I realized my serious error, I decided to wait for the "Holiday Season" to pass before diving back into a dark subject.

I need to walk back some comments I made that were written from my own narrow perspective and were extremely inaccurate and misleading - written with some passison, but without consideration for the broader set of historical facts.

I said there was hardly any "collateral" damage - read: "civilian deaths" in the Cambodian incursion. I said so because there was hardly any civilian population where we "worked" our mission. So let me apologize and clarify.

There were in fact somewhere between 40,000 and 140,000 civilain deaths as a result of our bombing in Cambodia. I personally suspect that larger range of these estimates includes many North Vietnamese Army (NVA) soldiers. I say that because the areas of southern Cambodia (*see map below), both where we entered, as well as some distance north of our "reach" during the incursion - (which you may recall, Nixon limited to 7 kilometers inside the border - see my faint dotted line inside the border) was largely NVA units - and I mean in great strength! I can testify to that becuse of the visual contact we had with several Divisional strength encampments just sitting across the border from us as we "worked" (flew) that border. 

But if I had stopped to review the entire record, there is far more bombing further into Cambodia than my little corner of the world at that time. In fact, we now know that the bombing had also begun much earlier than we were all once led to believe. Years before!  

But I still want you to understand that in most of the area I was familiar with, there was hardly any civilian population. (*see map below). And I will stand on the fact that there were hundreds of square miles of nothing but open, unihabited, elephant grass (not even rice paddy cultivation). I have added a simplified map (in case you are so bored that you are actually reading this) of my little corner of the planet as it existed for my unit. (note: we also often worked much further sout throughout the Delta, not just this Cambodian border) 

If one looks at this crude map (which I have altered for simplicity - I have painted out a number of (later created) bird sanctuaries, and a few town names I have no recollection of), you will see a few points of reference (beginnning with the small city of Vinh Long - site of my home base - along one of the northern splits of the Mekong. Going north from Vinh Long you see Moc Hoa (yes, where I often had lunch vistors). Moc Hoa ("muck wah") is where we staged the first few days of the "Incursion" into the "Parott's Beak" - the first day of which I was "down" (not scheduled to fly). And one of our sister companies ("Apache Troop", I beleive?) had a very regrettable day with some serious losses. I was told later that it was chaos, with all three - (plus one newly added) - Troops (13 ships at a time in each Troop), all operating out of the same tiny airstrip and limited refueling bladders, with a temporary Air Traffic Controller mounted on a truck along side the runway for better coordination of all the helicopters coming and going! 

In the area where you see the "Parrot's Beak" was one of the single largest concetrations of NVA troops - one which we were able to easily see from moderate altitude as we climbed out of the airstrip when the winds were out of the north. Then if you follow the border westerly (moving to your left) there wre a number of large units all the way to the the tiny vilage of Ha Tien (you may recall my previous story, "trading mail for lobsters" from the Green Berets at that little compound) on the Gulf of Thailand. In that eastern portion (nearest the "Parott's Beak", there is only only one substantial town Svey Rieng - capital of the province by same name - another story later), and a few tiny hamlets which were not bombed if I recal correctly. As you progress to your left (westerly) there is a slight increase of population especially near the Mekong and the sea. But I don't recall much more bombing in those areas either - some, but not much - whos existence was merely a temporary stopping point before infiltrating the border at several spots to work their way into the South. Again, a whole 'nother chapter in my experiences.

Simply put - in my area of view, there was heavy bombing in vast open unpopulated areas - mostly targeting encampments of large NVA units.

But all of my observation is only in that initial 7 kilometer limit (plus what we coiuld see further in from teh air) that Dandy Dick ordered. And I should also add, we obsereved that 7 kilometer limit ABSOLUTELY - much to our own chagrin at times. We so badly wanted to be able to pursue furhter once we had spotted and "engaged" them, but we would invariably have to turn back. 

Note: although we reached only to 7 kilometers, when we approached at altitude (before we "Scouts" made our descent down onto the deck), we could see for miles further in, and what we could see in some areas was a great deal more of these NVA units in large groups. (more later - maybe)

Now back to my point - this is only 7 kilometers into the country (roughly equal to my faint dotted line inside the border), If one looks at a larger map of teh bombing, you can see what a small portion of the country it includes, and it is my understanding that the bombing went MUCH further inside that limit - in fact all the way to Laos and beyond.  

It was my own fault that I wrote such a misleading piece without reviewing it better - I was writing out of a bit of passionate overreaction pent up over 50 years.

(now I'm still fooling around with the map  - sorry -  Lordy, it's taken me 3 hours with help from Apple - I had to download Chrome to do this.)

p.s. looking two towns to the right of Vinh Long (down river towards My Tho ("mee tow"), you find Dong Tam, where I saw Bob Hope's show.


01/07/19 07:45 PM #4541    

 

David Mitchell

This is embarrassing. After spending hours on that last post, I mis-spelled Moc Hoa!

(it is NOT Moc Hua)

I can't go back now and re-do that map - it took forever on the phone with Apple just getting it to post.

 

Just to add a comment about Moc Hoa - the place we went to more often than any other of a dozen odd names on that map (always for just the day - then back home to Vinh Long).

For about my first 8 months in Vinh Long - from about January to October of '69, Moc Hoa was as boring a place as it could get. So many days of nothing but flying in our tight circles and "S" curves, searching the grassy, swampy terrain right up to (and sometimes over by mistake) the border, for any sign of VC or NVA. But so often - nuttin" honey. There were times when it was like taking a day off. And yes, boredom did occur. Then about October, as if some little man in a remote booth, hiding backstage, threw a switch and the place came alive with activity - at times even nightmarish.  

 

We would return home to Vinh Long every day before dark (usually), and go back out again each morning to one of those little places on the map where there would be a small airstrip, some refueling "bladders" (enormous flat rubber "hot water bottles", air-lifted in periodically - full of about 20,000+ gallons of JP-4 fuel). After a 20 to 60  minute flight, we would all (13 ships) shut down on teh runway strip while our AMC (Air Mission Commander) would stand along the runway and meet briefly with one or two locally based "Special Forces" (green berets), and get an "intelligence report" of the last 24 hours. Then the "fist team" (we alternated about every two hours - one fuel tank) would head out to begin our search in that area they deemed the "hottest". After several shifts back and forth, we usually headed home by dusk to Vinh Long.

I have wanted to point out this detail for some time because I find it noteworthy that we lived a sort of "nine-to-five" war. Vinh Long wasn't a huge base like some near Saigon, or Da Nang, etc.but was no forward outpost either - picture a property a little bigger than Graceland Shopping Center with a 3,000 foot fixed-wing runway and about 80 helicopters, plus dozens of small support buildings - and all the dust you could put up with. But it afforded us a much easier life than the grunts who lived in more modest camps and spent much of their time out on patrols*

I flew home every evening to a hooch with only 8 guys (mostly getting along well - well, mostly), slept on a mattress with sheets and a pillow, and had a short walk to a "luke-cool" shower, outdoor latrines, and a mediocre (at best) Squadron Mess Hall. We did have a rather crude Officer's Club (that had a flat roof and leaked like a sieve during Monsoon season), with a cash order menu (often out of that steak you had been dreaming of all day), an occasional movie, or traveling band (Thai, Korean, or Ausie) that always wanted to impersonate Elvis. And we had our own PX, about the size of a large commemorative postage stamp, that managed to carry little more than magazines, cigarettes, tooth paste, and razor blades. 

Oh, and we also had a concrete basketball court, which I spent a lot of my free time on, mostly with 5 other guys (3 on 3) - including a Captain, two Warrant Officers (me), and three enlisted men - one black and two white. Once we six grabbed a ball and took the court, there was no rank or color.

* Actually, I just wrote this last part because I have long wanted to make the distinction between my comforts and the guys who really stuck their faces into it - like the Al Judy's, the Kevin Cull's, and the Clarks and Hummers of our world. Imagine patrolling out in the boonies for weeks at a time, sleeping on the ground in temporary guarded perimeters, in the rain, with a rain poncho, and your M-16 in your hands. Not to mention live ground combat where you can't just swing your cyclic stick over and vere away quickly.

 


go to top 
  Post Response
  
    Prior Page
 Page  
Next Page