HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

About all things in and around the Detroit area

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby D-Day » Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:04 pm

higgs1634 wrote:I joined the Marines after my freshman year at MSU... on a bit of a whim.

I don't know if I'd say they were the best years of my life...but I'm not sure what I would've traded them for. Or course, my time in was while we were between our Middle east excursions. I spent the entire time (other than boot camp and schooling) out of the US and the vast majority of it as a Marine Security Guard. For some reason while i was on the program there was an unusually large attrition rate at MSG School (which already had a pretty high wash out rate) as well as a higher than usual number of guys getting booted off the program for some sort of shenanigans while on duty. Because of the shortage, and because of the African Embassy bombings driving a ramp up in embassy security needs, I had the opportunity to extend my tour and was able to spend way more time on the program than most people.

I'd like to thank the American taxpayer for allowing me to live very well in some pretty exotic locales. For those who don't know, Embassies and a few of the larger Consulates are protected by Marines. Watch standers are junior Marines...Lance Corporal to Sergeant. Watchstanders are required to be single and are housed either on the embassy compound in apartments or (as was my experience) in a large house nearby the embassy/consulate (think fraternity house...full of Marines). Houses are staffed with cooks, housekeepers, full time driver with dedicated embassy vehicle (watchstanders were not allowed to drive). Owing to their size, the houses are usually in the more swanky areas of town and every Marine House has a bar (in some countries, it's the only place to get booze) and large parties to raise funds for the Marine Ball every year. So, they were social centers of the the ex-pat community. Not just for parties, but for movie nights, trick or treating/haunted houses for the kids, and breakfast with Santa...etc. From what I hear, post 9/11 some of that has been curtailed. So, all in all, a pretty sweet life....in between other US embassies being truck bombed, massive scary protests, IEDs planted on the compound walls, US ally embassies being bombed nearby, and people lighting themselves on fire or otherwise going berserk in the Visa line that is. As the saying goes...the job was a 1000 hours of boredom and 30 seconds of sheer terror.

Met two US Presidents, a Sec Def, a Sec of State, various ambassadors and diplomatic VIPs, some high profile Congress critters, a few b list celebrities, went heli-snowboarding in Central Asia, got to go to quite a few black tie events, concerts, VIP/after hours/backstage tours of World Heritage type places due to embassy connections, and I was involved in a couple of things I'm (as far as I know) still not allowed to talk about- which really weren't that exciting...but it sounds cool when I say that.


We hung out with the embassy Marines in Honduras and had a blast....what a night (from what I remember).......
Where the hell am I going? And what the hell am I doing in this handbasket?
User avatar
D-Day
Hot Fudge Sniper
 
Posts: 4328
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2007 10:19 pm
Location: Keeping Kentucky away from the rest of you

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby guest » Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:19 pm

I loaned my car for use by a presidential candidate's appearance at my college campus. Okay, so the campaign was managed by Wavy Gravy and his Hog Farm Collective and the candidate was a set of clacking wind-up teeth, but it was something.
User avatar
guest
Hot Fudge Poor Dentition
 
Posts: 6637
Joined: Wed Mar 28, 2007 11:40 am
Location: the old windmill

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby frank - up in grand blanc » Wed Oct 05, 2016 3:11 pm

About 11 years ago I took up the cause of an imprisoned man. His crimes were "mishaps" and I said so in letters that I wrote to the parole board. I went on to say "he has paid for his unfortunate lack of self control and the damage he has caused as much as possible and is sorry." Well, the parole board overlooked his second degree murder conviction and relented: justice was served and the prisoner was freed. Once free he met my daughter, fell in love, married her and took in her two children, fathered two little girls, and then went on a nut and slaughtered all four children in addition to torturing my daughter with a knife. So you could say that I have played an interesting role in the most heinous Detroit-area crime of the past 30 days.

- Fred Harris, pastor and civil rights activist


http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/local/wayne-county/2016/10/04/suspect-remorse/91559680/
User avatar
frank - up in grand blanc
HFD Marketing Consultant or Dumbass
 
Posts: 9163
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2007 8:42 pm
Location: "Avatar repossessed for history of non-payment.."

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby Ansel Rakestraw » Wed Nov 02, 2016 3:17 pm

"Got a kiss on the cheek from Ella Fitzgerald when I was 9 years old." and "Got the Sultan of Dubai to ask me how I knew the Canada geese on Belle Isle were from Canada and not the US. (Answer: Canada geese have an accent on their honking)" are my two most interesting famous people interactions.

45 days on the job in Austin and I was handed a microphone and asked to introduce Dale Watson & His Lone Stars to a festival audience of 10,000. No prep, just tossed on stage. Didn't make a fool of myself.

Tasked with figuring out whether the Book Cadillac was worth saving or not the day after the City got control of the building in bankruptcy court. That was complicated, hairy and contentious because so many wanted the building down. Period. Planning director was convinced the hallways were too narrow for modern code and because the hallways can't be widened and the tax credits kept at the same time, it was a lost cause. The Buildings and Safety director was convinced the hallways were too wide and the rooms too narrow to make modern hotel rooms and because the hallways can't be narrowed and the tax credits kept at the same time, it was a lost cause. Still don't know how I threaded that needle on the evaluation.

New Years Eve under the Arc de Triomphe
Opening day of Oktoberfest in the Munich Meisterberger's ceremonial keg tapping tent.
User avatar
Ansel Rakestraw
Hot Fudge Charlatan
 
Posts: 3802
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:34 am
Location: Escaped.

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby frank - up in grand blanc » Sat Nov 19, 2016 9:00 pm

Today I went through the estate sale held in the home in former member of the Michigan house, Michigan senate, and US house of representatives. My wife and I were over in the Grand Rapids area and on a whim turned into a neighborhood and stumbled upon an estate sale and said what the heck let's go in. There was nothing that interested me enough to buy and nothing scandalous like boxes pornos lay in around, but what there was were shelves in the basement filled with old campaign material and Vern Ehlers-branded swag like coffee mugs and note pads. What was more interesting to see, though, were the shelves loaded with plaques of recognition from probably every organization to ever recognize the man. I'm talking about shit ranging from the Association of US Bean Producers to a local Boy Scout council. So in the mayhem of a Saturday estate sale the question as to what ever becomes of all of those various marginalized/homers... they go untouched in the sale then likely end up in the same dumpster that will hold the unwanted 70s-era Christmas decorations and the equipment for repairing old tape recorders. I'm kind of messed up by this evidence of the finality of death and the fleeting importance of even the mildly important among us: we fade and no one gives a shit.
User avatar
frank - up in grand blanc
HFD Marketing Consultant or Dumbass
 
Posts: 9163
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2007 8:42 pm
Location: "Avatar repossessed for history of non-payment.."

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby middle aged female » Sun Nov 20, 2016 9:50 am

frank - up in grand blanc wrote:Today I went through the estate sale held in the home in former member of the Michigan house, Michigan senate, and US house of representatives. My wife and I were over in the Grand Rapids area and on a whim turned into a neighborhood and stumbled upon an estate sale and said what the heck let's go in. There was nothing that interested me enough to buy and nothing scandalous like boxes pornos lay in around, but what there was were shelves in the basement filled with old campaign material and Vern Ehlers-branded swag like coffee mugs and note pads. What was more interesting to see, though, were the shelves loaded with plaques of recognition from probably every organization to ever recognize the man. I'm talking about shit ranging from the Association of US Bean Producers to a local Boy Scout council. So in the mayhem of a Saturday estate sale the question as to what ever becomes of all of those various marginalized/homers... they go untouched in the sale then likely end up in the same dumpster that will hold the unwanted 70s-era Christmas decorations and the equipment for repairing old tape recorders. I'm kind of messed up by this evidence of the finality of death and the fleeting importance of even the mildly important among us: we fade and no one gives a shit.

The 70's era Christmas docorations will go for big money to some "mid/mod" collector
User avatar
middle aged female
Hot Fudge Designated Driver
 
Posts: 7406
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:22 am

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby Mud Bug » Sun Nov 20, 2016 1:05 pm

frank - up in grand blanc wrote:Today I went through the estate sale held in the home in former member of the Michigan house, Michigan senate, and US house of representatives. My wife and I were over in the Grand Rapids area and on a whim turned into a neighborhood and stumbled upon an estate sale and said what the heck let's go in. There was nothing that interested me enough to buy and nothing scandalous like boxes pornos lay in around, but what there was were shelves in the basement filled with old campaign material and Vern Ehlers-branded swag like coffee mugs and note pads. What was more interesting to see, though, were the shelves loaded with plaques of recognition from probably every organization to ever recognize the man. I'm talking about shit ranging from the Association of US Bean Producers to a local Boy Scout council. So in the mayhem of a Saturday estate sale the question as to what ever becomes of all of those various marginalized/homers... they go untouched in the sale then likely end up in the same dumpster that will hold the unwanted 70s-era Christmas decorations and the equipment for repairing old tape recorders. I'm kind of messed up by this evidence of the finality of death and the fleeting importance of even the mildly important among us: we fade and no one gives a shit.


I'm within a few years of an early retirement and work with a bunch of millennials who often get my sage advice, whether they want it or not. One of my regular themes is they (we) are little more than social security numbers on a payroll spreadsheet, and within a week of retirement, no one at work will remember their name, much less care what they are up to. My counsel is yes, we all need jobs, but the real focus in life is family and friends, being good neighbors, and relationships that matter. All those plaques and awards we get for accomplishments big and small are nice at the time but in the end, just trinkets.

I also tell the kids that the organizational hierarchy/power structure we operate under five days a week is necessary for the wheel to turn, but is ultimately meaningless in the big picture. For example, I refer to an upper-manager who retired a couple of years ago who once yielded great power in our organization but now is receipt checker at Costco. Don't get too big for your britches if you move up the ladder a notch or two because you still put your pants on one leg at a time.
User avatar
Mud Bug
Hot Fudge Regular
 
Posts: 1681
Joined: Wed Mar 28, 2007 8:06 am

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby The Suburban Avenger » Tue Jan 03, 2017 2:39 am

Walked 352 steps from the roof of St. Peter's Basilica to the near top of the dome.
Enjoyed a beer on the roof of St. Peter's Basilica on the way down.
My hand to God, she's gonna be at Carnegie Hall. But you - I'll let you have her now at the old price, OK? Which is, which is anything you wanna give me. Anything at all.
User avatar
The Suburban Avenger
HFD Widely Published Freelance Writer
 
Posts: 6707
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2007 1:51 pm
Location: About $8.25 in tolls from Chicago.

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby MICHIGAN » Sun Jan 08, 2017 4:23 pm

The Suburban Avenger wrote:Walked 352 steps from the roof of St. Peter's Basilica to the near top of the dome.
Enjoyed a beer on the roof of St. Peter's Basilica on the way down.


Very neat
Santa Cleopatra
User avatar
MICHIGAN
Hot Fudge Board Game Builder
 
Posts: 4690
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 11:33 am
Location: Teatro Massimo

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby Craig » Fri Mar 03, 2017 1:46 pm

http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/local/detroit-city/2017/03/03/vehicle-plunging-onto-leads-car-pileup/98678832/

Today is someone's first day of telling the story about driving off of an overpass and onto the freeway.

I drove through that area maybe an hour earlier than the accident so I missed by more than a mile. Still, it brings to mind the surreal experience of a few years ago when the lost soul committed suicide off of the Nine Mile overpass onto I-75,
Soon I discovered that this rock-thing was true...
User avatar
Craig
Hot Fudge Regular
 
Posts: 748
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 2:13 pm
Location: Where you're from is gone, where you thought you were going war'nt never there

Re: HFD Interesting Things Done In This Life

Postby Mud Bug » Fri Mar 03, 2017 1:51 pm

Craig wrote:http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/local/detroit-city/2017/03/03/vehicle-plunging-onto-leads-car-pileup/98678832/

Today is someone's first day of telling the story about driving off of an overpass and onto the freeway.

I drove through that area maybe an hour earlier than the accident so I missed by more than a mile. Still, it brings to mind the surreal experience of a few years ago when the lost soul committed suicide off of the Nine Mile overpass onto I-75,



Crosspost to "HFD Things I'd Just As Soon Forget"
User avatar
Mud Bug
Hot Fudge Regular
 
Posts: 1681
Joined: Wed Mar 28, 2007 8:06 am

Previous

Return to General Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Baidu [Spider] and 2 guests