Thursday, April 26, 2007

Peet's and an Oakland PS

Peet's was a blast, even though it was a slow night we still sold many books and had great conversations with people. Some military people that have served in Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan and even Vietnam came out. One nice lady has her son over in the sand box for the 3rd deployment. She really had a great perspective on it. She said her son signed up and is proud to serve and she is proud to be his mom. When he goes to work it is just like going to work in Oakland. I guess that is bad for the people that live in Oakland, but what she meant is that life happens. It's hard on people, but a good attitude makes the difference. For me, I learn from everyone that stops to talk to me. Last night I learned that some people are poised and gentle at all times and I hope to be more like that. Some people have had intense military experiences and they are ok, it took time, but they are ok. My family came out and helped too, which was fantastic. I feel very grateful.

OOOOPS_ Bad to slam Oakland..... For the first time EVER, I have to be in Oakland in the morning for an appointment... and the bridge melts.... Arrgh- It's too early to take the Capital Corridor train, and impossible to get the BART. If you have ever been down there.... I 80 to 580 is the direct route, and it's melted! OK, sorry Bay Area! J

Monday, April 23, 2007

Parties and Veteran Students

I posted a link to an article about Veteran's returning and going to college with that fancy GI Bill! If you have anyone around you that is a veteran, recently returned etc.. Please read it. Here's my brief story. My guy came back and was on fire to go to school. He started classes 3 weeks after getting home. I thought it was too soon, he could hardly wait! It went bad fast.. First, he was in pain, second, he couldn't remember when to go. Third, and worst of all, he had a political science teacher that would not shut up about how useless the war was. Hey, say that to a Purple Heart Veteran that has had to bury friends, who is trying to get a life back, one who would love to ambush you rather than listen to you... He dropped the class. The other class, Algebra...the math teacher wrote in red on the board, was too lazy to get an eraser and instead erased his equations with his hand then proudly showed that to the class, "hey, it looks like blood." It didn't go over well for my medic man. Who had already seen too much blood and blown up bodies. It had been three weeks since he patrolled the streets of Baghdad. He came home with his own injuries...
Veteran's are all different, especially in this nutty war... A supply clerk is likely to engage the enemy.... However, the Infantry, the SEALS, the absolute war PITBULLS of patrol, they have a longer way to go to get back to "Calm Labrador Retriever" status. OK, not maligning dogs here or Screaming Eagles, just mentioning that experiences are different. What if we put together an inservice for colleges on how to incorporate the veteran into classes. Please read that MSNBC article...It's long, but good.

Second- The Bombshells Party! Pretty Women, good books and fund raising for Soldiers! Please read the Bombshell Party entry and send me your great comments. In the meantime..
A heart warming video for the Veteran SOUL! or click this link! Party on! Click the heading to go to the link--


Spring 2007 - The lanky University of Wisconsin-Madison sophomore was searching for the keg when another partygoer spotted him.

Student Veterans- from MSNBC Click title to access whole article

“Everybody, this is Jake Warner,” he announced. “Jake was in the Marines and he’s been to Iraq,” he continued, his voice rising.

Oh shit, here it comes; Warner groaned.

“He’s killed people before!”

Warner’s smile evaporated. “Thanks,” he grumbled. “Thanks for that introduction.” But the damage had been done. His camouflage of anonymity, of normalcy was gone—he could no longer pass as a physics geek. He was the killing machine. He was the Marine.

This wasn’t exactly the picture of college life Warner had dreamed up—and for most war veterans, college never is. It’s not that they face the rabidly anti-soldier environment that Vietnam veterans did, but the transition from soldier—or airman or sailor or Marine—to student can be a strange and lonely trip any way you cut it. While some veterans want people to buy them beer and thank them for their great service to the country, most just want to feel normal. College is a chance for them to start over, to start fresh—but putting the war behind them is a complicated process,

(Click title to access link to whole article)

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Bombshell Party

I had this idea to have a celebration at the pub where my guy and I first started to "get together." The pub is special to me, I just love the place. I figured I would put a few fliers up and sell books. I wanted to make some money for Fisher House and Soldier's Angels, so I came up with an idea... Missy sent me some Bombshell dog tags... I bought party favor tins, silk rosepetals and made little special tag tins to sell. I sold them for 5 bucks, although they sure could have gone higher, and I sold a book and a tin for 15.00, that way money could go to both Fisher House and Soldier's Angels. BRILLIANT! Well, I wanted to raffle something, but didn't know how to do it. My friend Kaycee made raffle tickets and she let me know that when people fill out names, you collect their address if you want to do a mailing list. (hmmm, didn't think of that). I raffled off a thong that has the pink grenade and the words "Sergeant Major" printed on it. You can find the link to that site at the Bombshelter made page or look to my cafepress link on this site. Also, Although I didn't do it last night, I was offered to collect a dollar a song for a charity on Karaoke night. She suggested doing a 50:50 raffle, that way you don't have to start with a seed item and you still get to collect money for charity! WOW, I just never thought I could do something so simple and fun and help others at the same time!

There were a lot off ideas swimming in my head and I wanted to make money for charity, raise awareness about the homefront and sell 'Bombshells' books. Guess what! We should all be having those parties. It was so much fun! I did it in a bar, but could have been a church social. It could have just as easily been at a house party or a farmer's market. I could really see it happening at churches.... without the thong of course-
People came over and talked about their military backgrounds and it made for thought provoking conversations! One guy was being deployed in two weeks. It was great for non military people to hear from military people, not to talk politics, but to hear humanity. It was great.... A book party that raises awareness about the homefront and raises cash for Fisher House and Soldier's Angels. WOW, it was great. I am doing another one at Peet's Coffee in Vacaville this Wednesday from 5-8.
Peet's is giving a free drink if you come in between those hours! WOW