Saturday, February 17, 2007

Kenneth Hammond, Sheepdog.

Officer Kenneth Hammond of the Ogden, Utah Police Department apparently doesn't want anyone to call him a “hero.” Officer Hammond, for anyone who may not know, is the police officer who was forced to shoot and kill the Muslim Bosnian immigrant named Solejman Talovic in the Salt Lake City mall earlier in the week. Officer Hammond went to the mall on Valentines Day with his wife, off duty. If he had wanted to, Officer Hammond would have had every right to go to the mall as a private citizen, unarmed, oblivious to his surroundings, just as most of the innocent shoppers at the mall were doing that day.

Officer Hammond; however, is a sheepdog. Officer Hammond went to the mall that day prepared. Not only was he carrying his firearm, Officer Hammond had obviously mentally prepared himself to be a sheepdog instead of a sheep. Officer Hammond went to the mall that day planning on spending the day with his wife, probably not consciously thinking even once that he might be called to protect the flock that day. I imagine that for a short second as he strapped on his firearm before leaving his home, Officer Hammond may have been briefly reminded of his personal decision to be a warrior in a world full of sheep. Then he went to the mall, like hundreds of other people, with one major difference: Officer Hammond had prepared himself to do great violence on behalf of the flock if the flock was endangered.

I don't know what Officer Hammond was doing when he first heard the gunshots, but I know what he did afterwards. He likely told his wife, “Don't follow me!” or, “Get out of here!” and then, as all of the sheep were scattering in confusion and fear and running from the sounds of danger, something inside Officer Hammond took over. Whatever it is that makes Officer Hammond different from 98% of society kicked in, and Officer Hammond ran straight toward the danger. A thousand thoughts might have been flashing through his head: tactical considerations, fear, anger ... only Officer Hammond knows. One thought overrode all the others and was his motivation as he moved, “Protect the flock.”

To Officer Hammond, warrior, I'm glad you are ok. And thanks for being a sheepdog.

(Sheepdog analogy shamelessly stolen from Lt. Col. Dave Grossman.)

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Stupid Babies

Tonight I saw this book in the checkout line at the grocery store:

I was left wondering... Is this a book to help parents name stupid
babies? OR is it a book to help stupid parents name normal babies?


Monday, February 05, 2007

Kids these days... a two part blog

Part 1:
When I was a kid, we walked to school both ways uphill in the snow during a heatwave.

Seriously, I noticed something a few weeks ago: Americans as a general rule seem to have turned into helpless drones with little, if any survival skills. It snowed a few weeks ago and was relatively cold, the roads were pretty sketchy, but I ran to the store for some groceries, and while walking into the store I saw:

  1. A man in shorts
  2. Two girls wearing flipflops
  3. Only one person, out of about fifteen or twenty who I was watching wearing a hat
  4. A fat girl in a mini skirt
  5. Only a couple people with any sort of "boot" or appropriate footwear on.
  6. At least eight or ten people with no coats on.

Perhaps it's the old "Be Prepared" Boyscout in me coming out, but what the hell are these people thinking? The roads were bad enough that I passed several cars in the ditch on my way to and from the store. What if they drove their car into a snowbank?!?

I'll allow that some of these people may have left their hats, gloves, and coats in their cars
while they went shopping. But the people withflipflops, shorts, mini skirts and gym shoes are nothing more than ignorant sheeples, with absolutely no concept of how tenuous our existence is here on Terra firma, and with no personal skills for surviving in the elements.

I'm pretty sure that if the power company in Dayton shut down for a whole week right now when it's close to zero degrees Fahrenheit with a -20 wind chill, at least 2/3 of the population would perish. (On the up side, there would be plenty of entry-level and minimum wage jobs available once the weather warmed up a bit.)

Part 2:
This all came together for me this morning when my wife woke me up and said, "Turn off your alarm, all the kids' schools are closed today." I slept for a couple more hours and got up to find what? Three or four inches of snow on the ground? NO. A sheet of ice covering the streets and sidewalks? NO.

Every freakin' school in the county was closed due to "cold weather." It's not even in the negative numbers here, folks. Is it cold? Yes. How cold? Damn cold. Is it so cold that with a coat, a pair of boots, a hat and gloves you will drop dead while waiting on the bus? Hell no.

I will admit to being somewhat torn, though. My observations in Part 1 of this post make it pretty clear that if they had opened the schools today, at least 2/3 of the school children would have frozen to death at the bus stop in their shorts and flipflops.

I have come up with a bit of a theory...
teachers get a certain number of paid "disaster days" right? Since we haven't had any snow to speak of this year, the administrators start making up "chilly willy days" and "ooops, a water pipe broke" days, and "we all have the sniffles" days, just so they can get those paid days off.

Whaddya think?