pseudosoldier's Articles In Work
January 30, 2008 by pseudosoldier
In response: I suppose I could just tell them to go online (I believe militaryonesource.com directs servicemembers to free versions of the commercially available products, like TurboTax), but it defeats the purpose of this class pretty well. I did comment to my supervisor this morning that I would probably just use TurboTax for my own again this year... and she said that it doesn't really instill confidence when the guy tagged for Tax Assistant isn't going to do his own. Which is fine, since ...
January 28, 2008 by pseudosoldier
I volunteered for this additional duty position over half a year ago, as the alternate. I started to figure that it was something my unit didn't take seriously, since I didn't have any training and I was the "alternate" to an empty primary position (ever since Geezer left the service). Then, at the beginning of the calendar year, the base started directing all servicemembers to see their Unit Tax Representatives for assistance with filing. (What was I supposed to tell them, go online? Fork o...
October 3, 2007 by pseudosoldier
I got an email from Wes Higgins, who was my point of contact for coordinating the color guard for the roping event, and he let me know that they made about $22,000 for the Wounded Warrior Program. He also forwarded a story, a description of one of the great trips that they take injured veterans on. I'm reproducing it here without really knowing the author, so if they contact me to ask me to take it down, I will. I just thought that it was a great thing to share.


It was the evening of Sep...
September 30, 2007 by pseudosoldier
Over a month ago, a former Army Staff Sergeant contacted my Battalion to request an Army color guard for a local event. After checking with the legal office, my command okayed our participation, and I secured the assistance of three other volunteer NonCommissioned Officers to perform the drill duties. I really didn't know much about the event, or the organization... but now I wish I did, and I would have publicized it to the entirety of our unit.

Only after the event did I find this on the ...
June 14, 2007 by pseudosoldier
I knew I was going to this almost three months ago, since I insisted after the last one (that I was thrown out of) that I wanted to go back. (They're quarterly, so that's about three months.) But I slacked, so while I'm better prepared than last time (primary goal: don't get thrown out; secondary goal: have the CSM call me by my actual name), I'm not as prepared as I'd like. We got a memorandum for the board just over a month ago and then got a new memo at the end of last month that changed s...
June 12, 2007 by pseudosoldier
I get all the email from the Air Force at work, so I was able to follow along with this. Several days ago, a local (National Guard?) soldier's house burnt down. His family was safe, but his belongings were almost entirely destroyed. There was a call for clothing and emergency household items (they had put his family in base housing on short notice), and I got to hear about the Army side of it as my battalion chipped in to make sure they were clothed.

Early today, an email went out as a sho...
June 9, 2007 by pseudosoldier
Today, myself and three other volunteer NonCommissioned Officers of my Battalion headed out early to Menard, TX to participate in the commemoration of the 250th anniversary of the San Saba de Santa Cruz mission. This historic site has had its location recently confirmed and archaeologists and Texas historians will be doing further research into the dig. We were to serve as a color guard for a parade in its honor.

We arrived on time, more or less (more if we had to be there at 0730, less if ...
April 30, 2007 by pseudosoldier
For the first time since I've been here (and according to one senior NCO, for the first time in the three years that he's been here), our unit held a marksmanship range specifically for cadre. Usually, we'll only get to fire if there are rounds left over at a student range and the cadre range safeties feel like shooting a rifle. I haven't even been to the range here before.

We were there for quite awhile (1430-1900), the first half hour of which was standing out in the rain waiting to get i...
February 9, 2007 by pseudosoldier
Earlier this week, I got some good "face time" with my 1SG because I approached him about a matter concerning the Joint Services Color Guard. I have recently taken over as the NCOIC and was having trouble procuring volunteers for an upcoming event. I asked him if he could poll the cadre to find interested personnel, not just for this particular event but in general so that I could have a rotating roster of possible candidates for participation.

He thought this was a great idea, at least par...
January 31, 2007 by pseudosoldier
Today, the offer I was made yesterday became official when I accepted the position of the base Joint Services Color Guard NCOIC (i.e. head dude of the guys who carry the flags).

I'd like to think I was offered the position by the previous NCOIC because I will do a good job with it. I'm not saying I won't do a good job, because I will, but I realize that the offer was made more out of my perceived willingness to take the job off his hands. I don't hold it against him. He's one of my favorti...
January 25, 2007 by pseudosoldier
As I mentioned in my last post, I now list my profession (so far, only on MySpace) as "warrior monk." Yes, greywar, it sounds better than "geek" and it means something much more to me as well.

Sometimes through adversity, things can become more clear. Not perfectly clear, in my case, but...

I did a lot of reading. A lot of self-improvement books. Some spiritual works: Purpose Driven Life. Some Zen: Zen In The Martial Arts, The Method of Zen. Some military related books: In The Compan...
January 21, 2007 by pseudosoldier
It has taken me awhile to write this but for no particular reason. There are no OPSEC concerns nor was it any great fiasco. I guess I just didn't.

On 14DEC06 (was it so long ago already?), I participated in the Joint Service Color Guard for a wreath laying ceremony as part of Wreaths Across America. Link We had some trouble with attaining a representative from the local Navy Detachment. Apparently, they sent only one Boatswain's Mate to do both the Color Guard and the wreath laying. Sinc...
January 15, 2007 by pseudosoldier
We received notification late (1440) Friday. The family had requested full honors but we were unable to organize the firing squad in such a short time. The deceased served honorably so was certainly entitled to military honors at his funeral, so myself and another Staff Sergeant made the arrangements for today.

We performed it as a two-man detail and practiced at his house prior to arriving at the cemetery. We saluted the casket as the pall bearers carried it to the site. We positioned ou...
January 8, 2007 by pseudosoldier
Today, I began to take over the Physical Training responsibilities for the soldier trainees who have a restriction on what sort of PT they can perform due to an injury. My first assessment is this: they've had it too good for too long.

We (and I mean the SFC in charge of the overall PT program for our company; I'd just be the guy to implement and hopefully influence his direction) had previously allowed the students to utilize the gym facilities during directed PT times with minimal interfer...
December 8, 2006 by pseudosoldier
The week started off... oddly. I hadn't really recovered from last weeks' duty (read: loss of sleep) by the weekend, and although I love having my boys here it certainly didn't make for additional rest. I actually dreaded going into work on Monday, and my trepidation was rewarded with a long, long day. I administered a test to my student soldiers, and one of them did poorly enough to require retraining. I arrived home at quarter til 6, missed PT, and ate meat and drank booze until I fell asl...