Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Complaining Against God

Tomorrow Remedial PT begins again as does regular PT. The basic drill is the remedial group has PT at 6am Monday - Friday, except 520am on Wednesday. The others have PT Monday-Wednesday-Friday. I caught myself complaining about remedial PT, not that I have to do it, but that I am in charge of it. Again, it is not the exercise, but it is a piece of human nature that I don't like.

So when that happens I am complaining against God. The piece of human nature I am complaining against is the universal tendency of people who know a subject but don't do it to be experts in it in their own mind.

So as soon as members of the remedial group knew they actually had to do a certain exercise, they immediately have their own grand ideas about what they should be doing for an exercise program. It makes no difference that they consistently have failed to meet the standard of fitness the Army expects--they know better.

Their view of the world extends to every part of life. Who is more strident than a fat, inert couch-potato fan about what the players on the field should be doing. Players know those decisions are complex and they are much less likely to condemn other players.

No one knows more about faith than people who talk about it, but do not actually suffer, sacrifice, care for orphans, and the other things that every faith holds in common as virtuous.

Is there anyone on earth who knows more than a political talk show host about how to run the government? It is interesting to watch the commentators who actually held office versus the ones who never held office. The former office holders may howl about their favorite topic, but they also know the limits of politics--they are former office holders and generally lost an election before becoming a talking head.

Since the tendency is universal, I am guilty of it myself whenever my knowledge exceeds my practice in any given field. Most every human tendency has a good and bad side. I would like to know the good side of this one.

In the meantime I will be hearing soldiers grumble that PT is to hard, too early, too much aerobic, not enough, etc. On the bright side, they do not have pulpits and radio shows to make their ignorance influential.

New Bike for Kuwait

This morning I bought a bicycle at the PX. It's a no-name mountain bike that is too small for me. It has front and rear suspension. I can't take it with me when we leave Kuwait. So why would I buy this bike? It's $99. I am going to give it away when I leave. I have paid up to $40 to rent a good road bike for one day in San Francisco, so $99 for two or three weeks seemed like a bargain. And if I give it to a local guy when I leave, there will be one more person who likes Americans--even if he thinks we are crazy.

There are only about four miles of paved roads and the whole base is flat, so it won't be a very varied workout. But it will allow me some solitude and something to do while we wait to find out what we are doing next.

Thursday we are supposed to get sand storms. Sandstorms mean we all stay inside the tent. that should be interesting!

Faith in the Military: Chaplains During the Cold War and the Current Wars

Army Chaplain with Armor Unit In the Cold War Army of the 1970s, the Protestant Chaplains were very different men...