A couple of weeks ago I indicated to someone that if I could, I'd enlist today and help my country track down those responsible for killing thousands of innocent people in New York City and Washington, D.C. But I'm over 50 now and the Armed Forces say I'm too old to track down terrorists. You can't be older than 35 to join the Army. They've got the whole thing backwards. Instead of sending 18-year-olds off to the fight, they ought to take us old guys.
In fact, you shouldn't even be able to join until you're at least 35 years old. For starters: Researchers say 18-year-olds think about sex every 10 seconds. Old guys think about sex every 15 seconds, leaving us more than 28,000 additional seconds per day to concentrate on the enemy. Young guys haven't lived long enough to be cranky and grumpy. A cranky and grumpy soldier is a dangerous soldier. We'll kill the enemy just so we can relax. "My back hurts!" "I'm hungry!" "It's too damned hot!"
An 18-year old hasn't had a legal bottle of beer yet, and you shouldn't go to war until you're at least old enough to legally drink beer. An average old guy, on the other hand, has probably consumed at least 126,000 gallons of beer by the time he's 35 and a jaunt through the desert heat with a backpack on and an M 60 over his shoulder would do wonders for a beer belly. An 18-year old doesn't like to get up before 10am. Old guys get up early for no reason at all. And, if old guys got captured, we couldn't spill the beans, because we'd probably forget where we put them. In fact, name, rank, and serial number would be about it.
So, if it weren't just for this age barrier, I'd pretty much be able to get into the Army without a hitch. According to the Army Internet site, I'd need to pass an entrance exam (officially called an ASVAB), but the simple questions I saw weren't exactly head scratching material. For example:
*A magnet will attract: (a)water (b)a flower (c)a cloth rag (d)a nail. I took a wild stab at it and guessed, 'nail,' knowing they'd probably stick me in some desk job with Army Intelligence after Boot Camp.
Another one was:
*If 12 workers are needed to run 4 machines, how many workers are needed to run 20 machines? (a)16, (b)18, (c)3, (d)60. Well, lets' see now . . . three workers per machine times 20 machines . . . er . . . 60?
Finally, they wanted to know if I had command of the English language, just in case I had to describe an enemy camp from memory. So now you know where the first set of questions come from for the "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire."
Boot Camp would actually be easier for old guys. We're used to getting screamed at, yelled at, and nagged at for all sorts of inconsequential things. And what's more, we actually like soft food. We've also developed a deep appreciation for guns and rifles. We like them almost better than naps.
The Army could lighten up on the obstacle course, however. Hey, I've been to the desert, and didn't see a single 20-foot wall with a rope hanging over the side. Yup, I can hear the Drill Sergeant now. "Get down and give me . . . er . . . one!" And the running part seems to be a hell of a waste of good energy. Besides, I've never seen anyone outrun a bullet.
Patience is something most 18-year olds simply do not have. For good reason, too. An 18-year old has the whole world ahead of him. He want's to get going. He's still learning to shave. To actually carry on a conversation. To learn that a pierced tongue catches food particles. And that a 200-watt speaker in the back seat of a Honda Accord can rupture an eardrum. All great reasons to keep our sons at home to learn a little more about life before sending them off to a possible death. Let us old guys track down those dirty, rotten, filthy, A-rabs, who attacked our country just a month ago. The last thing they'd want to see right now would be a million old guys with ticked-off attitudes!
Anonymous but sincere.
I am really enjoying THE WAYNEDALE NEWS. I had never read it before and am impressed with all the diversity it contains!
Is this journalism?
(Quoting from HOMETOWN VIEWS by Mrs. Wayne E. Dale)
"I'm in so much of a much better mood than I have been in a long time. Wayne has discovered Viagra. I do wish he would get some sleep and take better care of himself though. It takes him all night to do what he used to do all night. Well it takes him longer to do what he used to do longer anyway. Not that I'm complaining, I just think he needs some vitamins or something."
Assoc. Ed. Note: Journalism? No! Feature? Yes! (Is this letter from Wanna Bea?) We also had one phone call from an elderly lady telling us that she will never read THE WAYNEDALE NEWS again because of Mrs. Wayne Dale's column. Sorry to hear that but we 'know' you will read it just to see what the old gal is up to. Mrs. Wayne Dale just tells about life and the way it is - no holds barred (well actually we do edit it and correct her spelling as much as we dare.) You must admit there are no 'dirty' words in her column and it is a lot cleaner and nicer than some of the ads on TV. Has anyone seen the VICTORIA'S SECRET commercial or the one for HANES women's underwear?? Tampax? Kotex? Viagra? Preparation H? Pristeen? Panty Liners? Want me to go on? Please just enjoy MWD's wanderings and her Tubby Hubby's antics AND go eat at the places they recommend. Even when criticized, the restaurants enjoy her and what she has to say.