started doing semi-regular updates a long time ago. Oh well. My web space
is located at http://nuthouse.org/~hendersa and I can be reached via e-mail
Archived .plan entries can be seen at http://nuthouse.org/~hendersa/finger.
*19 June 2002 - The Floridians Will No Doubt Demand A Recount*
Boy, when you people vote, you don't mess around. I received a LOT
of votes on what the next .plan update topic should be. And it was
close. Really close. Like one vote close. So what topic won?
Suprisingly, it was the ROTC storyline this time! Since the Wedding
storyline people have been on a roll and had such a lead in the votes
last time, I though that I'd be writing about weddings for sure. I
guess the ROTC folks revised their tactics and conquered the Wedding
storyline folks using a clever flanking manuever. Or maybe it was
because they just rocked my inbox with messages filled with assurances
along the lines of "oh yes, we WILL get our ROTC update this time."
Any way you slice it, it was impressive. There were 37 votes
for the ROTC storyline, 36 votes for the wedding storyline, and
a single solitary vote for a new storyline.
And to add fuel to this fire, I received 3 votes for the
wedding storyline after the deadline for the voting had passed. I'm
telling you, it was close this time around.
In other news, I've received a number of applications for the
minion/henchman/lieutenant positions that I mentioned in the last
update. Some of the applications are long. Some are short. Some are
really clever. Some sure as heck aren't. Almost all are pretty
darn funny. The field has varied quite a bit so far. I'm really
amazed with some of the entries I've received so far... you people are
putting a LOT of time into these things.
Keep those applications coming! Remember, you have until the
end of Sunday the 23rd (Midnight) to get your minion
application to me.
Without further ado, the ROTC story continues...
*20 June 2002 - Trouble Comes In Small Packages*
When last we left things on the military front, I had just been pulled
out of ROTC rifle team practice and told that I was going to become
the practice partner of a charming young lass known as Neri Velez.
This had come as a bit of a suprise to me, since I was the last person
that I thought would be picked to help someone with their rifle drill
training. Hell, I was lucky if I could avoid hurting MYSELF when
performing rifle drill. I can just imagine the damage that would
result if someone emulated my heinous technique.
Still, this girl had picked me out. Go figure.
Moments after Neri and I had swapped pieces of paper with our
respective phone numbers at practice, the drill team executive officer
started yelling at me to haul my butt back out to the practice area
and get back to work. I picked up my rifle and made a mad scramble
back over to the colorguard who were, unsuprisingly, doing much better
with me gone. I scrambled back into formation, and was popping to
attention when a big drop of water hit my face.
That drop of water was soon followed by about ten million of its
friends. My legs started to feel heavy as buckets and buckets of
water began to soak into my BDUs. It began raining so hard that the
sound of the water hitting the asphalt was drowning out the drill
commands being given by the chief training officer.
"Well, didn't you go inside to get out of the rain?", you might ask.
If you asked this, you clearly do not understand the principles that
the military is built upon. Once it became quite clear that the
practice area was beginning to flash flood, we all knew what was
Push-ups. Lots of them. For some reason, military people seem to
think this builds morale.
When you have to do push-ups, it really isn't that big of a deal. It
only really bites if you either happen to be somewhat out of shape
(which I was) or if you get in trouble a lot and end up doing hundreds
of them as punishment (which was me once again). However, when you
are gasping for breath right before plunking your face down into two
inches of water, well... that just sucks, no matter how you slice it.
Consider the fact that the water in question was carrying motor oil
and other dirt, crud, hairballs, and stuff that accumulates in a
parking lot, and you're talking about one swell time to be had by all.
After performing a few dozen face plunks in the parking lot, the team
commander called us all to attention and dismissed practice for the
evening. At this point, we were in the midst of a major downpour of
rain. Cars driving by on the street next to the parking lot were
starting to plow through the water as it continued to get deeper and
deeper. The positive spin that had been present at practice (meeting
Ms. Velez) was certainly being quickly dampened by mother nature.
I made a mad scramble to the car and headed on home. I was completely
sopping wet, and I could feel water that had been warmed by my feet
sloshing around inside of my drill boots. I was not in a very
pleasant mood, and I just wanted to get into some dry clothes and get
some homework done. Well, the homework part was optional, but the dry
clothes were definitely on the to-do list. I was soaked through to
my underwear, and sopping wet briefs aren't exactly a picnic.
When I reached my apartment, I fished out my keys and unlocked the
door. I'm sure that at least one of my three roommates that inhabited
my two bedroom apartment was home, but the door still managed to get
locked because of one of my roommates in particular.
That roommate would be Shannon. We'll be getting to her momentarily.
I opened the door and stepped inside the apartment onto the doormat
inside. I immediately became aware of how warm it had been outside
and how not warm it was in the air conditioned apartment. Ask anyone
with wet underwear what they think of air conditioning... I'm pretty
sure you can take a stab at what their response would be.
My roommate Randy peered at me and smirked at my hydrated condition.
"Say, you're awful moist", was his assessment of the situation.
"Well, I'm just happy to see you, you know", I replied as I started to
wring out my shirt onto the linoleum floor of the entryway of the
apartment. It was the sound of the water hitting the floor that
brought the pitter-patter of scampering little feet over into my
"Not on the floor! Not on the floor!" Shannon chattered at me as I
redistributed parking lot-flavored water all over the entryway. For
such a small person, she was an overachiever when it came to whining.
She was easily whining at the level of a seven footer. Shannon was a
large goody-goody nuisance packed into a five foot frame. I looked at
her through my one open eye. My other eye was closed because a
miscellaneous tidbit of parking lot funk had decided to add to the
moment by finding it's way into my eye.
"Where do you want me to drip, then?" I demanded of her. "If I go drip
outside, I'm just going to reload." With that, I pulled off my
drenched t-shirt and tossed it aside with a might *FLUMP* on the
floor. Shannon just about had kittens.
"You get into your bathroom and stop dripping on the floor! I'm going
to have to mop this now!" Shannon whined as she pointed at the shirt
on the floor. At this point, I was rather tempted to whip my head
back and forth and spritz her with some rain water cocker
spaniel-style, but I decided that verbal torment was far more
I dashed from the entryway of the apartment through the living room to
the door of the bathroom that Randy and I shared. As soon as my boots
hit the lineoluem just inside the bathroom, I could see Shannon
looking at the wet bootprints on the living room carpet. This
discovery was not met with a warm welcome. Shannon knelt down,
examined the water on the carpet, and was preparing to explode. I
decided to just head this one off.
"Since you've got the air conditioning cranked to 'Antarctica' on the
thermostat, I think it'll probably evaporate in no time." I said to
her when she looked up from the wet footprint. Her face was getting
more and more flushed before she simply got up and walked away.
Undoubtedly, this little episode was going to be a major portion of
Shannon's next extremely-long whiny phone call to home.
After watching Shannon storm off, Randy turned to me and shook his
head with a grin on his face. He always found amusement when Shannon
and I went toe-to-toe. To him, this was better than watching Cartoon
"Boy, she's pissed at you!" was Randy's assessment of the situation.
I peered at him with my open eye in a rather Popeye-like fashion and
then turned my head to look in the direction that Shannon had stormed
off. I looked back up at Randy and said, "Oh... I hadn't noticed. Oh
well." I sat on the toilet, and proceeded to wrestle with my boot
to try to tug it off my foot. I fell off the toilet in the process.
"Say, you look a little wetter than normal. I take it practice was
fun?" Randy said as he watched me head over to the sink so that
I could splash water into my face in order to get eye #2 working
again. I turned my head to look at him for a second, paused for a
moment, and said, "They assigned me a woman. Go figure. I knew all
those ribbons would pay off!" Randy looked confused for a second
before asking for clarification.
"You were 'assigned a woman'? They can do that for you in the Air
Force? Oh man!! I KNEW I should have joined ROTC! I didn't know
they gave you women, too!" Randy said in mock amazement. He was quiet
for a moment as I winged my foot around in an attempt to get my second
sopping-wet boot off of my foot. When my thrashing had died down, I
said, "Yeah. I was asked to help train a girl that wants to join the
drill team. You know what this means?"
"Umm... that we'll have about half the women on campus hanging around
in our apartment?" was Randy's response. Since there were about 13
guys to every girl at our school, the fact that Randy and I lived with
two of said scarce females was quite an achievement. Women were a
scarce sight. When you saw one that wasn't surrounded by guys,
chances are pretty good that you only realized that it was a woman
when you took a good hard look for a few seconds. If you threw in the
idea of a third girl hanging around, well...we would have most of the
female population of the school right there.
I pointed at Randy and said, "Well, I hadn't thought of it quite like
that, but that's not a bad take on it", and I tugged on my soaked sock
in an effort to get it off my foot. The sock removal process wasn't
going very smoothly. For some reason, socks never go on or come off
when you're in a hurry. Then again, I guess that when you're in a
hurry to change your current sock/foot relationship, your feet are
probably damp at best and soaking wet at worst. I paused for a second
before saying, "Besides, this one is really cute. Wonder why we've
never seen her? Oh well... it doesn't matter. And you know why?"
Randy looked at me for a second before responding with a "noooo....".
With a big smile on my face, I reached into my pocket to produce the
evidence of the fact that Neri actually existed and even might want to
talk to me again. I pulled out a mass of paper that contained Neri's
phone number. Or rather, it was the mass of paper that HAD contained
the number before getting thoroughly soaked and sloshed. At this
point, the number was pretty much smeared beyond all hope of
readability. My heart sank.
Well, this just downright sucked. Of course, my luck tends to have
radical swings with no middle ground. Either I'm being hit by a car
(which happened at college) or I'm being given thousands of dollars
for no major reason (which ALSO happened at college). It stood to
reason that my good luck was due for a drastic downswing after having
had the good fortune of being placed in a situation where a cute girl
had been ordered to spend time with me. Randy gave me quite the
smirk when he saw me staring blankly at the wad of paper I had pulled
from my pocket.
"Oooooh, dude! Sucks to be you!" was Randy's assessment of my
predicament. He was lucky that I had left my rifle in the entryway to
the apartment. If I had happened to have it in my hand at that
moment, I probably would have started beating him with it.
It suddenly came back to my attention that I was really pretty darn
cold. Sitting in the swirling air conditioning while soaking wet
wasn't doing much for me. I realized that I had been shivering
during most of the conversation I had with Randy. I started pushing
him out of the bathroom door.
"Shower time. I need heat. Get", I told him as I herded him out and
closed the bathroom door. I jumped in the shower, washed the parking
lot funk off of me, and soaked in the hot water for a good 20 minutes
before deciding that I had better get out and dry off before the
wrinkles on my soaked feet and hands decided to became permanent.
When I finally opened the bathroom door, I was greeted by Randy.
"Dude, she called when you were in the shower! How's that for timing?
I even got her number for ya", Randy said as he forked over a piece of
paper with a phone number on it. "She sounds cute!" he added as I
examined the paper. "She sounds... Spanish or Mexican or something."
"Well, her last name is 'Velez', so I'd imagine that's where the
accent comes from. What did she say?" I asked Randy. He smirked
again and said, "She called and asked for 'Mr. Henderson'. I thought
she wanted to talk to your dad! Anyway, I told her you were tied up
for a little while, but that you'd call her when you had a minute."
I glanced at the piece of paper I had in my hand. Looks like fate had
decided to give me a second chance after all. Of course, If I had had
any idea of what was in store for me, I probably would have been
happier with losing the number and not finding it again. But I'm
getting ahead of myself, aren't I?
"Hey... think she has a sister I could have?" Randy asked.
Next Military Update: Major Mamasita