Friday, September 22, 2006

Two Funny Things

So... Today was my last day at Fox Hollow... It went smoothly enough... I got the library going, the secretary is happy, and the labs are ready for TESA. The dibels data has been entered, and the server has been set up with all the new students...

Anyways, it is around luch time and the teachers are filtering into the lounge... They urge me to join them and say goodbye... So I wander in with one of our student teachers from the University... On the table in front of me I see a beautiful cake and card. I think to myself, that is so sweet... I begin to miss everyone even more... I say, "You got me a cake, that is so sweet..." Then I heard her say, "it's from everyone..." Again I swell up with pride for the honnor and pick up my card... Again I smile and say, "you got me a card too?" and quickly scan the card, not really reading it... At this point I feel great that they all have been so thoughtful... I am still completely unaware...

Finally the girl annunciates her words and the cenario becomes clear... It wasn't "It's from everyone" she kept saying... It was "It's for everyone"... Apparently it had been her last day too and in appreciation of our support and guidance, she had brought a cake for the staff... This was only apparent after she took my card away...

I was then given my real card... with thoughtful comments, such as "have fun limping at your new school."

I don't want you to think my coworkers forgot me completely... It turns out they did try to surprise me... They brought me a cake, but I come to work at noon, and they ate it before I got there... But I guess it was a nice thought... Oh well...

The other interesting event of the day was a observation made in a 4th grade class... I was running updates and getting the lab up and running, and noticed some kids enjoying their free time with a box of puppets... I look over and the next thing I see is a 10 yr old dancing around with a stuffed sting ray yelling, "Look guys, I'm Stevin Corwin!" And stabbing herself in the chest with the ray of the puppet... They then took turns impailing eachother with the plush toy and rolling on the ground...

I felt this was the perfect ending to my year.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

My Dad


I was the Charlie Battery personnel clerk for the 653 Field Artillery
Battalion(observation) stationed in Fort Sill, Oklahoma in 1993.

Our men (118 enlisted and 4 officers) were hand picked on the basis of
their hi I. Q. scores.

We were trained to work with sophisticated plotting equipment in
detection of the location of enemy artillery. We used : Sound detecting
devises, Radar, and Flash triangulate using a high degree of math.

I was notified by Battalion commander to prepare to move the Battery to
Desert Rock, Nevada on temporary assignment.

I packed up the 201 files and made sure everybody had their required

We caravaned across country in trucks and jeeps, sleeping over at
different Armories along the way......

Our last stop,before arriving at Camp Desert Rock was Bolder Dam/ Here
we spent the night sleeping in the Bolder Dam theatre.

Jerry Lewis,(comedian) stopped by and talked to our small group. He
later invited the whole group to be his dinner guest at the Copa Room in
the sands. (that was fun...the hotel sent buses for us and we met Dean
Martin (Lewis's straight man) and everything was on the
house...including all we could eat an drink.

Camp Desert Rock is a tent station..with a fe quonset huts.

I lived in a nine man tent and worked with other battery personnel
clerks .. our commanding officer was Lt. Joseph Bruining.

We were under the impression that we were there to train in plotting the
location of atomic artillery.....(we were there as guinea pigs....and
we were sent down ranger every time the guys at Camp Mercury (the
attached facility) decided to detonate a bomb.....

For most of the men..this amounted to five or six shots....Both Apple
and Tea Pot.........

The drill went like this....the men were loaded up in trucks around 2:00
A. M.....and driven into the desert about fifty miles down range. We
were given density goggles (3.2) had on our regular field dress along
with our helmets and liner. We also were given a dose meter that was
to register the amount of exposure to radiation. (the theory was that
if we got 5 rinckon of exposure, we got to go home. Nobody ever went

The shots that I experienced were all tower shots. We were told to enter
the six foot deep trenches (long and deep machine dug straight
trenches...about four in number located about 4,000 feet from ground

The tower was about 100 feet in the air.....and it was the
sun slowly started raising some one on a loud speaker began the count
down.......starting at 10....I got as far down in the trench as I could
in the fetal position..with my gloves over my opaque density goggles....

I heard the announcer say: "two" and all of a sudden everything lit
up....even with my eyes closed and with the goggles I could see the
bones in my hands....

the trench began shaking violently,moving two feet back and forth...

ad then sage brush, dirt, rocks came flying over my head......

We were then told to come out of the trenches. We walked to the area
where the tower had had been vaporised.

as we walked through ground zero, we were swept with brooms and Geiger
counters were buzzing.....

Our unit was stationed at Desert Rock for four months.

We loaded up our equipment and caravaned back to Fort Sill.

David B. Gardner SP3

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Two Days to Go

So my next appointment is Friday... We will see if I am fit to hit the streets or if I am looking forward to an extended sentence of hopping and hobbling. The last thing I would want is to rush this and prolong any long term problems... So day by day we will see what we will see...

I was just sitting on my couch... and I can't help but crack up when I look at my leg. I mean come on... Mild mannered, masters degree, technology teaching me... The one that seldom comes out of the house, avoids parties, and likes to knit and bake pies, and I am the one with 6 screws and a metal plate in my leg. From skydiving no less. I could never have imagined a less probable injury for myself. I always took pride in my abilities to avoid all seemingly dangerous situations, and attempt all with extreme caution and guidance. So it just seems like a funny way to start each day; wanting to get up in the morning and get breakfast, and then realizing... you can't, you decided to go skydiving... It just seems like someone else's life, definitely not mine. Well at least I made it to 22 without ever having a major illness or any visit to the doctors that wasn't related to an ear ache or sun burn. So I guess that's good enough...
I really can't wait for this all to be over, it is really wearing me out. All the simple little tasks I took for granted, getting to my classroom, doing wiring, upgrading machines... It's all so much larger of a task than before... And I am tired all the time...

Anyways... We will see what we will see...

And in other news, since people are over my ordeal...
Autumn accidentally burned her eye with acid the other night. She was working late on a project and a small bit of the chemical got into her eye. She flushed it profusely with fluid and sought medical assistance. She seems to be doing better and we will be monitoring her progress... As a new visitor to the ER I wanted to welcome her to the winners circle... Wear that wrist band with pride... It's like the ultimate badge of shame... Kind of like the runner up token for the Darwin Awards...

We thought that if things keep going like they are that we will be coming to a freeway off ramp near you... Can you just see it... With an eye patch and leg brace, cardboard signs in hand... "Starving artist blinded by acid, and unemployed teacher, broke leg in skydiving accident" . Well hopefully she will be feeling better soon, and it won't have to come to that. I just want her to know that no matter what career choice she makes, she'll never be alone...