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Passions in Poetry

The ARMY - Your thoughts

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PoetryIsLife
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0 posted 05-03-2002 07:44 PM       View Profile for PoetryIsLife   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for PoetryIsLife

Hello

To all who read this, I'm curious your thoughts on the ARMY. I myself am considering joining, via a four-year scholarship to ASU. After that, it would be an eight year tour of duty. Whether or not I serve Active Duty, which would be four years active, four year reserve duty, or all eight in the Reserves, I am unsure of. Still debating that issue. It's fairly certain that I will join. I would only be twenty six, a degree and a tour of duty under my belt. Not a bad way to begin a career. Add on to that the leadership, maturity, dedication, and determination. Through hell and back, I'd be prepared for quite near everything. Any thoughts you would have are much appreciated.

Sincerely,
Daniel 'Titus' Redding

Every second that passes you are one second older. You'll never get that second back.

Christopher
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1 posted 05-03-2002 11:05 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

i will come back to this because i have several things to say on this issue from a personal viewpoint and from a subjective one - both through experience (Navy, not Army, but trust me, at the root, they're all the same)

Chris
Alexia
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2 posted 05-03-2002 11:20 PM       View Profile for Alexia   Email Alexia   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Alexia

ok i have 3 cousins in the Army, my neighbor he's my bud, he's in the Navy (now army). And my other 3 cousins are in the Marines .. and they love it but then one left on a medical leave and I have a cousin in the air force .. oh yeah my other cousin was in the Army but he had to go on medical leave b/c he got his arm caught in a Grinder thingy and messed it all up and so he couldn't go back. I have a BIG family .. but they all seem to like it! so if you wanna be in it go for it!
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3 posted 05-04-2002 08:19 AM       View Profile for Jamie   Email Jamie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Jamie's Home Page   View IP for Jamie

Temperament is of utmost importance.
How would you describe yours?

I did 3 years abeit from the enlisted ranks, which despite the adage of rank having its privliges is certainly less stessful than being commissioned.

Think long on this.

J
PoetryIsLife
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4 posted 05-04-2002 02:47 PM       View Profile for PoetryIsLife   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for PoetryIsLife

Looking forward to your comments Chris.

Jamie... tempermant is a very good point, one that, thankfully, I've been thinking about. I will be pushed in many, many ways. The people who are above me will try challenge every aspect of who I am, to force me to reach down, deep inside, to survive. It's their duty - to create an officer in me. I know it won't be easy, but, being pushed, growing and changing are things very important to me. So, I think my tempermant is a very good match. I hope.

Sincerely,
'Titus'

Every second that passes you are one second older. You'll never get that second back.

Poet deVine
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5 posted 05-04-2002 06:29 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

My daughter was in the Air Force. It was at all times harrowing, degrading, uplifting, exciting, patriotic and controlled. She grew in spirit and in body. She became more self assured, more centered. She met and mingled with people she may never have met before (it's a great equalizer!). She signed up for the GI bill and took classes at every base she was on. She signed up for a second tour, did 7 years total and then got out. They paid for her college so she can now make $30 an hour!!

I would recommend it. But start on an exercise regimen - you're going to need it!
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6 posted 05-04-2002 07:05 PM       View Profile for NapalmsConstantlyConfused   Email NapalmsConstantlyConfused   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for NapalmsConstantlyConfused

depends on your personality - can you stand having people who aren't as smart as you yell at you and call you names? it WILL happen, even if you go in as an officer.

if you can take orders and adapt to situations quickly, by all means - you will certainly learn things about yourself, which is all that you can truly count on.

but beware: if you are indecisive in a crisis, do NOT let your pride lead you into a situation where people's lives depend on your actions. there are times when ANY action is better than none, and if you are paralysed in crises, you are a danger to everyone who serves with you.

that being said - i did 4 years in the 82 airborne division as an infantryman, and i can honestly say that you WILL learn more about yourself and your limits in the military, regardless of branch. you might be surprised at how deep the well goes, you know?

good luck
-Dave
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7 posted 05-04-2002 11:42 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel



(sigh) I too think it all depends on a persons character, and I believe generally speaking in your case, it will indeed help you know a lot more about yourself and it can indeed strengthen your leadership abilities! (big hugggssssss) Whatever you wish to set your heart to, always follow it, for I know if you truly feel this can sharpen you acute sense of intrapersonal knowledge and career options, this is beneficial for you! (sigh) Good luck to you on all your dreams and achievements, we all love you so much!



Love,
Noah Eaton

"Underneath your clothes there's an endless story..."

Shakira

Opeth
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8 posted 05-05-2002 11:22 AM       View Profile for Opeth   Email Opeth   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Opeth

I am a 20+ year navy veteran, and without any subjectiveness on my part (hee hee), I would say to you to stay away from the Army and find out if you can instead get into the Air Force.  The best branch in the military when it comes to funding, which leads to a better living conditions, bases, enemities, etc.

If you love the water or to travel, the Navy is the next best branch of service.

The military isn't for everyone. However, it can be an extremely rewarding experience, even if you only stay in for one tour of duty.  Meeting people from all around the country will open you up to diverse sub-cultures in the U.S.  Valuing diversity is most positive way to improve one's own self.

Good luck!
Christopher
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9 posted 05-06-2002 04:45 AM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

sorry it took me so long to get back to this...

some people have said things along the lines that i was going to, so if i'm repeating, forgive me. keep in mind that the following are my experiences and opinions.

the important point to consider when joining the military isn't really what you hope to gain from it (education, experience, travel, camraderie, etc.) though those are important, but rather how your personality will fit into the military life.

the military was not for me.

having said that, i also want to add that it also wasn't bad for me either. i entered at a time when my life was on a steep downhill slope and it was an option i could take to help myself get back on track. i learned much from being in the military, and a good portion of who i am today is a direct influence of my time there... but in an inverse manner from what 'they' were hoping to do.

the best personality for the military is someone who can handle being sequestered in a room with fifty or more people, being set on a strict routine, and being told what to do in every manner. now this doesn't preclude being able to think for yourself. you are always allowed to do that. but a person who fits well in a military environment must be able to accept doing something when it wouldn't be their choice. beleive me, as a rule, the powers that be couldn't care less what you think about... anything. it is a well established organization with many, many years of dealing with people who, as a rule, like to do things their own way. if you are out to change the world from a personal stance, don't go in. the changes you make will be the ones they want you to. now this doesn't mean that you can't have an affect on things. every person makes a difference. but policies are set and you are not going to change them. nope.

it can be and usually is a difficult life. unlike working a 'normal' job, the military is full time. they take and expect everything from you - you, in effect, become the propoerty of the government. this includes limitations to the way you dress and act in public (even when off duty), the times you can or cannot have personal freedom, when and where you can go, etc. the list is long, and, thankfully, one i've fogotten much of! you will have a 'normal job,' the duties of which will of course depend on branch and job. of course, on top of that you have duty times (standing watch, cleaning barracks, etc... though being an officer would reduce some of these, though not the watch part, but will also entail other responsibilities). oh i could go on. in a nutshell, the military life is full-time. even when you're not on the job, you are. it is a life that you have to be dedicated to, because it will be everything to you for the time you're in (and, probably for a time afterward as well).

if you're in a relationship with someone, consider that carefully as well, and discuss it with your partner. a life in the military is challenging... but not so challenging, i think, as it is to a person who's devoted to you. a military spouse not only has to deal with times away (assuming you don't get a position where you can stay in one place and not have to travel) but is also, in many ways, constricted by the life. their conduct is also partially controlled by the military.

geez, i see i can run a very long ramble here. let's get over to the flip side before i start sounding too bitter.

there IS a lot of good about the military. the level of friendship and understanding is virtually unparralled. you have literally thousands of people who have a major common ground with you, and they're the exact same people who can understand how that life is and how you fit within it. (a point of interest, while i was in, i saw a lot of problems with relationships that involved one military person while the other wasn't... and i also saw marriages/relationships between two military people work marvellously - understanding)

benefits are unparralled as well... and i'm not just talking medical and dental (avoid having to use a military dentist if possible... yuck! lol) i'm thinking more along the lines of 'incidental' benefits. things such as - while in the navy, you can literally hpe any military flight to anywhere... and i mean anywhere... for free. the only constrictions are of course space (if someone is reporting for duty, your vacation takes a backseat based on rank) amd time available. you get many discounts at many places just by showing your military id. there is a level of respect i've noticed both while i was in, and afterward as well... especially when applying for a job. they know that if you satisfactorily completed you time in the military, you're probably very responsible and will show up on time every day. you become eligble for many government grants in regard to buying homes, going to school (and this doesn't even count the money you get from school for them), and several other things. there are more, but i'm rambling again.

i'm gonna stop. hopefully i've given you a little better idea of what being in is like. some people absolutely love it. they deal well with the structure and constrictions as well as the friendships. others, like myself i admit, felt bound and smothered. my personality did not fit into the environment at all. i need space to breath, space to be. however, if you think you can do well, i think it's an excellent choice.

Feel free to ask any questions you like. to fight boredom while i was in (oh yeah, expect a lot of that, a LOT - the military motto is "Hurry up and wait" and i'm not kidding) i did an informal analysis of the sociological structure. i was in the navy, enlisted, but i had many friends both enlisted and commissioned.

Chris
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10 posted 05-06-2002 06:01 AM       View Profile for NapalmsConstantlyConfused   Email NapalmsConstantlyConfused   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for NapalmsConstantlyConfused

christopher is certainly not wrong about the MAC flights, lol. there IS something about going on leave and just being able to go "i think i'll go to europe this time" that just fires you right up.

the other side: no matter what branch you join, you will travel - but a military post on tadjikistan looks the same as one in west texas.

my point being, be informed, and not by the recruiters. they get bonuses based on getting you to sign up, so they will say things in the most convincing way possible. find people who were in the branch you want to go for, in the rank level that you're looking at, and talk to THEM.

and remember - like i said, even if your job ends up being something like "assistant artillery grease monkey third class" ALWAYS at some point there is someone out there whose life depends on your expertise. if you're going to be in the military, at least TRY to be good at it. you don't have to like it, just don't slack off.

and if you think i'm kidding about the job - ask the recruiters about an assignment to "needs of the service" and find out what i mean, lmao.

-Dave
Opeth
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11 posted 05-07-2002 08:39 AM       View Profile for Opeth   Email Opeth   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Opeth

Christopher made some excellent points, but I do disagree with him on a few.  Sometimes a person grows in wisdom through experiencing other subcultures, camraderie, travel, education, etc, which could lead to a personality change for the better.

I have been in the aviation side of the navy for over 20 years and was hardly ever sequestered with 50 or more people, if ever ~ routines may be strict, but as you climb up the ranks, you have much more freedom in those routines, as for accepting to do things you don't want to do, you will find that in any job at any position, of course the more rank you have, the less accepting will occur, as for powers that couldn't care less ~ that is a blanket statement which is not always true...there are good leaders and bad leaders, maybe Christopher happened to come across some lousy leaders who needed to read Dr. Demmings TQM book or Colin Powell's book.

Christopher made some excellent points dealing with the question that you need to ask yourself ~ do you think you can handle the military? Does it seem right for you? If you have serious doubts, then refrain from joining, but if you see the postive aspects of joining the service and believe and WANT to become a part of the finest military in the world ~ give it a shot.

Good luck.
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12 posted 05-07-2002 11:55 AM       View Profile for Interloper   Email Interloper   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Interloper

You have gotten a lot of advice from an enlisted person's point of view.  Now a word or two from an officer's point of view.

Any good military person, especially an officer, must learn to take orders before they can give orders.  One must understand that while you may not like the individual issuing the order, you must respect the uniform/rank of the person giving the order.

Most ROTC officers, as well as those from the USMA, must learn that they don't know everything.  Like a private, you are the bottom of the totem pole in the officer ranks.  Furthermore, you must gain the respect of your subordinates.  This you get by walking the walk ... you cannot demand it.

You will learn, at ASU, what you need to know to obtain your degree (regardless of the discipline)and what you need to know to begin a career in the Army.  Neither one makes you ready for "the real thing."  You have "book learning" ... then you need on-the-job training.  For a young Lieutenant that means listening to your Company Commander first and your Platoon Sergeant second.  If you let them, they will make you into a good officer (Remember, your Company Commander has been an officer for at least 4 years and your Platoon Sergeant had been in the Army for 10-15 years).

Now, as for which branch of service ... gee, that's up to you and up to the limits of your opportunities.  If you want to be a "soldier" in the Army, you have many brances from which to choose.  Those choices will be based upon your grades and achievements in ROTC when integrated on the national level.  The Branches within the Army are, Infantry, Artillery, Armor, Special Forces, Military Police, Finance, Medical, Judge Advocate (legal), and Supply (I forgot the formal designation).  

You will have the same choices in the Air Force with the addition of flight such as Pilot, Maintenance, Avionics, etc.

In the Navy you will have all of the above with the addition of ships :-)

In the Marines you will have all of the above.  You will, however, get no choice in the Marine Corps.

My family has proudly server in the enlisted and officer levels in all of our armed forces for four generations.  My son, originally in the Air Force as an enlisted man, is now a Captain in the Army.  He is an ROTC Distinguished Military Graduate, and a  George C. Marshall Award winner.  He can tell you all you want to know.  So, If you want it from the horse's mounth, Email me and I will get him in touch with you.

He is currently on leave, after his return from Afghanistan, and I will get him to "talk" to you.

Whatever your choice, God speed, and good luck.
Christopher
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13 posted 05-07-2002 01:25 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

thank you Opeth. I don't think we so much disagree as you said them better or i failed to get to those points (because it degenerated into a ramble, lol) I agree on what you say regarding leaders. my point was more from a wholistic point of view. i was thinking 'if you want to change the world then this is likely not the best place to go' - FROM a personal POV. you CAN make a difference in the military. but the difference you make will be one that's not necessarily of your choosing. orders get handed down from way up, and while rank has some options on how to interpret those orders, they're still what you have to follow. please understand that i'm not saying this is a bad thing. there are many different ways to change something, and this is one viable option. I was jsut saying that the changes you make are proobably not going to be of your choosing.

this is a good conversation - wish someone would have had it with me before i joined up!

Chris
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14 posted 05-08-2002 09:21 AM       View Profile for Opeth   Email Opeth   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Opeth

Christopher ~ thanks for the clarification, I agree.
PoetryIsLife
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15 posted 05-27-2002 09:43 PM       View Profile for PoetryIsLife   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for PoetryIsLife

I know this is a few weeks late, but a very, very warm thank you for all your advice and opinions. I appreciate the time and effort you took, and to those of you who offered further advice, I will contact you soon. Lately, life has been very hectic. I was finally able to get around to replying. Once again, thank you, and I will contact you further very soon.

Sincerely,
Titus

Every second that passes you are one second older. You'll never get that second back.

 
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