discarded lies: friday, september 22, 2017 5:39 am zst
everybody needs a hug
daily archive: 11/11/2008
guest author: Memphis Bill in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Lady of Shalott in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Thousand Sons in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Dwave in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: RayH in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Thousand Sons in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Memphis Bill in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Jourdan in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: floranista in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Right Wing Conspirator in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: joem in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Springsky in Discarded Lies:
Leaving Neverland
It’s June, and we’re outside a convenience store in Baker, California. It’s a zillion degrees out. The four of us are filthy. Our car is trashed, our clothes are tattered, we look like we’ve been through hell and back. The guys gather around the hood of the car and smoke pot while they discuss whether or not it’s time to re-duct tape the holes in the engine yet. I’m not wearing shoes, and my feet are burnt to a crisp. I strategically postion myself in a spot that is both shady and heavily trafficked by gas station customers. The shade doesn’t do much good, it’s still like ninety degrees out. It’s not hard to look as vulnerable and pathetic as I can.

Most of the work is done for me; I’m exhausted, dehydrated, starving, and in desperate need of a shower, and I’m a cute young girl. I begin to plead with everyone who walks by. Some people ignore me, others hand me some change or even a few dollars here and there. I’m collecting money for food, gas, possibly lodging, though we’ll probably sleep in the car, and a fresh bottle of whiskey. A middle aged man comes out of the store, and I pray he’ll take pity on me. ‘Sorry to bother you today, sir, but could you possibly spare a little change?” “Get a job!” he retorts angrily. I hate when people tell me that. Before I can bite my tongue, I snap back “Get on your knees and give me one!” He rolls his eyes and walks off, muttering to his wife, “Young people like that really have something to apologize for.” I didn’t realize it back then, but he was completely right. Road kids are eternally indebted to society.

It’s impossible to deny the beauty and romance in traveling the way we did. We were almost free. We went wherever the wind took us, without concern as to what would happen tomorrow or the next day. We saw ourselves as the revolution. We were raging against the machine! By refusing to work for The Man, we were going to change the world. There were two snags in this logic. The first was that it’s absolutely impossible to instigate a change in human consciousness by getting drunk in a ditch behind Wal-Mart. The second was that we were supporting ourselves by becoming parasites to America’s backbone. By hustling the middle class into giving us their spare change to support us, we were no better than the politicians who swindled them every day.

It sickens me to think that I used to believe that the people who were working so hard to take care of themselves and their families owed my friends and me something. Somehow, we remained completely blind to the fact that the people that we were leeching off of represented society’s core. It’s ironic to me that we spent so much time preaching to each other, and yet when we had the chance to speak to the rest of America we instead ridiculed and scoffed at her. Because we had so completely dismissed our responsibilities, it seemed natural to laugh at the working man who struggled to make ends meet. None of us thought for even a second that if maybe we had tried to relate to society our message would have been heard better.

I’m not sure any of us even knew what our message was, though. We knew we didn’t like The Man, but we didn’t know why or who he was. We knew we wanted things to be different, but we didn’t know what kind of changes to make. Thousands of us floated around the country, begging, under the pretense of conscientious political objection, but we weren’t sure what it was we objected to. No matter what or who we thought we were, we were a bunch of kids with Peter Pan complexes. We thought our ar was against The Man, but in all honesty it was a war against adulthood.

It’s unfortunate that the “hippies” I met during the time I spent traveling were so child-like. If any of us had taken the time to reflect about what we were fighting so hard against, we could probably have started the movement that changed the world. I met many unique, articulate, intelligent people with the potential to be our generation’s greatest teacher, lawyers, politicians, and role models, if only they’d been willing to apply themselves. It saddens me to admit that we truly were America’s wasted youth. Indeed, we clashed so forcefully against society that we couldn’t step back far enough from the battlefield to see what the war was really about.
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guest author: Fay in Discarded Lies:
Lest We Forget
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.



We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

–Lt.-Col. John McCrae

11 November 2008 is the 90th anniversary of Armistice Day. At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, we remember them.

Here is how Canada marks the day: Day of Remembrance.

The company I work for started a "Company Name Here" Remembrance site which any employee can contribute to by way of stories of military service. This year I submitted a piece about my father-in-law.

I am astounded by the dedication and service of so many of my work colleagues and their families. Some of their stories are literally mind boggling; like the 23 year old Major who was decorated with the Victoria Cross (the highest military honour in Britain) and the Military Cross. He died at age 23 during WW1.

Both Matt and I felt something in our eyes after reading the story of this young man:

"In July 2006, my daughter Martina was engaged to be married to Justin Patton, an American. The attached photo is of my daughter and Justin at the time of their engagement. At the time, he was a Private First Class in the US Army's 1st Cavalry Division based in Fort Hood Texas. In October 2006 Justin was posted to Taji, Iraq, just to the northwest of Baghdad. During the next few months, the seriousness of the situation became clear as the battle reports would sometimes arrive in our home in the middle of the night on my daughter's cell phone. This also brought increasing concern as the fighting seemed to be intensifying with the US troop surge in Baghdad.

On February 17, 2007 our worst fears became a horrible reality. Justin was killed in action in a suburb of Baghdad by a sniper. He was not my son, but still I have no words to describe his loss or the pain my daughter feels. My heart still aches for my Daughter, and for Justin's family in Michigan. Justin was 24 years old. We will never forget."



Another one of my colleagues served in Rwanda:



I had served on 2 peacekeeping missions. In 1993 I served in Cambodia for 7 months where I was involved with organizing and executing free elections for Cambodians as well as assisting in the removal of land mines left by decades of war.

I also served in Rwanda in 1994 during the genocide. During my six months in Rwanda I took part in providing humanitarian relief for hundreds of thousands of refugees displaced from Rwanda and surrounding countries. I also took part in the gathering and transporting of war criminals for the local authorities as well as providing security within Rwanda for those who needed it.

In 1998, I took part in the Swiss Air Recovery in Peggy's Cove, NS.



These are some of the many stories of service and sacrifice. I thank them all.

They Shall not grow old
as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them
Nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun
and in the morning
we will remember them.

–R.L. Binyon


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guest author: joem in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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guest author: Dances With Typos in Discarded Lies - Hyperlinkopotamus:
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