Not in the clamor of the crowded street, not in the shouts and plaudits of the throng, but in ourselves, are triumph and defeat.--Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

REDIRECT ALERT! (Scroll down past this mess if you're trying to read an archived post. Thanks. No, really, thanks.)

Due to my inability to control my temper and complacently accept continued silliness with not-quite-as-reliable-as-it-ought-to-be Blogger/Blogspot, your beloved Possumblog will now waddle across the Information Dirt Road and park its prehensile tail at http://possumblog.mu.nu.

This site will remain in place as a backup in case Munuvia gets hit by a bus or something, but I don't think they have as much trouble with this as some places do. ::cough::blogspot::cough:: So click here and adjust your links. I apologize for the inconvenience, but it's one of those things.

Friday, April 16, 2004

A Story Worth Coming Off the Bench For

Last night (after an all-day bout with typing with only nine digits) I had more stuff to type up for Oldest for her English class today, AS WELL AS having to help her find a current events news article for Social Studies. This usually takes a while, but looking through the Yahoo! stories, this one popped out immediately as something worth talking about--Kilt-Wearing Marine Plays Bagpipes in Iraq

FALLUJAH, Iraq - Amid the clatter of gunfire and explosions that regularly rock this city, an unexpected sound rises over the front line — bagpipes.

Dressed in Marine fatigues with his gun at his side, 1st Sgt. Dwayne Farr, 36, blows into his set of pipes. The plaintive wail is carried by the wind that whips across this dust-blown, war-torn town.

"Playing on the battlefield — I never thought that would happen," Farr said.

Farr, an African-American from Detroit, was inspired to learn when he saw another player who didn't match the Scotsman stereotype.

"I was at a funeral and I saw a Marine playing the bagpipes, and I thought, this isn't a big, burly, redheaded guy with a ponytail and a big stomach. He's a small Hispanic Marine. I said if he can learn to play the bagpipes, I can learn," he said, chuckling.

When he is not on the front-line, Farr wears a kilt when playing, and some Marines have been skeptical about a member of one of the toughest fighting forces in the world donning what looks like a skirt.

But Farr is unfazed. He's looking for a desert camouflage kilt he can wear in operations like these.

"Kilts are something that fighting men wore many years ago, and we know that the Marines are fighting men. So real men wear kilts. And they are pretty comfortable too," he said.

Among his admittedly limited repertoire is "taps," the tune traditionally played by the military when a service member is killed. Farr has played it several times over the past days in Fallujah.

Marines say the sound of the bagpipes is a morale booster.

"It's something to hear besides the rockets and gunfire," said Master Sgt. Rowland Salinas, 42, from San Antonio, Texas. "It's something that soothes the mind."

Now THAT guy has a pair! The utter incongruity of it all is just so danged...American.

Anyway, since 1st Sgt. Farr is looking for a desert camo kilt, I think I'm going to send this article along to the good folks at Utilikilt to see if they might be able to track him down and fit him out with something befitting him.

Semper Fi, Mac.

[UPDATE--Looks like Miss Juliette found it before me. And seems someone else had the Utilikilt idea, too! Dern it all--this useless finger is slowing me down something fierce!]

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