Simi Valley Sophist

The Simi Valley Sophist ruminates on all manner of topics from the micro to the macro. SVS travels whatever path strikes his fancy. Encyclopedia Britannica: Sophist "Any of certain Greek lecturers, writers, and teachers in the 5th and 4th centuries BC, most of whom travelled about the Greek-speaking world giving instruction in a wide range of subjects in return ..."

Location: California, United States

Retired: 30years law enforcement-last 20 years Criminal Intelligence Detective.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

An Old Warrior’s Choice

I have a life-long friend, I’ll call him Flounder, because that is his nickname. Flounder and I played high school football together and did a bit of SCUBA diving on weekends.
He picked-up that nickname somewhere in his globe trotting life in the U.S. military; a career that began in Special Forces and finished with flying fighter jets. He had a truly adventurous professional life, the likes of which are only fantasy for most males.

Flounder is now retired and spends half the year in Germany and the other half in the U.S. He writes well, and I’ve been trying to get him to share his experiences and insight with the world via a blog. While Flounder is resisting me, he has previously mentioned the possibility of writing a book. I have not been successful on the blog idea as he prefers to spend his time traveling and keeping in touch with a group of people that he has deemed his “Dirty Dozen.” Most of us do not know each other. Apparently, we are a cobbled together group of people that Flounder has accumulated over a life time.

Recently I wrote to Flounder,

I don't want to be too pushy, but to my mind this is what you should be weighing in on: Col. Snodgrass and the limited war doctrine. See my blog: Limited War Doctrine-What Will You Do, Democrats?
Flounder replied,

…my not discussing the issue (is)…simply weariness. First …, all the political BS (war included) has me worn out trying to keep my eye on the ball. Secondly, my opinion isn't worth much, if not well thought out or informed. Otherwise, it becomes like everyone else's, sinky. …I'm tired & retired… Besides the battle for the hearts and minds of the public (American or otherwise) is something I no longer really concern myself with because [1] I concern myself only with those I care for and respect, and [2] I seldom waste my time with that which I have no influence over.
There is so much left to do in life, and so little time to do it that I don't want to waste any of it tugging on superman's cape and/or pissing into the wind.

Referring to the cartoon depicting the reaction of a mouse to an eagle that was about to end the mouse’s life, I wrote to Flounder:

I prefer the mouse flipping off the eagle just as the talons sink into his body. Dieing as a warrior is far preferable to dieing as a sheep. Either way you’re dead, but it's how you go out.

After spending a career in law enforcement, boy can I relate to Flounder’s position. But, I’m not really there yet. Perhaps what I wrote my friend will explain.

A person can pretty much be what he wants to be, and he can check out of the Sheepdog fraternity any time that he wishes. A U.S. Marine is quick to remind you that there are no ex-Marines, only former Marines. That’s because it’s a state of mind. I think the same applies to all Sheepdogs. Perhaps it’s a matter of motivation. Today my four year old granddaughter was in my arms in the Y swimming pool. She gives me a reason to keep fighting in any way that I can. I am quickly coming to the end of my professional gun toting days. But, as long as my mind works, I can write. I raise my middle finger to the forces that want her dead.

Whatever my friend chooses is alright with me. He is my friend, and he has paid his dues and ours many times over.

Thank you Flounder for all that you’ve done and for being my friend.

Previous Postings:
The Ordinariness of a Sheepdog
Why Do They Fight?
A Sheepdog is Returning
The Indecent Sheep Bleat
Are Sheepdogs Born Or Raised?
Thank You Sheep Dogs for our 230th. Birthday—Fourth of July 2006
Sheepdog Blood Leaves Queasy Stomachs