Thursday, September 17, 2009

Noonan strikes again...

Peggy Noonan, for those of you who don't know, is one of my favorite writers. She was also a speech writer for Reagan. She penned the following after the death of Senator Kennedy (I know, it's been a while, but the internet here is slow, so cut me some slack). I enjoyed it very much, but mostly I was caught by the last paragraph, the way in our current political climate, it seems almost unimaginable now that the level of civility, friendship and genuine caring for one another across party lines was not just acceptable, but the norm. Can anyone else even imagine a scene like this taking place today?

Read here.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Well done Tyler...

It's taken me a while to write about Tyler. Other than Adam, he was the closest friend I've lost. The three of us were in Glee Club together actually, for a brief period, before Tyler quick to move onto better things...he started a one show band at school, which played at the Firstie Club when we were plebes and I wasn't allowed to go watch.

I want to write eloquently about his laugh and smile...about what times we shared and how much I'll miss him, but I can't. Every time I begin to type, I begin to well up and have to stop. I'm in the place for an MI LT to be seen crying over friends.

I look at the picture above and I remember taking my own Firstie Photo. How excited we all were to have all the accouterments of our success...saber, ring, sash, stripes...and how forward looking we were to leaving it all behind to get our single gold bar. Some of us were destined to become great officers, others...not so much. Tyler, we all knew, was in the former category.

We took those pictures, it seemed at the time, to remember a moment when the whole world was ahead of us and nothing could hurt us. When trips to the firstie club, weekends in New York City and a life of adventure lay ahead. Too often, however, it now seems the photos were taken so, when they were needed, they could be dusted off, posted and remembered for who we were in times like this.

I won't write any further. I will say that if you've read my blog over the years, then you have read about Tyler, even if un-named. When I traveled with the Arabic club, he was there...when I went to the Debutant Ball, he was there...for my four years at West Point, Tyler was there. And now...he's gone, and I just don't understand.

Well done Tyler, Be Thou At Peace.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Alexandra Rosenberg

Alex's sister was my classmate who had been in my company for Beast Barracks. A smart, funny girl as well. I was lucky enough to meet Alex last summer when she was at Fort Hood for some training and we were able to float the Guadalupe River together (a favorite hobby of mine...if floating can be a hobby).

I couldn't help but post this...another person I know who is more inspiring and successful than I could ever be. Congratulations to her, one of Glamour Magazine's Top Ten Collegiate Women.

Below is the write-up the Dean (intellectual rock-star he is) posted to facebook:
Our cadets earn recognition across the country and around the world for many different achievements. Recently, Glamour Magazine named Cadet Alex Rosenberg, Class of 2010, one of the Top 10 College Women of the Year. Alex is an amazing cadet and a terrific student -- she is number one academically in her class (of over 1000 cadets), with a Grade Point Average over 4.2. She is majoring in Sociology but is also taking additional courses in Chemistry and Life Sciences to prepare her for medical school, because Alex, who aspires to be an Army doctor, was just recommended for our Medical School Program following graduation.

This is far from the only honor that Alex has earned. Last year she was selected for a Truman Scholarship for graduate studies. Her academic program score, an amazing 4.27, includes two perfect semesters with all A+ grades. Alex has personally tutored other cadets for hundreds of hours in Chemistry, Chinese, and English, and she developed a company-wide tutoring program that helped her cadet company raise their academic standing significantly. She volunteers for Big Brothers and Big Sisters as well as at Tripler Hospital in Hawaii the summer before last, and scored a 353 (on a 300 scale) on her most recent Army Physical Fitness Test. This past summer, Alex spent seven weeks doing volunteer work on Crossroads Africa. It's no wonder that Glamour Magazine selected her for this honor.

Alex is not the first cadet to be selected in this category -- Erica Watson, Class of 2001, was one of Glamour's Top 10 College Women in her senior year. Erica was also selected for a Rhodes Scholarship that year.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Real posting will resume as soon as I'm able to get to a computer more frequently.

Until then, a short note:
I am coming quickly upon a time when I must make a decision about my future, be that in the Army or otherwise. I am, as of now, unsure.

One of my best friends, and his wife, Gosia, are now traveling America and Canada (follow their adventures here I think back to nine years ago when Lee and I met. He was a young 20 yr old from Tennessee and I was similarly naive and from So Cal. Our friendship was unlikely, but more importantly, our futures uncertain. Almost a decade ago, if someone were to tell me I'd be an Officer and Lee would be traveling the world with his Polish wife as modern day vagabonds, I'd probably have laughed.

Life is, to say the least, unpredictable, and if the next decade has as many twists as the last, at least I know it will have been a good ride.