color: SOME SOLDIER'S MOM: Zeroing Up... and Other Thoughts

Monday, May 02, 2005

Zeroing Up... and Other Thoughts

Had a two hour drive today… here’s a smattering of things that I thought about when I wasn't singing along to the radio...

Zeroing Up
When a soldier calibrates the scope (sight) on his weapon, it's called “zeroing up”. They correct even the smallest discrepancy because as the distance to the target increases, so does the error -- and the bullet misses its destination. I don’t know why I began thinking about that, but I mused that it was probably a good lesson to take to every day life: we should all “zero up” once in a while. Make sure we're on track… lest we miss our target (goal) altogether. In our professional lives, our personal lives, in our faith and in our relationships.

Every Relationship Has A Price
I have a theory that every relationship in life – with your parents, your children, your spouse, your friends -- has a price; you just have to be willing to pay the price. And if you’re not willing to pay the price, then the relationship has to change or end. Take for example, your relationship with your mother (or MIL) -- you have to be willing to stay on the phone with her and listen to her tell you the story of Uncle Hal’s 1955 appendix surgery one more time… or the details of all her current ailments after her trip to the doctor, or how appalled she is that you “allowed” your child to mutilate his/her body with a tattoo (sigh). It’s the price of your relationship. Your best friend is late for everything. It annoys the hell out of you, but she’s otherwise a great friend. Tolerating her tardiness is the price of your relationship. Now, if it comes a time that the lateness really starts to weigh on you, you have to decide whether the price of the friendship (always being late to everything) is too dear. Once you accept that IT (whatever IT is) is the price of the relationship, it sometimes helps bring things into perspective and makes it a bit easier to accept flaws. The price of my relationship with my soldier son (as with each of our children) is total commitment and unconditional love. Oh, and weekly care packages.

Running Away
Since when is an adult running away from a wedding a criminal matter? Yes, the phone call claiming that she was kidnapped probably qualifies as filing a false police report… but SHE wasn’t the one that called the cops and said the bride was missing and started the whole search and rescue thing. She bought a bus ticket (not a crime whether it was purchased a week or a minute before she left), she cut her hair (still no crime), she went to Vegas (nope, still not a crime). To hear the MSM talk about it, “We have breaking news!! She may have bought the bus ticket a week in advance!” To the MSM and the police in Georgia: It is not a crime to plan or take a trip and not tell anyone where you’re going! Why she just didn’t call her parents or the cops back in Georgia and tell them she was safe and stop looking and why she had to make up the kidnap story is beyond me, but it’s not a crime to not call home when an adult leaves of their own free will. Mostly, everyone should just leave this poor confused young woman and her family alone. Terrible way to get your 15 minutes.

Of all the colors in the universe, who do you suppose picked red, yellow & green for stoplights? And while we’re on the topic, who do you think thought up the idea of double yellow (solid), and intermittent road stripes to indicate whether you can pass?

Once they invented hotels and room service, who thought camping should still be called “fun”?

God’s Way of Telling You That You Have Too Much Money
Hummers. (Not the little ones.)
Are There Stars In the Sky?
In my most recent letter to my son, I wrote: “We can see a lot more stars here at night than in New York -- but I hear that you can see so many more there because there is no light pollution there… no lights at night... When I am looking at the stars here I wonder if you've looked at the same stars today.” I am hoping he looked up at the stars and remembers that I am looking, too. Sometimes, though, just looking at the stars makes me get teary-eyed because he is ½ a world away from us looking at the sky…

The Meaning of Life
The Meaning of Life is… Family. All the good, the bad, the fun, the worry, successes, failures, the love. It’s all about the love.
Copyright 2005. All rights reserved.


At 5/03/2005 3:14 AM , Blogger DangerGirl said...

Loved this post...and your blog in general....

I agree with your insight, and you have an ability to express yourself with a sense of humour, but with deep meaning.
Nice talent!

As for the Runaway Bride....yeah they do have the right to prosecute her for both a state and federal offense. And frankly THEY SHOULD.

Her parents issued $100k reward money which should be donated to the city for the expenese incurred in their search for her.

She is a lost confused soul, whose family was too self obssessed, or in major denial, to notice and to take action.

She DELIBERATELY planned to runaway, purchased the ticket, removed her engagement ring, CUT her hair to avoid being recognized. THAT MEANS SHE KNEW PEOPLE AND THE POLICE LOOKING FOR HER.
Every bus depot has tv screens running latest news...and as does MOST of Vegas. Her BS about not knowing anyone was looking for her is just that! BS.
And she calls home and claims to be kidnapped, making up descriptions of people who fit the prototype of kidnappers. How can you blame her fiance for calling the police? Sure he did...wouldnt you call if your loved one was missing?

Sorry...she wanted her 15minutes of attention from her self obssessed family...and she got. But she also got attention from the country. It was unfair, unwarranted, stupid and selfish. And her actions had effects that resonated beyond her! She barely apologized to the city of Duluth, to the police, being too contrite. She owes us ALL an apology.

A University student who faked her own kidnapping has been paying restitution to the city, and been put on a years probabation. I think thats fair.

I think this Runaway Bride needs to ante up...and she and her family need to seek psychological counseling IMMEDIATELY.

Great blog, you have a new fan.

At 5/03/2005 4:50 AM , Blogger Call Me Grandma said...

I love the post also. You have a special gift with words. I wish I had that gift.
I am sick of the runaway bride story. It is not a crime to deliberately plan to run away, if you are a single adult. I think sometimes, if we had the guts, we would all run away from the stresses of life. Maybe it is not guts, but responsiblity to others that keep us from running
I do not think this is breaking news. I think it is a pitiful attempt to make it a breaking news story.

At 5/03/2005 5:39 AM , Blogger Stacy said...

You are great with words. Hope you have a great day.

At 5/03/2005 11:31 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Discovered your blog after the mention on MSNBC. Really enjoy the way you write. My marine son returned from Iraq in September so I really emphasize. He is now already deployed again to Okinawa, such is the military life. Bless all of our military.

At 5/03/2005 7:48 PM , Blogger StoicMom said...

Well, from looking at the previous comments, it looks like another "meeting of the Moms". I agree with you about the runaway bride. I don't think she owes anybody anything. The only reason this is even a story is because 24 hour TV has to fill that time with something. Next week it will be an Amish man that lost his temper. Oohhhhhh.

I like your random thoughts. Keep on typing and we'll keep on reading.

At 5/04/2005 8:07 PM , Blogger Rachelle Jones said...

you were really thinking this am. Love your daily posts, and your unique perspective.

At 5/26/2005 5:15 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree totally that currently it is not a crime for an adult to runaway, plan to runaway, cut your own hair, travel on a bus ticket to another U.S. city purchased weeks ahead of time. Ever heard of pre-meditated dissapearing being on the law books? I never have. I also agree that it is a crime for filing a false police report about her being kidnapped and she should be punished for that and she should pay for any costs that occurred related directly to her claim of fake kidnapping only AFTER she committed the crime of making that false claim of being kidnapped. Anything that the police did before that bogus call was not her direct responsibility or against any law so how can she be held responsible for what the police and feds ordered their staff to do? She is responsible socially and morally but not legally.

Don't you think that the police in Georgia ramped up the search for Miss Wilkins since CNN and the rest of the news stations were giving it so much coverage and rich Mr. Mason and Miss Wilkin's parents were putting on the pressure on the police to look more diligently for her (raising the costs of the search)? More than likely they would have just thought it was cold feet or been disinteredted in the story if there were not so much "news" coverage and Mr. Mason and Miss Wilkins were both poor uneducated persons. We live in a day and age of Petersen and Hacking stories. News agencies seem to be just hoping for another one. The facts are that Miss Wilbanks did not stage her dissapearance, no ransom note, no blood or struggle, no false filing of insurance so no crime did she commit until the bogus call of kidnapping.

Some people said she had to have watched TV, she knew what she was doing, she knew people would be looking for her... Are you a psychologist or psychiatrist, were you with her? Then if she knew all that then why didn't she bring more money to keep on running longer? Why didn't she have a good rational plan? She should have known she was going to run out of money and then she would have to deal with what may come and she would have worked up a believable story to say why she was missing.

The fact of the matter is from all of her actions is that she wasn't being rational and irrational people do some really weird stuff. . Again, making a false police report is a crime but if you want to charge people with a crime for dissapearing on purpose and make him or her responsible for any search costs incurred then CREATE that law or ask your legislators to do so and maybe call it the Wilkins law.

Personally, I think she's a loon but most of us are at times. Miss Wilkins just acted upon her looniness while the rest of us try to convince ourselves we aren't loons. Cheers.


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