1893 Grand Exhibition. The world's intro to PBR, hot dogs, ice cream cones and the Ferris Wheel.

1893 Grand Exhibition. The world's intro to PBR, hot dogs, ice cream cones and the Ferris Wheel.
A view through the wheel. The black, horizontal line is the axle, the single largest forging to that time.
"I don't make hell for nobody. I'm only the instrument of a laughing providence. Sometimes I don't like it myself, but I couldn't help it if I was born smart."

1st Sgt. Milton Anthony Warden.
"From here to Eternity"

Paul Valery

"You are in love with intelligence, until it frightens you. For your ideas are terrifying and your hearts are faint. Your acts of pity and cruelty are absurd, committed with no calm, as if they were irresistible. Finally, you fear blood more and more. Blood and time."

The Wisdom of the Ages

"When a young man, I read somewhere the following: God the Almighty said, 'All that is too complex is unnecessary, and it is simple that is needed',"

Mikhail Kalashnikov
"Here lies the bravest soldier I've seen since my mirror got grease on it."

Zapp Brannigan

Monday, October 29, 2007

Candy Ass


This video has been bandied about on the web for almost a month now and I've finally decided to address some things that the knee-jerk folks just aren't paying attention to.
First of all: The bar owner, complexion and ethnic heritage notwithstanding, is an American citizen. A citizen who would've been entirely within his "rights" to take old Jim to the cleaners, baseball bat to the back of the head, that kind of thing. Instead, he chose what is always the wiser choice. Good man.
Secondly: Flag laws are not "Federal laws". It's a group of "recommended protocols", nothing more. If they were laws, I'd like to bust all the "patriots" with the flags in front of their houses that are fading to a heart-stirring pink, grey and...blue-grey. Aren't those things supposed to come in at night?
If you want to chase the "Jim Broussard" rabbit trail a bit farther you'll find a radio interview with some local (Reno), neo-con talking head. Contained in same is this little tidbit: Jim served in the Army in '72 and '73. First off, a two year enlistment? That's not long. What kind of discharge? Was he reserve? What?
I first found this vid on the blog of this racist moron who entitled the post "God bless this man".
Now I'm not out to piss on any blessings of the Lord that might be coming Jim's way. God may think this was way cool. I can't speak for Him. All I've got is my opinion (which are like assholes etc.).
On another site, a forum which dealt with this vid, much comment was given to Jim's supposed status as "...a man who's seen combat" and why the sight of Old Glory being so disrespected rankled him so.
News flash: I joined the Navy in '72 (served my full four years minus 1 1/2 hours - I guess I could have stuck around to actually give my last full measure but I skipped out the moment the Yeoman said "That's it. You're separated from the Navy". It's a shame I live with.
My point is this: The draft was done away with in January of '73, so the movement of troops relative to that portion of SE Asia was away from Vietnam.
So...Jim was a peacetime soldier. No shame in that. I was a peacetime sailor (Seabee - it's an important distinction) and later yet I was also a peacetime soldier. But, even so, I would never have vocally "gone public" as a veteran, because that implies "combat veteran" which I aint - and I've too much respect for those that are, to catch a ride in their parade.
Last, and the real point of this mean-spirited tirade is this: In the film, idiot Jim, stumbling over his words, stated he used "a knife from the U.S. Army" to rescue our flag from disgrace.
Okay, a subject near and dear to my heart, the M2 USMC Fighting/Utility knife. The knife that the brainwashed call a "Kabar" after the guts-ball, pretend-wild-west "branding" given it by its maker, The Union Cutlery Co.
This is my new purchase: A Camillus M2.
As stated earlier, Camillus (my favorite knife company - sadly, now defunct) made the first M2's issued in the War as well as the greatest number of them. As opposed to the other five makers - one of which was the Union Cutlery Co.
I didn't buy my knife from the folks linked to. The people I bought from don't have any more... nor do those above.
Camillus, America's oldest knife-maker was done in by Kabar and their ilk so their "genuine" M2's are going to be hard to come by in the future.To the left, the reason I love Camillus. On the right, the Camillus TL-29 (Military, Electrician's Knife) that I was given during my first shift at the seawater desalination plant at McMurdo Sta. Antarctica, October, 1974 (Veteran Jim had been discharged by then. Fancy that)
It's got a funky "clip point" which I ground onto it with the bench grinder at the plant, an action I think now was somewhat silly but ... I was 20.
In any case, the old warhorse served me for 20 years until, lanyard loop gone overboard, the blade sharpened narrow and sprung in the hinge, I retired her and bought another.
I went to a local "Cutlery Retailer" and told the man "I want a carbon-steel, Camillus TL-29". It had to be ordered - not a big inventory turnover on these - but I got it...for $14.95.
Lost that one at Home Depot. Bought another which is the one pictured to the left (in the center is my bench-knife - not germane to the issue).
In short, Camillus made inexpensive, reliable, no-bullshit knives.
On the subject of bullshit: Back to Jim. On the forum aforementioned, "Arthur's Hall of Manly Overcompensation" one comment was that it would have been more appropriate had Jim used a "Marine Corps Kabar".
Well, genius, if you'd looked, you'd have noticed that that's exactly what he used - except; it's one of the 51 (!!) different "commemorative" (read "Franklin Minty") and otherwise pimped-out "editions" of the humble M2.
You can see them in all their candy-assed glory here - for $20 to $30 more than I paid for mine. or, you can go the long-dollar and get the "Presentation Grade" whatever the hell that means.
Bottom line - and the end of my "Fuck the Union Cutlery Co." diatribe - is this:
Kabar hasn't had a contract to supply the U.S. Government with anything since WW2, and only started making M2's again in 1975. And yet now they're dining out on a reputation enjoyed by these knives that was largely built by other makers.
And, Jim, in case you ever read this - if you indeed can read - the M2 was never an Army knife. The Navy and the Marine Corps are the services it was contracted for. Just because Union Cutlery Co prints something on the blade don't make it so. What if they'd written "Birth of our Lord and Savior commemorative 'Kabar'"? Really, this is just marketing. Grow up.
So, "Kabar is candy-assed - just like Jim. Anyway, to get the taste out of my mouth after having had to address so much gratuitous horseshit, a few photos from an earlier post of "Theater Altered" M2's (real ones).

8 comments:

bob r said...

First off, a two year enlistment? That's not long. What kind of discharge? Was he reserve? What?

Don't know a thing about Jim, but two years was a standard enlistment at that time. It changed to three years a little later (when I joined in Sept. 1975 it was three years).

You really shouldn't imply that there is something "wrong" with a two year enlistment in that time frame.

Oliver Hart-Parr said...

In the Navy, 3 or 4 years was standard. Never meant to imply there was anything dishonorable about old Jim's service, just that there aint much of it. I think it's tacky to trade so heavily on two years of your life that happened 35 years ago. Especially from a guy who in all liklihood thinks John Murtha is a coward.
And thanks for the advice but I'll imply what I want and you're welcome to infer from that.
"When I'm writing, I'm the captain of my ship"
Charles Bukowski

Assrot said...

Great blog. I just ran across it from a link on another blog. I like your style and I definitely like your content. I'll be back if you don't mind.

Some folks don't like my blogger name so the ban me. It's an old nickname from when I was a kid. I'm from Georgia and had a very strong southern accent back then. When I would say "That's Right" people said it sounded like I was saying assrot so I got the nickname for several years.

Nowadays I just use it because it is unique and it reminds me of the good old days. The few friends I have that are still alive still call me Assrot to this day.

Later,
Joe

Oliver Hart-Parr said...

Assrot,
You're my man. The name's fine. Hell, everything's fine. Anyone who puts up with my horseshit is welcome.

Assrot said...

Thanks buddy. I'm mostly a reader (lurker) of good blogs. Your's impressed me so I may comment now and then. I find very few that impress me. Most people just sling shit against the wall on their blogs and hope someone will read it.

andy sparrow said...

Great on all points Dan. Pisses me of that I couldn't watch the vid though. At least the guy didn't give the usual SEAL spiel I guess. What was the "offender" doing with the flag?
The electrician's knife is still in the system, will drop one by next time I'm out River Road way.

Ghost said...

I agree with the ass, you have one of those rare attitudes that make men say, "I hope I'm that cool when I'm old."

On the other hand, I didn't know Camillus was out of business in till I read this post... great, thanks for killing my mood for the rest of the day!

Bubbacupcake said...

Well said. How many of your average "born American" citizens know the rules of flag etiquette anyway? And this poor Mexican guy makes an unknowing blunder only to have a "True American" descend upon his buisness and vandalise his property.

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