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Sunday, February 6, 2011

History, as she is wrote . . .

People ask me if I'm a veteran and I proudly acknowledge that I served our nation as a member of the US Army from 1957 to 1959 at Brooke Army Hospital, Ft. Sam Houston, Texas.

"Brooke Army Hospital? Wow! That must have been interesting," they say. "What did you do?"

"Oh," sez me, "I did autopsies."

"Really? I didn't know you were a doctor."

"Oh, I'm not," I say, "I just liked to cut up dead people."

"Wow! I didn't know you knew how to do that!"

"Well, it was pretty much on-the-job training. They give you a scalpel, scrubs, a face-mask, some drills, a bone cutting saw, and you're on your own."

"How did you learn to diagnose the cause of death?"

"That was the easy part," I tell them., "Death is always caused by heart failure. The heart stops pumping, you're dead. Doesn't matter if you've been shot, or hit by a car, or die of so called 'natural causes.' At some point in time the heart stopped pumping. Congestive heart failure is all I ever had to write."

"How long did you do autopsies?" they asked me.

"A couple days," I tell them. "I gag at bad smells, like when I have to clean up after a dog or cat. That didn't work too well in a morgue.

"The Army thought my talent and skills just might lie in a different direction. So they made me Entertainment Director for the base. I put on stage shows, talent shows, took patients on bus trips to picnics, fishing, shows in downtown San Antonio. It was a tough life. Whenever I'd put on a talent show at night I got to sleep in the next morning, right through inspection. Wasn't all that unusual. A number of fellas in my barracks worked the night shift on medical wards. Difference was, they had to work all night in order to sleep through morning inspection, I just had to work my shows for a couple of hours.

I liked this work so much that I stayed in 'show business' when I got back into civilian life. Worked in radio for 27 years and loved it. Saw a lot of the world on someone else's nickle, was paid way more than I was worth, and had a pretty comfy job.

Along the line I owned and operated a fishing/boating resort, a beach resort, and published a weekly newspaper for about 10 years.

And all that started with a two year hitch in the Army in San Antonio, Texas".

"And by doing autopsies," they reminded me.

"Nah, I lied about the autopsies," sez me. "Everything else is true.

I'm presently planning on moving to Washington, D. C. President Obama has tapped me to be in charge of Defense. When I finish with Defense, he wants me to be in charge of DeRoof.,"

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