soldierI was not an easy teenager to raise.

That’s not to say that MTV could have created a reality tv genre around me, but my parents had more than one occasion where they most likely had to supress the overwhelming urge to hit me with their station wagon and swear it was an accident.

I wasn’t “mean spirited” . . . I was just “spirited”. There were many things in the world I was very interested in and none of them were school or curfews or doing what I was told on a regular or even semi-regular basis.

I was irresponsible and unreliable and undeniably fun at parties.

It became clear to my Dad when I was in 12th grade that I wasn’t planning to go to college. It also became clear to him that I wasn’t planning anything at all.  It led to many interesting conversations.

dadch5DAD: What are you going to do for a living?
ME: Start a rock band and go out on tour.
DAD: Are you an idiot?  I’m going to send you to join the army.  

DAD:What are you going to do for a living?
ME: I’m going to write, produce, direct and star in science fiction movies.  
DAD: Are you a moron? I’m going to send you to join the army.

DAD:What are you going to do for a living?
ME: I’m going to create a wildly popular website that specializes in covering Geek Culture.
DAD: That is the dumbest thing I have ever heard. I’m going to send you to join the army.

In hindsight I realize that my father had a much stronger grip on reality than I did although he seemed to think that I was GI Joe material which sadly was not the case either.

Before I say another word – I have nothing but the highest respect for the Armed Forces of The United States of America. My father was a Vietnam vet and I have many relatives who have served with honor and some who continue to do so. I am not saying that I feel I am above it- or that I would not serve if called upon – I am only saying that I am NOT remotely qualified now or then to strap on combat boots and defend a position. Any postition. Except maybe reclined.

Okay – with that said; my Dad used to “threaten” me with the Army on a regular basis. It became like Ralph Kramden threatening his wife with interstellar space travel. “One of these days kid – BAM Right To the Army!”  It was actually funny after a while. Until June 11th 1988.

My Dad worked nights so when word had come that I neglected to go to school for like the 53rd time on June 10th, we had not had a moment to “discuss it”. This was now coming down to the point where it was the “last straw” between us and on June 11th, 1988 we sat outside on the back deck to come to terms.

He was very frank and concerned. I was very cocky and blase’. He yelled. I yelled. He pointed. I counter-pointed. Blood pressures rose.

There was a knock at the gate.

We both stopped our heated “discussion”. Who would be knocking on the gate? Were we so loud that a neighbor had come to see what was the matter? Had we committed the cardinal suburban crime of airing our dirty laundry out in such a way that actually interuppted somebody’s barbeque????

“Get the gate”. I walked over to the gate ready to be emabarassed in front of one of the neighbors – ready to be red faced and offer some lame excuse for our loudness. I was not ready to be drafted.

I opened the gate and was met with an Army Seargant in full dress uniform. He looked me straight in the eyes and spoke with a slight southern drawl.

“Are you Calmixx*?”

My jaw dropped. It had happened. It was now. He had done it. He had said it for years and now it was to be so.

“Yes.” The word didn’t come out so much as it was just mouthed.”

“My name is Seargant Mills of the United States Army and I am here to discuss a future in the Armed Services with you.”

My Father laughed so hard that he fell to his knees. He had not called Seargant Mills, Seargant Mills was going door to door with a list of the Seniors from my High School.

“No thank you sir. Thank you for dropping by.” I slowly closed the gate as the very nice soldier who had no idea why my father was laughing so hard that he was gasping for air tried to tell me about free tuition and seeing the world.

Once the color came back to my face I had to admit that it WAS pretty funny.

I also had to admit that I needed a plan.

Once my Dad finished laughing his ass off he helped me make one.


About calmixx

Calmixx is the Pseudonym of New York Artist/Writer Brian Mc- - HEY wait a minute. Why have a cool Pseudonym if you're just gonna tell people it's a Pseudonym? Yeah you can just call me Calmixx for now. Maybe if we have a third date I'll give up the last name but not without dinner. Check out my silly little blog and let me know what you think. Because I care. I really do. Really. Honest. Sorta.
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3 Responses to GI No

  1. Karolyn says:

    Great story! What was/is the plan? Are you still working it, even though your Dad has passed?

  2. Jen Currao says:

    This is my favorite so far… Thanks for making me lol into my pillow at 4 am so as not to wake my husband during my latest bout of insomnia 🙂


  3. Loved this one. Now, had you gone into the Army..that would be quite the story too.

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