Sunday, April 17, 2005

Bahbah Wahwah runs wild through J-Land

So it seems there is this interview thingy making the rounds through J-Land. I first happened on it at Phinney's (no link 'cause she's private) and thought what the heck. Interview me!

So here goes, starting with the rules because every game has got to have them you know.  Leave me a comment saying “interview me”. The first five to leave a comment requesting to be participants will be interviewed. I will respond by asking you five questions. You will update your blog/site with the answers to the questions. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions. (Write your own questions or borrow some) Fun and easy right?
1.  You spent a number of years in the Military.  What was the scariest time or event for you personally while you were a soldier?

It occurred at Basic Training. Part of the requirement for graduation is to scale a 40 foot wooden tower and repel down it. I am deathly afraid of heights! I hemmed and hawed all day long occupying myself with other activities like traversing rope bridges and cargo net ladders hoping that no one would notice that I had yet to repel down the tower. It was getting to the end of the day and I ran into my drill sergeant. "Have you been up the tower yet, Private?" He barked in his grisly, endearing way. "No Drill Sergeant." I squeaked in my weasel, please don't make me do it but I can't lie to you way. "Well, private. What are you waiting for? We have to clear out of here soon. Get up that ladder over there ASAP!" So off I went to face my demons.

Scaling the ladder alone had me shaking in my boots. The steps were positioned far enough apart that you had to hoist yourself up each rung. But, I pushed through and made it to the top. At the top, there were drill sergeants who checked out your rigging and guided you through the process. I was all set to go when the bulldog of a drill sergeant barked at me “What are you supposed to do now private?" I think he was losing his patience with me. He barked "stick your head over the edge and let 'em know you're coming private," he screamed in my face. Rattled and flustered, I immediately did what he said then took a step back from the edge. About that time, the drill sergeant began screaming hysterically in my face - something about what the hell was I doing as he looked down at where my hand had a death grip on his forearm. I followed his eyes down. It was then that I realized what I had done and jumped back, releasing my grip as he continued to bark orders at me to get my act together and swing my legs out over the edge.

Finally in the position of the "L" with my toes clutching a ledge of only a couple inches the drill sergeant told me to start my way down. I began tip toeing down. Apparently, that wasn't fast enough for him though! He began barking at me to "Bounce Private!" I looked at him like he was crazy but attempted maybe a three inch bounce then continued my tip toe down the wall. "No Private! Like a Basketball!" He hollered as he started whipping the rope that I was gliding down. Scared to death I gave a push off from the wall as instructed but lost my "L" positioning and SMACK came slamming into the wall with my body. Ouch! I got back into position and began tip toeing back down the wall. But, noooooo, that wasn't good enough. He continued to bark the bouncing orders. Somehow I made it to the bottom in one piece and no worse for the wear. But, the object of the course is to get a troop to overcome their fear of heights. Sorry to say, it didn't work on me. I'm still scared to death and can't believe I made it through even now so many years later as I think of it.

2.  Out of all the many places you've lived, where has been your favorite, and what made it so?

That's a tough one. I like Florida a lot. Mostly because of the beach and the laid back lifestyle of a beach community, but I'd have to say that San Antonio was my favorite. I liked the diversity of the area and the people. San Antonio has the amenities of a large city but with a small town atmosphere. I built a great life there for myself and still have dear friends there.
3.  Did you have a nickname as a child, (spill it!) and does anyone still call you by that name? 

Ha, ha, ha. That's easy! It was and is Robbie. My given name is Roberta. But, I've been called Robbie since I was born. I like it better than Roberta. I can't even identify with the name Roberta. It's not me. I'm Robbie.
4.  You are given a chance to take a cruise around the world.  ALL expenses paid.  Cannot bring a friend!  However: you'll be gone one year and your job will NOT be waiting for you when you return.  Do you go?

Nope! I love my job and the company I work for. I've worked enough places in my life to know that this kind of job and company are far and few between. They pay me well enough that I can save up and take a short cruise anywhere I want, if I want. So why throw it all away? A year is a relatively short amount of time compared to the years ahead of me. If something like that is meant to happen it will when the timing is right. But, it's not right - right now.
5.  What is the food you would never EVER eat, no matter how hungry you are??

Liver. Definitely! I can't even swallow the crap. My gag reflex kicks in and it won't go down.


bridgetteleigh75 said...

Phinney did you proud...these are some great questions.  And you're right...Robbie suits you MUCH better.  =)


sistercdr said...

Oh, I can see you on the tower, now.  When I rappelled, it was through a ROTC department wanting people to sign up, so they made it fun.  I tiptoed halfway down and then got the bounce thing going, but I didn't have anybody yelling at me.  I loved seeing you know the real value of your job.  So many people don't have what you do with their work, and I'm proud of you for appreciating it.

ryanagi said...

Oh man...that tower would have me freaked out too.

coy1234787 said...

Hi Robbie great interview.
    I so remember the first time I repelled down our 4 story building at the airport when I was in Civil Air Patrol as a kid. It was a little scary but everyone else was doing it and I just told myself, "if they can do it, I can do it," and I did.
    That was the first of many trips down the side of the building after scaling up a ladder similar to the one you describe. The fear factor is probably much less intense when you are 14! Oh, did you have to do the hand over hand thing on a rope crossed over a huge lake or something? That was almost as much fun as survival missions in the Everglades.
     What the heck, interview me if you like, I'm just glad that you are back!

                                  *** Coy ***

rollinghillsides said...

oh my, very interesting!   that sergeant could've beat me to shreds, he still couldn't make me climb that 40 feet of terror, no way!!  very brave of you!  it amazes me how many great adventures you've experienced in your young life, i've led such a sedentary life (one might even call if boring) ... i'd better get my "butt" in gear, although i'll never "catch up" ....   have a great week, i love that you "love" your work (thankfully, i did too) ....

ksgal3133 said...

Thats one thing that I wouldn't be able to do or have a very hard time with, the tower! I'm afraid of heights,lol   That was one thing Ben loved doing while he was in basic, gotta be a guy thing? lol
ugh liver, can't stand the sight or the smell of it!
My computer works again :)


geminiwilder said...

Great answers Robbie!  Wow, it's fun learning new things about our J-land friends!!  

xo Phinney :)

lisaram1955 said...

I'm with you on the liver.  Maybe, too, on the trip around the world...but not because I love my job so much (don't have one!) but because of the stipulation that you cannot bring a friend.  I would kill for a free world tour, but without a friend (or husband) to share it with, what fun would it be?  Lisa  :-]  

onestrangecat said...

i agree with you on liver.  the thought of it makes me sick.


andreakingme said...

See, this is why I could never, not in a million billion trillion years, be in the Army. Or the Navy. Or any other ... force. (I am Fieval, not Bond. And I don't jump or bounce, unless I'm sitting and I'm excited and I bounce on my buns, dammit.)

Poor Robber Bobber. (New nickname, people!) I wanted to rip that hysterical drill sergeant's head off and poop down his neck. Friggen jerk. Yeah, I know he's only doing what he's supposed to be doing, but sheesh. Oh, well. Not dying on that wall made you that much more interesting!

And ... what the hey. Wanna interview me? (I'm really boring. Not at all exciting happening in MY life right now.)

msyahtzee said...

I love your answers to these questions.  I am with you on the liver.  And I wouldn't take the vacation either, mostly because vacations (for me) are better when shared with someone I care about.  I can't imagine being on one that long by myself.  -Kari

sunnyside46 said...

well,its  good you llived to tell the tale!