Deep thoughts: Experience Vs Credit/ Perception and expectation

If you can not change your life and your body, how will you ever use your body to manipulate the world around you and have your name remembered?

Click the picture for a quickee of the vacation

I will start with Perception.

There are some things that I feel the need to address because if one person is saying it, there must be others thinking it. What I am talking about is how people have been judging me lately and how I have been judging myself. Someone thought it was a good point to make that I can’t educate other people on how to live healthy when I had a pizza, alcohol and cigars on leave and apparently I had the biggest stomach at the beach according to someone (after a week of drinking in the mountains). All I have to say to that is… nevermind. I have stated before that I don’t train for looks. I train to improve my chances of killing someone before they kill me in combat, to score well on Physical tests in the Marine Corps, and because I have fun doing it. You can judge me by my lack of 6 pack abs or that I don’t have trophy’s stacked in the corner, but day to day I guarantee you can’t keep up with me. I train to improve on myself in all capacities but more than that I do it because the process of improving those capacities is a lot of fun. Testing my body’s limits is always a good time.

On the other hand though, being a role model is something that I was thinking about and even talked to Jess about just before the Leave funny enough. I realize that even though I don’t ask for it, I probably have a lot of kids and people who are influenced by what I do. I had seen this video… that I can’t find right now by strength project on youtube where multi- talented athlete Aresh talks about how he committed himself to a Sober lifestyle and keeps his body clean for both training reasons and more importantly to be a role model to kids coming up. There are too many athletes out there that the kids see in and out of jails and caught screwing up.

I guess with me, I feel like I wouldn’t want a kid to do a lot of what I do anyway other than the way I eat so I feel fine keeping my life, the website, and videos and things on here above a PG13 rating. I do think it is great what Aresh is doing though and I pay attention to how people perceive me. Leading by example is a big one for me (by one I mean pet peave even though I hate that word). On average, I rarely drink, I never smoke, and my eating habits in my opinion based on what I go by is superb for the most part with the occasional restaurant with friends. The only problem is that most of you guys only see me through the internet and don’t see my every day lifestyle. When I do see friends or family it is usually at that restaurant or on leave and I am doing those things like drinking or eating something unhealthy. My view on it is simply that you have to live a little. Don’t judge a book by the tiny writing on the edge of the cover.

On that same note… “Don’t judge a book by the tiny writing on the edge of the cover”, I want to talk about the fact that Credit earned is not Credit given.

When Christopher Columbus told people that the earth was not flat he was heckled because it wasn’t something known and accepted. Isn’t this what’s happening with nutrition? Colleges teach one thing, anyone who says different is heckled because they don’t have a signed piece of paper from someone saying that they learned the thing in college. Is that not the definition of ignorance.

For some reason when someone doesn’t like what I have to say, the argument quickly turns into… Well I learned this one thing in college, or that guy is a heart surgeon so he’s right. He knows more than you about nutrition because he learned about hearts and medicine for a lot of years in college… Give me a break. What you are telling me is that your PE teacher somehow knew more about nutrition than a Doctor who researches the metabolism of the nutrients in your body and is achieving breakthrough studies. The only reason being that You were sitting inside a building that was labeled “college” while you learned this stuff and I wasn’t when I learned mine. Get that weak stuff out of my face.

Stop hiding behind pieces of paper. Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for formal education and training, but it’s not always correct and doesn’t match up to real world experience. Where do you think the ideas come from that translate into the ink in that book you are reading in class?… Real world Experience and research. A guy I know left the Marine Corps a year ago to become a contractor in St Louis doing the same thing he did here. They sent him to a class back here and while here was asked to give the senior technicians a hand working on some servers and possibly learn something. This was a problem they had been troubleshooting for 3 weeks and had no idea on. Thanks to the experience he had here, some common sense, and intuitive thinking Tommy was able to get the server up within 24 hours. The 40 year old senior technician was immediately fired. 22 year old Tommy was given a promotion and a bonus on the spot. The funny thing about it is that Tommy had maybe one certificate from a test he took whereas the Senior Tech had a stack of Certs and plenty of formal training. I think you get the point so I won’t beat it to death.

Expectation

I’ll open up myself for a minute and let you guys read a chapter in my life. Before two years is up I’ll have that huge decision to make again. Those of you that know me have heard me talk about the topic of where to go from here. I get a lot of encouragement from both sides from people that I have a tremendous respect for.

Recently becoming an Officer was a serious thought. There are a few senior Marines now and others from a few years back that I have a great deal of respect for who tell me and told me that I carry myself like an officer and they see it all over me. It is something that I had thought about a lot and still do. Just last month I started putting in the work and getting the package together. When the time came, it got to me writing the letter on why I wanted to do it… There was nothing left and I honestly couldn’t say that it was even something that I wanted anymore.

I chose not to submit the package for a few reasons. For one, Quantico ruined how good I look on paper. The real reason though is that I am not ready to sign another 8 years of my life into contract. A lot has been weighing on my mind with it. When I was being trained for the Sys Admin job I do now just two years ago, About 1 month in I was on the shift and hadn’t been fully trained yet. I came in 2 hours early for a shift for the purpose of learning to do Status reports from a guy and the response I got was “You don’t need to do those yet” and he just left two hours early. Needless to say, withing a day I was put on night shift and had to do the status report. I asked the guy I was relieving how to do one. He pretty much showed me the page. Talked about it a little and said “Look at the previous day’s report and figure out where the numbers come from. I never do them so I don’t know”. This was because the same person would do nights for 6 months to a year at the time. I left my phone in the car that next morning not realizing it (because phones aren’t allowed in our building). It was in the car and was in our apartment sleeping after getting off the 12 hour night shift and resting for the next night shift during the day.

I missed 2 calls during that time and didn’t see anyone to get the message for a day and when I did was given a counseling and threatened to restriction to the barracks (only can leave the barracks for chow and work) for not being able to be reached. They were calling about a slight error on a status report which I had to correct during the day anyway during my 12 (really about 10 and not including sleep time) hours off between shifts. It’s similar to Office space if Bill Lumberg had locked the main dude up in a closet for a month for an error on the TPS reports. That really opened my eyes to the fact that no matter how hard I work and how much I have done it just takes one guy, or one incident, or one miscommunication to have my wife, money, and dignity taken away from me or apparently even food on a ship according to NJP regs. I’ve been serving for more than 6 years now and for that. They’ll give me all this money to sign the paper again and then take away everything that really matters in the world for a missed phone call. I can’t live like that anymore. Of course things here got much worse before they got better. Sleep deprivation and stress are nothing to play around with and caused my altercation with a field grade officer and some staff NCO’s due to a liver condition it caused. You can read about this more in my intro post.

My point being that having the security in knowing that in the back of my mind I can walk away and do something else and I don’t have to live like this anymore would be a great feeling. Serving my country has been the greatest honor in my life. Having my freedoms stripped away in order to do so has been the worst deprivation in my life. I have been playing with the ideas of becoming a personal trainer, Gov contractor, some type of Security job, or possibly a sheriff. On leave recently Jess and I met a sailboat captain and first-mate that pretty much do that and bartending. With that type of job, why would you want to retire or not be at work for that matter? That type of freedom must be awesome.

I feel like now that I have followed the path that I was ordered to follow for long enough and while I still have youth there is more out there. If I want to start or do something great and reach full potential, it will need to be something that I choose to do for no other reason than the fact that I feel passionately that it needs to be done or created. I can’t do that without being held back where I currently am…

To be continued in the next chapter of this journey called life.

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