Friday, January 11, 2008

Another Brian Update

First of all, Brian is fine. I found it somehow appropriate to write nothing during the moment of prayer pictured, but hadn't counted on scaring the bejeezus out of a few readers, wondering if Brian was the one being prayed for. I modified the title to make it (hopefully) clearer, and write now to ease your wondering minds. I am so sorry.

I spoke to Brian yesterday; he was in good spirits. The workload has eased up for now. He seems to fluctuate between exhaustion and boredom. Our conversation was definitely more upbeat, he being more rested than other times he's called.

It's cold, and they have new uniforms made of Nomex, which is nice and flame retardant, and also breathes. Fabric that breaths: Nice when it's hot. COLD when it's not; the wind whips right through their uniforms. Overcoats are not allowed, any insulating has to be done via layering under their uniforms.

SO. I'll be trekking out to Champaign Surplus tomorrow, to look for black long-johns, for him and his gunner, Steven Moore (pictured below).

I have been instructed to help take care of Mr. PFC Steven Moore (age 20), also; he has apparently saved my son's life more than once, though exact details are not forthcoming. Steven sits on a turret atop Brian's humvee, and, while Brian stays warm inside the truck, Steven is outside, in the wind and cold, for the majority of each mission's time.

When I tell Brian I'm sending him a pillow, it is "send one for Moore, too, he's saves my ass" that he tells me. Enough said, kid. Anyone that saves my kid's life gets pillows and long johns and space heaters, and anything else he needs to be alert and comfy while he's doing it.

Sounds like Brian is acquiring brothers, while he's there, and Moore is one of them.

I personally bonded with Moore, from across the world, when Brian told me that he's terrified of spiders. "Even more than I am," he added.

He cackled maniacally then, telling of a practical joke that he played on him, placing a rubber spider the size of a man's hand just under the 50-cal (that's Moore's gun) on the turret.

Apparently Moore got halfway into that turret one night, and found himself face to face with the hairy thing. "Hold on!" he yelled, "Hold up! Hold on!" Brian innocently responded, " 'Sup, Moore? We gotta roll out!" "JUST HOLD ON!!" he yelled back, trying to decide which direction to head, slowly pulling out his flashlight, to further assess the situation. After another minute, Brian heard "SOMEONE'S GOING TO GET THEIR ASS KICKED!"

Brian laughed, on the phone, and I could hear Moore in the background, laughing also.

E-mails, and MySpace and phone calls are all good...but I can't tell you hearing the sound of my kid laughing lifts my spirits. I can hardly wait til he gets home, and, of course, brings Moore and his wife over for spaghetti.

I will then bond with Moore further by sharing war stories with him: I will regale him with tales of Brian, as a child, placing a hairy rubber spider between the sheets, and re-making my bed, or placing the thing in the silverware drawer, or in the microwave. We will smoke cigars, and drink whiskey, and reminisce: Ahh, how many times did I almost dropped dinner on the floor, mindlessly turning around to put the rice in the microwave.

And Brian. We will make him wait on us hand and foot, refilling our drinks and buffing our nails, and cleaning our ashtrays. I'll start shopping for a little French maid's outfit right now. Paybacks are hell, and we, the Arachnid-ly-traumatized, will seek our revenge.

Ohhh, this is going to be good.


  1. Yay! Brian is fine, it's Friday night and all is right in the world. Hugs to one and all. Have a lovely weekend!

  2. Yay! It IS Friday, yay! Hugs to you and yours too!

  3. I always feel better for you, when you write that you have talked to your son =)

    I'm glad you heard him laughing.

  4. Anonymous5:10 PM

    I heard on the 10 a.m. news this morning that is snowing in Iraq for the first time in memory!

  5. I'll admit I freaked out a little at the photo. I knew it was a photo that he took, but I don't like to think about how close his is to the realities of war. Naive of me - I know. I also like knowing that you have heard from him, it's comforting.

  6. He's scared of spiders and has a weapon that size!

    With long john or vest undergear, look for Merino wool instead of polypropylene. More expensive but a lot warmer and doesn't smell. Probably only in specialist outdoor shops.

  7. marinemom10:12 PM

    So glad you heard from Brian. I can agree with you about his "brothers". Billy has many and I have fed them and sent them socks and homebaked cookies and given them shelter on their cross country treks from Camp P home. My family has become larger because of what my son does and I love them all. So glad Brian has a "brother" who has his back as they say in the Marine Corps.

  8. I smile when you smile. Thanks for sharing the good news.

  9. I'm glad your son is okay. I have to say that he is a cruel cruel man though............putting those fake spiders (shudder) out. And even if HE isn't afraid of spiders I'm not sure how he deals with those dang camel spiders. (shudder shudder shudder) They are freakin' huge and ugly and nasty and mean and scary!!! If you haven't seen them I really suggest that you do NOT google them. I saw them once when one of our parents (I teach elementary) came back from Iraq and brought pictures. He did a presentation for our 4-5 graders. I had to leave the room for a few minutes when he was showing those things. Ack!!! I would freak completely out!

    You revenge does sound sweet indeed! ;-)

  10. Brian's got a great sense of humor. Even while he's waiting on you hand and foot in his little French maid uniform, I bet he finds an opportunity to drop a rubber lobster into the toilet bowl, or leave an OmegaPumpkin on the eye-level shelf in the refrigerator.

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  12. It's great to know that Brian is doing so well and he is living through his experience as his normal goofy self. Thanks for the updates. I only went to school with Brian, but still I always have a sigh of relief to know that he and other soldiers I know over there are still laughing.

  13. Good for you for wanting to take care of the guy who is taking care of your son. You can add me to the "horribly detests spiders" club!

  14. Scared of spiders. How very bizarre.

  15. I read this like 4 times and never commented? Shame on me! So glad he was in good spirits.


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