Wednesday, September 12, 2007

September 12th.

And we go back to our lives, already in progress. Back to forgetting. Do you remember where you were on September 12th last year? Any year? September 12th: life happened.

But it was September 11th that finally got me interested politically, (though that 2000 presidential campaign was pretty interesting, I recall.). I've always been curious, about nearly everything I suppose, but after 9/11 it seemed to me we were suddenly living in historic times. How exciting!

I guess every century or decade is defined by something. The 20s -they were "Roaring" right? And then the 30s -Depression. 40s -WWII. 50s -Atomic fears and the Cold War. 60s -duh. 70s -umm... disco? Star Wars? 80s -bad hair and cocaine on Wall St. 90s -Clinton. The 90s, that's a good one. What happened in the 90s? Bring back the 90s! Boy, those were the good old days... Young, single, wasting time and money. Generation X. (Oh, brother.)

Enough of that. My friend over here is right. I don't mean to be all-political-all-the-time either, but Petraeus came back with his report and it's Sept. 11th, so the current events are kind of ruling the day.

General Petraeus' report is very positive, if you've been paying attention. He says he believes it is possible to deal a severe blow to Al Qaeda, assist in installing a viable democracy in Iraq, and building an ally in the Middle East. He's no dummy, either, as he admits it will take a lot of commitment on America's part, and it will be a tough haul, but he believes it is possible. This is the guy everyone voted that they wanted to hear back from (including the democrats) so I believe him, and not the MoveOn crowd. Good news for America. Great news, actually.

David Petraeus is a fascinating guy. He is super smart, graduated in the top 5% of his class at West Point and went on to get his masters and PhD at Princeton, among other things. If you've heard him speak, you know that he doesn't sound like a military commander at all, but a sharp, sensitive, polite guy. Like your girlfriend's Dad.

Interestingly, in 1991 he was accidentally shot in the chest during a live-fire exercise when a soldier tripped and a rifle discharged. He was taken to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Tennessee where he was operated on by future Senator Bill Frist. The hospital released him early after he did fifty push-ups without resting, just a few days after the accident. A few years later, he broke his pelvis while skydiving when his parachute collapsed at low altitude. He has been described by his subordinates as "the most competitive man on earth" and "phenomenal at getting people to reach their potential". Those are high compliments. Yes, I agree with you, put that ass-kicker in charge!

So I have some confidence about the future. Let's just get everybody out of the guy's way so he can work. By the way, more people will die. It's war. But we have the greatest fighting force on the planet and they are all volunteers! So unless you can name a country more deserving, America always wins. Give the soldiers whatever they need to finish the job, and godspeed.

I thought I said enough of that? Oh, well. Today was a little rough. The orders were screwed up, it was a lot of driving, and this evening the kid was inconsolable, crying to no end. (Congressional democrats would think I was refering to American soldiers in Iraq, there. But, no, it's just my humdrum SoCal life.) What do you do? Just put the kid to bed, I guess.

Another night with a glass of wine, sitting in front of the AppleTV screensaver. It's the damnedest thing. I recently had the computer upload ALL the old photos (previously, it was just this year's) so it was like watching your whole life slide gently by on the television. It's nice after a rough day. It reminds you that though there are days like this, there will be more days like that. And those will be the ones we take pictures of. The ones to remember.