Wednesday, August 30, 2006

By a Classmate

Twas the night before Thursday, and everyone was tired
The new schedule of calls had everyone caffeinated and wired
Classes were starting to get hard, 09 was getting the blame
For 10 sucking it up at the k-test game
Form-10’s and confinements were already old
For a “more military academy” the wing’s happiness had been sold
On this night however, a feeling began to grow
From all of the 09ers who had been feeling quite low
They looked over their calendars, no, it couldn’t be right
Could it really be that tonight was the night
Tomorrow, they would sing out 1000 days left to go
And everyone would get a free burrito
Tomorrow they would forget all that had made them mad
And they would try their hardest without alcohol to be glad
For in 1000 days they would hear those amazing words
“you are dismissed” and flip USAFA the bird
But tonight however, there was still work left to do
Dear God how am I going to survive 1000 more days in the zoo
The same way I guess, I’ve made it this far
I’ll hope for a D. in Engr Mech cause I’m an academic superstar

Rugby

Today was out first game of Rugby.
We palyed Squadron 2.
That was fun.
I got to inflict some pain.
Just like the Knowlege Bowl,
The other team had already practiced.
So they knew what they were doing.
We didn't have a clue.
We had a few injuries.
One of my freshmen knocked heads real good with another.
Lots of blood.
He's ok though.
No stiches required.
He took it well.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

1000's Night

For those of you that remember 100's Night,
Thursday night is 1000's Night for the class of 2009.
Since this is also a Swing Club night,
This should correspond nicly.
It's not as important as 100's Night,
But it's still cool.

Parent's Weekend

This weekend is Labor Day Weekend.
That means it’s also Parent’s Weekend.
Most of my family will be coming up to visit.
Two of them are staying home to ensure that Sonlight puts up a strong fight in Robotics this year.

The plan is for them to get here a little early and Show up at Swing Club on Thursday.
Then they’ll come sit through a few classes on Friday.
And we’ll have a parade and a squadron BBQ.
And then we’ll spend the weekend in the woods camping.
And boating and dirt biking.
Should be fun.

Knowlege Bowl

We had our first knowledge bowl this evening.
It was our Four Degrees vs Raging Bull Six.
Six had already gotten a chance to practice,
But our 4*’s didn’t have a clue what was going on.
We still won though,
150/105

Euro Fighter

Never underestimate your enemy,
And never overestimate an ally



This is the new Euro Fighter,
Also called the Typhoon.
It’s got almost the same capabilities as our F-22 Raptor,
But at one third the cost.
The reason…
It’s only got most of the capabilities.
Our Raptor has stealth.
I’d say that’s worth the extra couple of million dollars.

Typhoon isn’t as sleek as our planes though.
My Lightning II is much better looking

Friday, August 25, 2006

Swing

The 4*'s have a mandatory dance tonight.
So Swing Club is goin to make an appearence to help teach them.
This should be interesting,
Since only the core of the club is coming out.
So it'll be about 20 of us,
Teaching 700+ of them.
This should be entertaining.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Got Robotics?

Pluto

There are no longer nine planets that orbit our sun.
We are now back down to eight.

In other news,
Our Solar System has been attacked by the Galactic Empire,
The Death Star has begun the systematic annihilation of this system.
Citizens are advised to panic and run wild in the streets.

Just Kidding,
But we are down to eight planets.
Scientists have come up with a new set of standards that a celestial body must meet before being granted Planet status.
And Pluto didn't make it.

The funny part about this whole thing,
Is the way I found out about this,

I was sitting in German Class,
Doing the Language Lab.
I had finished my work 20 minutes early,
So I jumped on the web and watched a recording of the 5’oclock news from Germany.
I was piecing together what they were saying,
When it hit me

Yeah,
I found this out in German.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Skipping Stones

"She told me she loved me again and again ,
Like a stone skipping over water,
And when I believed here,
It sank"

Our English teacher read this this morning.
It made for an interesting conversation.
We talked about what the poet meant by this.
One cadet brought up the point that
"The skipping is the fun part,
After it's over,
You just pick up another stone."
Every one else thought that was funny.

I didn't like the message behind it,
Or the fact that everyone else thought it was humorous.
The world is under the impression that relationships have little or no meaning,
They think they can keep going until they find what they want.

Now…
Pardon my old fashioned thinking,
But here is my opinion.

Relationships are to be more than that.
They are to have a deeper meaning.
God did not create man and woman just to entertain each other,
But to help each other through life.
That means that such a relationship is designed to be long term,
Not the “while I enjoy it” outlook that the rest of the world has taken on.

Other than my immediate family,
I have only one true (human) friend.
His name is Chris.
(He was my roommate over the summer)We didn’t get to be such good friends from just hanging out when it suited us,
We stuck it out and supported each other when the other would have a problem.
I’d listen to him and he would listen to me.
The fact that we have so much in common helps there too.
We’re both Eagle Scouts and we’re both in the class of 2009 up here at USAFA.
We worked together a lot in scouts and we both want to be fighter pilots.
(Even if we can’t agree which plane is better)
We support each other.

I believe that any serious relationship between two people of the opposite gender should be the same.
It should be a long term relationship no matter what trouble comes their way.
This is why the marriage vows include sickness and all that stuff.
It was not designed to be until one tired of the other,
But as long as they both shall live

It’s not like shoe shopping.
You can’t try on five (or 25 for some of you) shoes
And decide which one feels better.

My pastor makes a good analogy when it comes to this.
He says that when you think your ready for a significant other,
Get involved in a ministry that God has called you too,
And run the race,
Then,
Look to your left and right to see who is running besides you.
Then take that person's hand,
And run together

Sonlight Robotics

Monday, August 21, 2006

Rules of Flight

1. Every takeoff is optional. Every landing is mandatory.

2. If you push the stick forward, the houses get bigger. If you pull the stick back, they get smaller. That is, unless you keep pulling the stick all the way back, then they get bigger again.

3. Flying isn't dangerous. Crashing is what's dangerous.

4. It's always better to be down here wishing you were up there than up there wishing you were down here.

5. The ONLY time you have too much fuel is when you're on fire.

6. The propeller is just a big fan in front of the plane used to keep the pilot cool. When it stops, you can actually watch the pilot start sweating.

7. When in doubt, hold on to your altitude. No one has ever collided with the sky.

8. A 'good' landing is one from which you can walk away. A 'great' landing is one after which they can use the plane again.

9. Learn from the mistakes of others. You won't live long enough to make all of them yourself.

10. You know you've landed with the wheels up if it takes full power to taxi to the ramp.

11. The probability of survival is inversely proportional to the angle of arrival. Large angle of arrival, small probability of survival and vice versa.

12. Never let an aircraft take you somewhere your brain didn't get to five minutes earlier.

13. Stay out of clouds. The silver lining everyone keeps talking about might be another airplane going in the opposite direction. Reliable sources also report that mountains have been known to hide out in clouds.

14. Always try to keep the number of landings you make equal to the number of take offs you've made.

15. There are three simple rules for making a smooth landing. Unfortunately no one knows what they are.

16. You start with a bag full of luck and an empty bag of experience. The trick is to fill the bag of experience before you empty the bag of luck.

17. Helicopters can't fly; they're just so ugly the earth repels them.

18. If all you can see out of the window is ground that's going round and round and all you can hear is commotion coming from the passenger compartment, things are not at all as they should be.

19. In the ongoing battle between objects made of aluminum going hundreds of miles per hour and the ground going zero miles per hour, the ground has yet to lose.

20. Good judgment comes from experience. Unfortunately, the experience usually comes from bad judgment.

21. It's always a good idea to keep the pointy end going forward as much as possible.

22. Keep looking around. There's always something you've missed.

23. Remember, gravity is not just a good idea. It's the law. And it's not subject to repeal.

24. The three most useless things to a pilot are the altitude above you, runway behind you, and a tenth of a second ago.

New Uniforms

The Air Force is getting new uniforms.
A board is currently looking over the options availible.
A few pictures have been released,
And Airmen across the world have not hesitated to express their opinions about them.
Here are a few...




Sunday, August 20, 2006

I've Been Saying This For a While Now

Watch out for the squirrels

That's a First

That was interesting.
I didn’t notice this going to lunch,
But I saw it coming back.

I was looking up at the mountains,
And I noticed something different atop Spirit Hill.

It would appear that Squadron 11
Has taken Squadron 14’s bathroom
And put the entire thing on top of Spirit Hill.

It would appear the 4*’2 have discovered what spirit missions are.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Rockin at OCF

The OCF leadership decided that the vocals during praise and worship weren't loud enough.
So we got a portable sound system to set up for meetings.
Guess who gets to run said sound system.

Yeah,
Me.
Tried it out at our Saturday meeting tonight.
Works good.

Club Day

Today was club day.
All the clubs set up a table and recruited new Four Degrees.
Most of them had stuff to hand out.

Not Swing Club.
We just had music,
And us.

We played music for four hours.
And we danced the whole time.
Occasionally,
One of us would grab a Four Degree and danced with them.

We had a sweet demo too.
All sorts of cool flips and stuff.

It worked.
We got over 170 sign ups.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Triple Threat

This weekend is our first Triple Threat.
That means we have a SAMI,
(Room inspection)
PAI
(Uniform inspection)
and a parade.

I'm sitting CQ too.
So I'm not gonna get to clean my room until late.
Fun Stuff

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Group One Copmmanders Call

Evening Briefing again.We all hate these with a fiery passion.
So we go,
(Just like any good cadet would)
The Cadet Commander comes out.
Says “(Earth’s Summary: We’re the best Group in the Cadet Wing, Work hard, stay out of trouble)”
(In slightly more words than that)
Than the Air Officer Commanding (AOC) comes out
(He’s the real AF Officer there to keep us in line.
You know how unsupervised college students will act…)
Says “(Earth’s Summary: These are my expectations for the semester)”
(In slightly more words than that)
“Do you think you can handle that”
Group One: “Yes Sir!”
AOC: “What was that?”
Group One: “Yes Sir!!!”
AOC: “Alright than. Dismissed.”
And he walks of the stage.

I’ve never seen anything like that before.
I think I like this new guy.

Than we’re walking bake to our rooms.
There is an enormous black cloud over Fairchild Hall that stretches to the Horizon.
The rest of the sky is crystal clear with a few other clouds in the distance.
The LEWIS (Lightning Emergency Warning Something System) is flashing.
We hear the typical “Lighting is dangerous stay off the Terrazzo”
(In slightly more words than that)
Warning over the big speakers.
Just then,
A brilliant flash of light hits the ground form the enormous black cloud.
(It was a ways off, so we knew we were safe)
Cadets: “Oooh, Aaah…”
And just for kicks,
I scream: “WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE!!!”

Yeah…
Got some good laughs out of that one.

CQ Duty

As Thirdclassmen,
It's our job to man the Charge of Quarters (CQ) Desk from reveille to taps.
We work the schedule out among us so that everyone sits the same amount of time.
Sometimes people can't make they're shift do to some unforeseen event.
If this happens they have to find someone to fill their shift.

I was working the taps shift for someone last night.
An Email went out asking someone to fill their reveille shift.
I looked at the times and saw I wasn’t doing anything so I sent an Email saying I’d do it.
Then I realized,
It was for this morning.
So I was up after taps,
And before reveille.

Fun stuff

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Mitchell Hall

I went to breakfast this morning, As expected. The plates are put on the table upside down, To prevent things spilling on them. I went to my normal spot and turned my plate right side up. There was a rather large piece of chicken stuck to it.
I'm not sure which was more disturbing.
No matter how hard I flung it,
The chicken wouldn't come off,
Or the fact that the last meal we had chicken with,
Was at lunch the day before.

Yeah,
Mitchell Hall food is great.
(That's called sarcasm)

Sunday, August 13, 2006

V: VoilĂ ! In view, a humble vaudevillian veteran, cast vicariously as both victim and villain by the vicissitudes of Fate. This visage, no mere veneer of vanity, is a vestige of the vox populi, now vacant, vanished. However, this valorous visitation of a by-gone vexation, stands vivified, and has vowed to vanquish these venal and virulent vermin van-guarding vice and vouchsafing the violently vicious and voracious violation of volition. The only verdict is vengeance; a vendetta, held as a votive, not in vain, for the value and veracity of such shall one day vindicate the vigilant and the virtuous.
Verily, this vichyssoise of verbiage veers most verbose,
so let me simply add that it is my very good honor to meet you and you may call me V.

Evey: Are you like a crazy person?

V: I'm quite sure they will say so.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Oh Wow...

The Squadron Safety & Security Officer is a very interesting person.
He’s the guy I report too.
He keeps his hair shorter than I do.
Meaning,
He shaves his head.
He just found a new way to take advantage of this intriguing little detail.

He just ran down the hall…
With a plunger stuck to his head.

My Hair Is On Fire

I'm mad.
Really mad.

Some one up on Wing Staff decided that all storage rooms need to up to standards now.
While I usually don't have a problem with this,
We're usually given about two weeks to get that squared away because of the size of the task.
That and all the rules, regulations, and standards are going to change tomorrow when they release the new Cadet Sight Picture (CSP).
So we're going to have to redo them tomorrow.

Since I'm in charge of Safety and Security,
That falls under my jurisdiction.
(Why storage is considered a safety or security matter is beyond me)
So it fell to me to make sure that all three storage rooms for all four classes were in order.

Now…
Normally I don’t mind this kind of thing.
I’m rather used to doing things that seem pointless just because I’m told too.
That and I usually love doing my job and being helpful.
And I’m into security and all that.
That’s why I asked for the job.

But…
The order to get the storage room came out around 1945.
And the deadline was 2100 tonight.
Swing goes from 2000 to 2200.
So by the time I got over the storage rooms done and got over the Arnold Hall,
It was about 2115.
My two hours of dancing got cut too 45 min.

Yeah…
I’m really mad.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

First Day of School

The SMACKs were out calling minutes this morning.
I went out to train them.

The old adage is true.
It truly is more blessed to give than receive.

I love being an upperclassman.

Wednesday, August 9, 2006

Swing Club

Had our first meeting of the year.
Had a blast, as usual.
Nothing like swing dancing to take your mind off your troubles.
(And get a decent workout in)

Monday, August 7, 2006

Wow

CS-10's Chief Clerk just walked in.
(Cheif Clerk is the Highest position a Three Degree can have)
He just asked me to be his assistant.

Yeah...
Wow.
Apparently so big deal Firstee recomended me.
We'll see how this goes.

Please pray for me.
I need all the help I can get.
I know I can't pull this off on my own.

The New Basics

They're here.
Our future Four Degrees are moved into their rooms.
And I've already been working them.

They're setup up three to a room.
But there's only two beds and two desks in their rooms.
So It ook them room to room,
And had them move desks and bed to different rooms.

But I take care of them too.
I walked into one of their rooms,
Threw a bag of chocolate into a box,
And siad, "Don't get caught,
Share those with your classmates."

Moving In

Finally getting around to unpacking my stuff from storage.
Found my CDs.

Nothing beats Christmas music in August.

Sunday, August 6, 2006

Tiger Ten

Finally got moved into my new squadron.
Tiger Ten, Huzzah!
This squad doesn't seem anywhere near as bad as I thought it would be.

All the basics are three to a room.
But they're all in two man rooms.
So I spent the evening moving beds.

And geuss what?...
Super Cadet is in this Squadron.
Yeah...
This should be interesting.

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

SAR 121.5 Mhz ELT Phase Out

The 121.5 Megahertz Emergency Location Transmitter (ELT) used for Search And Rescue (SAR) is being phased out.
It is being replaced with a newer more powerful 406 Mhz ELT.
They put these ELTs in plane and boats and make a smaller version for hikers.
The idea is that when a plane crashes, a boat sinks, or a hiker gets lost the ELT will start transmitting.
The ELT can be activated automatically or manually.

Not that any of you care,
But this is the thing I was trained to go find back when I was in Civil Air Patrol (CAP).
The SARSATs (Search And Rescue Satellites) would pick up the signal and and give us a rough estimate of the location.
The ELT was supposed to be within a 20 mile radius,
But that rarely happened.

The SARSATs have to orbit three times to verify that the signal is a real distress signal.
Then AF RCC (Air Force Rescue Coordination Center) calls CAP,
CAP passes the info down through Region, Wing, Group, then to Squadron.
A team is assembled at the Squadron level and sent out.
This whole process takes a rather long time.
And then the team has to actually find the ELT.
A process that can take anywhere from 2-48 hours.

This reason this whole process takes so long is mainly because of the limited information available at the beginning of the mission.
The only location info we get comes from the satellites ability to determine it from the signal direction.
Accuracy is severely limited because the 121.5 Mhz ELT only emits a .1 Watt signal.
The new 406 Mhz ELT will transmit a 5 Watt signal, narrowing accuracy to 2 miles using signal alone.
When coupled with a GPS unit, as many of them will be, the 406 Mhz ELT’s accuracy becomes 100 yards.
That’s a significant improvement over 20+ miles.
This alone should help reduce SAR mission times.

The only downside to all this,
We’ll need to get new equipment.
Our current ELPER (the unit we use to determine the direction of the signal) only receives 121.5, 121.7, and 243 (121.7 is our training frequency).
The new equipment will be expensive,
But it’ll be worth it.
(Plus the fact that congress sends money for this helps)

Chem Final

My Chem Final starts at 9 TX Time.
It'll be four hours long.
Please pray.
One of us is gonna get whooped pretty good.
(I think it's gonna be the final ;-)

Tuesday, August 1, 2006

Basics

Yet Another Day In Chemistry (Again)

Instructor: "There's been a change of plans. Instead of me teaching you the material science lesson, I got our resident MatSci expert to come teach you."
That instructor walks out.
Soon, another instructor walks in and closes the door.
New Instructor: "This was kind of last minute, so I haven't got a clue what we're doing. I hear you have a final tomorrow. Well, let's see... We can study for the final, meaning I'll go get a copy and we'll study it, We can blow something up, or we can get out early. What do you guys want to do?"
Random Student: "All three?"
New Instructor: "Sounds good. I'll go get the chemicals."

And such is how the morning proceeded.