Friday, March 03, 2006

Odds Are, You Are Just Plain Lucky!

You know that old adage the squeaky wheel gets the oil? Turns out I must squeak like a mouse that accidentally fell into a batch of catnip. Hmmm that would make more sense if it wasn't completely retarded. Long story short I must be prettier than I thought. They decided (last night) to move me to days. They didn't tell me this until I finished todays shift. (I was supposedly covering for someone who had to go to a briefing in Cedar.) At the end of my shift the NCO in charge (read bane of my existence) Oh by the way Brooks your on Days permanently your next day off will be Monday. So I went from working once every two days to working four days straight. This really and truly isn’t all that bad. But I really prefer nights... I am usually up anyway and the people are less annoying. Although I did meet someone today that I have decided to mention here. His Name is Jeff Scariff (Some of you will note that it is very rare for me to use a real name in my blog. But I feel this person deserves it.) He seems like a nice enough guy. He is thirty seven years old, the same rank as me and in the Army reserves. He has been here in Iraq since sometime in late August of 2003 he returned home in December of 2004 (Reserves can be deployed upwards of 18 months, where as active soldiers like myself are normally only deployed for a year.) apparently four months later he was given orders to come back, Talk about a trooper. I had almost 16 months between when I returned home and received my current orders. All of this is sad but not the reason I am writing about him. Apparently while he was home He was struck by Lightning. I swear to God above I told him that was a horrible thing to lie about and he showed me an entry wound in his shoulder and exit an exit wound on the sole of his foot. (Remind me to never call a mans bluff. On the off hand he ends up in the buff) apparently it caused a few medical problems... (Too many to list here, not to mention the fact that it seemed a little heartless to take notes while he was telling me his story.) Apparently even though it was a direct hit he remained conscious and coherent and was even mobile. He said he doesn’t remember about two hours of that day the last thing he remembers is walking out side his front door. The next thing he knew he was in a hospital two hours later. I knew pretty much right away that he would be the subject of my blog tonight. Not only because of his unique experience (I have survived a lot of crazy situations but I haven't yet been struck by lightning. I say yet because with my luck, I would be the guy to get three lucky sevens on a slot machine about thirty seconds before I suffered a severe heart attack.) Another thing that I find slightly unsettling about Jeff is that we have a lot in common, our beliefs in how women should be respected. And on being everyone’s hero, I sort of caught a glimpse of myself ten years from now. This was both interesting and slightly scary. The thing that made me the happiest about this little comparison was the fact that he didn't meet his current wife until he was my age. (There was a first wife but they were married and separated early) All he talked about the whole day (13 inhumanly long hours) was how much he and his wife loved each other it was real sweet and gave me hope that I might find my wife yet. And on that Happy note. Not too much else is going on. I am having issues with our new mail system; to say it is unreliable implies that it is actually working in some fashion. I have received one letter so far so I am thinking not so much.

Random fact of the day:
ACCORDING TO 'STORM DATA'... A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PUBLICATION... AN AVERAGE OF 87 LIGHTNING FATALITIES OCCURRED PER YEAR FROM 1959-1995. DUE TO UNDERREPORTING... THE FIGURES ARE MORE REALISTICALLY ABOUT 100-120 DEATHS PER YEAR. ONLY ABOUT 10% OF PEOPLE WHO ARE STRUCK ARE KILLED... LEAVING 90% WITH VARIOUS DEGREES OF DISABILITY.
ODDS OF BECOMING A LIGHTNING VICTIM THE US CENSUS POPULATION IN 2000 WAS 280,000,000 PERSONS. BASED ON THE 1959-1995 REPORTS OF 85 DEATHS AND 315 INJURIES... THE ODDS OF BEING A LIGHTNING VICTIM IN AN AVERAGE YEAR ARE 1 IN 700,000. THE ACTUAL NUMBER OF DEATHS IN 1959-1995 I SUSPECTED TO HAVE BEEN 120... WITH 1050 INJURIES. BASED ON THESE NUMBERS... THE ODDS OF BEING A LIGHTNING VICTIM IN AN AVERAGE YEAR INCREASE TO 1 IN 240,000. SINCE THE CURRENT LIFE EXPECTANCY IS AROUND 80 YEARS... THAT MAKES THE LIFETIME ODDS OF BEING A LIGHTNING VICTIM 1 IN 3000. FINALLY... SINCE TEN PEOPLE ARE GENERALLY AFFECTED FOR EVERY ONE PERSON STRUCK... THE ODDS OF BEING AFFECTED BY LIGHTNING STRIKES IN A LIFETIME 1 IN 300.

1 comment:

Gram & Gramps said...

How much and what kind of squeaking did you do?

You've got plenty of years to find the right woman. Remember, Gramps was 53 and Ted was 41 (and both of them were 1st marriages) and look at how happy they are. She is out there, and, you will find her someday.

Lots of love. Keep safe.

Gram & Gramps