<= 2003.02.05

2003.02.07 =>

an army of one

Weird variations on Freud's examination dream all night: first, that I had forgotten the honors English class at Stanford where they gave me a C+; then, that I had written the second chapter of Song of Roland entirely in the present tense, from the POV of a Hemingway-style straight-talking backwoods narrator who was a minor character, a decision so patently awful that I'd have to do the whole thing over; then, that Tobias Wolff was the doctor in charge of dispensing my antidepressants, and I was afraid to meet him because I thought he would find my life experience inadequate for a writer, given that he had been through Vietnam while I needed chemical support to go to restaurants without freaking out.

"This Army of robots that you see on television doesn't exist," [Christian Bauman] said, referring to the way elite units are depicted. "What percentage of soldiers are in elite units? Almost none. The real Army is made up of people like me, people who had no choice, people trapped and suffocating without enough education and a real job. It is this Army, I explain, along with what happens to it when it is sent into countries where we don't understand what is going on."

 

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