Friday, March 23, 2012

Living in a Bubble

I feel so disconnected:

I find myself reading the New York Times everyday, scanning and browsing for articles that might interest me even a little bit.  And yet – it feels as if the world is happening an ocean away.

The military has a very special way of keeping me informed about what is happening in the world.  I get a pretty thorough briefing on the unclassified events that are driving the world about once a week.  I don’t share and won’t share any of that information, but it’s not the really cool stuff that happens in locked away rooms in buildings that I don’t go to.   I wouldn’t be surprised if most of the briefing I get comes from Lance Corporals scanning their hometown newspapers and then cutting and pasting.  As for the juicy information that can only be found on WikiLeaks - you are looking at the wrong place if you are reading this blog expecting that kind of information.  Technically my clearance allows me to hear some of it, but I have enough problems with the stuff that I actually need to know.

I know Leora has written about the wonder that is AFN TV. While we often fast-forward through the commercials, during every commercial break there is some sort of news update.  The Pentagon puts out the Pentagon Channel update with a very severe Marine telling me what is happening in the military world.   The Navy puts out “All Hands Update:  Informing the Fleet”:  I have nothing but good things to say about PO2 Amara Timberlake and MC1 : these guys are alright.  The Air Force one wouldn’t be bad if it wasn’t Moustachioed March.  I’m not sure where it came from that everyone in the USAF needs a mustache in March, but getting my news from a creepy Senior Airman/70s porn star doesn’t inspire confidence in the news source.

But what they have to tell me is so military centric as to make me believe that nothing else is happening in the world.  I did a search to make sure that I could cover all the articles aired this week.  They include:
SecDef announces that there is no money in the budgets
A chaplain in the Maryland National Guard is doing really nice things for soldiers
It’s Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness Month
AsstSecDef announces that there is no money in the budgets
US/Japan marks 67th anniversary of Battle of Iwo Jima (and I was mad that I couldn’t go)
New Navy policies directed at alcohol abuse
Special Assistant to the SecDef announces that there is no money in budgets
Army Chief of Staff to congress: there is no money in our budgets.

I can search the news on my own, and I do.  That is the only way that I keep abreast of the Republican Primary News and the current state of Tebow-mania in Jersey.  I can live without Tebow-mania, but without my personal news perusal I would not have heard of the horrible events in France this week.  I am able to talk about it with some people on an intellectual level, but I miss the presence of other Jews with whom I can connect to about this on an emotional level.  Skype and Vonage are great, but not quite there.

Tonight is Shabbat.  We’ll be at the chapel in just a little bit of time; there’s a pot-luck dinner and we will be staying late to talk with anybody and everybody.

I hope to reconnect tonight.  I hope to feel part of the people of Israel again. 

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