Believing our own P.R.

11 Nov

I was asked twice this week why I originally joined the Navy and I gave my honest answer, that I needed a job after college and Michigan was in a deep recession in 1981.

Like many, I intended to hang out in the military for four years, then go back home.

If that were all there were to it, many of us would not bother to go out on Veterans’ Day for the numerous free meals available. We would feel that someone else should claim them, not us.

Fortunately, the military is made up of many people who major in self-deprecating humor. If we believed our own P.R., we would be unbearable. So we joke about how little we work and how much we get and . . .

The real backstory is that, somewhere in the process since 1981 ( or whenever others came in to get a job, like I did), we ended up willing to give our lives, if necessary, for something bigger than ourselves, our nation.

I have heard of many who threw themselves on a grenade, maybe as a Christian or maybe not, in order to save the lives of others. I have seen many not called to make that sacrifice who probably would, if necessary.

I myself did not go to the war on terror because, when the call came, they found breast cancer while trying to clear me to go. But I was willing . . .

Remember that with your favorite vet. They will probably joke and say it was just a job and they were just any old person doing it. We need to believe that about ourselves.

Happy Veterans’ Day!


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