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I started this blog to keep in touch with my family and friends during my time attending Commissioned Officer Training (COT) and the Judge Advocate Staff Officer Course (JASOC) at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama. Now I'm done with training and back in the "real" world, but I'll keep updating this blog with any interesting developments from my JAG career.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Reality is starting to set in . . .

[Originally drafted December 20, 2010]
COT starts in 21 days.  Three weeks.  Christmas is this Saturday.  New Year’s day a week later.  And a week after that I’ll be packing my bags for a 6:50 a.m. flight to Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama.  Might as well be catching a space shuttle to Mars.
Before I go any further, a word about journaling.  I’ve never really done it.  That’s not true.  I’ve done it a few times in my life, but never successfully or consistently.  When I was in second grade I kept a journal because my teacher wanted us to work on our writing.  My Mom found that journal a few years ago.  Here’s an excerpt:  “Today is Tuesday, and I’m tired.  I wonder what we are having for lunch?”  Every single day was more or less like that, except for one day when I wrote, “Today is Thursday, and I’m not tired!!”  Riveting stuff. 
The other time I kept a journal was when I was a sophomore in high school.  It was 1993.  I received a Far Side calendar for Christmas that was more of a notebook; it had lines to write on for each day of the year.  I decided to write down my thoughts each day.  That evolved—or devolved—into me writing down things that I liked at the time, especially things like movies, music, and TV shows.  I wrote them under a heading called “REMEMBER THIS” – as if using all caps would force whatever I wrote afterward to lodge itself in my brain forever.  Well, that was the goal, anyway.  The experiment lasted maybe two weeks, after which I lost interest and lost the journal.  But every time I think about it now, I remember writing “REMEMBER THIS:  Jeremy Jordan – My Love is Good Enough.”  I guess I really liked that song.  I even remember the video, albeit vaguely:  Jordan with a great head of blond hair in this early 90s Vanilla Ice pompadour, breaking into banal dance choreography with legions of other gyrating, baggy-pants-wearing, white middle-class hip-hop wannabees.  Pure early-90s cheese.  And it pains me to no end to think that my 15-year-old self devoted time and prime journal space to forcing a formulaic (read: crappy) pop song by a one-hit wonder into my memory reservoir as if it was the national anthem or the bass line to Billie Jean.

So I have never really successfully kept a journal.  (I do not consider the act of burning the name Jeremy Jordan into my consciousness when I was 15 to be a success by any metric.)  I think it will be different this time around, for at least four reasons.  First, nobody keeps a journal any more.  Everybody blogs.  So we have that going for us.  Second, after spending four years studying English in college, three years in law school, and the past eight years working as a lawyer, I’m a better writer.  (At least I hope so.)  Third, I have better judgment.  I don’t plan on using this space to remind myself about crappy pop songs or how tired I feel.  If I do start to veer into that or similar territory, please stop reading, delete any links to this webpage, and forget you ever knew me.  And fourth, I think that my 32-year-old self is a lot more interesting than my 15-year-old self or my 8-year-old self.  (God, I really do hope so.)
The thing is, a lot has happened in the seventeen years since I last made an earnest attempt to record my life.  Certain things are more significant than others.  And certain of those things are more directly linked to this rebirth of my journaling self.  Chief among these are the following:  three years ago I married Susan, a beautiful, smart, funny and loving woman who is my best friend; thirteen months ago Susan gave birth to our son, Joaquin; and last week I received orders from the United States Air Force to report for military training on January 10, 2011.

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