Monday, January 08, 2007

New Recuiting Slogan?

A Marine Recruiter called Daredevil tonight. Interesting conversation. They talked for quite a while and then the recruiter says, "Wait. Wait. Wait, I don't even know if you're qualified yet. I need to ask you some questions."

"Have you ever been in the back of a police car?"

"Yeah. I was 10."

I imagine there was an audible *gulp* on the other end.

Yes, folks. I have stories I have not told. There is nothing like opening your door at 2am to find a Policeman standing there. I can't recall the exact conversation but more or less "Do you know your children are out running the streets at 2am?" I was stunned. They were in bed when I went to bed at 10:30. Holy Crap they were only in Elementary School. I never dreamed that I would have to deal with the police when they had just hit double digits.

I was married at this time and had 3 step-children, 2 boys and a girl, as well as my own 3 boys. Yes, I was mother to six children each a year apart. Chowhound was the youngest at 8. His daughter was 9. Daredevil 10. His youngest son was 11. Improviser 12. And, his oldest was 13. I should have been committed at this point. But, soft-hearted me also had taken in 2 girls who were 16 and 17 and being molested by their adoptive father. And if that weren't enough, I was hosting a 16 year old exchange student from Bulgaria. Yeah, what the hell was I thinking. Nine fricken kids under one roof.

So, initially, when the policeman said he had my children in the back of his car I wasn't sure which ones it would be. After all, there were 9 to choose from. I was horrified that this was happening to me. He had caught up with them on the roof of the elementary school about a mile away. They had been seen playing in the construction equipment and drainage pipes next to the six lane highway that was under re-construction.

So, I stood there with my heart pounding, hugging my bathrobe tight around me as the Policeman opened the backdoor of the squad car. The first of the culprits start to climb out. My X2B's youngest boy. No surprise, he was my problem child. He is wearing camouflaged shirt and pants, combat boots and his face is painted for war. (left over Halloween paint) Yeah, this is getting better by the minute. Then delinquent number two comes crawling out. Matching outfit. It is Daredevil. I believe this was his first caper. And, I might be mistaken, but I think I remember his arm being in a cast at the time. Mother of the year, here I come. The third criminal was hiding in the darkness. I expected to see X2B's oldest son. Finally, after prodding by the Police Officer, Chowhound, who is only 8, sheepishly comes out. My baby! I was in utter disbelief and embarrassment. I wanted to kill the three of them. But, I was so grateful that they had been returned safely I just hugged them. Sentencing and Punishment would come in the morning. The Officer just turned them over to me and left. Thankfully. (I have no idea how come I am not in the loony-bin).

Now, I don't think the recruiter got the full version of this story from Daredevil just that he was 10 and didn't get arrested or put in juvie.

Question #2.

"Have you ever smoked Marijuana?"

Daredevil took the Politician approach. "Once." I don't think whether or not he inhaled was challenged. He claimed it was over a year ago so the recruiter wasn't concerned.

Boys are so much fun to raise!

The conversation finally went around to careers. Daredevil explained he wants to be an Engineer. To which the Marine Recruiter replied, "Well, we don't just kill babies. We do have other things." I was floored when Daredevil told me what he said. It was said in a joking context as we started off the conversation very jovially. And, I admit that we did laugh about it. But, the more I think about it, what a thing for a Marine to say even as a joke.

I read the mil-blogs all the time and I am proud of the wonderful men and women who sacrifice so much for us. I have seen pictures and read stories of the love and compassion they have shown the innocent children in other countries. Especially in Iraq. It bothers me that this recruiter thinks that is the imagine people have of Marines. Where is his pride? Where is his loyalty? I feel like he was selling out his brothers and sisters by making that comment. Maybe, I'm too sensitive or thinking too much into it. But, I just don't think a Marine recruiter should joke about such a thing. Am I wrong?