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Thursday, March 08, 2007

Please Monger The Rumors

Greetings and Salutations to All my Kith and Kin and All the Ships in Outer Space:

Well, as many of you know, I'm quite the solitary recluse, preferring to stay within my room here at the Old Soldiers' Home, and I almost never go anywhere.

Since I have a refrigerator and microwave, I buy goodies from the PX and eat in my room.

Thus, it's been a long time since I've been to the mess hall.

Likewise, because of crowded unsanitary conditions, perceived racial animosity, and intolerable bureaucracy, I avoid going on sick call, even when I really need to.

It's difficult for me to go on sick call, which is always held only in the mornings, because I can't sleep at night, not even when I dope myself up with handfuls of pills.

Instead, I usually fall asleep just before dawn, and when it's time to go somewhere, I'm too overwhelmed with depression to get out of bed and face other human beings.

But today, after many days of procrastination, I finally went on sick call to renew my prescriptions.

I took two (02) volumes of my most challenging crossword and codeword puzzles, so I would have some way to occupy my mind while I waited for hours and hours.

Also, because I don't like people getting too close to me, I always try to look as mean and wicked as possible, deliberately snarling at everyone, hoping they will keep their distance.

Anyway, I couldn't believe what happened this morning on sick call.

I saw the doctor IMMEDIATELY, with absolutely NO waiting!!!

I couldn't believe it.

Also, instead of the normal employees, student medics from Walter Reed Army Medical Center took my vital signs, and I was happy to see the regular United States Army personnel being actively involved in the Old Soldiers' Home.

At chow time, I went to the mess hall and the chow line was unbelievably long, and not moving.

Since I hadn't been to the mess hall in a very long time, I asked one of my fellow residents, a retired WAC sergeant major who served at Long Binh, Viet Nam, if what I was seeing was normal.

She said that every meal was like that now, because the mess hall and the entire Soldiers' Home was severely contaminated with norovirus.

With that huge crowd and that long long long line, I gave up and left the mess hall, choosing to buy a burger and ice cream in the PX.

Gee, I can't afford to keep doing that!

Someone else told me that the norovirus epidemic was why Walter Reed Army Medical Center was investigating conditions at the Soldiers' Home.

Apparently, the virus is STILL raging, with hundreds of people getting sick, and some residents so affected, they are quarantined, and not allowed to leave their rooms.

Yes, some have died.

I noticed a couple of guys I know had their pictures posted on the board announcing recent deaths.

As I was conversing with another resident, someone else came by and said that so and so (I didn't know this person) had died this morning.

In my room, I listen to this stuff all the time on my amateur radio, with ambulances continuously rolling in and out of the Soldiers' Home.

On the news, I saw that a couple of hotels in Virginia had shut down because a hundred guests had become sick with norovirus.

We've had many times that number get sick here at the Soldiers' Home, some are still sick, and some have died, but there hasn't been any mention of it in the news, or at least, I haven't seen it mentioned.

I must admit I seldom watch or read local news, because I really want nothing to do with Washington, D.C.

If it weren't for the Old Soldiers' Home, I wouldn't be here at all, and if I can scrounge up enough money, I'm leaving here the first chance I get.

I reckon it's a good thing I buy goodies and snack in my room.

I have been sick, but not with norovirus - - - yet.

I had a pretty bad respiratory problem for a few days, but now I'm once again able to talk and sing - - - when I'm not too depressed to pick up my guitar and practice.

However, I still have difficulty inhaling a full breath, and after singing only a few songs, I begin coughing and choking.

Still, I'm slowly making progress.

I spoke with another friend about our planned participation in the Gathering of Eagles down at the Viet Nam Memorial on Saint Patrick's Day.

We plan to take a cab to Catholic University, and then ride Metro Rail down to the Viet Nam Memorial.

I attempted to obtain transportation for our Gathering of Eagles volunteers from the administration here at the Soldiers' Home, but I knew those politically correct cowards would just ignore me.

For any of you who don't already know, the Gathering of Eagles is a formal organized gathering by Viet Nam veterans and supporters to protect the Viet Nam Memorial from being vandalized by thousands of anti-war protestors on Saturday 17 March 2007.

Someone just now told me of a big Scottish celebration on Saturday 07 April 2007 in Old Town Alexandria, so I hope my kilt gets here in time so I can wear it!

They're observing National Tartan Day, which commemorates the signing of the Declaration of Arbroath on 06 April 1320.

The only other significant news was when I looked out my window yesterday and noticed all the radioactive fallout coming down.

Shucks, I never even heard the thermonuclear explosion.

Anyway, the sun is shining, but there's still a few patches of radioactive fallout on the ground, although most of it has dissipated.

Yes, it has to be radioactive fallout, for it doesn't snow here in March.

Hey, we didn't get to have a white Christmas, did we?

I'm sure it's radioactive fallout.

Any moment now, an enemy submarine should be surfacing in our fishing pond, and enemy amphibious troops will assault our golf course.

So, there's the latest rumors and gossip from the Old Soldiers' Home.

How much of what I wrote is true and factually reliable?

Hey, I'm just passing on vicious unfounded rumors, not reporting the news!

So, go monger the mill, y'all.

Thank You.

John Robert "SAIGON" Mallernee, KB3KWS
Official Bard of Clan Henderson
Armed Forces Retirement Home
Washington, D.C. 20011-8400

NOTE: "My unpopular and controversial personal opinions are independent of my Scottish clan."

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