Tuesday, September 27, 2005

More Fun Training

We got up early this morning to do some neat bit of training. For this morn, our happy little crew were to partake in a Humvee Rollover Into Water Simulation of Doom. Sound neat? Eh, it wasn't bad.

Now let me just say first and foremost, that this is going to be another story about how bad I suck and how awkward I am.

For this simulation, you must pass three phases. The first consists of wearing goggles that keep water from filling your nose. You're submerged into water and must SUCCESSFULLY remove your seatbelt and exit through your door. The second phase is the same, minus the goggles, which were pink, and very unflattering, but I'm sure they looked good on me. The third phase is what I call "The Motherfucker Phase". No other name says it. In this bastard of all bastard phases, you are BLINDFOLDED, and your door does not work, and you must escape through the passenger door.

Now most navigated this course with little trouble. But you know me, I can't allow myself to do anything without screwing it up in some way. The first attempt went off without a hitch for the most part. I forgot to take the seatbelt off, so I spent two seconds wondering why I couldnt get out of the open door. That was remedied after I found the buckling mechanism, which was on the opposite side of that which I was fumbling with. And then the seat belt caught me, but it was easily removed, and I ALMOST gracefully emerged from my deathtrap.

The next time around, I was more prepared and acquainted with my surroundings, though in this case, that didn't mean shit. The seat belt ended up clotheslining me, and there was much confusion, and then a hint of "Oh fuck, I don't think I like this whole not-breathing and not-escaping thing very much". I still didn't panic, though I was good and lost inside this evil training tool. However, I did move with a sense of purpose. Just a little. Had to redo that attempt, and I succeeded, after struggling with that fucking seatbelt again. I swear to god that bastard is out to get me.

On to the Motherfucker Phase. Here, we are blindfolded, and we aren't looking forward to this, but our mentality is one geared towards getting it done and "driving on" as the cliche has it. So now you're blind and half drowned. You're being coached on the subject, but its all just words to you. "Take a deep breath, count to 10 and stay calm" just before you're plunged into water, sure. Perhaps you've misinterpreted it, but either way, you dont plan to relax for 10 seconds under water. You adjust your kevlar helmet and fasten the seatbelt, blindfolded, because you are such a ninja. Now you're underwater. You unbuckle the seatbelt and you very deliberately move the entire seat belt and shoulder belt more than out of the way. You grab the handle of the first door and attempt to open it, but it isn't opening because your beloved platoon sergeant has blocked it. You knew this ahead of time, so it doesn't irk you much. Now you must find the other door. So find it. You should be feeling a handle by now. Where the hell is it? Is that it? No, that isnt. Where the fuck are you? Come on man, what are you doing? You still can't breathe. You've got adrenaline pouring through your system like the soup of survivalistic instinct that it is, ice cold and white hot at the same time. You are amplified and your thoughts take a back seat to action, and you are half spectating yourself. So why are you still inside the humvee? You can't last like this forever, its time man, get it done. Where is it? You better find it, FAST! You've been in here too long! You have to get out! Is that it? No! That? No! Your personal alarm clock is ringing and you know you've had enough, so you scramble to find your feet and stand with your head above the water to catch your breath, remove your blindfold, and make some smartass comment for a laugh to mask your anger towards yourself for failing again.

They explain to you that you ended up in the backseat, and you acknowledge that bitterly, knowing that backseats have doors too, dammit. You climb back into the seat and strap yourself in for one more attempt. You're underwater again now, and you've pushed that fucking seatbelt well out of your way, and you hope to never see the damn thing again, and now you're on to your next objective. No surprise your door doesn't work. So you make sure to stay under your seat and feel your way to the other door. But where is the handle? You are relatively sure that you're at the door, but where is the handle? You fumble around for too long, and finally find it, and slowly push the door open and swim through, as if through a cervix, leaving your umbilical seat belt noose behind. You rise out of the water, and another wisecrack emerges from your mouth.

"I am born again."


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membrain said...

That was hysterically funny and very well written and set up. Plus it gives us old guys an idea what the modern army training is like. Nothing like that when I was in the service. Although they did try to kill us a lot of other ways. LOL.

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Really great writing. Thanks.