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Old November 26, 2000, 12:02 PM   #1
Join Date: November 16, 2000
Posts: 86
Well I report in to the Recruiting Center at 4pm today, and there I will be taken to the Processing Center ... going to have a good meal before I do. Fortunately my favorite Chinese restaurant is scant blocks away from a cybercafe

I got stranded last night in a really strange part of South Chicago (where the freaky people are) and needed to get to a friend's house, where I am staying now. The friend in question is a hispanic gangbanger LOL ... who is in the process of cleaning up. He lives right in the middle of an area controlled by the Latin Kings - and to get there I had to walk 36 blocks. Really. I know, I know ... but I'm alive.

Thing is for the first 20 blocks the area is controlled by black gangs. I went on the main street, trying to stay out in the open where a lot of cars were passing through. I spotted groups here and there and took parallel streets (never alleys) and cut through parks. I was spotted a few times, came across crackheads smoking pipes, and groups of 6-7 gangbangers in patrol. After I got to the hispanic area, things actually got ... quieter? For the remaining 16 blocks. Not too safe but nonetheless manageable. I'll distill what I found out:

(1) Bad weather is your friend. It had rained severely last night in Chicago and a light drizzle was still falling. It kept most of the gangbangers off the streets. If it was warm and balmy I'd have taken a cab.

(2) Threat recognition works at a distance of 2 blocks. One block is too close for comfort. Anything less and you're in confrontation distance. At 2, you can reasonably cut streets and change routes without being noticed.

(3) Black clothes at night are a godsend. I'd picked up the habit as a runaway. It kept me from being spotted easily and since the gangbangers all wear colors, having a flat black made it harder to place me.

(4) Sound travels far in night. I never knew how true this was til I tried to get a chocolate bar out a plastic bag and the rustling caught the attention of a group of gangbangers a block away. Cut a right turn fast.

(5) Walking quick and silently is a lifesaver. I am so glad I didn't have leather soles. I had boots, but the way I walk (I have quick strides anyways) is to catch it on the very back edge of the heel in a quick tap and then bring the rest of the foot down. I look at the wear on my soles every now and then and mark the differences in stride. I wonder if basic training will change it.

I think that's about it ... after-the-event recollections sometimes end up hazy. I remember there were an awful lot of auto shops selling used tires and hubcaps with "GORE LIEBERMAN VOTE DEMOCRATIC" posters in the windows ... conicidence, perhaps ... I think that sums it up.

Everyone have a good weekend.
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Old November 26, 2000, 12:44 PM   #2
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Join Date: June 5, 2000
Location: Job hunting on the road...
Posts: 3,827
Hey, if you see this, good luck.

Remember, your DI is your friend. But don't volunteer that you know how to do ANYTHING.

Except maybe type. That's always good for something... Especially if it's rainy and muddy out there.

Hey, I admit it. I was a REMF, but I did actually make it out into the rain and mud a few times...

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Old November 26, 2000, 01:26 PM   #3
Join Date: November 16, 2000
Posts: 86
Why do I always keep on hearing the same advice?

"Don't volunteer for ANYTHING."

Um ... ok. I guess I'll figure it out soon enough.
Ok I'm off now to the train and to grander things ... adieu, adieu
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Old November 26, 2000, 02:21 PM   #4
Jody Hudson
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Join Date: February 16, 2000
Location: Near Rehoboth Beach Delaware
Posts: 1,140
Volunteer for EVERYTHING!!!

As I am a devout contrarian... I volunteered for everything; honor guard, band, driver, security, etc. No one ever knew where I was supposed to be or what I was supposed to be doing.
We help people relocate to Rehoboth Beach Delaware.
Our Site:
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Old November 26, 2000, 03:57 PM   #5
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Join Date: November 18, 1999
Location: SE OK
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Remember these words: "No excuse, Sir".
Good luck and take care of yourself.
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Old November 26, 2000, 05:37 PM   #6
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Join Date: July 20, 2000
Location: pasadena,california,America
Posts: 542
Urban E & E

Viceroy 808 tomodachi,
Don't show everything that you know.
Be the one that you would count on when TSHTF.
You are now part of a team. Hang with the ones that'll watch your back(you find them out in time and experience), you trust who you can but don't count on anyone else when the rubber meets the road. No one knows how they will act until you face real combat. After some time, you know who will be the buddies you can trust your life with.
Meanwhile, they can be your drinking buds, your fighting buds, your training team in basics.
Learn everything that you can, it may save your life.
Give 120%...through your efforts, others will trust you and look to you as an example. Because you are a team, you hold up your end. The team is only as strong as the weakest link. You will not be that link, tomodachi.
Do not complain. You don't have to like it, you only are expected to do it.
Much of this you already know, my friend, I'm just covering the basics.
From your posts, I know that you already know a lot, and that you have experiences that others can learn from. Have as much fun as you can in basics...don't take it too seriously and you'll have fun and make it through easily.
When you can, let me know where to send the snail mail?
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Old November 26, 2000, 08:49 PM   #7
4V50 Gary
Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 20,819
Good observation about the dark clothing

Bill Jordan (No Second Place Winner) recommends against wearing white at night as it stands out as a target. Funny but during the Napoleonic Wars the French, who wore white cross straps (one for the cartridge box and the other for the bayonet), launched a night attack to capture the bridge over the Agueda River at Barba del Puerco (Spain). The white cross straps made for great aiming marks and the French attack failed.
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Old November 27, 2000, 11:29 PM   #8
Join Date: November 16, 2000
Posts: 86

Part of what I didn't mention in this thread because I don't have the leisure to write well in a cybercafe at length, is that I got the strong feeling I was being herded at points. The gangbangers communicated through whistles; I moved through parking lots, parks, but never through alleys or spaces between houses. Which turned out to be good because I found that crack dealers and buyers would travel between the houses and use the alleys. The empty lots overgrown with trees didn't have any of them.

Thank you all ... have a good evening

LASur5er ... when I get to Fort Benning I'll let you know what happens
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Old November 28, 2000, 12:25 PM   #9
Steve Smith
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Join Date: December 9, 1999
Posts: 4,131
As far as the "Don't tell everything you know." here's a taste of it:

In my best DI voice:
"How many of you like to bowl?" (hands are raised)
"Good, you've got latrine duty!"

I'm glad I didn't fall for that one!
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Old November 28, 2000, 11:50 PM   #10
Nevada Fitch
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Join Date: October 21, 2000
Posts: 261
I am glad I don't have to work or live where I have to deal with gangs.I know the inner city is different world than I know,but why can't these gangs be done away with somehow?How can good people put up with this year after year?I truly believe that if this was happening in my area that a bunch of good ol boys would get together and open up a season on them.Heck if the cops can't control the gangs Maybe they should just look the other way while some other concerned citizens cut things down to a managable level.However there is good side to this if they can't control the gangs maybe they can't control the people that want to remain armed it the goverment ever decides to take all of our guns away.Of course the fly in the oniment is that most gunowners are law abiding people where the gangs are not.JUST RAMBLING.
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Old November 29, 2000, 01:08 AM   #11
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Join Date: December 24, 1999
Location: College Station, Texas
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After God knows how many posts, this is my very first in the CQB forum! My advice:

1. Don't see the military for what it isn't. See it for what it is. It is a system wherby you can learn more about yourself than you ever thought imaginable.

2. From my Army experiences, you will do well since your walk through the bad parts of town prove that you can fit into your environment. Those who stand out tend to catch hell in basic training.

3. The Drill Sergeant who trains you is using a system only poluted by PC crap he must abide by. NEVER, NEVER take the easy way out of anything. Nobody ever learned anything by taking the easy way.

4. The undisputed favorite advice of all I know is that YOU WILL GET OUT OF IT WHAT YOU PUT INTO IT. Those who find ways to get out of stuff don't have near the fun that they could have if they'd given 100% effort. Even basic was fun for me in parts. I gave a lot of effort. I helped those who needed it, and accepted as much help as I needed. You will depend on your friends more than you know. Learn quickly who your friends are, and depend on them. Some folks will get you into trouble, and some will be of huge aid in the hard times (which aren't that hard anyway).

5. If you have a choice, go for the elite units. While getting in is difficult, being in is easy. Challenge yourself, and you'll reward yourself. I don't know how many SF guys are reading this, but I am certain that most will agree that once they were in, it was easier than permanent party-- at least it was more interesting.

Good fortune to you. Enjoy my gift of a better Commander in Chief!
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