Frankly, I’m a bit concerned about the strategic national defense of a country who openly solicits assistance from my son. I’m not saying that he’s not capable of fulfilling his patriotic duty, but I just can’t believe that an eighteen year old that goes all white around the mouth and makes the pouty face when his applesauce touches his pork chop is going to be reliable with rations packed into an indestructible Hefty bag.
As soon as my son entered his senior year in high school, the United States Army began a postal crusade to win his affections. Our mailbox was bombarded with pamphlets extorting the virtues of Army life that boasted so many bonuses and benefits it resembled a campaign for a timeshare in an exotic land. One where you could experience the world, earn an education, and operate heavy artillery. All this with a meal plan and government issued fashion accessories.
This kid has remarkable experience with real-life tactical weapons. He masterminded the construction of a working tabletop trebuchet for his younger brother’s science project, and provided ammunition in the form of toy farm animals to launch at the family dog. (Bo survived several near-misses and a plastic cow in his water bowl.) His present stockpile of munitions includes a marshmallow gun made from plastic pipe, three foam rubber swords, and a heavy duty water gun that leaks.
If it’s his video game skills that has the Army all atwitter, I can understand their excitement. To his credit, he has defeated enemy armies and crushed mighty weaponry on practically every game system on the market. He is a virtual expert in guerilla warfare with camo-clad GI Joe types and a definitive power in open battle with earthbound aliens or free-range zombies. But I just can’t believe that worldwide thermonuclear war will pause for him to get a snack and watch reruns of “That Seventies Show.”
Fortunately for those of us who depend on the Armed Forces to maintain peace at the borders and keep terrorists out of the potato salad, Son Number One opted for college life instead of a military existence. Reportedly, Uncle Sam likes soldiers who can take out the enemy without having to stop and reload their controller with AA batteries.
However his brother’s coming along, and he’s a triple threat: He has superior ratings with water balloons, rubber bands, and air guitar.