14 July 2014

My One-track Mind

The following originally appeared in the blog "Musings of a Factotum" May 19, 2009

I realized that I had not written much that was not military related in some time. It got me wondeing why I was so obsessed with the Army?

Well, isn't it logical? I am serving a deployment. To say that I am working for the Army full time is an understatement. I carry my weapon nearly all of my waking hours, and am on call for military duties 24/7. I do have some down time, but even that is spent performing maintenance on my equipment and getting ready for more work.

We are in a sort of news vaccuum out here, and the people I see, even at the "store" or at dinner, are all here for the same thing, and only reinforce the mindset that comes along with a deployment. 

Needless to say, I have to make every effort to redirect my thoughts away from the Army, and don't often have epiphanies about things that used to occupy my mind. So, it's hard to be clever about topics about which a factotum should be clever.

But it's important. I don't want to be so narrow. Does it not go to the heart of the question about whether it is good to be generalists or specialists? I would rather be the former, but certianly our society needs specialists. Maybe I am still looking for what really motivates me. Do we all find a speciality in the end?

I hope that's not the inevitable conclusion to our lives' paths. I love teaching, but I joined the military knowing full well that it could take me away from it. I am also trying to get into investing, but a teacher's salary doesn't exactly foster a climate of investment opportunity. The Army has taught me a bit about video editing, and I am learning more in hopes of applying it to my teaching. I also love writing, and both math and my military service have given me fodder to practice the craft.

At any rate, I like to dabble in lots of things. It's enjoyable, and I would encourage those around me to do the same. I am making my best attempt to avoid keeping my mind on one lonely track.

Editor's note: I wrote this on my last deployment to Kosovo. I find every bit of the information still applies to this deployment to Afghanistan.