1965....Turning 16, the struggle to be a grownup
Walked home from school today. I quit, which pissed my dad off and my mom wasn't much happier. Dad asked me what in hell I thought I was going to do now. Told him I plan to join the Army, go to Vietnam, help my country win a war. The look on his face said it all; he looked at me like I was some dumb kid. I'm not, I want to be treated as an adult. Don't they get it? I hate school and I know the only way to see the world is to join the Army. After a long talk, Dad finally agreed to go with me to see the Army recruiter. I was hoping he'd come around.
A few weeks ago I talked with a couple old classmates at school. They came in dressed in their army uniforms and man, what a crowd they drew. Those uniforms look cool and all the kids hung around them like bees around honey. I liked that, especially the girls they attracted. something about a uniform all the girls seem to like. The admiring looks from the guys seemed pretty cool to me too. I asked them all sorts of questions about Vietnam, the Army and if they liked it. They said they did and planned to go back to Vietnam in about 30 days.
I listened, as a kid, to my dad and my uncle talk about the war. My uncle is so full of stories, interesting stories and he makes the Army seem very interesting. I made up my mind, a long time ago, I wanted to join, get out of Indiana and see more of the world. Hell, the Army will pay for it and I'll learn something too. Thanks Dad for coming around.