Wolfe’s Woofers: Father’s Advice

Sunday, August 4th, 2013

Dennis-Wolfe-Wolfes-Woofers“Papa, it’s something I just felt like I had to do,” the young man said. “Now that I joined the US military I can get my citizenship.”

“Yes,” his father said, “but if you are in the military you must fight. I wish I had some advice for you.”

Listening to this conversation in the airport brought memories flooding back to me. I recalled when I was drafted into the US Army and was being sent to Vietnam. Before I went overseas my father sat me down for a talk.

“Son,” my dad said, “you’re leaving on a grand adventure as many men in our family have done for several hundred years. Since I am a retired military man I feel qualified to give you some advice before you go.”

“I need some advice, Dad,” I told him.

“There are going to be a lot of dangers ahead of you,” he said. “Remembering your training and obeying your commanders will keep you alive in battle.”

“I will keep that in mind,” I said.

“When the battle is over and won there is still great danger,” he continued. “As you go into the cities and town there is trouble lurking everywhere.”

“Even after we’ve won?”

“Oh, yes. Winning the battle is only the first step. Occupying the place you have fought over is often more dangerous than the real battle.”

“How is that?”

“There will be many temptations to lure you away from your fellow soldiers and this could put you in jeopardy even though it seems safe at the time.”

“What do you mean?” I asked.

“Son, in every town there will be a street that is the most treacherous of all. On this street there will be strong drink to dull your senses, loud filthy songs to dull your hearing and cheap loose women that can help your enemy catch you off guard.”

“What should I do, Dad?” I asked.

“Son, as a former military man, my advice to you is simple. Whatever you do . . . FIND THAT STREET!”

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