This post has been in the mental crock pot for a few days now. While checking my sitemeter log, I saw a hit from Instapinch, a blog of a former Naval Aviator, so I chased it. His post on graduation from college and heading to the cradle of Naval Aviation for AOCS has motivated me to finish it and ask the rest of you to tossing your stuff into the pool of knowledge for the soon to be graduates in our country.
UPDATE 5/12/2006: A little more on the New & Improved blog...Yes, I'm calling for papers for this project!
In the weapons world, with one weapon system in particular I worked with, the future plan was to have the ability to fire the weapon from sea, and a forward observer, usually in an aircraft, could take control and "tweak" the flight path. The capability would be called "forward pass." I see this concept outlined below as a similar capability. Stick with me and read the post.
In my MilBlogging Conference AAR - Part II, I spent a few minutes drafting the types of military bloggers that are developing. In the case of the active duty and veteran MilBlogs, I see an opportunity I'd like you (in those two categories) to consider as we are coming up to graduation for not only high school, but also the service academies and the many colleges and universities that have ROTC departments.
And I can hear it now: "And your point is?"
Do you have any good advice for the soon to be military members, both enlisted and officer? Was there a particular "mentor" you had that gave you the best piece of advice you ever heard to help you transition into the military and you found out, by the test of time, that it was wisdom suitable for mention to those who will don the uniform behind us? Do you have antecdotes, "sea stories" or the like, that will provide some valuable insight? Your stories, posted for the next genration of warriors, is hereby dubbed "Operation Forward Pass."
Have you already taken the time to provide same to some family friend, young workmate, or relative, that you could share with the blogsphere?
If you have a well read blog, yet have no stories to pass on, but have a target audience of those who are coming up on joining, you could link to the posts that come up on other blogs? I think this would be a great topic area for blogs written by family members of current military personnel, for they most likely are already attracting a readership of parents and spouses of soon to be military members. The extention of the stories through these blogs would greatly expand the "max effective range" of such knowledge.
In the couple of years I've been reading blogs, there have been several powerfully written posts such as this, sometimes taken from email, or letters of others kind enough to send them to a blogger. There may be enough wisdom already written to quickly do a summary post of a blogs posts, linking to the good stuff used already.
There have been a few DEPers out there blogging, and they have gotten some great inputs from others. I recall last year, a USMA Cadet had a blog up, and there was lots of good stuff sent his way.
If you're a DEPer, or ROTC/Academy type and blogging, you could certainly share the advice you're received as you approach the day you will raise your right hand and swear to defend The Constitution.
Take a minute, consider the wisdom you have gained with regard to your entry into the profession of arms, and see if it's fit to recycle for the next generation. Who knows what the max effective range of your blog is...it just might turn out to be several generations...
So, what do you think? Should we begin "OFP" now? Do we need a sidebar graphic for those particpating by posting their own stories, and those who will "autocat" them? There has got to be tomes of valuable insight awaiting those who need it, in specific and generic terms.
Not only will the information alone be useful, but it will give you a chance to honor the person who took the time to help you "assimilate." To provide proper attibution will give you a public forum to thank them and to let them know, or those who google them up, that they had an impact in someone's life.
I ask you to step up and share the pieces of discrete knowledge you have.