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April 24, 2006
Fran's CountdownBy Greyhawk
Some interesting intel from Andi, who spent last Friday night at Fran's:
I also met Ramona Joyce, an Army veteran and volunteer who is intimately familiar with the goings on at Fran O'Brien's. She and I had a long chat and I enjoyed talking to her. On this evening, she was more than perturbed with Brian Kelleher. According to Ramona, while the cameras were rolling, Brian Kelleher greeted the troops. So what? Well, she says that it was the first time that he's ever done that. She's not the only one with that complaint. Larry Gill, a wounded OIF veteran and friend of Hal and Marty, tells us to stay tuned to CBS tonight for more. This should be interesting.More to come here, and much more at Andi's - read it all.
Update: The comment she was referencing came from Larry Gill
Well, To let you all know: I had an email from Hal saying he and Marty were scheduled to have another meeting with their lawyers and with the Hilton. I also know everyone who has come to bear attention to this matter has done some good. About 10 minutes ago, on the CBS evening news, they showed a news clip of my fellow wounded soldiers while at one of the Friday night dinners. The CBS clip said, " These are not your everyday customers, But the participants may be losing this....." "Tune in Monday and we'll tell you why." I am anxious to see this. Please pass the word to everyone, and if anyone reading this has connections with CBS, tell them thanks for helping.There's some background on Larry Gill in an earlier post here..
CBS could do a hell of a story if they wanted.
Among the many groups supporting Fran's is the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs. Buzz Patterson sent the link to their latest:
Thank you for the literally thousands of e-mails generated to the management of the Hilton Hotels Corporation on behalf of Fran O’Brien’s Stadium Steakhouse and the troops. You were so effective that they closed the e-mail addresses we published. You can still reach them through the Hilton Honors website - firstname.lastname@example.orgMeanwhile, I keep getting cc'd on emails like this one:
Dear Fort Hood area Hilton Family managers,Tip of the proverbial ice berg. There's a big round up of the many groups who've weighed in on this issue (including the American Legion offering to raise money for an elevator) here.
This was all dreamed up by Jim Mayer, Vietnam vet, Department of Veterans Affairs employee, and Walter Reed volunteer. In fact, Mayer is Milkshake Man. He asked fellow Vietnam vet Hal Koster and Marty O'Brien, co-owners of O'Brien's, to offer the dinners. No problem.At least, until they disconnect the phone.
Posted by Greyhawk / April 24, 2006 6:22 PM | Permalink
Almost every week you see some story of a company doing something where you are left thinking - how on earth could they be so stupid. I'm not talking New Coke where they tried something, it didn't fly, and they Read More
For those that haven't heard this story, here is a summation in my management blog - The World's Dumbest P.R. Department Here's the problem. Across the left in blog after blog, people are totally upset with the Hilton for doing Read More
November 26, 2010
I think anyone who's ever pondered the "comment" option - once only available on blogs and bulletin boards, now ubiquitous on almost any web site - will appreciate this:
The so-called faculty of writing is not so much a faculty of writing as it is a faculty of thinking. When a man says, "I have an idea but I can't express it"; that man hasn't an idea but merely a vague feeling. If a man has a feeling of that kind, and will sit down for a half an hour and persistently try to put into writing what he feels, the probabilities are at least 90 percent that he will either be able to record it, or else realize that he has no idea at all. In either case, he will do himself a benefit.
That's wisdom from the past, captured for posterity at the US Naval Institute, shared via the web on the institute's 137th anniversary.
From their about page:
"The Naval Institute has three core activities," among them, History and Preservation:
The Naval Institute also has recently introduced Americans at War, a living history of Americans at war in their own words and from their own experiences. These 90-second vignettes convey powerful stories of inspiration, pride, and patriotism.
Take a look at the collection, and you'll see it's not limited to accounts from those who served on ships at sea, members of the other branches are well-represented.
I'm fortunate to have met USNI's Mary Ripley, she's responsible for the institute's oral history program (and she's the daughter of the late John Ripley, whose story is told here). She also deserves much credit for their blog. ("We're not the Navy nor any government agency. Blog and comment freely.") We met at a milblog conference - Mary knew (and I would come to realize) that milbloggers are the 21st-century version of exactly what the US Naval Institute is all about. Once that light bulb came on in my head, I mentioned a vague idea for a project to her - milblogs as the 21st century oral history that they are.
"Put that in writing," she said (of course - see first paragraph above!) - and here's part of the result.
Shortly after the first tent was pitched by the American military in Iraq a wire was connected to a computer therein, and the internet was available to a generation of Americans at war - many of whom had grown up online. From that point on, at any given moment, somewhere in Iraq a Soldier, Sailor, Airman or Marine was at a keyboard sharing the events of his or her day with the folks back home. While most would simply fire off an email, others took advantage of the (then) relatively new online blogging platforms to post their thoughts and experiences for the entire world to see. The milblog was born - and from that moment to this stories detailing everything from the most mundane aspects of camp life to intense combat action (often described within hours of the event) have been available on the web...
And et cetera - but since you're reading this on a milblog, you probably knew that. And you know that milblogs aren't just blogs written by troops at war, that many friends, family members, and supporters likewise documented their story of America at war online in near-real time, as those stories developed.
The diversity in membership of that group is broad, the one thing we all have in common is the impulse to make sense of the seemingly senseless, and communicate the tale - for each of us that impulse was strong enough to overcome whatever barriers prevent the vast majority of people from doing the same. Everyone at some point has some vague idea they believe should be shared - we were the people who, from some combination of internal and external urging, found and spent those many half hours persistently trying to write it down.
But where will all that be in another 137 years? Or five or ten, for that matter. That's something I've asked myself since at least 2004 - when I wrote this:
Membership in the ghost battalion has grown in the years since, and an ever growing majority of those abandoned-but-still-standing sites are vanishing. Have you checked out Lt Smash's site lately? How about Sgt Hook's? If you're a long-time milblog reader you know the first widely-read milblog from Operation Iraq Freedom and the first widely-read milblog from Afghanistan are both gone from the web. If you're a relative newcomer to this world you may never even have heard of them - or the dozens upon dozens of others who carried forth the standard they set down.
If you have a vague notion that something should be done about that, (a notion I've heard expressed more than once...) then you and I and the good folks at the US Naval Institute are in agreement. Preserving the history documented by the milbloggers is just one of the goals of the milblog project, the once-vague idea that we're now making real.
And it's a big idea, if I say so myself - too big to explain in one simple blog post, so stand by for more. Likewise, it's too big a task to be accomplished by just one person. So if you're a milblogger (and exactly what is a milblogger? is a topic for much further discussion on its own) I'm asking for your help. All I'll really need is just a little bit (maybe just one or two of those half hours...) of your time, and your willingness to tell the tale.
We've already made history, it's time to save it.
(More to follow...)
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