In order for the reader to get a genuine feel for the emotional tone I hope to create with this story, he or she would do well to find the nearest patriotic CD and let it play softly. If that's not possible, think of your favorite song of patriotism and begin to hum quietly to yourself as you read. I find a soulful rendition of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" to be especially emotive and appropriate. "Mine eyes have seen hmmm hmmm hmmmm hmmmm hmmmm coming of the Lord."
It is surely impossible for the casual reader to understand in a real way what it is like to be living in a war zone. Since this conflict began, our forces have done a splendid job of thwarting the plans of the enemy, all the while working to improve his lot in life. Where we once slept in tents, we now often sleep in plywood huts. Where we once walked everywhere, we now often are afforded the use of a car. Where we once ate Meals Ready to Eat (MRE's) from a plastic bag, we now have dining facilities that on occasion approximate real chow halls. And it is just outside one of these dens of culinary delight that a friend recently saw something that stirs the heart and ruffles the soul.
(Are you still humming?)
Just outside the kitchen entrance, where breakfast, lunch, and dinner go from chicken to nugget, was seen a stack of boxes bearing the warning, "Grade 'D' Meat - Prisoners and Military Only!"
Together...Nice and loud, "Over hill over dale la la la dee da dee la caissons go rolling along!"