Post 429: Me in Greece, December 1970

Perhaps I should clean more often. I found this Polaroid of me checking my light meter, Arriflex 16mm camera mounted on the pod and on my shoulder, ready to film a NATO exercise featuring US Army Green Berets and their Greek counterparts. I’m unaware of any other photos of me at work in my US Army uniform. I see I’d made Spec 4 by then, and would make Spec 5 by the next summer.

I never wanted to be a soldier, so I was very fortunate to be accepted for training as a Mopic photographer, then be stationed from July 1970 through the end of November 1972 in Germany.

I never wanted to be a soldier, so I was very fortunate to be accepted for training as a Mopic photographer, then be stationed from July 1970 through the end of November 1972 in Germany.

There’s one of me in civilian clothes, explaining my Arriflex motion picture camera to a kid at another military event. Somewhere!

Anyway, I take time to show you this so I can put off housecleaning prior to my brother’s arrival. I have made it as far as the dining room-kitchen. I may even have time to wash my breakfast dishes! (Or not…!)

Aw well! I was “prettier” and much thinner 44 years ago. 🙁

8 thoughts on “Post 429: Me in Greece, December 1970

  1. One of my team members took it. I’m pretty sure it was my team leader, actually. I documented things in my army job, but it didn’t occur to me that maybe I’d want a picture like this to document what I did while in the military. Odd! I’m glad I have the few photos (if I can figure out where I put them…!) I do, now. It’s kind of fun seeing them.

    • Even though it was a rough time for many of my generation, since I volunteered, I was able to direct my fate a bit more than draftees, who pretty much headed to Vietnam. I took the delayed entry program, where I selected three possible areas in which to be trained.

      I would have been bored snotless with my first choice (graphic arts, which I selected because I was studying advertising copywriting at the University of Nebraska when Uncle Sam called); my second choice would have been OK (still photographer, though they took a lot of “grip and grin” type shots of people getting awards, that sort of thing…not too interesting overall); or motion picture photographer (a field where travel and interesting activities to film made the job one big vacation instead of honoring my military obligation!).

      I came out of the experience pleasantly surprised that I, a person not particularly interested in the military life, actually enjoyed the time I spent in the US Army, that even boot camp was fun in some respects!

      I’m glad I found this photo of me doing this thing I enjoyed so much, and it brought back great memories of the adventure in Greece that cold December in 1970.

      • I don’t think I’d be a good choice for recruiting the next generation of service people. I prefer the old system of a draft. While a professional military class has benefits of a more highly trained and specialized military, it also creates a class of people who are available for Presidents with an adventuristic mindset (not to mention anyone with the initials GWB or anything like that…!). If you have a fine-honed tool, you naturally want to use it. A professional military, one built on careerists not conscripts and volunteers, tends to have to justify its existence. Why does a military exist? If that reason isn’t there, you have to do something to justify keeping all those careerists around, and a sloppy little war is just the ticket. Of course, maybe I am just a bit cynical!

    • Isn’t that the truth!? Anyway, I was pleased I found that photo since it’s one of very few where I actually am in military clothes and holding my film camera.

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