Friday, October 19, 2012


... box o' cigars, in today's mail.  Like this:

That's a pic o' my favorite cigar... the Drew Estate Cafe con Leche... of which we are now in possession of 21 examples o' such.  We've already lit one off for today's Happy Hour and are most pleased.  (That's an old pic, but the packaging doesn't change.)

And a new hat...

That's a new pic (but it's the same ol' me) and features one of my FAVORITE tee shirts.  Back to hats, though, and we're decidedly short on suitable USAF chapeaux, what with our inventory of hats we wore during our career bein' shabby and not suitable for public appearances, given they're over 25 years old.  So today we happened to encounter a gentleman who was selling LOTS of military ball caps in the promenade o' the Cannon Airplane Patch BX.  There's a short story behind the hat and it goes like this... Said gentleman stopping me in the promenade and sayin'...
Gentleman:  Sir?  Wait a moment... Oh, that must be a different USS Mason.  The original MASON had an all-black crew, the first such in the Navy.

Me:  (Wearing my USS Mason ball cap) Yessir, I know.  This MASON was my son's first Department Head ride, which is where I got the hat.  And I'm aware of the history behind the name, there bein' a tribute to the original MASON in the ward room.  (And because I've done my homework)

G:  Your son is Navy... career Navy, still serving?

Me:  Yessir, on both counts.

G:  Annapolis?

Me:  No sir, Rot-Cee, Mustang.  He's also an embarrassment to the fam'bly, seein' as how he's a Squid and his grandfather, father, and older brother before him were ALL Air Force.

G:  Be careful now, I'm a Squid.
Followed by laughter all around.  So we bought the hat... I mean, how could we not?  The crest on the hat is the old Air Force Communications Command (AFCC)'s emblem, which is where I spent the final five years of my career.  I spent a total of seven years with AFCC, which is about a third of my career. I spent more time with Air Defense Command... like 12 years, and three years with USAF Security Service... but AFCC gave me the foundation for my civilian career, to which I owe them a tremendous debt and my enduring loyalty.

So.  We're now able to fly an appropriate flag when we go out in public.


  1. They didn't have any ADC hats? You should have glommed onto one as a representative of an extinct species. Btw, I didn't know you were in ADC although I knew you worked on the earl-warning stuff--always thought you did it as TDY from AFCC in support of ADC. Never knew ADC had its own in-house electronic. maint/const capability (beyond minor stuff, of course) Of course I guess that was the result of the 1950s DEW/Pine Tree/Mid-Canada line stuff when it was all built as an integral NORAD pkg.

    1. ADC most certainly had organic radar maintenance capability... and had a (mostly) ADC-unique AFSC devoted to radar maintenance... 303X2, Aircraft Control & Warning (AC&W) radar maint. USAF had well over 300 radar sites when I went into the AF in 1963 and there wasn't a square INCH of real estate in the lower 48 that wasn't swept by a radar beam every 10 seconds. You can find out a lot about AC&W radar at There's some great stuff there and I've taken a lot of their stuff in my posts about radar sites.

      As for the ADC hat... I was severely disappointed there wasn't one in that gentleman's inventory. Which I thought was odd, given there were SAC, TAC, and AFCC hats... but no ADC and no USAFSS, either, for that matter. I'd have bought three hats if the option had been available.

    2. USAF had well over 300 radar sites...

      Check that... I was just perusing the history at the on-line radar museum and see that the MOST active sites we ever had was 150. My Bad.


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