Chinook

Calgary gothic
  • You enter a Safeway. Five minutes later, you exit the Safeway. The Safeway’s location has moved to the other side of the city. You check your watch. Three hours have passed.
  • A chinook rolls in. As much as you would like to enjoy the weather, you can’t help feeling an overwhelming sense of dread.
  • Every year, for ten days in the summer, society collapses. Nobody seems to notice. Everyone dons a wide-brimmed hat, eats pancakes, and screams war cries.
  • Once society rebuilds itself, no one mentions the event. The only news coverage is regarding dead horses.
  • You drive by a school building. One floor, white plaster with brown brick accents. You drive further. You drive by another school building, perfectly identical to the last one.
  • You get onto Crowchild trail. Traffic is backed up. You realize all the vehicles are parked. There are people in the passenger seats. There is no one in the driver seats.
  • You get onto Crowchild trail again the next day. All the vehicles are gone. Your vehicle is gone. The road is gone. You get off of Crowchild trail.
  • You spend a day at Heritage Park. When you leave, you can’t remember how to use your phone.
  • You enter a suburban community. All the houses are completely different yet exactly the same. All the roads have the same name. You can’t find your destination. You can’t remember what your destination was.
  • You get onto Macleod trail. You are always getting onto Macleod trail. You exit Macleod trail. You find yourself back on Macleod trail.

The Battle of Takur Ghar by Keith Rocco

As part of Enduring Freedom, in March 2002 a joint military operation named “Anaconda” was mounted in Paktia province to surround and defeat Taliban forces hiding in the area. On the third day of Operation Anaconda an Army MH-47E Chinook helicopter was fired upon as it attempted to land on a ridge on Takur Ghar mountain. Taking heavy fire, the helicopter lurched and attempted to take-off to extricate itself from the field of fire. When the Chinook lurched, one of the Navy SEALs on board, Petty Officer First Class Neil C. Roberts, fell from the rear ramp. Too damaged to return for Petty Officer Roberts, the Chinook landed further down the mountain.

“A second MH-47E attempted to land and rescue Roberts, but it too was fired upon and forced to leave the immediate area. The third MH-47E to attempt a landing on what became known as Roberts’ Ridge was hit with automatic weapons fire and rocket-propelled grenades while still 20 feet in the air. The helicopter, containing an Army Ranger Team and Technical Sergeant Keary Miller, a Combat Search and Rescue Team Leader from the 123d Special Tactics Squadron, Kentucky Air National Guard, hit the ground hard. Within seconds, one helicopter crewman, the right door gunner, was killed, as were three Army Rangers. The 17-hour ordeal that followed would result in the loss of seven American lives, including Petty Officer Roberts.

“Technical Sergeant Miller not only managed to drag the wounded helicopter pilot to safety, but also orchestrated the establishment of multiple casualty collection points. In between treating the wounded, Miller set up the distribution of ammunition for the Army Rangers who were taking the fight to the enemy. For his extraordinary life-saving efforts while putting himself in extreme danger under enemy fire, Technical Sergeant Miller was awarded the Silver Star by the U.S. Navy, one of the few members of the Air National Guard to be so honored.”

The entire operation is detailed in “Not a Good Day to Die” by Sean Naylor, one of the best accounts of military non-fiction I’ve read.

(National Guard)

“Clint and the Chinook” - Digital Oil Painting

“We wanted to get a dog up at the farm for a while, so– WHOA, what did you give him to eat? That is some serious doggie breath. Tony? Ton– Where are you go– WHAT DID YOU GIVE HIM??”

(It was half of Tony’s Limburger and liverwurst sandwich.)

If you enjoy my art, please consider subscribing to my Patreon! I am saving to buy a wheelchair lift.

flickr

1977 Datsun Chinook Gazelle RV by Greg Gjerdingen
Via Flickr:
Click here for more car pictures at my Flickr site.

Happy Spring, my dears! To celebrate my favourite season, I present to you a tarot challenge for the month of April. You are 100% welcome to alter or skip days as makes you comfortable, as these are just my own silly suggestions. Also, please feel free to @ me or tag with April Fool Tarot Challenge to share your adventures through the month! Write as artistically or as informally as you like! (PS I realise this is a little early/long-winded, I honestly just got excited). Anyway, with your consent, I wish you all the growth and warmth of the season! :)


1. The April Fool Spread: Shuffle, and find the Fool. The cards on either side are “what to be optimistic about this month” and “what to be wary of, in case it’s a trick”

2. Tarot Garden: Go through your decks and see if you can find at least three different flower species depicted. Take a super aesthetic photo of this tarot garden!

3. The Sun Cross Spread: Shuffle and find the Sun. The cards on either side are things that will warm up your spring

4. Green Thumb: Find three cards (or more!) with green as the dominant colour. Do the cards’ meanings relate somehow? If differentiating colours is difficult, select one or more cards that mean “growth” to you.

5. The April Showers Spread: Pull a card to represent April showers (an upcoming challenge), and another to show May flowers (a potential positive outcome of this challenge)

6. The Spring Cleaning Spread: Pull (randomly or by design) a card to represent something that needs to leave your life

7. The “That Gross Dirty Melting Snow” Spread (I asked my boyfriend what spring reminds him of, which was a mistake): Tell your deck the beginning of a classic joke, and then pull the punchline. Guaranteed to be an experience.

8. The Diamond Spread: For the April birthstone, pull four cards to represent Luxury, Clarity, Strength, and Rarity for the situation of your choosing

9. The Blossom Spread: Pull a Blossom (something to strive for), a Stem (what to do to help you get there), and Roots (what you already have that will guide your journey).

10. Wild Cards: Take a photo of your cards out in nature (or if you can’t leave your house, with a sweet houseplant!)

11. Haiku: Pull three random cards to write a haiku

12. Sweet Pea: For the birth flower of April, talk about a card that always makes you feel good when you pull it

13. Rubber Boots: Pull a card randomly. Its numerical value is your puddle-jumping-armour stat. How wet are your feet?

14. Hanami: Pull a card (randomly or by design) to represent something that doesn’t last long, so needs to be appreciated while it’s here

15. Tea Time: Have some tea with your cards! You’re halfway through and deserve a break.

16. The Two Easters Spread: My family celebrates both new and old calendar holidays, meaning that we usually have two Easters a year. This year, both fall on the same day (today)! To celebrate, pull two cards: The Resurrection (a lesson you could learn from your childhood self), and Renewed Hope (a message you need to hear from your deck). Feel free to alter this one as is comfortable for your spirituality.

17. The Spring Fling Spread: Shuffle, then spread your cards face up. Are the Lovers closer to the Emperor or the Empress? Use this as advice in your interpersonal relationships

18. Fairy Tales: Pull a card or two to tell us what your life as a garden fairy would be like

19. The Aries Spread: For the last day of this sign, pull a card each for the four stars of the Aries constellation. These will represent Passion (something to pour your heart into), Impulse (something to follow your gut on), Optimism (something to lift your spirits), and Aggression (something frustrating to work on).

20. The Taurus Spread: Taurus has way too many stars for this (lol), so instead, pull a card each for its two horns. One to represent something wonderfully stable, and one to represent something just a little stubborn.

21. The Chinook Spread: Pull a card to represent a very rapid change

22. The Earth Day Spread: Pull a card (or two or three) as a reminder of everything the planet has done for you!

23. The Rainy Day Spread: Pull three cards suggesting your next rainy day activities

24. Tanka: Pull five cards to write a tanka (like a haiku, but the syllables are 5-7-5-7-7)

25. Spring Break: Build a house of cards as best you can. Share pictures, even if it’s kind of a mess (I know mine will be)

26. The Weather: Describe today’s weather using tarot cards! Maybe even try to predict tomorrow’s weather, if you’re feeling it

27. The Migration Spread: Place five cards in a V, like geese flying north for the summer. What are you flying towards?

28. The Arbour Day Spread: A pine tree needs all four classical elements to survive: earth to hold onto, air to breathe, water to drink, and fire to release its seeds. Choose one card of each suit to describe yourself.

29. Rainbow: Find cards in each colour of the rainbow, for the sheer aesthetic of it. If differentiating colours is difficult (or your deck is fairly monochrome), find a handful of your happiest cards and lay them out in an arch.

30. Sunday Brunch: You’re off for a lovely Sunday brunch. Which court card(s) do you invite?