Never Mind The Frolykz, Here’s this Weekend’s D&M…

“All the world’s a stage” wrote Shakespeare.

“And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts.”

It gives one pause to thought. What is the real purpose in life? For some, it is the desire to get married and raise a family, others the pursuit of career and material wealth, and for others the pursuit of the creative arts where personal expression becomes an obsession that warrants sacrifice of all other worldly gains.

There is the participant, and the observer.

Those that glide through life without questioning its direction or purpose, and those that are so intensely philosophical and analytical that some are driven to madness.

We each tread our own path, and our experiences throughout life undoubtedly influence who we are today, affecting how we view ourselves and how we view others.

Apparently, research indicates that people who are religious are generally happier than those who are not. If this is so, is it because it is the belief in a “higher being” that brings about a sense of purpose or meaning to life, or is it the wanting to believe in something that makes it an unconscious requisite, in order to avoid the uncomfortable conclusion that there may in fact be no meaning at all.

Personally, I’ve never been all that interested in material gain. At least that’s what I like to think, but sometimes I wonder whether that’s entirely true.

Others feel a sense of purpose in helping others, Father Riley for example, through his tireless efforts to assist the drug addicted and homeless street kids in the heart of Kings Cross.

Some of the world’s greatest expressionists like Nina Simone and Billy Holiday, as well as comedians like Tony Hancock and Spike Milligan while, on the surface have displayed an almost genius like quality, have concealed a deep and dark side which they’ve eventually succumbed to.

So this is this weekend’s deep and meaningful.

What do you think it’s all about…?

Tenth Soldier Slain!

Another Digger as died attempting to diffuse and IED.

Once again my thoughts go out to his family and friends.

I don’t want to make this thread into a political punching bag.   I do think we should have a thread about the politics of war and Iraq and Afghanistan in particular – I’ll set one up next week.

For now, I’d like to reflect on the ten highly trained elite soldiers who have lost their lives doing their jobs and particularly watching out for their mates…contrary to popular belief (eg serving their country)…  that’s what Diggers do…

THE TEN

2009
March 19 Defence confirms the nation has lost its 10th soldier in Afghanistan. The man was killed while trying to defuse a roadside bomb.

March 16 Corporal Mathew Hopkins, 21, a member of the mentoring and reconstruction taskforce, killed in firefight with Taliban near village, 12 kilometres north of Tarin Kowt.

January 4 South African-born Private Gregory Michael Sher, 30, from the Sydney-based 1st Commando Regiment, killed as a result of indirect rocket attack in Oruzgan Province.

2008
November 27 Lieutenant Michael Fussell, 25, from Sydney-based 4th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, killed during an operation against Taliban insurgents in Oruzgan Province after an improvised explosive device (IED) was detonated.

July 8 Signaller Sean McCarthy, 25, from Perth-based Special Air Service Regiment (SASR) killed after wounded by improvised explosive device. Two other Australian soldiers and one soldier from another country wounded. Signaller McCarthy was born in New Zealand.

April 27 Lance Corporal Jason Marks, 27, from 4RAR commando unit in Sydney killed in battle with Taliban fighters in Oruzgan Province. Four other commandos wounded.

2007
November 23 Private Luke Worsley, 26, from 4RAR commando unit in Sydney killed in battle with Taliban fighters in Oruzgan Province.

October 25 Sergeant Matthew Locke, SAS, killed by Taliban fighters in Oruzgan Province.

October 8 Trooper David Pearce, 41, killed and another soldier seriously injured in roadside bomb attack in Oruzgan Province.

2002
February 16 Sergeant Andrew Russell, 33, was killed when the vehicle in which he was travelling struck a landmine in southern Afghanistan.

The Ode

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

Lest We Forget