Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

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July 28, 2014 at 12:21pm

Joint Base Lewis-McChord nerds and geeks unite!

8-bit hoo-ah!

Sure, there are spouses groups for Joint Base Lewis-McChord husbands and wives looking to integrate into the local community, make friends or learn more about how to navigate within the military world. There are resources galore, and yet sometimes spouses may want to connect and get together over a different topic than military resources. Spouses may simply want to get together and talk about shared interests - especially if those shared interests are something that maybe not everyone out there relates to.

For this exact reason, Monica Rice blazed a new trail and recently formed her own group - the JBLM Geeky/Nerdy Spouses, a Facebook group open to spouses of both genders so long as they identify as geeky and/or nerdy. After spending some time with the general spouse groups, she thought others out there might want to connect on all things geeky like she did.

"I'm still pretty new to the military lifestyle and haven't made many friends with spouses," says Rice. "Also, because of my passion in computers and programming, I don't have many lady friends with those same interests. I knew I couldn't have been the only woman with what I think are pretty niche hobbies, so I wanted to reach out while simultaneously forming a small network wherein all members could talk about their favorite passions without feeling like an oddity."


July 3, 2014 at 7:26am

Thursday Morning Joe: First female combat force commander, new Army handgun, military tracks Facebook, John Oliver excels ...

The 6th Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, throw coffee during skills training at Kunduz province, Afghanistan. Original photo by Sgt. Avila


Iraq chases Baghdad sleeper cells as "Zero Hour" looms over capital.

Israel said today it was beefing up its forces along its frontier with the Gaza Strip.

Iran has reduced demands for the size of its future nuclear enrichment program in talks with world powers.

The latest delivery of Russian-made Su-25 Frogfoot aircraft to the Iraqi Air Force originated from Iran.

The White House is expected to nominate Lt. Gen. Lori Robinson to head up Pacific Air Forces and receive a fourth star, making her the first U.S. female four-star commander of combat forces.

Top U.S. officials return to Farnborough as F-35 debuts.

How the Pentagon could save $108 billion over the next decade.

Will U.S. switch sides and back Assad?

There hasn't been a real adjustment in the U.S. definition of national security since the end of the Cold War and the extension of business as usual has simply diminished the U.S. in its role as a world leader.

Forget terrorism. The Pentagon's best chance to field the best military with the smaller budget imposed by sequestration may just lie in preparing for nuclear war with Russia and China.

China: Leap-frogging U.S. deterrence in the Pacific.

VA medical inspector retires after scathing report.

The U.S. Army wants to replace its Cold War-era M9 9mm pistol with a more powerful handgun.

Army: Bergdahl venturing out in public.

The Army-led Future Vertical Lift program is being developed to replace the service's aging helicopter fleet, and the aircraft of other services, at some point in the future.

94th Infantry Division vets reunite to remember World War II.

25th Transportation Battalion carries out certification exercise below DMZ.

The www.defenseone.com/technology/2014/07/military-already-using-facebook-track-moods/87793/?oref=d-topstory" target="_blank">military is using Facebook to track your mood.

Top five misconceptions about evolution according to scientists.

Cool demonstration of self-driving cars.

Too Much Free Time: Watch how American cities grow through thousands of historic maps.

Variety has a piece about John Oliver's show and how it has "shattered TV's comedy-news format."

Tour buses for Styx and Foreignercaught on fire yesterday.

LIST: 50 greatest summer blockbusters


LINK: Original photo by Sgt. Avila

June 7, 2014 at 8:45am

Saturday Morning Joe: Fixing VA, Gunmen in Iraq, Bergdahl boomerang, colossal cannibal great white shark

8th Commando Kandak fire rocket-propelled coffees during a live-fire exercise in Tarin Kowt district, Uruzgan province, Afghanistan. Original photo by Petty officer 2nd Class Jacob Dillon


GOP to Obama: Fix VA.

Ukraine's new president Petro Poroshenko said his country would never give up Crimea and would not compromise on its path towards closer ties with Europe, using his inaugural speech to send a defiant message to Russia.

Gunmen take hundreds of students hostage on Iraq university campus.

The Bergdahl boomerang: GOP lawmakers who long urged a rescue now sour on the idea.

Bergdahl's father said one of his son's Taliban captors lost his son in a U.S. drone strike.

Vet unemployment drops, beating nation's unemployment rate.

A handy guide to the potential candidates to be the next VA secretary.

Inside the liberal take-over of U.S. national security.

The five most powerful navies on the planet.

The most important disruptive technology systems and ideas that DARPA is working on.

Scientists at University of Akron claim they've cracked the code, so to speak, by creating a super-tough screen out of transparent electrodes.

A cocktail glass designed to work in zero gravity.

Mystery solved: This is the monster that ate a great white shark.

The definitive reason why you should delete your Facebook account.

The game has really stood the test of time: Tetris' 30th anniversary.

The BoJack Horseman trailer for the animated Netflix series, which debuts in August.

Orange in the New Cat ...

LINK: Original photo by Petty officer 2nd Class Jacob Dillon

May 27, 2014 at 9:16am

Soldier For Life Facebook town hall May 29

Vice Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. John F. Campbell / photo courtesy of Facebook

Vice Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. John F. Campbell will host a Soldier For Life (SFL) Facebook Town hall from 11 a.m. to noon EDT, Thursday, May 29. SFL initiative highlights the "lifecycle" of the Soldier at four points: "Start Strong, Serve Strong, Reintegrate Strong and Remain Strong." SFL is designed to assist transitioning active, USAR, and National Guard soldiers and their families by assisting in the reintegration to the private and public sector. SFL also assists in post Army opportunities through credentialing, certifications and licensing programs that directly link civilian recognized skill sets with Army training.

Participate on Gen. Campbell's Facebook May 29.

Read more at the SFL website.

Filed under: Army, Community, Facebook, Military,

March 26, 2014 at 7:21am

Wednesday Morning Joe: BRAC plea, Benghazi bust, infantry robots, Maj. Gant rise & fall, Facebook vs. virtual reality

While Espress-O-Yourself in Fircrest has a tight-fit drive-thru system, it's coffee is tasty.


Army leaders push for another BRAC round.

Congress' multiple investigations of the deadly 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, have cost the Pentagon millions of dollars and thousands of hours of personnel time.

The bilateral security agreement between the United States and Afghanistan has still not been signed, sealed and delivered, creating budget uncertainty and potentially significant logistical problem.

The head of U.S. Pacific Command believes America does not possess the capacity to conduct amphibious assaults in the wake of a crisis, as it did during World War II.

The Senate Intelligence Committee has pushed back a vote on its controversial report on Bush-era interrogation techniques until next week.

U.S. Army Human Resources Command established a provisional Cyber Branch, to provide career management, development and readiness to the Army's cyber forces.

Are aircraft carriers the new West Berlin?

The U-2 spy plane is a better suited than the Global Hawk for early warning of a North Korean attack.

The admiral in charge of all U.S. military forces in the Pacific says some of his needs for attack submarines are going unmet.

The secretary of the Army said he will have the final say on whether a disgraced Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair at the center of a sexual misconduct case retires at a lower rank with sharply reduced retirement pay.

As South America continues increasing its defense expenditures, air fleet modernization is driving numerous requirements and will continue to do so into the foreseeable future.

Three things have to happen before infantry robots hit the battlefield.

The Defense Health Agency is moving ahead with plans to cover the costs of some laboratory tests that Tricare, by law, cannot.

Training and operations can put such tremendous physical and psychological stresses on warfighters that their immune systems may be compromised.

This is not only a story about disgraced U.S. Army Special Forces major James Gant. This is also a story about a story about Jim Gant.

Neat shot of two Nimitz-class nuclear aircraft supercarriers-the USS George H.W. Bush and USS Harry S. Truman-cruising together in the Arabian Sea.

In your face Facebook.

Video of the Chicago subway jumping its tracks.

Good News: You can spend the night in a television antenna above Prague.

Neil Patrick Harris and Billy Eichner ambush New Yorkers.

The History Channel has renewed Vikings.


March 14, 2014 at 7:14am

Friday Morning Joe: Global Strategic Landpower unveiled, underwater drones, Google Glass for combat, 10 awesome girl bands...

We're sipping espresso this morning at the Starbucks off 38th Street in Tacoma.


Failings last spring by nuclear missile operators at an Air Force base in North Dakota were worse than first reported.

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno unveiled what he called the Global Strategic Landpower Network.

How to stop - or slow - Putin.

North Korea 2014 meets Rome AD 65.

The real military game-changer: Hypersonic weapons 101.

Pentagon boosting its push for underwater drones.

U.S. troops in Afghanistan must destroy up thousands of their own vehicles to save money.

U.S. Army officials say defense spending cuts killed the Ground Combat Vehicle, but this latest modernization setback fits right into the service's growing portfolio of failed attempts to replace its Cold War vehicles and helicopters.

The Air Force is in the early phases of a fleet-wide technological upgrade to the F-15 fighter jet to keep it in the air through 2035 and beyond.

BAE builds Google Glass for combat.

The U.S. Air Force wants to get rid of its legendary A-10 Warthog tank-killers. Should Canada buy them?

TRICARE Prime would cease to exist within a few years under the "Consolidated TRICARE" plan proposed in the fiscal 2015 defense budget.

Budget, strategy dominate Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey's Facebook Town Hall.

Researchers claim that Facebook has the power to spread moods in a viral fashion.

In-car facial recognition detects angry drivers to prevent road rage.

Bill Gates explains how to save the planet.

Americans are the weirdest people in the world. Here's why.

Cynthia Lynn, one of the last surviving stars of Hogan's Heroes, has died.

Louie returns to FX May 5.

List: 10 awesome girl bands

Are you in this video?

February 24, 2014 at 10:53am

Contest: Sing the "National Anthem" on Marcus Luttrell's tour

Marcus Luttrell, the former Navy SEAL whose story is presented in the movie Lone Survivor, is recruiting singers to perform the "National Anthem" at each of the 11 stops on his 2014 Patriot Tour. Contestants are encouraged to submit a video using the entry form on the Patriot Tour Facebook Page using the hashtag #PATRIOTTOUR. The Patriot Tour 2014 schedule includes stops in 11 cities across Arizona, California, Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, North Carolina and South Carolina. Marcus and his Patriot Tour team will select winners in each of the eleven cities on the tour.


February 4, 2014 at 7:45am

Tuesday Morning Joe: Kickback scandal rocks Army National Guard, vet tuition rates, secret Taliban talks, happy birthday Facebook...

Seahawks spirit is still alive at Rain City Cafe in downtown Tacoma.


More than 800 soldiers are under criminal investigation for gaming a National Guard program that paid hundreds of millions in bonuses to soldiers who persuaded friends to sign up during the darkest years of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has been holding secret talks with Taliban officials in an effort to bridge peace with his government,


January 17, 2014 at 9:59am

Debate: Should contemporary artists paint in the Italian Renaissance style?

Carla Paine's paintings may be seen at Olyphant Art Supply. Courtesy Photo

Weekly Volcano art critic Alec Clayton's review of Carla Paine's portraits and still-lifes has sparked a debate on Facebook. Clayton praises her talent, and recommends readers see the show at Olyphant Art Supply in Olympia.

That said, Clayton questions why the paintings were created.

The paintings are impressive, but they make me wonder why. Why would a 21st century painter make pictures that look like they came out of an Italian Renaissance studio? It has all been done before, and just as well if not better. Van Eyck did marvelous things compositionally, and he pictured every day reality in an honest if staged manner. Paine's paintings are definitely staged, warm and comforting, but beyond technical showmanship and nostalgia for a time she could never have known I question the reason for these paintings.

Is Clayton spot on or out of his gourd? If you have thoughts on Clayton's criticism, visit his Facebook and chime in.

Filed under: Arts, Facebook, Olympia,

January 9, 2014 at 11:16am

Open letter to the Brawny Man who supported the Wound Warrior Project

Wounded Warrior Project still front and Center this morning at Stadium Thriftway in Tacoma.

Dear Brawny Man,

We just want you to know that we have switched to your brand. We were Bounty fans for the longest time. Being in the media business, we are all about speed. The faster we can deliver the news, the better (thanks for the stress stupid Internet). Sometimes when we race to across the room to post a story, we accidently knock over the Walkie Talkie Weather Guy's sippy cup. Because Bounty is the quicker picker-upper, we rode its roll of towels. ...

That is, until we saw the Wounded Warrior Project emblem below your plaid-wearing, paper towel-hocking face on your packaging. You and your parent company, Georgia Pacific, have supported WWP since 2012. Your concept of donating a $1 for every Like on your Facebook page was both generous and brilliant. In 2012, you raise more than $500,000 for WWP. Last year, you exceeded your $6000,000 goal, raising $613,566 for WWP, which included $250,000 from GP above and beyond the Likes.

Brawny has given more than $1.4 million to WWP over the last two years to help our nation's heroes and their families through their difficult transitions.

You're awesome Brawny Man.

A quick call to Georgia Pacific revealed the program has been put on hold for 2014, according to Rich in GP's call center, although he did say it could come back in the future.

Georgia Pacific says the Wounded Warrior Project support will continue in 2014.

Thanks again Brawny Man. We will come calling when spilled juice is running off our computer desks an onto our linoleum floor.


Northwest Military News Team

About this blog

News and entertainment from Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s most awesome weekly newspapers - The Ranger, Northwest Airlifter and Weekly Volcano.

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