Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Colby Buzzell:A New Podcast

There was a blogger we only knew as "cbftw" back in the days when he was a soldier. Wanting to stay an anonymous soldier-blogger in Iraq, used his initials, and saw "ftw" tattooted on his arm. That's how he got his screen name. He posted from an internet cafe at his base in Iraq without any censorship (while other soldiers wrote on their MySpace accounts and HotorNot.) On his blog, he vividly described the war experience for quite some time before the Army shut him down - temporarily. The soldier-blogger, Colby Buzzell, reminded me of myself - he seemed to have an inexplicable need to share his experiences and thoughts with others. Kind of like talking to yourself, fully knowing others will be reading. I really got to like him - his voice. I was one of thousands of people from all over the world who loved reading "cbftw" the soldier. I remember going ballistic when I went to read him one day and he wasn't there. Boy, was I ever pissed off about it when he disappeared. Look at the size of my headline. Heh heh.

You can listen to this fantastic Ashley Foot interview with guest Colby Buzzell at Allegro Radio:

Radio Allegro:The Pop Culture Podcast
RA2.6: Life After War: Colby Buzzell, Killing Time in Iraq

*Please note there is profanity on this episode so parental discretion is advised.

Colby says that he feels that he's served and sacrificed for his country. Rather than having to go back again, he says that the people who scream the most about supporting the war should go to the war and take their turn. CB thinks that the gung-ho pro-war crowd is "retarded" and the people who say they hate Bush but don't understand why they hate Bush are equally retarded. He says that the sooner we get out of Iraq, the better. The last presidential election's result - the Bush win - caused him to feel sick and nauseous. He couldn't believe the American people would have supported him or the Iraq war. He added that he doesn't like to spend an inordinate amount of time worrying about it.

He joked that he has suffered PSTD from writing his book than from the war.

Trivia: CB was one of the only soldiers with an iPod. He loves the song "Free" by Cat Power and most songs by The Clash (and I'll bet he turned a lot of his fellow soldiers onto his music). Without the music, he couldn't have relaxed and he couldn't have coped with missing his loved ones and his life back home while facing the hell of war.

I'm one of those people who believes that music is so powerful that it helps us transcend time, age, anxiety, grief, hopelessness, religious boundaries, loneliness, whatever... and I think music helped CB stay sane and stay gold through this crazy war. He says he came back "fine" - no flashbacks - no problems readjusting to his life other than the booze habit he picked up over there. He says people can't believe it when he tells them he's fine when they ask - and they almost always ask. He has no special expectations for entitlement just because he fought in a war, but he admits that he's glad that the Iraq War chapter of his life is securely behind him. Some guys aren't able to move on with life and they're the ones who have problems adjusting.

Some of his friends from Iraq have had problems finding decent jobs since they've returned. Some went back to Iraq. CB wrote a book. My War. Trust me, it's a really good book. Colby's not sure what he's going to do next, but I have a feeling that Colby will be just fine - life's a journey and judging by the song he chose for the closing of his podcast, What A Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong, you just know CB's going to be okay.

CB's a good egg. It's for guys like him and all the other troops that I wrote on the sidebar of my original Iddybud blog long ago:
This blog, out of love and respect for our citizens who serve in the armed forces, supports the brave men and women who do their duty for this nation. This blog does not support the current policies of GW Bush. May Providence grant us all the wisdom to know the difference.
Be sure to listen to CB's interview.

What a Wonderful World
by Louis Armstrong