For what seemed like an eternity, but was actually only a seven-month stay on Sampson Air Force Base in late 1955, I had a friend of sorts who drove me nuts because he thought he had the answers to everything. No kidding. He had memorized about 40 or so “old sayings,” including those of two Chinese philosophers. He called them, “The great thoughts of the past” and no matter what we were doing he always had some %$#@! quotation, which he thought was the answer to doing it right.

What he never seemed to grasp was the fact that most of what he claimed were “great thoughts” were actually comments about the obvious. From that day to this I have been happy that they closed the base we were on before I ended up either strangling that character or stuffing my ears with mud so I couldn’t hear him droning away all day.

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