- 6 weeks of basic training at Lackland Air Force Base
- 6 weeks of English at Lackland Air Force Base
- 47 weeks of Russian Language at Lackland Air Force Base
- I forget how many weeks at Goodfellow Air Base (Crystal Confectionery 5 for 1 happy hours)
- 3 weeks of leave in Indiana during the COLDEST FREAKIN winter of the century
When the plane finally took off from La Guardia to Frankfurt, back in the days when they gave you real food, allowed you to use real knives and forks, and you could smoke, I looked forward to my first international flight meal.
To this day, I have no recollection (and I was totally sober during the flight) of the meal after the salad because of the horrible international incident I nearly caused.
The salad had cherry tomatoes. I love cherry tomatoes. I especially love to pop them whole into my mouth and bite down, causing them to explode in your mouth. I love that.
Since I was on an international flight, and because biting cherry tomatoes so they explode in your mouth seemed so kid-like, I wanted to be all international and worldly, so I poked a cherry tomato with a fork and proceeded to bite one end... like all world travelers and high society people do.
The only problem was that instead of exploding harmlessly in my mouth (had I been kid-like) this tomato exploded out the other end like a bomb, showering the woman in front of me right in the hair with such force that I thought she would be knocked unconscious. Lucky for her, she was sporting one of the largest bouffant hairdos I have ever seen (until the creation of Marge Simpson), which probably saved her life and spared her from feeling the assault from behind.
That happens to me when something really serious happens (not serious life threatening serious, I'm really good at staying calm and rational during those things), but if something non-life threatening happens that's serious... I laugh. I'm pretty sure if I tried to explain it while laughing, there would be all sorts of horrible national implications and I'd end up starting some kind of war.
I opted to stay quiet about the whole thing, and then spent the rest of the flight transfixed by the goo in her hair.
This is how I saved the world from certain annihilation.