Battle of Union Gap: Texan Initiates

First Texas Infantry

Photo Source: AllensCreations

 The bright sun blinds you, the tall grass brushes against your sides, and the smell of gunpowder overpowering your nostrils till they became nullified. This was the Battle of Union Gap. Our brutal battle started off as all others did in 1865, bunch of soldiers sitting around a campfire (though in broad daylight) and cleaning their weapons. But before I get to the gruesome details let me back up for a moment and just say this two-day event was over father day weekend, which is a special time for fathers and sons to bond and make memories with each other. Well we sure did that with the 1st Texas! A few of my friends were talking to me and said, “Hey want to join first Texas?” So my Dad began talking back and forth with the commander and my friend, and soon enough we reached an agreement. That agreement was that we would be able to attend at least one of the battles on Saturday, with the possibility of us staying the night however since my Dad works second shift we weren’t able to. Enough present day language, let’s go back in time to 1865!

First Texas

Photo Source: Charlotte Wigfall

There I was, dressed in grey. I felt very proud and humbled wearing the uniform, the same one they wore not too long ago. After having a moment of reflection in myself, I was awoken by the sound of the brigade, “Form up boys form up!” I hear quickly getting into place. To my right I could hear the infamous Cotton, keeping us calm and making us giggle as we approach the rest of the brigade. You know for a fact that the other companies don’t have nearly as much fun as we do. There we were lined up by our respected companies, awaiting the orders to move out. Soon they were given and we moved out, along the tree line making an odd U-Turn in front of the tall grass. Reminds me of the cornfield…. Flashbacks aside we couldn’t help but realize the sun bearing down on us, so we retreated to the shade, waiting for the Yankee line to appear from their hiding spot.

The Battle of the Cornfield

Photo Source: Photobucket

After several naughty jokes, and a futuristic doo-hickey that took a photo of you but didn’t have you stand in the same spot unmoving for two to three minutes took several shots of all of us together. I then got the feeling that we were about to march. The good flag was flown over us, everyone trying to give it one last grasp, as they knew it was gonna be their last. “Forward march!” cried the company commander. The first Texas followed suite and were ride beside Mississippi, then we saw the Union Marines. Many of us laughed seeing it foolish that a few marines could take on a whole brigade, we quickly routed them off and they went running with their hoop skirts back to their brothers. Once they were out of sight we could see several Union companies trying to flank us, this was my chance to prove to these battle hardened Texans what I was made of. “Front rank kneel, rear rank step up!” my Dad and I being in the rear rank did just that and open fired a murderous volley, taking several of the Yankees to their graves. The order was given to move to the right at the double-quick, and boy did we know why, the cavalry was flanking us. We high tailed it to our flank, then a shot rang out from the cavalry officer’s gun, our commander was hit. With blood pouring from his mouth he ordered his replacement to drive back to cavalry and flank the enemy. Confusion and disarray over the loss of our commander made even I frozen in our place for a moment. Then the confusion turned to anger as I loaded my musket and let out a boomer of a shot, knocking the cavalry officer clear off his horse, landing with a resounding thud on the ground. Satisfied I turned to where my other men were and engaged the Berdan’s to our front, “tree frogs” we call them on account they hop out of the grass then hop back down. We pushed forward now against the brunt of the Yankee line. Shot after shot was traded back men falling one by one, I discovered to my horror that both my Dad and I were out of black powder, then the Yanks shot and ripped me apart holes appearing on my chest as I flung backward, dead even before I hit the ground. My Dad turned around to look at me then he too went down. I could hear the battle in my ears as I lay in the sun awaiting my time to come. The cannons stopped bellowing, the shots stopped firing, and the women of the dead went out to claim their husbands and sons in this bloodbath on the fields of the gap. All I remember was my boys cheering after the battle ended, least my sacrifice wasn’t wasted as I drifted into eternal peace. Going forward in time to 2015, I must say I had a blast fighting with the Texans. After we came back to camp we gathered in a circle, and the three new recruits were inducted by tradition. Our right palm out which received a full cartridge of gunpowder, the left cupped water. After this we were told to rub our hands together really hard, then spread it all over our faces. The pictures followed, we were now Texans. I tried washing my face from one of the nearby spigots, and managed to spread it all around my face. I was now the modern-day version of blackface, Cotton got a good chuckle when he saw my face. Don’t worry, pictures will be at the end of this post with our “initiation” faces. The Texans are a family unit, who doesn’t believe in bureaucracy or shun members who can’t come to an event due to other obligations. This unit is my new home, and I’m proud to now say I’m a Texan. If you or anyone you know thinks the Texans are the reenacting unit for you, you can come join us at one of the events found here.  Did I forget to mention your first reenactment, is totally FREE? Yup, we have loaner gear and weapons for all if you want to try it. If you have any more questions you can visit our Facebook page, or go to the WCWA and look at the contact information for “1st Texas Infantry”. Hope you all had a wonderful father’s day weekend! – James References (pictures and video):

  1. AllensCreations: http://www.allenscreations.com/dtc1ti.html
  2. Charles Florin: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cl86_9saiG0
  3. Charlotte Wigfall: http://university-degrees-distance-learning2.blogspot.com/2009/06/charlotte-maria-cross-wigfall.html
  4. Photobucket: http://s235.photobucket.com/user/UKReb_photo/media/DSC00039-4_zps3a8f3968.jpg.htm

Wonderful News

The title suggests something more extravagant, such as a baby on the way or something that makes you spit coffee (or tea) out your nose. No mine is just about grades from college.

Ever since I turned in my math final to the secretary, I’ve been nervously checking my school’s “Check My Grades” tab to see what my course grade was. After chewing the nail on my right pinkie I saw it. I FLIPPING PASSED MATH CLASS!!! Sorry still dealing with the excitement coursing through my veins. I know everyone talks about, “I just got blah on my math test, well that was easy”. For me honestly I wished I could just look at a test or quiz, scribble the answers down, and carry on with the rest of my day. That’s not the case with me, tests and quiz’s cause me anxiety and stress but this year its been a little better. I’ve been doing my breathing exercises, and listening to classical music the night before a test (which really calms me down). For the first time in forever I passed all of my math tests which used to be the toughest mountain I had to climb, always taunting in its sheer magnitude and sharp angles. However, on this day, June 6th, 2015, I passed my math final and can now relax and finally get back to reading my new book that my Dad got from a work friend.

I apologize for not posting a whole lot on this site, I have some draft posts that I’ve written over these past few days, lots of them are poems which I’ve noticed have disappeared for quite some time. Well you’re in luck, they’re coming back! Have a wonderful summer everyone enjoy the sun!

– James

One Step At A Time

Progress is very slow for most people. This requires you to literally change yourself for better or worse, but its a option like everything in this world. Most know that bettering yourself is the key to have a easy going life but at the same time there are obstacles that come in are way that screw us up. Some think this is just stupid or boring but its true in every way. This is right in front of us 24/7  but again you have the choice to look or just ignore it, and keep doing the same old. Change is both a intimidating and encouraging thing to say to someone. No one else can change you but they can help you with progression. As always stay awesome and stay FABULOUS!!!!!!!

Every End is an Beginning

This is a very popular saying and is used in alot of films and video games. Its a true statement that has always been proven to be right through out history. Its a force of nature that cant be stopped and its both good and bad but it also depends on how you look at it. Society is proof of this and it also goes hand to hand with adapting with the new times. Obviously people go against this method because they think its unfair that thr y dont have total control of there life but its all about adapting and those who cant get use to the times are left in the dust. Its similar to stuttering becs use once you stutter you got to get use to it and you cant complain about it because it is now apart of your life. You just got to fund a way to cope with it and find some good in it instead of looking fir the negativity. As always stay awesome and stay FABULOUS!!!!!!!!

Battle of Deep Creek – Battle Hill and the Forest of Shadows

Last Saturday was the Battle of Deep Creek, known as the Battle of Spokane. The battle itself was held at Medicine Lake, which is close to the Eastern Washington Hospital. My family and I were staying at O’Sullivan Sportsman Resort over in Moses lake, which is a good two-hour drive from the battlefield. We decided that we would do both of the battles on Saturday since it was a three-day event. So there we were getting ready at 7:10 in the morning to prepare ourselves for war, putting on our wool uniforms on and shoes getting into our horse-drawn carriage (Mitsubishi Outlander). Fast forwarding approximately two hours, and we arrive at our destination where we begin walking up to the main camp.

Photo Credit - The Battle of Deep Creek

Photo Credit – The Battle of Deep Creek

As we arrived at the main camp, we heard loud cries for help, “Quick call 9-1-1 *insert name here* just got stomped in the middle of his back by his horse!” I glance up the hill to see a Calvary officer on his back with several people around him, with his horse off to the side looking at me and back to his owner. We then continue on our way to our unit, and find they’ve all massed into a brigade awaiting orders when several messengers come flying close behind us telling the other brigade staff (those who decide who wins or loses a battle) what happened. Upon receiving the news of a man being stamped by his horse in his back, several re-enactors with red fabric on their arms rushed to the scene. After they rushed on down one of the members on the brigade staff rebutted the messenger saying, “I can’t be bothered with this…” The response shocked me and I nearly fell backwards. I’m all for portraying historical persona’s, provided they aren’t stand offish but you should be disbanding your assembled brigade and helping the poor guy! Alas, he sent his men on their way to battle. Politics.

After recovering my jaw from the ground, we went over to our unit commander who we were told got relieved of command for the upcoming battle. So we quickly made sure our leathers which include; ammunition, canteen, cartridge box, caps, and our belt were all secure before we followed the route our brigade took. Turns out they were all sitting under some shade about 40 yards from where we were.

Welcome to Battle Hill

Photo Credit - St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Photo Credit – St. Louis Post-Dispatch

We began marching towards the enemy and as the confusion and chaos began to show its face, much like at Fort Steven’s. The frantic shouts resonated over cannon and musket fire. Laying round after round into the Yankee line proved ineffective, as only one Yankee went sprawling in a heap of limps as I shot him square. What we didn’t realize is our company kind of started to retreat, and our commander quit the field so then the real panic struck me. My dad got hit to my right falling down I then proceeded to play dead and wait for the Yankee line to come to me for a surprise attack, just then my guardian angel came in the form of a medic known as Betty told the Yanks, “Don’t you lay your hands on this one” the Yanks passing by replied, “Yes ma’am” She then gave me a wink and helped the other wounded tying dyed bandages on their arms and giving them jellybeans to heal them. I then staggered to towards the Yanks rear, only to hear the sound of taps being played meaning the battle had been concluded. Drat and I was so close!

Forest of Shadows

Photo Credit - Nelleke

Photo Credit – Nelleke

The evening battle was a surprise attack. Our plan was to send half the regiment attacking the Yank line on the bottom of the hill, while the remaining foes through the tree line to pinch the survivors and drive them back. A classic pincer movement. After traversing through the trees, and witnessing the carnage happening below us with units charging and repelling one another, we finally made it. Using the cover of the trees and our Texans’ provide cover fire we formed our battle line and made haste towards the enemy, little did we know we were in the path of a cannon. A plume of smoke followed by screams and shouts as I and most of my company fell in a pile of contorted corpses.

Upon seeing our obliteration the Texas drove at the cannon crew and killed them, reviving (tap on the shoulder) and men they were in arms reach of. As I was flying through the clouds metaphorically speaking, my Dad says, “Hey James, get up lets drive em back more” I then proceeded to get up and the camera that I’ve been recording the entirety of the battle, falls off. The only way I realized it had fallen off was when I went to grab a cap, and there was no camcorder, so the mad search for a small black camcorder in a pile of tall grass began. Like my dad said, “Like finding a hay in a needle stack”. Our brigade drove the survivors back to camp where they surrendered and laid down there arms, all the while I was running around like a mad man trying to find my camcorder. I enlisted the help of my nearby comrade’s, and by some stroke of luck one of them found it. After a thousand blessings to him, we walked back to our unit where they were waiting for us to begin the gun salute. Since I was preoccupied with my camera we got little jests of,”Those boys are taking their sweet time” to where a man who goes by CB said, “James, boy hurry up” with a smile. We then get into position and fire a unified volley, before marching back to camp. The marching must’ve jostled my camcorder loose again, because one of my comrades picked it up and handed it back to me.

The battles were over, the dead counted and buried, and the survivors reminiscing in memories and sharing moments of jubilation. The start of the reenacting season has begun.

– James

Ambitious

Ambition isn’t seen that much because of are society and the peer pressure. My Teacher taught me 2 days ago to be the the sore thumb in the group. To be the that one person who thinks ou outside the box and the one who doesn’t take the same old approach to things in life. She was expressing to us that following and obeying what people though of you or what they say about you 24/7 is a road to depression because you are not thinking for self your letting others think for you. Society does try to bring us down to what’s hip and cool. The awesome thing about that is that there are some people who reject that and find that ridiculous. These people are usually called the outcast but there no different from me and you. That just have the courage to stand up for what they believe in.

During are time we see that alot more and frequent. Not all of it is good but its progress. We are not machines, we can make are selves do what we want without being given a order or command. Being human is about being you and bettering yourselves. Its good to have those role models but more importantly you need to have that faith with in you. As always stay awesome and stay FABULOUS!!!!!!

Zombie Hunt: The Rise of the Unicorn Zombie Apocalypse Squad

Unicorn Zombie Apocalypse

Unicorn Zombie Apocalypse

On Saturday me, Clonejill, Thanetos, and my dad went to this laser tag event center called Virtual Sports.

The first time I heard about this place was when a friend of mine posted on Facebook, “Scared the s*it out of some noobs, man it’s GREAT being a zombie! Plus I got paid!” I asked him in a Facebook message, “Where were you a zombie at man?” He replied, “Virtual Sports, look it up the place is dope!”

However my brain got distracted (as it often does) on another project, which was most likely either homework or Xbox. The next day I picked up the school newspaper as it was close to Halloween, and there on the front page reads, “ZOMBIE WARS: Fight to Save Seattle” after reading the article there was mention of COD Tactical Battles i.e. (team death match). I immediately showed it to my parents and my Dad got a coupon for me and three guests (two since my Dad was going), to do the once a month Zombie Hunt.

I gathered my squad and we went on our way there, where I had my mini camcorder (which I forgot to charge) ready to record us screaming like school girls…err I mean kicking zombie butt of course!

Our first decision was creating our accounts and deciding on a team name which if we come back there we can use during the tactical battles as well. As we were umming and ahhing, Clonejill picked the name of the fearsome four who will save the Starbucks and Top Pot donuts from the flesh-eating zombies. We were known from that moment forwards as, “Unicorn Zombie Apocalypse” our slogan was, “Get horned.”

We fueled up on sugary pop, since we aren’t old enough to consume adult beverages that were at the bar. As we waited preparing ourselves mentally and physically, letting the testosterone build all while talking smack to get each other revved up. We kept hearing gunfire followed by screams and shouts heard in “Downtown Seattle” we all looked at each other like what have we gotten ourselves into?

Our number was called after we waited for what seemed like forever, we went into the “Alpha” room and met with the commander as he debriefed us on gun-safety, rules, and the golden rule “walk through and enjoy the experience”. After the briefing we head out the door into the armory to get our weapons and armor, which were all replicas of the same used by the US military. The staff sergeant yells, “Let’s move boys, get in the fight!” We check our weapons and move out one by one down the corridor, into the hot zone.

Zombies Attack!

Zombies Attack!

CloneJill and Thanetos stack up by the far wall as me and my Dad bring up the rear, then the zombie pops out and we immediately shoot lead “lasers” at the horrifying thing. The first taste of sweet victory coursed through us and we went off picking up the pace, turning into soldiers as we checked our corners for more flesh eaters. Zombies popped out of the shadows and windows scaring the poop out of us, we started to become separated as we moved forward. Now I realize that this occurrence foreshadowed the events to follow.

Gliding through the maze getting more and more on edge as we all became agitated, little did we know my Dad was actually doing the golden rule and was taking his time. We sweep through the last turn as we see the exit sign and freedom, then the horde came.

Clonejill comes running like a maniac bumping into me and Thanetos, unknown to us, he left my dad to be eaten by the zombies as they were surrounded. As the horde descended upon me and Thanetos we had no choice but to shoot every last bullet in them, all the while moving back to where my Dad was barely saving him from the ravenous beasts. Catching our breath as we exited the maze we take a group picture, forever remembering the events that we experienced. We went out to eat after we took our gear off and handed our guns back, we aren’t a usually talkative bunch but we were gagging away as we munched on burgers and fries.

When I got home I went to check my camera, turns out it died a few seconds into the battle. I was disappointed at first, then my Mom said, “It’s not about the videos that you make, it’s about the experiences you create and the memories with your friends and family”. Those wise words spoke truth, it didn’t matter that my camera died, I still had an awesome time! I did have a few stuttering episodes, but I didn’t allow it to ruin my evening. Team Unicorn Zombie Apocalypse survived the zombies, now we’ll see how we are in tactical against real players.

UnicornZombieApocolypse

– James

Catching The Moment

This week has been a little but ot was cool at the same time. My psychology teacher was like Master Yoda and gave us some wise words to remeber and use when we take test or just do stuff in our daily lifes. Also I went zombie hunting with few guys and it was intense but it tested are true ability for teamwork. Although we had a couple hickups in our formation we stilled survived with a impressive record. Also my stuttering was gone the whole time because I was so afraid and focused and that felt good. To finally have a break from stuttering and to realize what actually causes me to stutter. It was a intense day but we had fun and we might do it again which would be awesome. Also i have a few post about the Seventh Lion which is going to be awesome and to spread the word about stuttering because believe or not, a lot of people still have no knowledge of stuttering so we need to inform them. As always stay awesome and stay FABULOUS!!!!!!!

Word Around Town

attention!

So i guess are blog is getting noticed which i have to say is honestly surprising cause me and my amigo just did this to help those or encourage but people want to help spread the word which i think is awesome and amazing. Im happy to be apart of this group to be able to spread the word. Its actually fun to share your experince with others or inform others about stuttering and how it affects us on a daily basis but to also spread that this is not thr end but the beginning of somthing new. Its not about the destination but its about the journey and i dont know how far this blog will go but im pretty sure the whole world will know about us. Opportunity are all around us but its about being patient and cautious of what we or you will do and if it will affect the people around you because believe it or not, everyone is connected to someone in a way. It just takes that somebody to step up to take that action. As always stay awesome and stay FABULOUS!!!!!!!!!

Word Gets Around

Utah_State_University_Seal.svg

I just got a request to post an academic article on our site. Here’s the email I received;

Hello Admin,

I am Jill Saunders with the Utah State University Communicative Disorders & Deaf Education department. I noticed that you allow guest blogging on your site and am interested in sending you an article about how stuttering affects academic education. Would you be interested in posting an article about that? Let me know and I will send it to you.

Looking forward to your reply,
Jill Saunders
Utah State University Communicative Disorders & Deaf Education 
 To say I was astonished is an understatement! I was literally saying to myself, “No this isn’t real, it’s a spammer” boy was I wrong on that it was legit! I know this post isn’t as long as my usual ones’ are. I’m just shocked that this blog was able to get the attention of a university, especially the department. Now this is a pretty freaking cool Thursday :)
– James