14 April 2010

Fortunes Favor the Strength of the Strong

Regular readers of Red Bull Rising will recognize that I've been having some fun with the concept of "tactical fortune cookies," which my brigade buddies and I create by adding the words "... on the deployment" to whatever predictions we find in our favorite after-Chinese-takeout treats.

Yes, it's awfully similar to the sophomoric practice of adding the words "... in bed." We have no problem with that.

Last week, as we were eating lunch out on the economy (in other words, we paid our own ways, rather than eat in an Army dining facility). There were more of us than usual, so we collected a Humvee-full of new prophesies. Our sample was so large, we began to notice some trends ...

There were the "Wise and Inspirational" fortunes, such as:
  • "Second thoughts are often wiser than first impressions ... on the deployment."
  • "You can undertake and complete anything ... on the deployment."
  • "You circle of friends will soon grow larger ... on the deployment."
There were the "Jaded Joes Know Better" fortunes:
  • "You'll experience real change for the better ... on the deployment."
  • "Honor is your greatest reward ... on the deployment."
  • "Contentment is yours when you find it does not come from things ... on the deployment."
  • "You will find good food in the near future ... on the deployment."
And there were the "Don't Worry, You'll Probably Go To Jail" fortunes:
  • "Wealth is in your future ... on the deployment."
  • "The fun side of a relationship begins to unfold ... on the deployment."
  • "Be alert, practical, and honest. Practice Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty ... on the deployment."
Want to make your own fortunes? Christine Hofmann-Bourque at The Strength Behind the Strong--a blog regularly spotlighted in the Red Bull Rising sidebar--recently suggested a way to order custom fortune cookies for homecoming (and, I'm sure, send-off) parties.

Which reminds me of the time that one of my high-school friends hand-made some custom fortune cookies for a mutual friend, someone who, while a funny guy, had the adolescent tendency to make Eeyore look like an optimist. He would subsequently carry his personal fortune in his wallet for years after the fact. What did it say?

"Nothing good will ever happen to you ..."


  1. We took a line from the movie "American Pie" the line "One time at band camp..." and changed it to:

    "One time in Bosnia...."
    Then 6 months later we changed it to:
    "One time in Iraq..."

    We'd fill in silly things like:
    "One time in Bosnia...we ran out of ice cream in the mess hall."
    "One time in Iraq... we ran out of tomatos for the salad...because the convoy got blown up..."

  2. My husband once got the ultimate anti-Eeyore fortune: "God will give you everything you want." Period. No qualifications. Maybe one of those will turn up at your next lunch. Might be useful on deployment, or might make deployment unnecessary. Here's hoping.

  3. @ CI-Roller Dude: We've got a lot of cops working in the TOC right now. I recently pulled a "One time? At the Law Enforcement Camp?" shtick, and almost didn't get out alive. Just three steps toward the TOC door, mister ...

    @ Carolyn Jacobson: Hmmm. Sounds a little like that (apocryphal?) ancient Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times ..."

    Or maybe it's a variation of "be careful what you wish for?"


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