A Latrine in Indochina

A fictional short by Larry B. Lambert©

The latrine had been constructed of pine bracing and plywood. A two-holed, it sat suspended over two sunken fifty-gallon oil drums, its smell familiar, its lure driven by need.

He kept the rifle but dropped the ruck, walked in, unbuttoned his trousers, and sat on the flat plywood seat worn smooth through use. His M-14 rifle, wedged against a block of wood nailed to the door, provided the locking mechanism. “Occupied”

Someone had stenciled Property of the US Navy inside the door, reminding them who owned them and whose latrine this was. On ships they were heads, on land, no matter how much the navy tried to hold with tradition, they were latrines. The word latrine interlinked the sailors and the grunts on the ground in a way a head never could.

Privacy, a place to think, undisturbed. Flies bounced against screened windows trying to get in. Distant helicopter rotors chopped the air, muffled morning coughs, laughter, metal banging metal, and more light through the screened windows. A PBR on the river started its engine in the distance. A radio clicked on playing popular music through a cheap speaker that yielded a tinny sound. Martha and the Vandellas crooned, Nowhere to Run.

The latrine provided a bulletin board, and a barometer showing the mood of the men. As an officer sitting in the enlisted latrine, he read what the men were thinking and filed it all away. Careful! I sublet the basement to a gook; Ensign Turner can suck my dick; and there were also the unheralded poets, I come here to itch my balls, and read the writing on the walls. Some of the writing could be attributed to an author: Article Fifteen this, asshole — accompanied by a crudely drawn phallus, clearly the work of Machinist Mate Second Class Troy Nelson, recently hauled before a captain’s mast. Killing for peace is like fucking for chastity, Lieutenant Commander Atwood. Atwood, a ring knocker on his way to admiral, delivered a rousing “why are we here” speech two days before.

Having perused the angst and frustration of others who also sat and shat, he pulled up his trousers removed the M-14 from its position, and pulled the door inward, stepping onto the planking with heavy boots.

He didn’t think any place could top a reeking navy latrine, but he always knew that he erred when he stepped through the plywood door and let the spring pull it closed behind him.

Once out of the privy, the jungle surrounded him. Thick green in every possible hue. Growth and decay were backed up by jungle sounds that were quite apart from the human stain created by the navy’s presence. The smell of chlorophyll masking rot on the shore of a muddy river, languid as a mill pond. Itching jungle, wet, dripping tangled jungle, a maze that could swallow you forever without a compass and some idea of where you’d been and where you wanted to go. Giant spiders, deadly snakes, monkeys, and endless, thick swarms of blood-sucking insects…and beyond them, the war.



Bullet Points:

**Tucker Carlson, is back in action.

** The old saying, “With age comes wisdom,” was obviously written by some old guy.

** Go woke, go broke – “After much thought and consideration, we believe it is in the best interest of Park’s stockholders to materially reduce our current exposure to the San Francisco market. Now more than ever, we believe San Francisco’s path to recovery remains clouded and elongated by major challenges — both old and new,” said Thomas Baltimore Jr., CEO of Park Hotels, in a statement that could be applied to every other liberal-controlled US metropolis.

The 1,921-room Hilton is the city’s largest hotel and the 1,024-room Parc 55 is the fourth-largest, and together they account for around 9% of the city’s hotel stock. The hotels could potentially be taken over by lenders or sold to a new group as part of the foreclosure process, although it is unclear who would want to put even one dollar of equity into a property that will more than likely redefault within a few years.

That’s because there is no easy solution to San Fran’s long list of challenges which not only a record high office vacancy of around 30% but also concerns over street conditions (and the amount of feces covering them), a lower rate of return to office compared with other cities (because woke snowflakes are naturally entitled to work from home of course) and “a weaker than expected citywide convention calendar through 2027 that will negatively impact business and leisure demand,” Baltimore  Jr., said.

** Bring on the Brave New World – Nearly one-third of Generation Z says they’d be just fine with government-installed surveillance cameras in every household under the guise of reducing domestic violence and other illegal activity.

** Voting Fraud – Arizona – As revealed by new evidence and footage, none of the 446 vote center tabulators used on election day were tested by the Secretary of State or Maricopa County during Logic and Accuracy testing on October 11th. A test using only five “spare” tabulators that were not used on election day “was the only metric to ensure all election day ballots could be cast, counted, and reported accurately.” Clay Parikh told us, “They ignored 446 vote center tabulators that were used in the election. They had the wrong programming on them, which means they were misconfigured.”

** A Lesson on Cause and Effect – more ruin caused by Pedo Joe’s regime.


Identify the Aircraft (2)





The collapse of Roman authority in the island province of Britannia in the 4th and 5th centuries is a historical blind spot for which the extant literary evidence is slim to none. When the Western empire collapsed in the 5th century, historical literary traditions were kept alive by members of the remaining aristocracy, men such as Sidonius Apollinaris and Boethius.

Meanwhile, in the East, the historical narrative was continued by historians such as Zosimus and Olympiodorus.

Unlike today, a Roman historian was expected to have lived through the period he was narrating. Post-Roman Britain, the earliest historical source we have is that of the monk, Gildas.

Gildas was estimated to have written his version of events surrounding the end of Roman Britain more than a century after the fact. Added to this, his narrative was not intended to be historical but rather to provide context for the woes of his contemporaries.

Other medieval writers drew heavily from Gildas’s flawed story over centuries, and this lack of certainty has given rise to the myths and legends of British folklore. Classical civilizations of the Mediterranean world had long heard rumors of a mystical wintry island far off to the north inhabited by strange peoples.

Herodotus briefly described the wealth of tin in these mysterious isles. A century later, a Greek explorer, Pytheas of Massalia (modern Marseille in Southern France), a contemporary though not acquaintance of Alexander the Great supposedly circumnavigated the entire island.

Around this time, the Phoenicians established a trade route to the island, with Punic coins being found there dating to the 3rd century BCE. Britain remained a realm of curiosity to the civilized world which spurred Julius Caesar’s expeditions to the islands during his Gallic campaigns (58-50 BC).

Caesar had ventured to the island partly because it was harboring fugitives and supporting his enemies in Gaul, and partly out of a sense of adventure and for the political rewards he would accrue as a result.

Following Caesar’s political ascent, the Roman world was thrust into decades of political turmoil and transformation. This meant that Britain remained free of Roman domination for nearly another century.

The reformer who emerged as the master of Rome, Augustus, bequeathed advice to his successors regarding the frontiers of the empire. Instructing them to maintain the Roman dominion within its natural boundaries; the Atlantic to the west, the Rhine and Danube rivers to the north and northeast, the Caucasus mountains and Euphrates River to the east, and the Sahara desert to the south. However, desperate for glory, Augustus’s successor sought to add Britain to their domains, and in 43 CE, under Emperor Claudius, they did so.


  1. The one landing looks like a Vought F7U Gutless Cutlass.

    The other one looks like a T-33… did the Navy use them, and shipboard?


  2. Good story.
    Reminds me of the time I returned from leave and saw our new squadron commander, a petite pretty Captain. I wrote a 4 chapter love paen to her on the walls of 4 successive stall walls.
    I didn’t think it was attributable to me, but found out much later that she knew I had written it.
    It was mostly tongue-in-cheek with nothing naughty involved.
    When I left the squadron and visited her office to say goodbye, I saluted her and she came from around her desk, stood on her tiptoes and kissed me on the cheek.
    One of my favorite memories of the service.

    • A lot of sitting Republicans fear the Democrat machine. The sheep go along to get along and to be fair the Democrats do pay to play. Corruption is endemic here. It reminds me of Mexico.

  3. San Francisco’s oligarchy will be the beneficiaries of repeated rounds of urban renewal largess from their friends in Congress. Detroit and Baltimore have seen how many hand outs and special tax abatements over the last 5 decades? Too bad they still remain the bastions of vibrancy that they are, but…..

  4. SF- Creating Dystopian Central one hotel at a time. Build a wall around the place, it’ll be like The Maze Runner but without a way out.

    Comey should be in prison. There, I said it. (Okay, not the first one, but repeating is Hannity’s approach so I figured I’d try it. [tap,tap,tap…me waiting for my big paycheck from Failing Fox.]

    Canada’s let it burn policy by the idiots in charge…proving zero forest management policy does not work.

    Smoke- They have a name for “the flow” causing the smoke dump on the East Coast: Omega Block. That’ll be front and center for the next week until it rains and the smoke clears.

    The usual suspects our ox is getting gored now so it’s all of a sudden a big deal …what a bunch of weak-minded whiners. A few weeks back we here in the West had The Canadian Fire Haze. Life didn’t stop. Yesterday was outside prepping some large wood posts, grinder with sanding disk (it’s not Fine Woodworking). Only time I wear a mask yet still breathed in some fine particulate despite it being a well fitted N95. Later heard the NYC/Philly/Boston crybaby’s talking about “smoke danger! Will Robinson!” and Wear your mask!. Folks, smoke particles are smaller than dust particles. More Virtue Signaling by the Low-IQ Voters once again.

    Pro-Level Virtue Signaling: Wear a Bud Lite Face Mask and Rainbow T-Shirt while driving your Chevy Leaf with an AOC/Greta bumper sticker. (BTW, according to Greta we only have 13 days left on the planet…the heck with beer, drink the good whisky/whiskey first.)

        • I should have known better, especially with the header pic. The reality is those (especially these days) who have not been there and done that would see it as crude…but it’s just life when men are faced with trying to maintain a mental edge while in such situations. It’s real, and there’s no need to explain the ‘why’ to those who would never understand.

          • It’s real, and there’s no need to explain the ‘why’ to those who would never understand.

            Like teaching a pig to sing…..

  5. Medieval Mace- I keep my old Easton aluminum bat handy, gives new meaning to ‘swing for the fence’ or “poke the dog”.

  6. Yeah, breathing has been more challenging than usual for the last couple weeks from the Canadian smoke (…from a distant fire).

    OTOH, NYC cancelled school today. It’s a good thing that canceling school for smog is a recent invention, otherwise there’d have been no school in NYC from 1880 to 1980.


        • Read a good article on twitter by a former forest ranger and firefighter from Canada who says they are not trying to put out any of the 200+ fires currently burning out of control. They just let them burn out and only protect assets like businesses and houses. Sat videos show about 30-40 fires in Alberta starting at the same time over a huge area. No clouds or storms anywhere near.

  7. 1. I think spending one’s formative years in NYC (possibly any very large metropolis in the US), situational awareness is automatically developed: if no other reason, to avoid be run over by drivers trying to beat the light; paranoia is an inherent, but useful condition.
    2. I admit to being a feather merchant (a dentist), but one who volunteered for the Armed Services to serve my country in the best capacity I could; did’t try to avoid it (quite the contrary), but I never made it to ‘Nam.
    3. Whenever I had an urge to empty my bowels while out all day (deer) hunting (Maine, North Dakota, upstate NY), I always picked a spot well out in the open, so I couldn’t possibly be mistaken for a trophy buck; I didn’t care who saw me: I’m not that easily embarrassed (y’ gotta go, y’ gotta go).
    4. Were I an enemy sniper in ‘Nam, I think I would keep an enclosed latrine/head under close watch: easy score.

    • 4. You’d need to distinguish (from a distance) the officer’s latrines from enlisted latrines. If it was known that a sniper was in the area, I’m sure that the rank and file would assist with the ID.

      • I just called my buddy, Charlie, who did manage to make it over to ‘Nam (dentist USA ’67-’68), Chu Lai and Da Nang, to ask about the latrines. Theirs were enclosed – with screens, and placed towards the periphery of the base. He said he never saw the womens’/nurses latrines, so he couldn’t make any comment.
        Gotta call my BOQ roomie, a Huey pilot, to ask him what the facilities were at the various bases he found himself stationed.
        I’ve never been one to be interested in waste management facilities outside of our own home (except in restaurants, but that’s a room of another odor that can say a lot about the restaurant), but your story makes me wonder about such facilities on base in combat zones where a trusted civilian might not be all that trustworthy (just my paranoia popping up again) vs. civilian poop sites (San Francisco?) and where we’ll be going with the third world entries flowing in.

  8. Gah, that was a memory I didn’t want back, but accurate as hell… sigh…

    Think about the hotel debacle- They are walking away from $1.4B property, only owing roughly half that. That tells me they don’t think they could even get 50% of the value on a quick sale. And taking 2900 upscale rooms out of SF will be a major hit to the ‘players’ that come to town!

    Britain’s ‘history’ has always been curiously twisted, depending who whom was writing it when…

    • This is turning into the next major fail or as we have seen before, a bailout (for some anyway):

      [WSJ] Interest-Only Loans Helped Commercial Property Boom. Now They’re Coming Due. Landlords face a $1.5 trillion bill for commercial mortgages over the next three years.

      Not good.


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