This was an article published in our MCL, 1stLt. Frank Reasoner Detachment 919 newsletter in 1998. I am the editor of that newsletter, titled the Reasoner Reader. From time to time I include “secret” tid-bits in an article called ‘THE SPOOK”, about various members of our detachment. This one was about myself and absolutely true. I couldn’t make up something like this.
Case Folder: The $100 fried Chicken
Date: November 13, 1998
Time: On or about 1730 hours
Location: City of San Ramon, in the state of California
Incident Report: (Overheard through our hi-capacity audio/telescope)
Mr. Eveler was engaged in a telecon with a female member of our MCL detachment when the conversation turned to the Marine Corps Birthday Ball. Eveler inquired of the lady as to her intentions of attending such an event. She responded that “I have an invitation for tonight, at the Marriott in San Ramon but can’t attend.” Eveler replied, “You’re mixed up lady, the ball in San Ramon is tomorrow night at the San Ramon Marriott. I should know, I sent them my check for $100 two weeks ago. You better check your invitation again.” A slight pause while the lady was retrieving her invitation, then, “No, I’m correct, it says right here on the invitation — Marriott hotel at 7:00 P.M., Nov. 13th.” After a few more words the telephone conversation was ended. We then heard the sound of a shower running, an electric razor humming and closet doors slamming all over the residence. By this time I had dispatched an agent to observe how a Marine adapts in the face of adversity. What he and the listener reported is not pretty. Mr. Eveler showed up at the front window half dressed in dress-blue trousers and white shirt after calling the hotel 3 times to confirm there was a ball that night; and always assured that there was. It looked as though he was waiting for someone; as indeed he was. His wife had left some time earlier to pay some bills and bring home some fried chicken.
After endlessly pacing the floor and returning to the window numerous times, along with unintelligible curses and unprintable oaths, until about 1845; after which he tore off his half-donned uniform, removed the medals and emblems from his coat: and was in the process of returning them to their display box when his wife returned. “Its about time. What the hell took you so long?” said the, by now, very subdued Eveler, followed by, “We apparently made a mistake. The ball is tonight at 7:00 P.M. How fast can you get ready? If you pull a ‘Cinderella’ maybe we could make it in time for the ceremony.” Cried she, “What! You expect me to get a dress prepared and my hair done and be at the hotel in a half hour?” Knowing he was about to lose that particular skirmish he wisely stated, “Aw the hell with it, so we missed one. It wouldn’t be the first. Let sit down and eat our $100.00 chicken.”
As Eveler sat there and stared at his plate, his appetite gone AWOL, he reasoned that the chances of having two MC balls in San Ramon were slim to none. But, being the ever vigilant Marine he once again called the aforementioned woman and asked her to check the invitation again. After receiving the same response he asked her to read the return address on the envelope. “I threw the envelope away” said the lady. “DAMN !!!”, said Eveler. After reconsidering his tactical position he jumped on his trusty steed and rode to the Marriott that was only 5 minute’s distance. In the parking lot he asked a pair of gussied up Marines what unit was conducting the ball that night. “The reserves from Concord sir.”, said the ever polite Leathernecks. Our hero fairly flew home to relay this bit of information to his wife. You see, we found out that his arrangements were made with the Marines from Alameda who were actually holding their ball the following evening.
After analyzing this case, my staff and I came to the conclusion that both he and his wife are brilliant strategists, and tacticians. Had his wife not refused to pull herself together in 30 minutes they would have arrived at a ball where there was no room for them and they were not exactly welcome. On the other hand, had Eveler not traveled to the Marriott they would have assumed they missed the ball, only to find out the following week that they really screwed up big time.
Our office’s conclusion is that this Eveler guy is a Marine, who when handed a sack of crap, knows enough to fertilize the garden. Here’s looking at you and be sure to always cover your six.
The Spook. Semper Fi,
1stLt. USMC (ret)