Guest Blog by Mike Rowland: This is My Life
Last Saturday, my two oldest daughters and I went to a Laughing Pizza concert at the Cox Capitol Theatre in Macon. Laughing Pizza is a family band made up of the husband and wife team of Billy Schlosser and Lisa Michaelis and their daughter Emily. Their “Pizza Break” videos can be seen on Public Broadcasting stations around the country, including Georgia Public Broadcasting. They are talented and charismatic performers and we had a great time. You would think my thoughts would be far from the military at a concert like that, but three songs got me thinking about our men and women in uniform.
1. “Daddy”: Some years ago, Billy had a corporate job that had him traveling the world. Lisa and Emily wrote a song to express their feelings for him while he was away. The words are those of a little girl to her father, but they speak to the emotions of any person separated from a loved one. As I listened to the music, I thought “This is a deployment song” and my mind filled with images of Air Force personnel and their families, such as these:
There are tens of thousands of our military personnel deployed around the world at any time. Those Soldiers, Marines, Sailors, and Airmen miss their families. But they signed up to serve their country and so they leave their families and do what they’re asked to do.
2. “Plumpy Nut”: Laughing Pizza performed a song about Plumpy Nut, a peanut-based paste that is used to treat malnourished children. As Lisa gave the background on the song, I wondered, “Has the Air Force delivered Plumpy Nut?” If the US Air Force hasn’t delivered Plumpy Nut to a disaster area, it has delivered just about everything else. Of all the Air Force’s remarkable roles, the humanitarian mission is the one that I personally find the most interesting and inspiring. Whether it’s using air power to fly humanitarian aid to disaster victims around the world or rescuing American citizens in our own cities, the Air Force brings tremendous capability, flexibility, and experience to the table. Here are some examples:
3. “This is My Life”: For this song, Lisa stepped down off the stage and walked among the children in front of the stage asking them questions about what they like to do and what they want to be when they grow up. She used the children’s answers in the song. As the catchy tune filled the theatre, again, for some reason, my mind filled with images of Air Force people, each saying “I am an American Airman—this is my life.”
Rather than include some images here, I invite you to visit the Air Force’s photo archive and click on “People.” On the right side of the page, click “On the job.” There are over 1,100 pages of photos. Click on any page and you’ll see some of the faces of our Airmen, serving in an amazing variety of jobs.