Resting on the Oars

Mon. Feb. 28, 1944

4:45 p.m.


Dear folks,

I just finished reading your Fri. letter and I’m just a little mad. I know one Negro who has something waiting for him and I think he’ll get it some day. Couldn’t Pop take a poke at him for gosh sakes? Who was he anyway? Doesn’t he know him? The best thing to use on them is your foot. There’s one place you can get them or anybody so they don’t come back for awhile. At least hit ‘em in the guts, never on the head or you’ll break your hand. Well I guess I can’t do much about it so I’ll get back to my usual lineup. I did my Calculus last night after I finished writing. Then at 8 we went to study. I put one hour on one Physics problem. The second hour I spent on my theme for English. At 10 we came back & I got to bed. It started to rain last night & has been doing it off and on ever since. There was no reveille today so I slept on through breakfast until 7:15. Then I got up, dressed, made my bed and at 8 we went to Calculus. We finally got our tests back. The grades were poor – only 5 were above 70 & average was about 48. I pulled a 98 which made me feel pretty good. I lost 2 points for leaving out a minus sign. At 9 we had Physics. He gave us some problems about which I knew practically nothing. I’m a little lost in that stuff. We don’t get the test until Sat. You know all these tests this week really don’t mean an awful lot. Unless I really did awfully poor I couldn’t change my grades & whether or not we go on is all up to Dallas.

Back at 10:00. We had study at 10 this morning. I worked on Phys. just in case we might have a lab test. At 11 we had military and more stuff on map reading. At 12 we came back for dinner. I had steak, potatoes, cabbage, salad, bread, butter, milk and cake. At 1 we had Physics Lab. We didn’t have a test but did an experiment on Impedances in alternating currents. At 3 we had study & I tried to shape up that theme some more. At 4 we had P.T. & played volleyball. At 5 we had our monthly physical which means we get paid in a couple days. I got your Thurs. & Fri. letters today. I also got the letter back that I wrote to Hugh about a month ago. It had been sent from Camp Tyson to Fort Bragg & there it was stamped unknown and sent back. Evidently the mail clerk in Tyson made a mistake in sending it to Bragg. He probably shipped out to a different place. I started writing on this & wrote until 5:20. Then Sammy & I played ping pong until supper. I had corn, salad, bread, butter, milk, and fruit salad. Then we came back & played some more. I beat him 12-5 and broke even 2-2 with another fellow. At 8 we went to study. I did my Calculus and read 2 chap. of Drawing for a test we may have tomorrow. I had thought of really pouring it on & going to late study but they knocked all the ambition out of me. I’m back in the dayroom now. Here’s the setup as it stands now. They still don’t know if we stay next term or not. According to one of the officers they are trying to keep us 14 but don’t know if they’ll be able to or not. The big thing is this. There will be no furloughs. That came out today and applies to the whole A.S.T.P. all over the country. So that’s that I guess. God knows when I’ll get home now. Even if I can stay I doubt if it will be over 3 months & once I get back in troops chances for furloughs are darn slim. I know this sounds pretty morbid but its about the way things are. I want to stay but I’m beginning to think that will go too. To be honest with you I don’t expect to be here after the middle of next week. I’ll say what I feel then if things do turn out better, well we can feel happy about it. 14 months & I’ve had 11 days at home! What a life. Well that’s all there is. I know you’ve sort of expect me to get home & so have I but it’s out now.

Now your letters. They’ve knocked the wind out of my sails & I haven’t much ambition to study. I think I’ll do enough to get through & rest on the oars. Thurs. Feb. 24 – Don’t get excited over no mail for a day or two. You may hit gaps now & then when I won’t be able to write. I know you’ve been cleaning house sort of looking forward to something, but this is the army, they tell me. Boy they are taking everybody for the army now. They say they need us because quotas are low. The snow will probably be gone by the time I get there all right. Fri. Feb. 25 – Say, who was this guy that hit dad & how did it happen & where? He must have knocked him down, otherwise how could he get away. That guy must pack a wallop if he only hit him once. I’m mad about this. Let’s have the details. Don’t worry about me. Take care of him. Nobody can do anything about my situation. What people think about breaking up this program means nothing to the War Dept. I really don’t think Aunt Marie meant that that way. At least I’d like to think she didn’t. I know what I hope for too but I’m prepared for practically anything. There’s not much I could do to help Pop on that except add some moral support. You know what I’d like to do but I’m not a fighter. I have learned a few tricks since I’ve been in the army. A good swift kick in the abdominal regions would be just what he needs. Well that’s your letters. This probably sounds pretty low but forget it. I sort of kind of wanted that furlough and I don’t like the idea of people pushing Dad around. Well I guess I better quit,


So long for tonight



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