The Weekly Havok
What Should Masculinity Mean?

What Should Masculinity Mean?

October 21, 2021

A few weeks ago, during our crossover episode with Project Sapient, I got to talking with 22 Mohawks founder Dave Campisano about masculinity and what it means, especially to veterans. I told him we needed to do a show on just that topic, so this was the week. We brought on former Marine and current poet Mason Rodrigue as well as Havok Journal owner Charlie Faint to talk about it. And Dave attempted to be the first guest to do the show from a moving vehicle (no spoilers, but it didn't really work out). But it was a good slightly-more-than-wavetops dive into the subject. There will be more to follow...

 

Show Alibis

If you're wondering if we suddenly decided to start publishing these episodes on Thursdays, no we didn't. I'm going to blame task saturation and what turned out to be a false clear memory of publishing it a few days ago. #Facepalm. 

I really like Mason. (I really like Dave too, but only when he's not driving and I'm not calling him Nate). Would have loved to NCO that dude. After two podcasts almost back-to-back with him, he is that extrovert talker that keeps your morale up and the conversation going in the field. Every time I had to cut him off to go to another person, I saw his head drop and felt like he was pawing the ground until he could get back in the flow. Remote podcasting does a real disservice to him, because I'd love to have a back-and-forth in person when interjecting comments wouldn't derail a conversation and set the conversation back. Maybe next time we team up with Project Sapient in Boston...?

Can't wait to get a full episode with Dave Campisano back on the show. Just a great dude doing some really noble work right now at 22 Mohawks. He'll be back on in the dangerously near future, we've already worked it out...

 

Show Notes

Mason Rodrigue

Patrol Base Abbate

22 Mohawks

Second Mission Foundation

Savage Wonder 

Veterans Repertory Theater

Spotlight Episode: Greg Drobny

Spotlight Episode: Greg Drobny

October 12, 2021

Our first ever Spotlight episode shines a light on Havok Journal writer Greg Drobny. Greg is a former Airborne Infantryman, PSYOP Team Chief, political consultant, professional mil blogger, and Code Platoon’s Student Outreach Coordinator. He holds a BA and MA in history, as well as a Masters of Science in organizational psychology.

 

Show Notes

Code Platoon

Havok Journal

Veterans Repertory Theater

Savage Wonder

What Is Your Purpose?

What Is Your Purpose?

October 5, 2021

This week, I sat down with Liz DeGraeve, Elana Duffy and Havok Journal owner Charlie Faint to talk about purpose. Liz has shifted from a colorful and accomplished 23-year career in Army intelligence into being a 6th grade teacher. Elana held an Ivy League master's degree before becoming an accomplished combat veteran who earned the Purple Heart and a medical discharge and has leveraged it all to become a successful entrepreneur. And of course, Charlie combines military service, entrepreneurship and scholastic accomplishment. It was a group that seems to have no lack of motivation and purpose - so it was insightful to talk about their missteps, their doubts, and where they draw strength. 

 

Show Notes

Pathfinder LLC

Women in Combat

Second Mission Foundation

Savage Wonder podcast

Veterans Repertory Theater

 

Extra Episode - Marvel Meets DC: The Project Sapient/Weekly Havok Crossover Episode

Extra Episode - Marvel Meets DC: The Project Sapient/Weekly Havok Crossover Episode

October 3, 2021

On Monday, September 27 at Clerys in downtown Boston...the Weekly Havok and Project Sapient pulled off a massive 2.5 hour crossover podcast for Project Sapient's Vet2Vet event. Worlds collided. DC and Marvel together. Batman killed Thanos. Epic. There may have been alcohol involved.

Big shout out to 22mohawks Home Base, a Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Program and everyone that came out to talk #afghanistan #veteransuicide #ptsd #supportthetroops

 

Show Notes

Savage Wonder

Veterans Repertory Theater

Project Sapient

Are the Kids Alright?

Are the Kids Alright?

September 28, 2021

This week I talked with Charlie Faint and Jeff Marshburn about veterans in education – how education can impact veterans and how veterans impact the educational realm, whether as students or teachers. We talk about the tokenization of veterans, the cognitive dissonance felt by veterans immersed in academic culture and the particular culture of West Point. No, it never devolves into a West Point infomercial, but we were going to have to talk about it a little – Charlie still teaches there and Jeff taught there. Plus Charlie was wearing a very loud Army football jersey and we were recording the episode just before Jeff and Charlie went to the Army-Miami (OH) game, so there was no way we were going to avoid talking about it.

Have a listen here.

 

Show Alibis

I’m suffering from a severe bout of Alibi writer’s block. I’m sure there are plenty of things I should offer up excuses for, but I can’t think of any, so I’ll settle brevity by stopping here.

 

Show Notes

Second Mission Foundation

Project Sapient

Veterans Repertory Theater

Savage Wonder podcast

Savage Wonder literary blog

What Should the Layman Understand About National Security?

What Should the Layman Understand About National Security?

September 21, 2021

Some weeks, the Weekly Havok isn’t just the name of the show, it’s also the way the show comes together. This was one of those weeks. We threw every hiccup and technical glitch we could at Ben Varlese and Dax Mallory and they kept on ticking. Best of all – thanks to our producer Michael Neal – none of the glitches will even make it into the episode. So you will never know the landmines you dodged in your audio experience this week. Probably good to have a week like this every so often – keeps us humble. But if you think Ben and Dax are good guests, just wait until they do a show where everything goes smoothly.

 

Show Alibis

Did I even mention the subject this week? That was the first audible we called on Dax and Ben – getting them to pick the subject about a minute before we started the show. I gave them three choices and they picked the one I could barely articulate, go figure. So I spent the first five minutes of the show trying to figure out what the hell I had signed us up for.

And then…

As you all probably know, Afghanistan has been weighing heavily on me – to the detriment of the other news stories in the world now. That’s my way of saying that I should have pushed Dax harder on the subject of Haitian immigrants and the southern border. Of course, we try not to do a show that is topical punditry, but this was a missed lay-up.

The cross-pollination of criminal organizations and terror groups is a pet fascination of mine. So when Ben brought it up, I couldn’t wait to get into it. Or, actually, I guess I could wait, because I never got around to talking about it again. Make that two easy lay-ups missed during this episode. Did I mention we had problems this week?

 

Show Notes

Blackwater Memorial Alumni Association

Havok Journal

Savage Wonder podcast

Veterans Repertory Theater

 

What Does 9/11 Mean to You Now?

What Does 9/11 Mean to You Now?

September 14, 2021

On 9/11, Ayman Kafel was an American college student of Middle Eastern descent and Marshall McGurk was a second-year cadet at West Point. How they interpreted 9/11 and how they responded to a nation suddenly at war didn’t just take them to the sharp tip of the spear in the War on Terror – it changed their lives irrevocably – but not regrettably. It was a privilege to sit down with these two thoughtful veterans and discuss what 9/11 should really mean for us as we commemorate the original attacks – even after everything that has gone on in the twenty years since.

 

Show Notes

High Risk Soldier by Terron Wharton

Project Sapient podcast

Operation Recovery

Save Our Allies

No One Left Behind

Pars Equality Center

Havok Journal

Veterans Repertory Theater

Savage Wonder podcast

 

The 9/11 Special Episode

The 9/11 Special Episode

September 11, 2021

Consider this the first Tri-Weekly Havok episode. Now, we had a 9/11 episode planned as part of our regularly scheduled programming. But I did this solo recording for two reasons: I really wanted to post something that would go out on 9/11 itself especially on a 9/11 as significant as this one and I didn’t want to detract from our roundtable by diving too deeply into my personal 9/11 experiences. Thanks for indulging me in both the excruciatingly specific details and the vague recollections.

 

Have a listen here.

 

Show Alibis

I really dropped the ball on some parts of my 9/11 story, so I’ll try to make amends here. It’s a damn shame since both are positive notes.

 

First, I mentioned that, on September 10th, I was supposed to work the graveyard shift at a law firm – Brown and Wood – which was located on the upper floors of one of the Towers. I also mentioned that I thought of the folks there as the towers were coming down. What I failed to mention was that, days later, I found out that every single employee of Brown and Wood survived the collapse – except one secretary who ran back up the stairs to retrieve her purse. As I say, I never enjoyed working at Brown and Wood, but I was relieved that they were alive and I was free to remember that I never much cared for the work environment there.

 

Second, I talked about scooping up cellphones that people dropped in their panic to escape down West Broadway. I should mention that I returned the cellphones to a local store a few days later and they were able to track down the owners – if I remember right, this was something a lot of cellphone stores were doing at the time to help out in the wake of 9/11. The store even called me to report back their gratitude that someone had retrieved their phone.

 

Which leads me to a last point that I really should have made on the show. In the days and weeks following 9/11, New York City was different than it has ever been before or since. It was like small town America. To ride the subway in the days following, everyone made eye contact, everyone smiled and said hellos and how are you’s to each other. We all had a shared experience and it was a close bond. One that did not hold, obviously. But it was special and we all knew it was special, I think. The moments of Rudy Giuliani touring Ground Zero, President Bush speaking at Ground Zero and throwing out the first pitch of the World Series, those were special moments for New Yorkers. I remember seeing the first NFL game on TV and watching Ricky Watters of the Seattle Seahawks run onto the field waving an American flag with tears running down his face. We have come a long way since then. For better or worse. Maybe more of the latter than the former.

 

Show Notes

Not mentioned on the show, but crucially important right now:

Operation Recovery

Save Our Allies

No One Left Behind

Pars Equality Center

Extra Episode - Why Should We Still Care About Afghanistan?

Extra Episode - Why Should We Still Care About Afghanistan?

September 8, 2021

We don’t want to bang the drum about Afghanistan to the point it is just white noise. And we have a lot of great guests and a lot of great subjects booked for the Weekly Havok. But events in Afghanistan are unfolding rapidly and with great significance for our national security, the future of the country and the future of terrorism. It’s important to note what’s happening along the way. And if we can do that without detracting from our regularly scheduled programming, all the better. So here’s an extra episode, catching you up to everything Afghanistan-related as of late 07 September 2021.

 

Show Alibis

Not much to say here. Still tired, mostly due to keeping up with the roll-out of the new Afghanistan. Hopefully it doesn’t show up too much in the episode. I really tried to keep this episode short and sweet, but it ended up being 71 minutes or so. Oh well, the best laid plans of mice and men…

 

Show Notes

Operation Recovery

Save Our Allies

No One Left Behind

Pars Equality Center

What Is Courage?

What Is Courage?

September 7, 2021

There is no way to do justice to a subject like courage in the space of an hour. But there is a way to hit some major wavetops, and that’s what we did this week. Combat vets Dave Hartmann and Douglas Dodge joined the show for a discussion about courage that ranged from the philosophical to the personal. And then Doug talked about Medal of Honor recipient SFC Al Cashe. If you don’t know about Al Cashe, you should. And if you haven’t heard Doug talk about Al Cashe, then you need to. Military guys do a lot of hard, traumatic things. But what Doug and Al Cashe went through is on another level. It may not tell you everything you need to know about courage, but it tells you more than you probably knew.

 

Show Alibis

When I’m tired, I don’t get inarticulate, I get overly articulate and end up using polysyllabic words that don’t mean what I mean them to mean. And going into this show, I was tired. Not so tired that it detracted from Doug or Dave or the subject matter, but enough that I noticed it and felt bad enough to own up to it now. So, if you need to, grab a bunch of shots and make a drinking game out of my malaprops, brain farts and general over-articulateness.

I don’t want to be too maudlin about this, but Doug Dodge really fucked Dave and me up. It was the closest I’ve come to tearing up on the show ever – which didn’t help me become more articulate and less fatigued. Regardless, it’s a great compliment to Doug to pull that on Dave and me his first time out. And it’s a great compliment to him and Al Cashe – most of us will never know if we could have acted as bravely and most of us will never have to find out, but they set examples that day. I mean, don’t get me wrong, there was that time I watched my wife save a rooster from our Chihuahua, but you really don’t get examples like that too often (sorry, felt a desperate need to lighten things up).

 

Show Notes

Medal of Honor recipient SFC Al Cashe

Headstrong Project

The Havok Journal

Brittany Medrano needs a kidney and is O-Negative. If you can help please reach out through: https://ca.gofundme.com/f/support-brittany-through-her-medical-endeavors

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