Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Adopt a Marine! Project Redux

Last year we instituted the Adopt a Marine! Project because Adam's friend Jason was deployed in Iraq. Jason is back and out of the Marine Corps. He's going to college in northern California and life is pretty good.

But his unit (2nd Recon) is back in Iraq. This time they'll be there for the holidays. Even if Jason isn't there, I still feel as if they're kind of our guys. Jason got me the names and addresses of the guys in the 2nd Recon Battalion and once again, I'm asking anyone who is interested to contact me and I'll send you a name and address.

What do you do? You get a box and fill it with cool stuff—magazines, books, video games (they’ve got all the consoles) DVDs, CDs, toys, time wasters, not very perishable food (chocolate and things that melt, alas, don’t ship well, although my box of vanilla wafers and jar of Nutella shipped just find, thank you. And apparently Nutella vanilla wafer sandwiches are pretty damn good. And Jason swears nothing keeps you awake on patrol like wasabi peas.)

When you have a box of stuff, you seal it up, take it to the post office, explain that it’s going to Iraq and fill out a custom’s form. (Keep track of what you put in the box, okay?) Then you send it off. It takes you a little time. And then you get to feel pretty good about yourself. And every time you see one of those stupid ‘Support The Troops’ yellow ribbons on the back of a car, you can have a moment of insufferable superiority knowing that you do a lot more than just buying a magnet.

They guys aren’t so great at writing back. But I have it on reliable authority that the packages do make a difference. And the magazines, books, CDs, DVDs, and games that we send stay in the common room and lots and lots of people use them.

Jason said that the boxes were a big hit. The guys never knew that they were coming, and there it would be, a box out of the blue. It can't make up for spending Christmas in Iraq, but it's got to be better than nothing.


Blogger Adam Rakunas said...

I'm hip. Please send the address to, and I'll get cracking.

October 24, 2007 1:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

They guys aren’t so great at writing back. But I have it on reliable authority that the packages do make a difference.

I'm glad to see this because I sent a box last summer, and never heard back. I was concerned that it didn't get there.

Please send an address to

October 24, 2007 2:22 PM  
Blogger Responsible Artist said...

Sign me up. I'm out protesting to bring them home but it would be nice to do something for our troops until that happens. L.

October 24, 2007 2:47 PM  
Blogger Stephanie Dray said...

I'm totally on board!

October 25, 2007 8:24 PM  
Blogger Stephanie Dray said...

P.S. Is there no RSS feed for your blog so that one could put it into a reader? Hint hint!

October 25, 2007 8:26 PM  
Anonymous Karen Sandstrom said...

Hi Maureen
I, too, sent a box and didn't hear back and figured it didn't get there or maybe the stuff I put in it was stupid or something. Anyway, feel free to send another name/address. Long as I know the first box made it, I'm happy to do it again.

October 26, 2007 9:07 AM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

I figure a lot of these guys are just young and kind of clueless. Like a kid who won't think to send a thank you to grandma unless someone makes him.

October 26, 2007 10:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would very much like to have an address for one of the young men in Iraq. I have been following your blog now for a couple of years. My son is Christopher Barzak. He speaks so highly of you I feel as if I know you. Thank you for what you are doing for our troops far from home. Please send an address to
Thanks, Joyce

October 26, 2007 12:43 PM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

Joyce, with pleasure! Christopher Barzak is an astonishing guy. And his book, One For Sorrow is such a beautiful book.

October 26, 2007 1:32 PM  
Blogger Erin O'Brien said...

Erin give GOOOOOOOD box.

October 27, 2007 9:46 AM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

How did I know that Erin could be counted on to send a Marine a good time?

October 27, 2007 10:02 PM  
Blogger Responsible Artist said...

I overfilled my flat rate box and got a lesson from the clerk, but then when I opened it to take out some of the rice krispie bars the neighboring clerk, a woman, took pity and said, Let it go this time and try to color between the lines the next.

October 29, 2007 2:36 AM  
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