Dolman is not well.
He has recently added to his stable of fine motorcycles this magnificent 2007 Bourget Dragon:
And here is Sweet Suzy Suzuki, aka The Angry Bee:
A BRIEF DOLMANOGRAPHY:
Dr Everett Carl Dolman was born and raised in Montana.
Memories of his personal life tend to come into focus sometime after attending College at Montana State University, where he managed to cram a four-year liberal arts degree into a drug-addled five-year course of study.
Armed with a spanking fresh baccalaureate degree in modern European history (and minors in existential philosophy and fine art), not-yet-Doc Dolman found himself eminently un-hirable.
With few options, and five months of a steady diet of boxed macaroni-and-cheese (hold the butter), Dolman hocked his ten-years-old 35mm camera, placed his remaining belongings neatly into the bottom half of his backpack, and started hitchhiking down the highway to greener passages.
He made it to Butte just before a fall blizzard hit, and might have died on the Interstate had he not been picked up by a kindly Army recruiter who didn’t seem the least bit nonplussed by Dolman’s dire condition. Apparently, potential recruits routinely find themselves down and out along the asphalt byways of south-central Montana.
That was on a Sunday.
Following a hot meal, the Kindly Recruiter offered Dolman a motel room for the night, breakfast the next morning, and a lift back to the Interstate … all in exchange for stopping by next morning and taking the Army physical and aptitude test at the recruiting and in processing station conveniently located right across the street—no obligation implied.
It’s funny what a couple of hot meals and a night’s sleep on a real mattress will do to a mind deprived of regular injections of drugs and alcohol. By 10:00 AM on Monday morning, Dolman was certified A-1 fit and psychologically stable enough to sign up for duty (without having the enlistment tossed out by a federal court).
At 12:15 Dolman was on the thrice-weekly flight from Butte to St. Louis, and from there by bus to fabulous Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri for Basic Army Training.
Make no mistake. Basic Training blows.
At the time, Dolman was just over 6 feet 9 inches tall, and just under 200 pounds. So skinny that if he turned sideways, he could cut through paper like a razor, no uniform could be found that fit. There is nothing a drill sergeant loves more than a recruit who can’t hide.
Advanced Individual Training, or AIT, was at Goodfellow AFB, Texas, an all-services (or Joint) Intelligence School that put the first seeds in Dolman’s rapidly expanding cranium that he probably would have been better off in the Air Force.
His first functional assignment was with the National Security Agency in Washington as a traffic/cryptanalyst. While there, in an effort to polish his credentials as The Army’s Most Ridiculous-Looking Soldier traveled to Fort Campbell, Kentucky, where he was distinguished graduate of its Air Assault Training—to the everlasting embarrassment and shame of the fine men and women of the 101st Airborne Division (”Screaming Eagles”).
It was at Fort Campbell that Dolman resolved never again to volunteer for anything.
On return to regular duty, with fresh buzz-cut and silver wings upon his chest, Dolman strode heroically into a Friday-afternoon pre-Christmas Holiday Party … and was knocked flat by a single glance from the most-beautiful woman he had ever seen, Army Specialist Denise DeMaso.
It took six months to get SP4 DeMaso to acknowledge his existence, but after spiking a number of her drinks and lying baldly about his personal wealth and future prospects, she was hooked.
In the meantime, the Army had to do something about Dolman. Clearly he was a lousy private, so he was promoted to Specialist. That was a disaster, and the best recourse seemed to be promotion to Sergeant. After two-frustrating years of absolute incompetence, Dolman was commissioned a Second Lieutenant and shipped to Fort Huachuca, Arizona, for Officer’s Finishing School.
At last he had found a niche. Second Lieutenants are supposed to be goofy looking and stupid. It was a perfect match.
Dolman’s inseparable companion in Arizona was another Montanan named Eric Stebbins, who was fooled into getting a master’s degree in queuing theory from Stanford University before entering active duty. Equally gangly and competitively anal, Stebbins and Dolman formed a two-sided triumvirate of irresistible military ineptitude.
Stebbins was Dolman’s best man at his New York City wedding. Mrs. Dolman, hereafter affectionately known as TW (The Wife), went with Dolman to NORAD/USSPACE Command headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colorado, for his first officer assignment. Dolman was the first Army Lieutenant ever assigned to USSPACECOM, a desperate experiment the US Military has concluded, in consultation with the Judge Advocates General, will never happen again. To erase all trace of Dolman’s tenure there, USSPACECOM was subsequently decommissioned.
As years past, and having fallen even deeper in love with the delightful TW, Dolman decided to resign his commission to stay on in Colorado. He took a post as a government civilian, reasoning that here he could achieve some semblance of job security and stability.
Then Desert Shield/Desert Storm happened. Dolman was placed in charge of a crisis-response team to find Iraqi scud missiles. No matter that Dolman’s team was in Colorado, precisely half way around the world from the suspected location of Iraq and its missiles, and forgetting for a moment the utter inability of anyone to find said missiles, America needs its heroes. Dolman was put in for, and received, the CIA’s Outstanding Intelligence Analyst award for 1991.
The award carried with it a stipend and tuition for graduate study in an intelligence-related discipline. Thinking clearly for perhaps the second time in his life, Dolman reasoned that he could one day become a government worker and a college professor, combining the two most notoriously lazy professions in America into one, unassailably indolent career.
Selecting graduate school with the same precision of mind and character he demonstrated when enlisting in the military, Dolman applied to any department still accepting applications in February. Then, with the professional discrimination of a federal employee, Dolman reasoned he should go to the most expensive graduate school that accepted him. Cost must have some correlation to quality, and heck, he wasn’t paying for it. Off he went to the University of Pennsylvania.
Then Al Gore happened.
Government needed to be re-invented, and Al was just the man to take credit for an idea/invention that was originally someone else’s (hence the re-: as in Internet, the movie Love Story). People were actually getting paid to stop working. Dolman grabbed the chance and completed his graduate training in 1995, from then on entitled to use the title “Doctor” before his name.
Except, of course, if someone needs a real doctor. In a theater or on an airplane, for example, should a cast member or flight attendant request the attention of the audience/passengers and ask “is there is a doctor in the house/on the flight?” In that case it would be wrong to stand up and say, “I’m a doctor,” even though Doc Dolman is and could give the victim a withering literary critique should he or she need one.
Doc Dolman spent two years at The College of William & Mary as Visiting Professor of Political Economy, a description he still likes to trot out now and then to inflate his sense of self-importance. This was followed by two years each at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville and Berry College in Rome, Georgia.
SIU-E holds a special place in Doc Dolman’s and TW’s hearts, because it was here that Mary Dolman, their daughter, was born. Mary has been all that they could wish for, and a box-load more. Doc and TW had originally planned to have three children (one of each), but Mary has proved plenty.
Doc Dolman loved Berry College, and planned on teaching there until he retired, but an offer to teach at the Air Force’s elite School of Advanced Air and Space Studies (SAASS) could not be passed up, and so he moved his family to Millbrook, Alabama, where he has been since 2001.
Since coming to SAASS, Doc Dolman has published three books, numerous articles and papers, and managed promotion to full professor.
One final note—Millbrook, Alabama, may not be Heaven. But if you chuck a rock at a beer can perched upon a random fencepost, the rock and the beer can are likely to land in Heaven, ‘cause it is that close.