I like being in charge


What’s more exciting than waking up at five in the morning for a 15-hour non-stop flight to Korea? Running in place, collecting hair, and watching a McMillan & Wife marathon come to mind, but spending half of the previous day sick and ending up at urgent care that night is not one of them, but that’s exactly what happened. It happens. Life happens. You have to suck it up and drive on, but I was sick. I wasn’t sucking anything up.
I knew I was sick when I was unable to finish my Chick-Fil-A nuggets. It was not a pleasure. That has never happened. In my life, I’ve hugged a clown. I’ve eaten Pop-Rocks while drinking a Coke. Heck, I’ve even pulled for Alabama a time or two, but I have never, and I mean never, not finished my Chick-Fil-A nuggets.
I needed sleep. I needed rest, but that wasn’t going to happen because the pilot wasn’t going to wait for me, and changing my flight was not an option. I don’t need to be in charge of a group or anything, but I like being in charge of my own situation, which is why I went into business for myself and is why I usually plan the logistics for my trips; however, this trip was planned by Armed Forces Entertainment through the Pentagon.
Whether my destination is Montana, Michigan, or Maine, driving is usually my preferred mode of transportation, because, for the most part, I’m in charge, dependent upon Mother Nature and poor drivers.
I felt really bad but figured I’d be fine with the right medication. I just couldn’t imagine being nauseated for 15 hours at 38,000 feet. I knew it was legit when my blood pressure was 140/90. It’s usually 120/80. The nurse pricked my finger for a little blood and sent me back to a room.
A few minutes later, I overheard the doctor telling the nurse something about ruling out diverticulitis and appendicitis and taking a pregnancy test. That’s when I really got worried. I feared I’d have to buy some pickles and cancel my trip, which wouldn’t have been the end of the world for anyone. There were four other GIs of Comedy on this trip that starts in Korea and ends in Japan, but this was a great opportunity that I would not be denied. When this tour is over, I will have performed for troops in 13 different countries. I’m no Bob Hope, but that’s not too shabby for an Opelika boy.
We’ll be gone for a couple of weeks, and when I get back, I have another gig in New Jersey just two days later. I already reserved my flight, and it’s early—real early. The good news is that I decided to fly back the same day, so I can sleep in my bed that night with my dog and cat. I like being in charge.
Driving to Korea may have been an option. I assume I could’ve taken a bass boat through the Panama Canal and headed west, but you know what they say about assuming. It makes a bass out of you and me.
I don’t assume much. I just do the best I can. I pray for good health and work hard to create my own luck, but I do like being in charge of my situation, but ultimately it’s up to God…and my cat.
Jody Fuller is a comic, speaker, writer and soldier with three tours of duty in Iraq. He is also a lifetime stutterer. He can be reached at jody@jodyfuller.com. For more information, please visit www.jodyfuller.com.


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