Then within 3 weeks I was in: United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Md. When we got there we had our heads shaved off. I felt like a cow going through the branding, and I never saw Mike Sinisi again. The first few Sundays we were in the Chapel at Protestant service. Later, we marched into town to the Episcopal Church.
I learned to fold clothes and I still fold my clothes the same way to this day. I received a laundry number, I received my service number.
They told us that Plebe Year started on 5 July 1962. I thought that I would wake up and start to “brace up.” At midnight, they woke us up, and the legitimate harassment began. I remember pushing balls of socks down the hall, saying, "Beep, beep, sir."
Some of the things I learned at the Naval Academy: I learned to fire a 45 caliber automatic. I learned to fire a M1. I was already familiar firing rifles. But my rapid fire group was scattered.
I learned the value of teamwork. I learned to sail a small boat. I learned to fence, en guard. I learned the meaning of Honor and keeping your word. There were only five responses to questions: yes, sir; no, sir; I’ll find out, sir; no excuse, sir; and aye, aye, sir.
I did not know that I have low blood sugar and Attention Deficit Disorder would kick in when the low blood sugar is amplified. What would happen would be that I would not get enough to eat and then my blood sugar be low, and I would not be able to think straight.
One day I got lost and mixed up could not figure out where I was supposed to be for class. By the time I got to the room I broke down crying. The first semester I made it okay except for chemistry. The second semester, all hell broke loose and the upperclassmen focused on me. I got almost 200 demerits in two weeks. I wanted to die.
Ludwig Von Shumaker, who wanted to be a Marine Officer and Bill Bondi were at opposite ends of the table when I finally broke down and tried to choke myself. Before it was over I decided to resign from the Naval Academy.
I told my mother, my legal guardian, I wanted to be an Episcopal Priest. My father was very unhappy with me. Because I was at the Naval Academy, I had incurred a 6 year obligation to Navy.
I came home then joined a reserve unit, but did not go to weekend meetings. I missed a special drill and I was called to active duty. I decided to sign up for Training Active Reserve Duty at New Orleans.
That is where I met Britt W. He is one of the guys with whom I used to go out drinking in the French Quarter. While I was in the Navy I lived in an apartment with Phil. Phil would practice his French horn.
I used to see Clark W. getting off work then rushing to take a shower and coming in late. Clark wound up introducing me to Maggie M. And the next thing I knew I was getting off work and coming in late. I had an affair Maggie M. who was 12 years older than me. She was in a play. Seeing it was like an education in theater: from reading of parts, watching the set get built, rehearsals, to opening night.
I also worked at your Father’s Mustache Banjo parlor. I drove a 54 Ford and a Honda 305 Dream motorcycle. The whole time I was drinking and started to smoke marijuana. I hung out at La Casa De Los Marino’s , the Acropolis, the Napoleon House and the Seven Seas and various other places in the French Quarter. I hung out in Jackson Square, drank coffee and chicory on Decatur Street, listening to boat whistles at the same time.