At the end of May, I joined 15 other bloggers for a trip on the aircraft carrier, the USS Nimitz which was about 80 miles off the coast of San Diego. Which meant that we had to fly on and off the carrier. And yes, it was a pretty amazing to experience to get caught by a wire and catapulted off the carrier. But my longest lasting memories will be of the amazing people I met. I will be writing a few additional posts with more details, but below is a quick overview as well as links to the content from the other bloggers.
The trip was initiated by Guy Kawasaki, who last fall made a similar trip on the USS Stennis. At the end of the trip, he realized that this was a great story that would benefit from other blogger perspectives. Working with Dennis Hall and Guy’s Garage.com partner Bill Reichert, they invited 16 bloggers to participate. Fifteen went on the main trip with Chris Pirillo making the trip a few days later because of a schedule conflict.
From left to right: Jefferson Wagner, Beth Blecherman, Jennifer Jones, Robert Scoble, Pamela Slim, Charlene Li, Jenny Lawson, Bill Reichert, Jennifer Van Grove, Jen Leo, Guy Kawasaki, Andy Sernovitz, Andrew Nystrom, Dennis Hall, (not pictured, Carroll “Lex” LeFon & Chris Pirillo)
The public affairs officers on the trip continually commented that we documented everything – and as you can see from the content below, this is quite true (the list will be updated as we add more content).
If you want even more of the USS Nimitz, check out the PBS 10-part series, “Carrier” on Hulu.
Finally, a disclosure: I am a liberal, anti-gun, Prius-driving, anti-war protest marcher. I set aside all of those feelings in order to go on the blogger embark because I wanted to see first hand how our military works and more importantly, because I thought there were some important lessons to be learned from the people who serve us so well.
I come away from the trip with a deep and profound respect for the people who in the military — their dedication, professionalism, and sacrifice are awe-inspiring. My personal views on military action have also been shaped, in that I appreciate that this is *my* navy. I take great pride that the Navy is there to serve me and the people of the United States, and also to help in other parts of the world if possible and if allowed. There are, and always will be, times when the military will be called into military actions, actions that I hope our political leaders have the wisdom to engage in only when absolutely necessary, and actions that I may not politically agree with.
But it is with tremendous awe and gratitude that I know that these men and women are there to come to someone’s rescue, just as they did four a ship captain on a lifeboat held hostage by four pirates. Seeing them in action, and understanding their tremendous sacrifice firsthand is something that I will never forget. Now when I see a person in uniform, I extend a hand in grateful thanks, and send a silent prayer that they never see action and will be safe in their duties.
Blog posts – from the embark
Guy Kawasaki: 24 Hours at Sea on the USS Nimitz. Highly recommended for the comprehensive tour, photos, and videos.
Carroll “Lex” LeFon: The Embark, The Ship, The Wing, and The Bloggers. Perspective from Lex is especially helpful given that he used to be a Navy pilot who not only flew off carriers but also helped run the “Top Gun” training school.
Jennifer Jones: Learning Navy & Marine Corps Terms for Bloggers’ Embark
Jenny Lawson: “The Bloggess”: This is too long for one post but I’m too lazy to do two.
Chris Pirillo: The Navy’s USS Nimitz Aircraft Carrier Experience
Dennis Hall: Bloggers’ Embark
Charlene Li: Bloggers On The USS Nimitz (pre-trip)
Beth Blecherman: USS Nimitz Blogger Adventure – Night Before Dinner
Bloggers Embark: USS Nimitz Plans To Receive 16 Podcasters, Bloggers and Other
s for May 29-30, 2009 Interview by Jennifer Jones with Dennis Hall, the organizer of the trip
Robert Scoble: Nimitz Blogger Embark Flickr set. Beautiful shots
Guy Kawasaki: Nimitz MobileMe photo album
Beth Blecherman: USS Nimitz Blogger Embark 09 Flickr set
Jennifer Van Grove: Bloggers Embark Flickr set
Jennifer Jones: USS Nimitz – Bloggers Embark 2009 Flickr set
Jenny Lawson: USS Nimitz Flickr set
Carroll “Lex” LeFon: Nimitz Blog Embark Flickr set
Andy Sernovitz: USS Nimitz Flickr set
Charlene Li: Nimitz Blogger Embark May 2009
USS Nimitz Flight Deck With Landing Jet landing behind Jennifer Jones
USS Nimitz Navy Aircraft Carrier Flight Retrievals by Chris Pirillo
USS Nimitz Navy Aircraft Carrier Operations by Chris Pirillo
Interview: Commander Charlie Brown on why the Navy invited bloggers by Charlene Li