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How ONE TREE HILL Saved My Life In Iraq

Sometimes over on ZBT we talk about topics that are prevalent for the military community but we forget that civilians might not know about them because they aren't featured on the news or in movies. The window into the mundane life of a deployment is lost on most. They didn't show the 3 hours per day that Rob O'Neil was binging THE OFFICE in Zero Dark Thirty because that isn't exactly what the critics would call, "compelling cinema" and is going to put audiences to sleep.

The fact is there is a large chunk of a deployment where you are not doing anything. Listen, not even Patton was fighting the Nazis 24/7. There is a lot of down time and that down time is mostly filled with three things:

  1. Working out
  2. Meals
  3. Binge watching movies and TV Shows

Which brings me to the time ONE TREE HILL saved my life. 

Giphy Images.

Ugh Brooke was so fierce but that's another blog for another day. 

I'll keep this short.

I was on the back half of my deployment and deep into watching OTH for the first time. We ran out of movies/shows, were on a super remote outpost without access to more, and a friend had sent me the first 5 seasons on DVD so we had no other options. It cemented itself as one of my favorite shows of all time, due in part because it carried me through the last few grueling months of my time in Iraq. 

My commander at the time came down with a tummy ache one day. He was supposed to lead a patrol based on some intel we got that there was a massive weapons cache near the border of Iran. We couldn't scrap the mission so I got tapped to fill in for him.

Long story short, we had a minor engagement with the enemy, found the weapons cache, and completed the mission mostly without incident. I was pumped to get back and watch OTH. I radio'ed back to our COP (combat outpost) that we were coming back. I find out that my battle buddy who I was watching OTH with (shout to my dawg, Rob) had to go to another base for a meeting. He wouldn't be back for a couple of hours. 

Well, I couldn't watch OTH without him so I decided we would take a detour to check out some additional intel to kill time. An hour later another convoy hit an IED on the EXACT route I would've traveled on to get back.

So if I wasn't knee deep in watching OTH with my battle buddy, I would have hit that IED! 

Nathan, Lucas, Brooke, Peyton, Haley, Dan, Keith, Karen, Mouth, Skills, Deb, Whitey, and all Tree Hill residents, thank you for keeping me safe.

P.S. Your art matters

P.P.S. OTH had a perfect ending to the series. Take us out U2