Pipe hitters are like wild mustangs: they can’t be constantly corralled. They need to get out and run hard all the time. Such was the case with Greg Coker and the boys cooped up in a holding area, trying their best to wait out a tactical pause. “Tactical pause,” yeah… just what exactly was that anyway? Here’s my best attempt to splayne it: It’s when the brass didn’t know whether to defecate or wind their timepieces. That was bad — really bad, and often ended up with them shitting on their watches.

Chief Coker always deployed with a calf rope, and why wouldn’t a Texan carry one? He probably kept it under his gunship’s pilot seat there with his wrist rocket. In the event that his bird, his assault rifle, and his wrist rocket all went Winchester… hell, he could touch down and rope himself a Taliban toad.

Greg just missed his roping pen and horses back home, that was for certain. He burned a bit of time lassoing miscellany in his bunkhouse like an MRE box sitting edge-on made a fine dogie target to punch. He reeled in his 30-foot rope, built a loop, cranked that lasso around a swift couple of swings, and laid that loop down over that MRE box just as smooth as Devil’s River Texas Rye.

Chief’s home-on-the-range activities drew the attention of a few like-minded comrades, who lingered nearby striking up conversations about horses, ropes and roping techniques, rodeos, and best rodeo times. Chief Greg’s best time? Eight seconds flat. Ironically, for Chief Greg Coker, eight seconds is also how long it took his gunship, hit by an enemy Surface-to-Air (SA) rocket, to plummet to the ground.

The pipe-hitters felt the distinct oppression of the Afghan strain of the boredom virus, a highly contagious progeny of the Global Lazy Virus nicknamed Novel Afghan Phlegmatic Virus 2005 or NAPV-05. The viral tug was a downward one, threatening lower men to doldrums and dulling their edge. Inactivity is an enemy of Mustang pipe-hitters; the men knew that. To inoculate themselves against NAPV-05, Coke and a couple of others decided to take an excursion on a support vehicle, one highly modified Kawasaki Mule that they called a Hoopdie.

The Coker clan’s Kawasaki Mule.

Coke’s klan roared off into the desert to the nearby British contingent’s tent cluster and affected a loop around the premises. To their thrilling surprise, they happened on a local lass supine over a towel, clad in a brilliant orange bikini, and taking in some rays. Greg throttled back the mule to protract their time in passing the sunbathing babe. Coke’s passengers stood in the cruising mule in anticipation of gleaning a better pleasing eyeful.

“OMG that color — look at me, look at me — I’m over here everyone!”

“I’m afraid a chopper might mistake her for a VF-17 panel and try to land on her.”