Hooooo doggies. There’s nothing more fun than learning about VA law unless it’s stopping in Nevada on the way and winning a lot of money. Driving long distances (in this case 3,000 miles one-way) allows you to see America at ground level. It’s extremely difficult to do so at 35,000 ASL.
Having a loving wife like Cupcake for a navigator is a definite plus. I’d be in Tijuana by now without her. I haven’t been to San Antonio since October 1969 for Basic training at Lackland AFB. In the intervening forty nine years, some Rocket boy in the Texas DOT decided to create parallel roads alongside every major Interstate highway. Google maps, in turn, determined it was acceptable to reroute us onto these one-way highways miles before our hotels along the way- in one case, a full seventeen miles before the easy, logical exit. Other times we followed the instructions and found ourselves doing a u-turn under the freeway in these neatsy keen lanes under the overpass specifically designed for this aberration and returning five miles back to the hotel on the other side of the freeway. In desperation, we’ve had to give up Google as a religion and figure it out by chance. I’m not going to comment on the logic of duplicating that much asphalt but it gives new meaning to ‘what were they thinking?’. Why not just build eight-lane freeways and call it good?Navigating under these circumstances tries men’s souls to say the least. One is not permitted to blame the navigator nor discuss the qualifications of the copilot. Bad form and all.
I am blessed, nevertheless, inasmuch as I finally get to meet many of you who taught me my tradecraft on these odysseys. For each one who came to me with an intractable problem and asked for help, I was forced to learn the reason for the denial, the statutes and regulations concerning it, and the proper tools to cut the Gordian Knot. As you can see, it finally culminated in becoming a nonattorney practitioner out of necessity to preserve my own VA compensation. VA has an inane law that forbids us to help one another more than once in a lifetime. How that squares up with their version of ‘nonadversarial’ is anyone’s guess. After about 500 or more ‘ghost’ wins, it was becoming a dicey proposition for me to pretend ignorance any longer.
From my east coast sidekick and ILP guru Bruce Almighty, I include the following humor for you. Any droll subject like VA law definitely needs some levity to make it palatable. With no offense to Cupcake, I republish these in no particular order…