Broken Promises in a System - Memoirs of Barry Crouse Part 2


             Broken Promises in a System-Memoirs of Barry Crouse Part 2

           I would now like to talk about Life after College. I graduated from Cuyahoga Community College rouughly with a GPA of 3.0. December 1986. I began to look for a full time job while I had a few years of Military Service February 1988. During this time I had reached Brown Belt in Korean Martial Arts.

            I can remember summer 1987 I went to my two really three weeks summer training  field duty hint no barracks Grayling, Michigan not to far off from Canada to give you some idea about the type of climate living out in the field no creature comforts living in a foxhole or a shelter half no shower or toilets this is expected out of a Combat Engineer. I can remember that because I was always maxing out on my PT Test 80 pushups 2 1/2 minutes rest 2 1/2 minutes 80 situps 2 1/2 minutes and a 2 mile run I was scoring 300/300 so my Sergeants knew I was getting ready for the Black Belt Test so I was given a test of mental and physical will in other words how bad do you want it ?  They asked me about my future plans and I wanted to get my black belt and goto Japan to fight in Full Contact matches leaving the past behind me. The Sergeants gave me 6 hours rest within a 72 hour period I was than to complete the PT Test. I prided myself in being in tip top condition running, biking, hitting the Heavy Bags cold or Hot weather, Lifting weights bench pressing  at 165 lbs 300 6-8 times leg press nearly 1/2 ton 1,000 lbs, jump roping whatever it took to get it done in fact my Dad asked me if I would consider completing a triatholon. I had to much muscle to swin but the biking and running I could complete.

        The military gave me the test after I completed the test I puked up all over the ground and my legs were wobbily this was a simulation of what it would feel like in a Kickboxing match against a equal opponent. I could not understand this for a number of years but I figured it out why the bar was raised on me so that I could gain some experience.   In February 1988, I completed my military service and a lot of Sergeants wanted me to stay but I knew what I wanted in life

      . In October 1987, I was offered a job at a local tax agency in Brecksville, Ohio as a Computer Operator next to the VA hospital. I worked on 3rd shift by myself all alone completing Back ups Forms Control running Jobs on IBM mainframes 370 and 4300 series JCL, OCL, Vtam, CICS. This job was low paying but gave me benefits. I was able to save money for my trip to Japan and was very eager. I completed my Black Belt test August 31, 1988 and it was a 8 hour test consisting of every form, block, punch, strike, breaking, fighting with two black belts against myself. I had passed the test with flying colors and did not have time to celebrate with my other comrades who completed the test as well. I went to work at my job happy and satisfied. 3 months later my master closed his school down in the middle of the night and I went to the passport office and the lady asked me a few questions and she told me yes, you did save 5,000 dollars up but how are you going to make it over there on top of this I started to get nose bleeds out of the blue. so this long awaited dream went up in flames as well. I still continued to practice in other studios Hapkido with some friends. I wanted to mention that some people have evaluated my skill sets in the Korean Martial Arts and I can remember while in Detroit, Michigan the Chinese Consulate saw me and suggested I come to China to practice over there, On another occassion when I was in Russia with my wife I would practice in 40 degree weather in the park and when I came back home to Washington they left me a surprise email saying they thought I had the tools to fight for a world title when I was younger they watched me quietly work out.

     I can remember back in 1988 and 1989 I would take trips to Kanas City, Missouri to visit my relatives. When I would come back it became harder for me to stay in Cleveland because I wanted to go elsewhere. During this time I took some additional classes at Cuyahoga Community College mainy Micro code Architecture-Assembler, Dbase 4 , and I believe a management class when I took one class with some time to spare I received straight A's.

     I went to Baptist and non denomination churches and attended some social functions but I felt very distant it was like I did not belong there. Please note this was not anybody's fault perhaps it maybe because of the years of feeling inferior to many people. 

     I took a new job in February 1990 with Gtech subcontractor for the Ohio lottery and this ends this period of time.

    In conclusion, the lesson here is we often make plans for the future but sometimes they do not happen or fall in place so make sure you have some kind of backup to goto in the Army it is called contigency planning.


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