And apparently that one E-6 can go tell her O-5 boss that you lack integrity, and he'll believe her without meeting you. Wow. I'm not sure what to make of all that. But on the bright side, I didn't have to curl up on the bed and cry. Instead I met with who I assumed would be a fairly genial O-5 (Lieutenant Colonel; that's as opposed to little ol' O-3 Captain me) to explain that what we had was a misunderstanding. He didn't think so. In the midst of him telling me that: I would never make major because I was too stupid, that he thought I needed to "come to Jesus" about my integrity issues, that he was glad I was no longer flying, and that he thought I was trying to pin my own indiscretions on his Tech Sergeant (E-6); and of his completely ignoring and plainly not giving a rat's ass about what actually happened here, I came to a realization.
I love flying. I love flying small planes, like T-6's and even T-1's to an extent, and I'd love to do that again. I'd love to instruct. Frankly, I'd love to instruct Air Force student pilots. I think that would be a good job and I think I would like to serve out my time doing that. But I also don't ever want to deal with people like this O-5 again. Integrity? How about using a little common sense? Does he really think I'd do the things he was accusing me of? Does he know me or my work well enough to disparage my intelligence? What gives him the right?
Ah, yes. What gives him the right is that rank. And all you really have to do to get rank is stick around. One of the worst officers I have ever worked with was a one-star general. He had the rank; what he didn't have was a clue. And that's where this guy is heading--he's going to be a wing commander one day and he's not going to have any fucking idea what the people below him do for a living or what he should do for his wing--and he's not going to care, either. I'd rather not still be employed by this organization when that day comes.
So, I'm all better. I have bitter nostalgia. I also now know what it means to say you can never go home again. But I think I can safely go back to MacDill and talk to AFPC and do what they need to promote me to civilian.