Op-Ed

The Breakfast Cereal Guide to Life (And Not Being a Dumbass)

[This article was brought to you by JTF Awesome member Daniel Defense. In case you have been living in a cave or communist country: they’re the semi-subtle-yet-totally-baller AR manufacturer that the free world knows and loves]
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The Breakfast Cereal Guide to Life (And Not Being a Dumbass)
Nick Perna

Breakfast cereal. Its as American as reality TV, AR accessories, and overpaid athletes. In other countries they don’t generally partake in it. In Europe you are more likely to get a scone or croissant than a bowl of Frosted Flakes.

I love a big bowl of presweetened goodness with multiple tablespoons of sugar on it. But as I finish it up and pick up the bowl to chug the remaining milk/sugar combo like the “money shot” at the end of a porn scene, I wonder what applications this has to the rest of my life.

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“Part of a nutritious breakfast” (in other words, you get out of it what you put into it): Every commercial shows their cereal product along with a large glass of orange juice (fruits), toast (grains) and other items. The cereal by itself isn’t enough to sustain you but it is part of the healthy package.

Real world application: We all bring something to the table but it takes a combination of different types of people to make a good team. Think of any squad, platoon, or working group you’ve been in. The successful ones contained a mix of folks with different strengths and weaknesses. The guy who can troubleshoot every problem with an M240 machinegun may not be particularly adapt at fire and maneuver tactics. The tactical expert might not be able to read a map. A good team complements each other’s strengths, compensates for individual weaknesses, and is collectively successful.

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“The Lucky Charms” Theory: Pink hearts, yellow moons, orange stars and green clovers (did you hear it in a leprechaun voice when you read it?). This was my “go to” cereal as a kid. I devoured it. Like most kids though, I plowed through the marshmallow treats while skipping the “brown stuff” (oats, in case you’re wondering).

Real world application: When training, whether it be firearms, martial arts or Crossfit, you need to do the stuff you don’t want to do as well as the stuff you like to do. I know that on a B27 target I can repeatedly hit the 10X ring at 10 yards during unholstered slow fire. I can’t do the same thing from the holster in low light while operating a weapons light. But which is the more likely scenario? It’s easy to practice the things we’re good at. You have to force yourself to do the things you suck at and don’t enjoy. Think of the guy at the gym with the 48-inch chest and 24-inch biceps but whose legs resemble two toothpicks. Don’t forget leg day, bro.

“We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard.” – President John F Kennedy at Rice University, September 12, 1962. JFK knew that, as Americans, we were going to have to eat the “brown stuff” too.

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“The wonder that is the variety pack.” When we’d go on summer vacation my mom would buy the variety pack. It contained small boxes of all types of cereals. Like the Lucky Charms concept, the sugary cereal boxes would go first, followed by everything else.

Real world application: Force yourself to experience things you wouldn’t normally do. Go to a steak restaurant and order pork chops, read a book someone else recommended that isn’t in your normal reading category, go to a symphony. If you try five new things I guarantee you’ll find something you never knew you liked.

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“Knowing where to look for the best stuff.” Marketing 101. Place the product in a location where consumers can see it and readily access it. Next time you’re at the market, check out the cereal aisle. The “fun” cereals are at about eye level for a child. The boring, healthy stuff is up high, out of their view. Despite not having any money, the kid is the actual consumer. They want the stuff with the prize inside, not the one that comes in a bag that’s high in fiber.

Real world application: Seek knowledge from a variety of sources. Wikipedia is great but it provides condensed internet descriptions of a person, place or thing written for internet users by internet users. If you want to learn about the Vietnam War, don’t just Google or it or watch on-demand shows from the History Channel. Get a book like About Face, Nam or We were soldiers Once and Young. Go to a VFW meeting and chat it up with someone who has actually been there.

Go talk to your “hippy” neighbor with the “Obama 2008”, “Obama 2012” and “Bernie Sanders 2016” stickers on the bumper of his Subaru Outback rather than the guy who lives across the street who has an “almost as good” gun collection as you. The fellow gun connoisseur is the low hanging fruit. You probably won’t learn anything from him. By seeking out the balding dude with a pony tail and Birkenstocks you might find out he actually has something interesting to say.

The George Soros follower/CNN Fan might even have some valid points. You might be able to glean a few useful facts to confront “Libtards” on Facebook and during family functions. At a minimum, you can ruin his day by telling him Whole Foods imports its “locally grown” frozen vegetables from China, or show him videos of Clinton and Obama talking tough about immigration in campaign speeches.
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So remember, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Just be mindful of what you’re eating.
-Nick Perna



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Capt Nick Perna US ArmyCapt Nick Perna US Army 7About the Author: Nicholas Perna is a former Army officer from the 82nd Airborne turned Army Reservist and police officer who has (among other awards) been decorated for valor in the line of duty and a recipient of the Officer of the Year Award in his department. An EMT and current street crimes supervisor, Perna has worked detectives, patrol, street crime suppression, counter-gang, counter-narcotics, SWAT and in numerous other billets. As a police officer he’s worked collateral assignments as a SWAT Team Leader, Firearms Instructor and Terrorism Liaison Officer; while active duty he served as an airborne medical platoon leader, company commander, battalion intelligence officer and battalion OPSO. A combat veteran, while serving in Iraq in ’03 he led a team of SOF soldiers conducting psychological operations as part of Joint Special Operations Task Force Arabian Peninsula.  Perna has previously been published in SWAT Magazine, Soldier of Fortune, Havok Journal, Police One, Guns & Weapons for Law Enforcement, Counter Terrorist Magazine, the NTOA’s Tactical Edge, the CATO Quarterly journal, the Homeland Security First Responder Network and other places. We don’t know him well enough to make fun of him yet, but it certainly seems like he’s a candidate for grumpy old man jokes like Hernandez and Reeder, and you can rest assured we’re trying to get picture of him as a boot 2nd Lieutenant.

 

Capt Nick Perna US Army 4


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More about Daniel Defense: Chances are that if you’re reading this page, you’re at least familiar with AR-15’s. Most all of us here at BreachBangClear have carried AR’s or M4’s in professional capacities the world over, and we’ve even managed to learn a thing or two about guns along the way. We won’t sell you a line of shit–Daniel Defense is definitely a go-to manufacturer for us and has been for a long time. It’s easy to go cheaper (note that we didn’t use the term ‘inexpensive’) but much harder to do better. We are proud and enthused to have them in JTF Awesome, and it’s through JTF Awesome we make this all possible. Read about our exploits with them at SHOT Show, be sure to visit their homepage here, and give them a follow on Facebook and Instagram.

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5 Comments

  1. “… the kid is the actual consumer…”
    Yep, but the parents are the ones with the money & the decision-taking power, so the kid eats what they buy. That, or they don’t get to eat (I have no time for “you’ll sit there until you eat that!”–I have things to do. Go hungry today, you’re less likely to choose to do so tomorrow.).

  2. The Best Lt. I’d EVER been issued in a Career in Both the 82nd Airborne, And 5th SFG!
    Fearless, Compassionate, And Capable of Independent Thought & Deed!

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