Thursday, November 11, 2010

Why I Will Never Eat Frogs:

In light of it being Veteran's Day and all I had to share this story....A little tribute to a brave soldier who just so happened to be my Grandpa. 

Before my Grandpa passed away several years ago I was able to video tape him telling the story of how he earned his bronze medal in WWII.  It's a story that my cousins and I have heard repeated many times during our lives and never tired of hearing.  The following story is directly from my Grandpa's mouth, word for word copied from the video tape.  For the full effect you must read it with a thick Italian accent.  =) 

Disclaimer: Please disregard the grammatical errors and politically incorrect references and keep in mind these are the words of a man with very broken English.

Grandpa's Bronze Star Frog Story

"It was the Isle of Biak.  Just south of the equator...close to the equator.  We were going to patrol through the jungle to see where the enemies are.  There were 5 of us - 1st scout, 2nd scout, radio operator, squad leader (he was an officer), and a radio guard.  So we were walking near a stream of water...not a river....just a small stream.  There was a lotta frogs.  Ribbit... ribbit.... ribbit...*insert grandpa's frog sound effects*.  When I went across on a bridge made of wood.  I don't know if the natives made that or if the Japanese were there before us.  So when you walk on the bridge the frogs stop making the noise.  I walk about 200 yards and I stop.  The patrol leader said "did you see anything, Marocco?"  I said, "I didn't see anything ahead of us but I'm concerned about those frogs."  He didn't know what I was talking about...he said, "what about the frogs?"  I said, "remember they make all that noise, then we pass and they stopped.  Now they should be starting again because there's no body there.  But they're still quiet."  He was pretty fast, he said, "you think some one's following us?" I said, "yeah...I think we got the Japs right on our back...they're following us."  He said, "OK, lets take cover." 

You know in the jungle it's easy to take cover behind the bushes.  They pass us...They were 12 of them....Only 5 of us....they were looking saying "where'd they go?"  So after they passed he (the squad leader) was in charge of it ~ he take advice from everyone.  I said, "I think we should follow them see where they are going."  So we did.  It was a whole battalion...a lot of Japs.  So, he said "we call the artillery"....they were about 5 miles behind us with the cannon.  They fire 1st round it was a little too short it was almost on top of us.  So the next one was right at the target...he said "FIRE FOR EFFECT" and they open up every cannon they had.  They blasted...they ruin everything.  So we went back to the company. 

The next day we went back there to see how much damage we did.  There was a lot of dead Japs but you know some of them got away.  They left behind a lot of food, even wine, so we drank their wine and that's it.  We went back (there was a ceremony) and one day a guy in a jeep came by and said "I'm looking for Private Marocco".  I said "I'm Marocco...what do you want?"  "Oh, the colonel wants to see you."  I had no idea what the colonel wanted. 

The Colonel said, "I want you to tell me about them frogs.  I got a report from your captain".  And so I told him ~ I said, "when I was a little boy in Italy I used to go catch frogs all the time and so I know when you walk by they stop making the noise...then after about a minute they start again....first one, then another, then pretty soon they all start.  And this time they were all quiet so it made me suspicious that we were being followed."  I said, "it sounds crazy but...." He said "No it doesn't, I'm gonna pass that on to all the training camps!  Everybody should know that!"  So I got a bronze star and that's it. 

I told the Colonel "I used to eat a lot of frogs ~ But I'll never eat another frog as long as I live ~ They saved my life!"


Marni's Organized Mess said...

What a great story to share!

Happy Veteran's Day!

ChaChaneen said...

Greetings, I found your blog while searching for recipes... Looks like your on a blog hiatus at the moment. This story is just lovely and a wonderful, funny memory for you all. Thanks for sharing it here.

jenna rosewells said...

I am so going to talk about u on my blog cause i love your blog!