Ounce of Prevention …and a Pound of Sausage

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I wonder how William would feel about my mission taking on the Naval Safety Center.  As one who never needed anything “fixed” by his mother he’d probably encourage me “to get over it and let it go”. However, finding a cause that celebrates one’s child and may benefit others helps to give some positive meaning to the tragic situation. Maybe one can make a difference, so another doesn’t find themselves here. Maybe change is possible. It’s about an ounce of prevention. Choose a cause.

Cooking in Afghanistan. Maybe sausage & peppers.

Cooking in Afghanistan. Maybe sausage & peppers.

For the last two years my mission has to do with educating those in command of the Naval Safety Center. Not that these folks need educating about sleep deprivation, but they sure could use some impetus to implement some common sense rules related to its risks. My goodness the military has rules about everything–where to go, how to dress, what to do and what to eat…..how about a rule to protect those who at a given moment really can’t protect themselves?

Most are well aware of the scientific evidence that cognitive deficits of sleep deprivation kick in early and linger and that the incidence of motor vehicle fatalities is higher among those military that have been deployed. Our government spends millions of our hard earned tax dollars on educational safety programs for enlisted young men and women seemingly committed to the goal of zero preventable losses.  Sailors and marines are required to take classes on everything from personal protective equipment to travel risk planning throughout their careers. Hmmm–with all this education these young sailors and marines should be able to take care of themselves.

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William’s roadside memorial

Oops-we forgot about the facts on sleep deprivation: the cognitive impairment, the poor reaction time, the slowing of the reflexes and “the impairment which is like being drunk” according to one correspondence. Don’t they get it? All the education in the world doesn’t matter when one can’t think for oneself. It’s common sense that a commander would never turn over the car keys to a sailor who had been drinking, so why doesn’t the same rule apply for those who have been sleep deprived due to a course of special training? It’s an easy rule: Go to sleep. No liberty for 48 hours. I’ll keep you posted when I hear back from Naval Safety Command on my latest suggestion.

In the meantime, here is a super easy recipe that is a family favorite. There are no hard and fast rules to the recipe, so feel free to experiment with it. Only 4 ingredients, so buy the very best products available. Delicious on a crusty Italian roll or over some cheesy soft polenta.

Sausage & Peppers

1 pound Italian sausage links, hot or sweet or combination of both

3 bell peppers( red, green), seeded and sliced

1 large onion, sliced

1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes (splurge on the San Marzano)

Heat oven 400F. Place sausage in a roasting pan. Roast about 20 minutes, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides. Add peppers and onions, roast for 10 minutes. Add tomatoes and cover tightly with aluminum foil. Bake for about 30 to 40 minutes or until bubbling. Remove foil and bake for another 10 to reduce some of the liquid.

4 thoughts on “Ounce of Prevention …and a Pound of Sausage

  1. Will might have resisted you at first, Lisa … but if you could tell him your efforts might help save the lives of other young men and women in the military, I suspect he would be cheering you on.

    I pity anyone who dares not given you a hearing … they have no idea who they are up against!

    • My correspondence over the years with the Naval Safety Command has been very positive. I do hope they consider my latest proposal and implement my suggestion. It seems like an easy thing to do if they are sincerely committed to zero preventable accidents. Sadly, I noted 3 other memorial sites along the route 17 stretch from Wilmington to Camp Lejeune the day I visited.

  2. Lisa, this is a most worthy effort on your part. This may be one of the most important things that you can do. Strangely, you will never know how much good it will do – but that is okay! Stay the course!!

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