03/20/2007 10:55 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Conditions on the Ground

"White House officials on Monday said the political pressure to leave Iraq would abate when conditions on the ground appeared more positive." -- New York Times, today

If I hear the expression "conditions on the ground" one more time...

I'm having difficulty with just about everyone I depend on because they simply don't know the conditions
on the ground. My son, he's in college. When school breaks for summer I want him to spend more time
with his mother and me than he presently intends. He says his mother gave him the ok to do whatever he
wants this summer. Maybe she did, but she wasn't speaking for me. She says she was because she had
talked to me about it. She didn't. She absolutely didn't. But our son takes her word for it. The boy doesn't
understand the conditions on the ground.

I'm seeing a shrink to help me get started on a book. I tell her
something about my father and the next time I tell her about a dream I had she interprets it as having
everything to do with my father. It didn't. I know it didn't. The woman simply doesn't relate to the
conditions on the ground in my dream Or the situation on the ground for that matter.

My doctor. My very own
doctor, for Christ's sake! I tell him I'm not eating fatty things, no sauces, no booze, I'm going light on desserts,
taking a stool softener, doing everything he told me -- and it's still hard as a rock. It's clear, the man has
no idea of my gastrointestinal conditions on the ground.

What's happening with you on the ground? Are you haunted by the expression? Going out of your mind with it?
Where did this "on the ground" thing originate? Maybe in Iraq. Or at the Defense Department. Rumsfeld
likely. "The situation on the ground." Sounds Rummy, now that I think of it. And it drives me crazy!