Living in Manhattan has its perks, but it also has its annoyances. I love watching the thunderstorms roll over the Flint Hills and the alien landscape left every spring when the prairie burns. However, I’ve lived here for 5 years and still haven’t gotten used to the endless shelling.

Yes, you read that right Manhattan Kansas is a nonstop war zone.

This is due to our proximity to Fort Riley, home of the Army’s 1st Infantry Division “The Big Red 1”. This leads to some fun benefits, like Black Hawks and Chinooks flying over at low altitude. I once heard what sounded like a loud helicopter flying towards my apartment. When I went out to see what it was, it turned out to be about a dozen C-130s flying only a couple hundred feet up directly at my apartment, it was awesome. But now back to my annoyance.

The shelling never stops.

It’s not like it’s just a dull thud you hear occasionally, it shakes everything. It knocks things off of shelves. There’s no telling when it’s gonna happen either. There’s nothing quite like suddenly waking up to things falling off your desk because somebody thought we should have an all out artillery barrage... at 3:00 AM. Houses in the area have an omnipresent feature, cracks in the structure around any opening like windows and doors.

These are called “Fort Riley cracks” by the locals.

I know that Fort Riley predated me moving here, but I’m just so tired of it. I’ll miss a lot of things when I graduate this spring, but the perpetual fire of artillery will not be one of them.


(nuttiest TVR for your time)