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I had a chance to chat via email with Eric and he was thrilled to let us share his blog post on this awesome video.  The video is incredible but the story behind it is amazing! Jen

by Eric Raum

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine here in Afghanistan, Randy Moresi, approached me about the song ‘Call Me Maybe’. I had just returned to Kandahar from the US and had been taken back by how big of a hit it was, as we often miss out on the latest and greatest while in the ‘Stan and I hadn’t heard it before. She said that people were creating covers of the song, and that it would be a lot of fun for the guys and gals out here if we could create a military version. With a day off looming, we got to work trying to get things organized.

I’ll say right now, as much fun as everyone in the video is having, these guys WORK HARD! That’s why this had to be planned out ahead of time, as we knew this would have to be fit into as little time as possible. Randy has a great relationship with the Marine command in Kandahar, and they agreed that the idea would be a great morale booster for everyone, but emphasized that they would have very limited time to do this… one hour for each group. In addition, Randy is a former cheerleader, so she got to work on choreographing a dance that would be learnable in a half hour as well as be ‘tough’ enough that a group of marines wouldn’t balk at performing it in front of the Internet.

We showed up in the afternoon, and in true Marine fashion, everyone patiently listened, paid close attention, and within 30 minutes, had the dance down. With another 30 minutes to film, we wrapped things up and they got back to work. We headed out to the tarmac with the second group on the C-130 and it was no different. They quickly learned the steps, performed with vigor, said their goodbyes and got back to their jobs.

We roamed around base grabbing people from all lines of service to bust out their own dance moves for the rest of the video. Sometimes people think of the military in a de-humanized way. They hear ‘military’ and they think of it as a whole. What I’ve learned over here is how incredibly diverse each person is. Different hobbies, different skills, even different dance moves. I am always amazed at the amount of talent and creativity I see out here and it is a blessing to have the opportunity to show a glimpse of that to people back home.

I know posting anything military related on youtube has a way of bringing out the best in people in the comments section 😉 I wanted to note here that this didn’t cost anything to make, was filmed on a lunch break, and had a great impact on the morale of not only the service members in the video, but those we’ve shared it with since. It is important to take a break and have some fun every once and a while, whether you’re back in the states hanging with friends and family, or serving your country under the unrelenting Afghanistan sun.

Until next time, thanks for watching!

-Eric

To follow Eric on his travels, read his blog and view his amazing photography click here :  http://www.ericraum.com/

 

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