Comedian Jim Fleming shares his bizarre temp job where he and other townspeople from Fallon, Nevada posed as Taliban fighters to help train U.S. Marines, preparing for deployment in Afghanistan. Additionally, he talks about how the experience shaped him.
Episode 18 – TEMP SERVICE TALIBAN
At the height of the war on terror in Afghanistan, the US and its allies, deployed combat forces to Afghanistan to fight the Taliban and flush out Al-Queda safe-havens. Coincidentally, the high desert terrain outside of Fallon, Nevada closely resembLes the landscape of Afghanistan and is also home to the sprawling Fallon Naval Air Station. Marines deploying to Afghanistan were sent to Fallon Naval Air Station to experience the Afghanistan-like conditions. Furthermore, to help prepare them for combat, local townspeople were hired to role play as Taliban fighters. $15 an hour got Comedian Jim Fleming’s attention. The temp agency recruiter only offered vague clues as to the job, Jim was unemployed and in need of cash.
He joined a rag-tag group of rent-a-rebels who had nothing in common with the Pushtun and Urdu tribesman comprising the Taliban. No matter the Marines needed training warm-bodies were needed. Jim spent two weeks role-playing a Taliban fighter with only an AK47, a robe, and lots of blanks. Unlike most of his fellow Taliban for hire, Jim had never fired a gun. However, his blanks weren’t going to inure anyone. Well, actually he held the gun on his wrong side. As a result, he burnt himself on an ejected shell casing.
Jim’s experience and explanation of his bizarre two-week Taliban Cos Play makes for a very entertaining Episode 18.
Jim Fleming Also Discusses:
- His interactions with the other Taliban stand-ins
- How playing a guard brought out some unsavory instincts in him
- F18 Fighter jets and other surprises
Links from this Show:
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Learn More About Jim Fleming:
Jim first started performing comedy while on the East Coast pursuing a career in the biotech industry. He has performed in many of Boston and New York City’s finest bars, Chinese restaurants, and finished basements. As a result, Jim developed the thick skin possessed only by cocktail waitresses and door-to-door salesmen.
He recently graduated from the University of Nevada Reno with a Masters in Economics and has performed at Reno area clubs many, many times. Thanks to an unflappable demeanor and zen-like detachment, Jim is equally comfortable performing in a room full of hipsters in San Francisco or a saloon full of intoxicated Rednecks in Montana.
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