Sgt Roman F. Klick 36620923
HS 1393 Engr APO 709
c/o PM SF Cal
9 December 1944

Dear Aunty Clara,

Now for a brief recapitulation of the day's events. It has been a fairly happy day. In the morning I did Morning Reports as always and after they were completed I was off for the remaining portion of the morning. Why? Because on Wednesday afternoon the Battalion was off duty as it is every Wednesday afternoon under our new schedule and on Wednesday afternoon when the battalion was off duty, I was on the range, firing. In the free time I sat outside the dayroom reading this book "Strange Fruit" until the Saturday inspection was over. Then, after the inspecting officers had gone through the barracks, I went to my cot and fell asleep until it was chow time. The afternoon was another easy affair since the first hour was taken up by a training class and then I came up to the office to do the next day's morning reports and write that letter for Cooley. No sooner had that been accomplished when Captain Cook chased everyone out of the office saying that no one should be in here after two o'clock on Saturdays. I like this new schedule much better than the six-hour day even though it means putting in more time --- supposedly. The nights are a half hour longer, a person gets a little time off at least and finishes Saturday a little earlier than the other days and, most important, is that the meals are at the right time plus the ten o'clock snack of a slice of bread smeared with peanut butter just before going to bed.

Most of the day during the free time when I wasn't dozing off, was spent in reading the book. The book does not settle or provide a solution for the racial problem in the South, but it forms a very poignant picture of conditions under which the whites and blacks try to live, This writer, Lillian Smith, strives for realism and, in my opinion, gives a little too much of it. There are things a person has a natural dislike for such as swear words for example, yet, in order to achieve cloying realism she has included everything in an exact picture of living. Maybe it is necessary for the purpose of the book which doesn't deal at all with the pleasant side of life at all, yet a person has the feeling it could have been omitted. I'm finished with it now and am glad I read it, though, for the racial question seems to be looming larger all the time in spite of attempts to hold it down and a person naturally likes to know a little bit more about things like that.

That there is much more killing, scandal and trouble today is very evident from the newspapers coming in from home. Jack always said, "Well, let's see how crime and killing is getting on in Chicago these days," as he would begin to read a Daily News. And it is true too, for about five stories on every front page deal with things like that. One of the main causes would be that with the breakup of normal family life during these times people are lonely and, strange as it may seem, they begin telling lies to each other until everyone believes the lies and begin living their lives according to them. I've noticed that more and more that as people lose their faith in something they get to grasping at straws. And the straws are tales made up by people who don't believe them themselves. But finally enough people do believe them that it hits right back at the people who lied at first so all in all it is a vicious circle and you wonder how changed society will be after the war. And you know that the longer it lasts, the greater and more lasting will be the changes. But I guess there is nothing we can do about it but lead our own little lives as best as we know how and when we make mistakes and fall into error just try the best we know how to correct them.

So much for a lot of windy talk this evening. It is about time to hit the hay anyway.

So-long,   /s/ Roman   Roman