I am off for a week or so to visit my daughter. While there we will pursue a number of offline, IRL activities, often including her boyfriend and his mother. His father will not be there because he is a civilian employee of the military. Right now he is in Afghanistan doing whatever he does for a big bucket of money.
Except he is not.
Seems that while the actual military can be considered "essential" and exempted from the shut-down, civilian employees are not. This begs the question of why they are needed in the first place, but I really have no idea what he does, let alone why our forces cannot do it themselves.
What I do know is there is little to do in Afghanistan except the job, and he is not doing that nor getting paid for that right now.
So remember, no matter what wackaloonacy this shut-down sends your way, it could be worse. You could be twiddling your thumbs in a war zone.
If you follow me on twitter, you will likely see some fun photos this week: @PHLane