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Ready for an ALL-CAPS KIND OF AUTHOR EVENT? Prior to his History Channel hit, Mail Call, R. Lee Ermey was known to most as Gunnery Sgt. Hartman, the unrelenting drill sergeant in Full Metal Jacket. In perhaps the epitome of a self-parody, Ermey has racked up a sizable résumé of character roles that seldom deviate from hyper-authoritative law-enforcement or military types. ’Tis not all an act: Ermey spent 11 years in the Marines, including one-and-a-half tours in Vietnam. After studying criminology and drama, he landed his first role, as a helicopter pilot in Apocalypse Now, a movie in which his background also made him useful as a consultant. Ermey’s book, Mail Call (named for his successful show), “Takes Q’s and Kicks A’s” according to the blurb on the cover, which also features the author in a familiar pose: yelling at you. Perfect for weapons nuts, equipment geeks, and history buffs who are sick of Hitler and J.F.K., Mail Call is sure to further distance the genders from each other. The curious are also invited to visit Ermey’s ultra-jingoistic Web site, rleeermey.com, where a cheap flash-rendering of our man screams in your face about flag burners and the mention of God in the Pledge of Allegiance. There, you can also purchase Gunny Sgt. R. Lee Ermey, a 12-inch “motivational figure.” Now, that’s not an “action figure,” mind you, but I’m sure it will berate you into some sort of action yourself. Ermey reads at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 21, at Olsson’s Books & Records, 2111 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. Free. (703) 525-4227. (Andrew Earles)