As Paul mentioned in the last episode, he did indeed watch me fling myself out of a perfectly good airplane like a schmuck. This is a pretty fun thing to do for me. I tend to enjoy the more extreme of sports past times. I’m not trying to make myself sound cool or manly. In fact, I do things like surf and rock climb and parachute for the sole reason that I do them alone. If you were to put me in a team sport environment I become a flailing spaz incapable of not accidentally bouncing the ball off my own face.
I love doing adventurous activities and spending time in the water and doing the fun things the commercials are so good at showing. What they don’t show, is that everyone of those Marines doing that fun looking activity, whether it be parachuting or riding in a Zodiac (rubber boats) or hiking, is currently at that moment hating their fucking life. “What? But you just said those are fun things!” Indeed I did children. However, the military has a nasty habit of making you hate all the fun activities you love by skewing them with some detail that makes it not fun.
Love hiking? Now try it in a non-breathing cotton uniform of which you’re not allowed to roll up the sleeves as well as a 30 pound vest and helmet along with a 50 pound pack. Then pick up a rifle and do it for 15 miles on cement as fast as you can. I don’t love hiking anymore. My joints don’t like it either.
Love riding in boats? Now do it in the dead of night in the winter when the water temperature is 59 degrees and its only 50 degrees outside (BTW fun fact: if the combined air and water temp don’t add up to 120, you’re at high risk for hypothermia). And when you get back you get to scrub all that salt water out of your rifle! Huzzah! I now hate going near water!
Love shooting guns? Not anymore, fuckface! We’re going to make you get up at 0330 (That 3:30 a.m. for you non military types) to be at the armory at 0400 so you can not start the range until 0800 and then sit outside waiting all day for your turn to shoot less than 100 rounds and then get back to the armory at 1800 (6 pm) to clean your rifle and then go straight to bed to do it all over again for a whole week straight! I now avoid shooting guns whenever I can. Fuck it. I’m a good shot and I would kill for some sleep.
Maybe I’m just a whiner. But then again, you’re still reading my blog and that’s the whole point of this. To give you a bitter, sarcastic look at the military. Talk to Paul. We’ve all thought these things. Some of my peers don’t talk about it because of professionalism or military bearing. But I’ll be damned if hasn’t crossed their minds too.