Well, the facades of certain stern, hard core, nail spitting, take no prisoners infantry officers are starting to slip, showing (gasp!) senses of humor as our tour of sandy parts plows on like a dull wooden plow attached to a 100 year old ox furrowing through the rocky hills of 18th century Ireland.
Gems of wit have been spotted sprinkled throughout top secret padlocked to the wrist documents that issue from our tough as woodpecker lips infantry staff. Fear not, I will stop short of divulging state secrets, unless itâ€™s the fact that infantry officers, once put in desk jobs involving such scintillating tasks as logistics and planning, actually retain a sense of humor.
USO sponsored entertainment does occasionally make it to my old outlying camp. The last comedian tour was not particularly well attended, perhaps due in part to the fact that the acts were performed by 4 middle age balding guys in ratty Hawaiian shirts. The upcoming comedy tour promises better attendance, perhaps not because of the sudden upswing in talent, but likely because the USO comedian is, in the words of one of my male compadre, A smokinâ€™ hot babe! Likely she is only average to pretty, but hey, months of deployment will turn even the most homely of gals into someone that can be put in quotation marks.
How do I know this, being that I am stranded up at Camp Tootie Fruity away from my old friends? I was privy a top secret document which demanded;
Appoint one Ranger qualified Infantry officer, preferably single, handsome and a shining example of the Infantry branch, to escort Ms T— throughout her time on the camp. Officer should take numerous photographs of himself with Ms. T— and then forward them to all other male officers in the brigade. If he fails to obtain a personal autograph with contact information, he shall be mercilessly ridiculed by his peers.
And yet there was more fodder. In an apparent attempt to lighten up the no fun command as we were prone to be called, another order to our subordinate units read;
The commander has ordered a completely spontaneous moment of joy and celebration at precisely 5:10 am on Monday morning to commemorate the end of — (a particular series of documents). Said moment of spontaneity will last exactly 116 seconds, at the end of which all fun will immediately cease and seriousness will promptly resume.
I kid you not. (Ok, I lied. I kid you all the time, but this weekâ€™s column is true and pretty much wrote itself.) Both gems are now permanently locked into the annals of military history, inscribed forever in the operational orders of our mighty U.S. Army.