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Briefcases and the Army

Someone on my FL was talking about messenger bags today. I was interested so I was looking around online and went to a site that had some and they also had briefcases. I started looking at the briefcases, which I've always thought to be the most inefficient sort of carrier, and this image popped into my head of an absurd scene that I've seen countless times. When I first got into the army, after basic training, I went to my first training station at Ft Sam Houston, in San Antonio, Texas. That is the army's main medical training center where they do the training for all sorts of things like physician's assistants, dentistry, etc, but mostly for technicians/technologists. It's where I went to school for x-ray technology and we also had dental techs, lab techs, medics and whatnot in our battalion. We used to muster in the morning around 5 am for physical training, then we'd go back to the barracks, or home for those of us who lived off post, to shower and have breakfast, and then muster again around 7:30 to go to classes.

We mustered at the company barracks which were down the hill from the school, maybe about a mile away. We proceeded to get into a formation and then march to class. To people that have been in the service, this is no surprise, but the memory I have of it is so ridiculous that I crack up whenever I think about it. I'm talking about real marching crap, you know, "YOUR LEF' YOUR LEF', YOUR LEF' RIGHT'O LEF'!" type thing, and calling cadences and stuff. Some people got used to it, but I swear to god, I laughed inside(when I wasn't crying inside) every single time we marched. It was just so bizarre, a group of young adults marching to school in a big group, and singing along while they did it!

Anyways, the most bizarre thing were the people who marched to school with briefcases. There were about three or four people in each company who walked...I mean marched to school, in their BDUs, with briefcases. I can only imagine they had come from some holler in West Virginia or some bayou in Louisiana and had been the first ones of their family to attend any type of school at all, because I have never seen anyone else carrying briefcases at any civilian university I've attended, unless they're really, really nerdy. In fact, I have a vivid mental image of ma and pa, thinking about the big New York businessman, carrying his briefcase and being SO professional, and sonny Jim was going to be just like that. I don't know why it's so funny. It's just that, a grown up person, wearing camouflage clothes, marching to school while singing, with a bunch of other people doing the same thing, carrying a briefcase...it's so fucking stupid, lol!

I need to look through my pictures tonight and find one from that time. I must have had the most confused look on my face 24 hours a day. Here's one from a year later, in the middle of the Mojave Desert. Fuck that shit.

Oh yeah, and we marched back to the company every evening after school too.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 26th, 2007 09:05 pm (UTC)
Nice moustache
Jul. 26th, 2007 09:14 pm (UTC)
It was pimptastic. I have a picture somewhere from before I joined the army. I totally look like Cheech.
Jul. 26th, 2007 09:31 pm (UTC)
It was just so bizarre, a group of young adults marching to school in a big group, and singing along while they did it!
Jul. 27th, 2007 02:58 am (UTC)
Nice pic.
Jul. 27th, 2007 03:05 am (UTC)
Yeah marching is creepy. I mean, I grew up on many an AFB, but at my bro's USMC graduation I was absolutely shocked at the marching. I even went to some website where they explained all the moves and shit. It really is ridiculous if you're outside the culture even for a little bit. haha.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )