One of the first things that strikes you when you join the military (especially if you are young and haven’t been away from home much) is the fact the armed services are a true melting pot.
It was actually more like a melting pot mixed with the UN. We had white guys from the Midwest, black guys from the city, guys of Asian descent from the west coast, guys from New England whose accent was so strong we couldn’t understand them. You get the picture.
Note the wide variety of individuals behind the President as he is speaking.
You have white guys, black guys, Hispanic guys, white women, black women…this is not accidental. Those soldiers didn’t just happen to be standing there. They were placed because of their ethnic backgrounds and/or gender. We used to call it, “the wall of diversity”.
We had one guy that was North Vietnamese whose family escaped to the US after the fall of Saigon. There was a Scottish soldier from the British Army training with us. We had a guy from the El Salvadoran Army.
Scots wearing the tam o’ shanter
The would get really pissed if you poked fun at their headgear. I didn’t witness much prejudice based on where someone was from or the color of their skin. Some people had enough personal issues that you just did not care for them much based solely on their disturbing behavior.
The following are the types of soldier that most troops didn’t like much:
The High Strung Ultra Gung Ho Guy – This soldier always has a stern look on his face like he’s ready to rip someone’s throat out. He’ll let anyone within earshot know that he intends to be at the top of the class. He will try to do this at the cost of others, therefore he is almost universally hated. This guy doesn’t want to fit into the group. He is commonly referred to as an asshole. [Example: Wilson in the movie Tigerland]
The Blue Falcon – Probably the worst of the worst. Blue Falcon is code for buddy fucker. He’ll screw you over for any reason or no reason at all. He is the antithesis of a team player. Think Bowe Bergdahl. He often gets what’s coming to him in the end and may be the guest of honor at a blanket party.
Bowe Bergdahl and his new buddy ready for a night out on the town in Kabul.
The Complainer – We get it, being in the armed forces can really suck at times. You get cold, wet, hungry…your feet hurt, everyone is yelling at you. This is supposed to be a test of your character. You suck it up and function at a high level despite the adversity. The complainer doesn’t do this. He bitches about everything. “My boots are too tight. This food sucks! We have to do another ruck march?” “I know that bastard checking weapons is just going to hand it right back to me.” He is often told in a loud voice to STFU. [EDITOR’S NOTE: Unless you are Pvt. Hudson in Aliens, then you are pretty awesome]
Some guys would even complain about the type of MRE they got
The Braggart -This guy tells you everything about himself that you never wanted to know. He was the quarterback of his college football team, he hass won numerous shooting awards and is president of his local Mensa chapter. Yeah, right, whatever. Just get away from me. When it is go time they can’t make it over the first wall of the obstacle course. You look at your buddies and roll your eyes. I saw one “star athlete” who could barely throw your standard M67 fragmentation grenade farther than the 15-meter casualty radius. For the love of God and all that is holy they only weigh 14 ounces (396 grams).
The braggart scared the shit out of us on the grenade range
These are just a few of my fellow soldiers that can be more than just a little annoying. Remember, soldiers are human beings too, and come in all sizes, shapes and demeanors.