Alright. I admit it. The closest I’ve ever gotten to military life was joining the army in Habbo Hotel. But like all “humour writers”, I can drone on and on about whatever I feel like and nothing can stop me, with the possible exception of Liu Kang and his bicycle kick. So today I will explore the magical world of military life, and the various things that are usually associated with the military, or whatever I dream up at the time of writing.
Note of Warning: I am a Canadian, so I will be writing about the U.S. Military as it is the geographically nearest military to me, as far as I know. This in no way prevents me from being an expert on the matter.
Signing Up/Boot Camp
I’m not quite sure how you sign up for the military. In World War II it was easy. Big men would come to your door and drag you away kicking and screaming. Presumably we have some sort of sign up office these days. I remember seeing one at my high school Career Fair. This large burly guy shouted at me from practically across the room. “Hey! You! THE ARMY WANTS YOU!” Normally I would have run crying into the girls’ washroom, but something compelled me to go over to the display: free pens.
So what does this have to do with the article? Nothing, but if I don’t preserve my memories, alcohol will take them away forever. Find one of these sign up places and scribble down your old John Hancock. You’ll be given a snazzy uniform and a snazzier gun. Then you’ll be taken to the nearest base for boot camp training.
Movie depictions of boot camp always made me laugh because there was always so much yelling and nervous breakdowns. Ah… reminds me of home. So basically some drill sergeant will scream at you for hours on end, asking you to give him “twenty”. I’m not sure what he wants twenty of though. Jumping jacks? Cartwheels? Break dancing? Try the break dancing first. If he flips out and thrusts his boot into your pelvis with the force of an SUV, you have my apologies. Not that it’ll do you any good, because you’ll have a shiny new bootgroin.
With a mixture of skill and dumb luck, you’ll survive. Congratulations! You’re now in the military! You’ve made an excellent career choice. There’ll be lots of war soon, because everyone is secretly out to destroy the United States. And the way things are going, the good old USA will soon have to nuke every country that doesn’t rhyme with “Bamerica”.
If there’s one thing the army has lots of, it’s vulnerable low-income minorities with few options who have been constantly targeted by military recruitment advertising. I mean… weapons. Let’s take a look-see at your arsenal:
- Pros: Kills people
- Cons: If you run out of bullets, you can fulfill your teenage dream of having every part of your body pierced with metal.
- How to Use: Aim at a person’s head and pull the trigger. If Half Life has taught me anything, it’ll take roughly 500 bullets before the person dies. (At which point they will respawn elsewhere.)
- Pros: It’s really big, and… it’s really big.
- Cons: Landmines can be unpleasant.
- How to Use: Drive over people/things until they stop moving/breathing. Then laugh.
- Pros: Kills people (lots of people)
- Cons: You won’t get to use this unless you’re the President or Dr. Strangelove.
- How to Use: Press the big red button.
Civil War Musket
Pros: I really hope these are still standard issue!
Cons: You might need to be a Civil War ghost if you have one of these.
How to Use: Fill it up with gunpowder and hope it doesn’t explode in your face.
That sums up the weapons, even though the government is probably developing hundreds more, including invisible rocket launchers and Muslim-seeking bullets.
Rising Through the Ranks
As I learned in Habbo Hotel, promotions are everything in the military. You don’t want to remain shrapnel-fodder forever. Eventually you’ll want the cushy job of telling people that THEY CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH.
But how does one accomplish this? It’s a long and difficult process of using your fellow infantry as human shields when the bullets start flying. Some people would call this dishonourable. To them I say, “go suck shotgun.” If you’re still feeling uneasy about this whole deal, here are some simple methods for avoiding the cold kiss of death:
You: “Oh no. I have a dropped a contact lens and/or button. How clumsy of me. Rico, the sun is too bright. Can you stand in front of me while I search for the aforementioned contact lens and/or button?”
Rico: “Sure thing, buddy.”
Poor Rico. But this is what we call “natural selection”. Here’s another favourite of mine:
You: “Rico’s looking sick. He’s lying on the ground motionless with a gaping head wound. I think it might be breast cancer. Can I take him back to the army hospital and away from this dangerous battlefield?”
Sergeant: “That is a good idea. You are always thinking of others. I am promoting you.”
See? Lying is easy. AND fun!
Other Types of Military
There’s also the Navy (of the sea) and Air Force (of the air). Everything I know about the Navy comes from the Village People and mislabeled porn. Thus I draw the conclusion that the navy involves ungodly amounts of anal sex. Go freedom!
The air force is like the navy, only it’s in the air. Picture a submarine with wings. That’s not what a plane is like, but it was a good mental exercise for you. Both of these choices are preferable to the Army, due to the fact that they have large machines that make lots of noise.
I have been told that there is also the Marine Corps which I thought was the same thing as the Army. I have no information on it to give you.
Military Battles of the Future
Eventually we’ll run out of countries that don’t rhyme with “Bamerica” and have to move onto something else. I suspect it will be either alien bugs or some sort of supercomputer that sends out robot assassins that turn into liquid when shot and slowly reform using awesome special effects.
Whatever the case may be, always have your gun readied. And please stand in front of me.