Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Chicken Shit

During my Vietnam military service it seemed that a tremendous amount of time was simply wasted. I suppose it’s just the nature of it—better to waste time than getting your ass shot off. With so much time available to observe things, you couldn’t miss seeing a lot of both funny and dumb stuff.  And sometimes, just for your own amusement, you made something up to see how someone would handle the situation.

The WWII Sad Sack comics lampooned military silliness; so did Bill Mauldin’s Willie & Joe; but for me the less well known Private Breger in Britain comics made some of the more lasting impressions. A couple of my favorites are included in this posting.

Is it any wonder that when we went off to Vietnam service, the military establishment had trouble figuring out how to deal with us? A significant percentage of us had either a degree or part of one. And with our having been exposed to the WWII attitudes of our fathers, is it any wonder that we took certain notions into the service with us?

The term chicken-shit came out of WWII and wasn’t lost on us.  For a great example of chicken-shit illustrated in film, take a closer look at John Larroquette's Captain Stillman character in Stripes. Pay special attention to his odd salute, repeated several times…that’s chicken-shit.  Guess you had to be there...and I think that at least one of the sceen writers had been.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I remember a young Ensign saluting just like Stillman and he was chicken shit through and through. There were some others, too.