True Stories of the USMC

I don’t know if the story about Commandant Gray is true, but this one is. When I was in college, Big Chilly and I stopped by to visit with a certain Marine general of my acquaintance, accompanied by another friend. Big Chilly and my other friend were a little taken aback when, after being introduced, the general pointed to a North Korean colonel’s hat and said: “You know the difference between you and me? I killed the man who wore that hat.” I don’t think I’ve ever seen Big Chilly’s eyes so wide.

However, the general is nothing if not charismatic, and by the time we left his house two hours later, we were not only singing the Marine Corps anthem, but abandoning our respective plans for med school and starting a computer game development company while arguing vociferously about which branch of the Corps we were each going to pursue. Big Chilly wanted to take his perfect vision and go for a Harrier pilot, our other friend was intent on Force Recon, and I hoped to follow the lead of my grandfather into the 2NDMARDIV. This went on for about 90 minutes, until Big Chilly suddenly held up his hand and said: “wait a minute, I don’t want to join the Marine Corps!”

At which point the spell was broken and we went ahead with our lives, as previously planned. But if the USMC ever lacked for volunteers, all they need to do is put a recruiting station right outside the general’s driveway.

The crudeness of Oz

One Kiwi commenter reminded me of my Ozzie friend, Firestarter. I was exploring the Lombard interior with a pair of Australian couples in search of the mythical Zegna outlet, which gave me the opportunity to observe the species up close and personal. Firestarter was trying to figure out if an associate of his brother’s, who worked with the other guy’s wife, was the jerk he suspected him to be. The woman was reluctant to be forthcoming, which finally prompted her husband to burst out: “look, is he a wanker or is he a mate?”

But the women can hold their own. Both the guys were rhapsodizing all morning about a statue they’d seen the day before entitled Primavera, which, naturally, was a scantily-clad, barely pubescent, beautiful young girl. After listening to a long and monotonous duet on the aesthetic charms of youthful pulchritude, one of the women finally gestured to a young boy walking by and snapped: “You know, I’d really like to suck his d—!”

The other woman and I burst out laughing, while the two Ozzies looked suitably chastened for all of about five seconds, then cracked up themselves. Ozzies are great; they’re the only aliens I know who fully grok the fullness of American humor. And speaking of Firestarter, it’s been too long since we’ve talked. Give me a call, mate.