Not the same

Believe it or not, I’m a people person. Ha, I say that as Im communicating through a computer. However, I have a very good knack of reading people. It’s a gift I suppose but I can listen or talk to someone and I can tell when they are sincere, in pain, desperate or truly happy that it’s something you may have never experienced unless you have the same sort of people person reading Batman like skills.

I was flying through Dallas recently on American Airlines(AA). I can tell you folks, AA really takes care of the troops. I don’t fly in uniform for force protection issues and unlike our Army brothers, we are not authorized to wear our camies off of base or especially on a flight. AA, will automatically put Army Joes in First Class if they are in uniform and there is space. Being a Marine your automatically excluded from that option but hey, even if I was offered it I would grab a junior warrior and have them take my spot.

AA also includes in their boarding announcement that service members in uniform can board early. Let me pause here. If you have read any of the above and called bullshit that AA offers warriors those options, you need to go look at yourself in the mirror. I continue.

As my flight was near boarding I sat in civilian clothes waiting when low and behold a couple of Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders sat next to me. Ok, I’m a huge Cowboy fan. Those that follow me on twitter will know that. These two girls (early 20s) were macked out with their hair all done up, nails and enough diamond bling on their “Cowboy” blue & white jump suites to compete with either of the two Elvis Presley jump suits I saw first hand in Graceland. They were obviously new girls to the team. I say that because they were freaking young and not comfortable with sitting down without messing up their recently done hair dues. They were speaking with this… do I say this….more experienced…ummm…crap, older lady. She was like their “handler” or mentor and was kinda escorting them to their destination. She was like the ladies in the older TV series “Dallas” you could tell she was born and raised in Dallas and had a “I don’t care what you do, I’m a little better than you attitude. Not confidence, arrogance.

What ever you did or had, hers in Dallas was better and she was going to tell you about it. Now being Marines, they were well protected and in safe hands so to speak and if you have ever seen a Marine in public, we usually stand out. Hell the high & tight haircuts usually give us away. There were some Army joes sitting around and in uniform and they were getting their pictures with them. Why not, they are Cowboy cheerleaders. However, this is where my entire opinion of them changed.

Have you ever said something and as soon as you said it, you feel like a pipe wrench just hit you in the head because you instantly realize how you said it wasn’t how it came out? Its happens to guys all the time. It’s a “guy” curse. However, it didn’t happen to me this time (shwew). The cheerleaders handler was running on to these newbies about her visits here and there, really blowing abunch of bullshit & hot air at them. We sat and kept to ourselves and none of us got all giddy and ran over to them. Again, were Marines.

The boarding announcement was made and like above the announcement was for any military in uniform can pre board (stand by for bus wreck) and the “handler” stops in her detailed glory story to these young girls and says “ Hey you girls are in uniform, it’s the same” you should be boarding….(insert cricket noise here). Insert the sound of my head turning to her and another noise of me clicking off safe). They all giggled and continued to be in her awe. This is where their reputation fell off a cliff (and interesting enough, servicemembers stopped asking for photos with the girls) .

After I got over the shock & awe of amazement she actually said that I said in a heart beat, not hardly darling. She didn’t hear me because she’s not a Marine. If she was a Marine, she would have gotten a verbal heart punch time now but one of the cheerleaders heard me and probably realized what just happened. 

I know, you’re saying “Pain, it’s not a big deal” and in life its not and I got over it, no I didn’t, I was disappointed. Disappointed because I know other warriors heard her and were thinking the exact same as me. Look, here is a no brainer, if you’re going to strut your shit through an airport in Elvis jump suites for your company, have a little situation awareness and assume everyone is judging you, because they are. Like our Marines that are at the White House and 8th & I, they are continuously being eye fkcd for errors and people will very rarely find errors in their uniform or hear them say something stupid. They are professionals 24/7. The one time you are not a professional is will be when the world is watching, so we are professional 24/7 or at least if we’re going to be ass clowns its where no one can see it, especially in our dress uniform walking through the airport. Overall, its not a big deal because every servicemember that has sacrificed has a part of their body armor that is calloused for shit said to us like that. Not 100% of Americans like servicemembers or understand their sacrifice. For the 99.9% of the US that often thank our warriors, there is at least 1% that have never had their kid serve or appreciate what we sacrifice and that’s ok, we serve for them as well. Honestly, I could give to rats ass if you tell me thanks. I chose to be a Marine, I love it and know what it brings. I get thanked twice a month as a pay check. For those younger studs, ya, they get a spring in their step when someone tells them that, hell, I get a spring in my step and I’m an old dog but regardless if anyone tells us anything, we are still going to the shittiest places, kill bad guys and we will win regardless if anyone says thanks, again, we are Marines.

Words have meanings and I have to ask myself, I wonder if that “handler” felt that wrench hit her in the head after she said what she did. I bet not and that’s the sad thing in all of this. Those young girls that are worshiping that lady are going to be just like her. Hell they were already following her around like impressionable puppies. Even if someone read this from within the Dallas Cowboy business and said “were sorry our employee is a moron and has no situation awareness and thinks she rates the same if not more than our countries warriors” I would be too humble and probably embarrassed because I don’t need an apology from them. However, I could offer that handler a couple classes that showed her that no sweetie, your young teeny poppers dressed in their glam is not anywhere fcking close to being the same of even the youngest most novice servicemember. That, I would make perfectly clear.

Time for a C-Gar!


    I have also heard similar sentiment that somehow that person’s work or status is a comparable hardship, sacrifice. Not even close. My new favorite soapbox is “living wage” or “minimum wage”, no comparison there, most of our military make less than minimum wage.
    I made my child and now the grandchildren, go up and thank a military person for their service. If a see a young family out to dinner, I sometimes buy a meal, or hand out a Coffee card, but at least a handshake and thank you. The last encounter was at our state fair. A 92 year old gentleman (dinna look a day over 70), who had served in WWII, so appreciated then 11 year old granddaughter and I taking the time to talk to him and with respect, his eyes glistened. He shared some things with us and was a wonderful opportunity for mine to learn and understand.
    I cried at the city parade two years ago. Veterans led the parade, carrying the colors, no one stood up to salute our flag or applaud our veterans. I stood up and applauded and cheered as did my granddaughter and a few embarrassed souls got up a did the same. When I was a child, everyone stood and saluted the flag and clapped appreciation for our veterans. I will not be silent in expressing my appreciation.

  2. You have more self control than I do! As a military brat ( both parents), Marine wife and mother; there isn’t a chance in hades I would have held my tongue if I heard her say that!!! What’s more, it wouldn’t be the first time I have had to enlighten someone about misconceptions they have had concerning our Military and the fact that are in some way superior or as deserving as them.
    My father is a disabled vet who spent 3 1/2 years in Nam with first ANGLICO and was seriously wounded twice, my mother is a retired Army nurse who served in the first Gulf war, my husband has served in multiple theaters including Iraq and Afghanistan (so far) during his service as a Marine, and most recently my oldest son served in Afghanistan; through out my life I have witnessed the sacrifices they have made, both seen and unseen. They all deserve thanks and respect from this country for their service and it pisses me off to no end when I hear anyone do/say something that undervalues their sacrifices or what they have been through.
    My hat is off to you for maintaining your bearing and not ripping her a new one, though I am not sure that is what the situation called for; I think maybe a little tactful enlightenment would have done her some good.

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