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Discussion » Questions » Military » What are some common phrases heard in military life that you don't often hear in civilian communities?

What are some common phrases heard in military life that you don't often hear in civilian communities?

E.G., Zero dark thirty, TDY, If the Army wanted you to have a family they'd have issued you one. 

Posted - November 21

Responses


  • 8418
    Why?
      November 21, 2020 8:07 PM MST
    2

  • 5261
    Just joking. :)
      November 21, 2020 8:13 PM MST
    2

  • 14821
    I thought it was "Oorah!"
      November 21, 2020 10:02 PM MST
    4

  • 8418
    I think you are correct.
      November 21, 2020 10:06 PM MST
    3

  • 14821
    And, I believe the Army says "Hooah!"
      November 22, 2020 8:07 AM MST
    3

  • 9182
    Canadian Navy...

    Stand easy (coffee break)

    'Up spirits' (open the rum locker and prepare rum issue)

    Hands to muster for grog (go line up for your daily rum ration)

    Batten down the hatches (prepare for high winds and heavy seas)

    Shore leave (off duty and free to go ashore)

    Dropped a sprog (just had a baby)

    AWOL (gone absent without authorization)


      November 21, 2020 9:03 PM MST
    3

  • 5261
    I've not heard of some of those. Thanks!
      November 21, 2020 9:07 PM MST
    3

  • 9182
    Yer welcome! This post was edited by Kittigate at November 21, 2020 11:41 PM MST
      November 21, 2020 9:12 PM MST
    3

  • 38628

    Volume I


    That’s unsat! (unsatisfactory)
    Belay my last. (Disregard my most recent order.)
    As you were. (Continue doing what you were doing before I arrived.)
    Gangway! (When said as a command, it means get out of my way. It is never uttered as a pleasantry nor as a polite suggestion.)
    Turn to. (Begin the task I have just explained that I want carried out.)
    Secure from. (Stop doing the task that you have been doing. The end of an exercise or operation. “At 1700, First Platoon will secure from night watch.”)
    The Commanding Officer desires . . . (I am relaying to you an order from the C.O.)
    Office Hours (Non-judicial punishment. It is used for formal consequences to an infraction of rules or regulations similar to a low misdemeanor, it is less severe than a court martial.)
    The Brig. (In naval terminology, the military jail or prison. The Army version is The Stockade.)
    Rolling Stock. (All of a unit’s ground vehicles.)
    Deck. (Floor or the ground.)
    Bulkhead. (Any wall.)
    Overhead. (A ceiling.)
    Hatch. (Any door or other access point that is not a porthole.)
    Porthole. (Any window.)
    Bug juice. (Military version of a powdered flavoring that‘s mixed with water, effectively Kool-Aid. Also, any insect repellent in liquid form.)
    Go-Fasters. (Athletic shoes, running shoes, tennis shoes. So-named because when you were wear them, you go faster, or theoretically you expect to go faster.)
    Water bull, or water buffalo. (A canteen, a water can, a camel-back, a water drum, or a water truck.  Almost any vessel used for carrying water.)*

     

    . . . stand by for Volume II (to be continued)


    *In a recent answer I gave to the question about an injury received from an animal, I was referring to a 2,500-gallon water truck that was being loaded aboard our ship by helicopter as we were docked at Subic Bay Navy Base in the Philippines. I was part of the 8-man cargo crew on the helo-pad of the ship, our job was to unhook the carrying straps from the truck as the helicopter sat it down, and then run two each in four different directions as the metal mesh cargo net fell away from the load. What I failed to notice was that I had my big dumb foot under one of the wheels of the truck when the helo set it down. Seven men turned to run to their designated zones, I was left there tethered under the truck. The helo took off, and the cargo crew had to lift the truck off my foot with brute force. Only the tip of my big toe was smashed, the docs removed my entire flattened toenail, I spent about two weeks on light duty.  The toenail never grew back properly, so since she 19, I have had a deformed-looking big toe.
    ~

    This post was edited by Randy D at November 22, 2020 1:08 PM MST
      November 22, 2020 2:28 AM MST
    3

  • 5261
    Impressive list! Thank you. 

    So, what was your most serious injury inflicted by an actual animal? 
      November 22, 2020 12:13 PM MST
    1

  • 38628

     

     Yes, full disclosure. When I answered your other question about animal-inflicted injuries, I did so tongue-in-cheek by referring to the incident I’ve described above. It wasn’t an animal, it was a truck that’s called a water buffalo in the Marine Corps.

      (Ok, how many demerits do I get for that?)

      November 22, 2020 12:37 PM MST
    1

  • 5261
    If you don't answer the animal injury question, you just may get an Article 15!

      November 22, 2020 12:40 PM MST
    1

  • 38628

     

      Hey, wait . . . 

      November 22, 2020 12:47 PM MST
    0

  • 38628

     

     But I did answer it! You even gave me a ‘Like’.
    ~

      November 22, 2020 12:59 PM MST
    1

  • 5261
    But it was not an actual animal, you now confessed! 
      November 22, 2020 1:30 PM MST
    1

  • 13751
    I have no experience but on Mash they call the food grub.
      November 22, 2020 8:13 AM MST
    3

  • 5261
    I think grub was preferred to MREs (meals ready-to-eat)! 
      November 22, 2020 12:43 PM MST
    2

  • 38628

     

      “Grub” predates MREs (they were introduced in the late 80s if I remember correctly) by many decades, but the word “chow” is more prominently used to refer to food in the military. Side note: both grub and chow are used as nouns and verbs. Also as adjectives, as in “He’s a real chow-hound” (he eats a lot or he loves to eat).
    ~

      November 22, 2020 12:52 PM MST
    2

  • 5261
    I didn't know that about MREs. I guess it was strictly canned foods while in the field, prior to then?  

    Chow sounds better than 'grub', I think. I cannot believe the success of "Grub Hub" food delivery app. I wouldn't use it on principle alone. 
      November 22, 2020 1:35 PM MST
    1

  • 38628

     

     Yes, the canned meals were C-Rations, commonly called C-Rats, and their true origins date back to the US Civil War when canning of food was in its infancy and the need to feed hundreds of thousands required a way to pack, store, ship and distribute food in a way that it wouldn’t spoil quickly. The more modern versions of those packed C-Rations meals has a heyday during World War II (by the way, that’s also how Spam came into being).
    Little-known fact: it’s a common misconception that the C in C-Rations stands for “can” or “canned”.  Like many thing military, there are code words and code letters and code numbers for almost everything. The way food is prepared, cooked, packaged, issued, etc is no exception, even down to the number of people can be fed in a setting. I’m going to have to give a loose explanation here, because it wasn’t my field of expertise, just trivia that I picked up over 25 years ago, so my accuracy is a bit fuzzy.
    There were/are A-Rations, B-Rations, S-Rations, etc.  
    Hot meals prepared in a galley or chow hall (military parlance for a large kitchen) and served immediately thereafter to dozens, hundreds or thousands of troops at or close by the galley are known as A-Rations.  If that same food is packed up and sent from the galley out to the field or other distant location to be served there, it’s known as B-Rations. Bag lunches that usually don’t include cooked or hot food (a sandwich, piece of fruit, a staple and other) is known as Day-Rations or Day-Rats. Food that is packed for individual issue per man, carried by that man and eaten either cold or heated by that man is known as C-Rations.  Food that is prepared for night crews or units that are not present for usual breakfast, lunch or dinner times is known as Midnight-Rations, or Mid-Rats.


      November 22, 2020 1:58 PM MST
    1

  • 5261
    Very interesting! I did presume that the "C" would have stood for "canned" until I read your explanation. 

    P.S. - SPAM = gross!!! 
      November 23, 2020 5:43 PM MST
    1