Operation: GTFO (Day 60)

Except for the beer part, this is what I think of when I think DFAC.

Except for the beer part, this is what I think of when I think DFAC.

Everyone Hates the DFAC

My boss came back from one of his meetings and announced that chow hall attendance had decreased significantly. Apparently, the fact that no one eats at the chow hall is a huge shock to Higher. I have no idea if Higher wants to increase attendance or if they’ve just figured out what the rest of us already knew. I guess when you’re a General and can have your meals catered or flown in from a Paris Michelin-rated restaurant you would have no idea what kind of slops are being served to the common Joe. What’s actually more shocking to me is that Soldiers are still eating at the DFAC and haven’t resorted to cannibalism as a viable alternative.

In case anybody cared, I’ve outlined reasons why the chow hall is a fail. I’m sure Higher doesn’t give a shit what I think but since I have nothing better to do at this exact moment, allow me to enumerate:

Reasons Soldiers Don’t Eat at the DFAC

  1. fast foodThere’s enough fast food on post to kill an elephant. Even the health-conscientious Soldier would rather choke down a cantina bowl from Taco Bell over “Taco Tuesdays” dried up ground beef, limp lettuce and funny-smelling sour cream in the chow hall. For the Soldier who prefers cholesterol-hardened arteries, it just makes his decision easier to skip boiled steak night.

 

  1. Get some!

    Get some!

    There are no gluten-free, organic, or restricted diet options. Don’t eat pork? Fuck you.   Vegetarian? Low-carb? Celiac? Fuck you. Fuck you. And fuck you. Vegetarians don’t just want to eat salad, you know. As a person that doesn’t eat pork I’ve gone to the chow hall a few times to find the dinner entrée was either pork roast or ham steak. I opted for a grilled cheese, only to discover that it too had ham in it.

 

  1. Stop giving slops cute names like "Meatballs Mexicana."  Does this even LOOK like Meatballs Mexicana?

    Stop giving slops cute names like “Meatballs Mexicana.” Does this even LOOK like Meatballs Mexicana?

    Everything tastes exactly the same. When you are cooking for a mass audience you do have to be neutral in your spice selection. Not everyone can eat food blanketed in sriracha, but does everything have to be drowned in tasteless cream sauce? Every fish entrée served is smothered in some kind of white sauce. Every pasta dish tastes like spaghetti. There really is no variety to any of the dishes. Let’s look at why this is. Friday is boiled steak night. Everyone knows that. The next night the entrée is “braised beef with noodles.” Hmm, amazingly braised beef tastes exactly like the steak we had the night before. You know what’s for lunch the day after that? Beef pot roast AKA boiled steak with gravy disguise. Every dish tastes like leftovers from the night before. If 100 Soldiers are supposed to eat the DFAC and only 47 show up, what did they do with the food for the other 52? You can best believe they did not throw it away. And stop with the bullshit ass “fancy” names. It’s not Asian Chicken Roast. It’s Chicken from Two Days Ago with Some Soy Sauce. And speaking of sauces, is it possible to get some sauce other than BBQ? There are about 25 varieties of BBQ sauce, and that’s it. I wouldn’t mind some teriyaki sauce, some kind of garlic sauce, or anything to drown out the stale pepper that is dusted over every single dish.

 

  1. FASTER!!!!

    FASTER!!!!

    The DFAC is run like an infantry division. It is not an enjoyable experience to eat at the DFAC. I feel like it’s Basic Training all over again: get it in your neck and get the fuck out. Being deployed sucks; the Army seems to understand that, which is why it provides MWR options for Soldiers. Why isn’t the chow hall part of that whole MWR experience? If you look at most cultures, including the American culture, eating is a social experience. The DFAC does not espouse that at all. You are hit with rule after rule after rule. Don’t show up to the DFAC in your civilian clothes with your sunglasses on top of your head. Fuck you, old man, with your reading glasses on a necklace. The PFC at the door will sic a Rottweiler on your ass. Don’t even think about putting hot food in a small to-go container. You will be slaughtered. What if you want to dine-in but take some fruit or dessert for later? Good luck. No to-go containers allowed at the tables, and if you ask for a plate to dine-in they won’t give you a to-go container. You have to lie, cheat and steal your way out of the DFAC with a handful of grapes for a light snack later on. You want seconds because you’re really hungry? Leave the DFAC completely and come back through the front entrance again. Don’t you dare try to come back through the serving line again; that’s a Class A felony.

 

  1. You're too cool for the DFAC.  Sorry guy, no all-purpose patties for you.

    You’re too cool for the DFAC. Sorry guy, no all-purpose patties for you.

    The DFAC can be inconvenient. Something that really irks me is that bags are not permitted in the DFAC. They say it’s a security measure, but we all know that’s bullshit. I don’t want to get into a whole security thing, so we’ll move on. I want to get chow on the way to work, but I need to carry a bag to work. So I need to first go to the chow hall and eat, then come back to my living quarters to get my bag. It would be much easier to just bring my bag to chow and proceed to work from there. I don’t have a vehicle, and I don’t need one just to carry a bag around. I’m fine with walking. I just want to conduct my business in one swoop without having to walk all over the place just to eat. Same thing on the way home from work. Go home first, to drop my bag and then go back to the DFAC, or leave my bag at work and come back to get it after I eat? It’s just a hassle, so skip the DFAC and popcorn from the USO for dinner it is. And forget about trying to take food out. It would be easier with a bag. I’ve only been here two weeks and three times I’ve seen Soldiers drop food and spill drinks trying to carry out. Just skip the mess and have a Frappuccino for lunch. That’s what I do. Working shifts? Trying to get food for a battle buddy that’s sick or working? You know you can’t get food for that Soldier if you don’t have his CAC. Don’t even attempt to get more than on to-go container. If the Soldier is working and needs his CAC to be logged into the computer, well, he can’t give it to you to get his food, can he? Might as well come with you. Or you know what, forget it. Just get Pizza Hut. You don’t need a CAC for that.

 

  1. Chicken patty?  Veal patty?  Fish patty?  Whatever.

    Chicken patty? Veal patty? Fish patty? Whatever.

    Anything you could want to eat is already gone. Whoever is ordering the food for the DFAC should be beaten. The DFAC has been out of cereal for a week. This morning I received intel that said there won’t be supply of cereal for another three weeks. Three weeks? Cereal is not perishable. It’s okay to store huge supplies of it. When you see your supplies dwindling, how about setting up another shipment so you never run out. We’ve been out of cranberry juice since Day 2. The grapefruit juice on the fountain has also been out of stock since I got here. In about a week’s time there will be a dearth of potato chips. These things seem minor but after a while it adds up and it becomes irksome. I’d been enjoying a bowl of dry Cheerios as a mid-morning snack but now I think I’ll just switch to ice cream and a Cinnabon.

 

  1. 9 of 10 forks will be embedded in a Soldier's stomach.

    9 of 10 forks will be embedded in a Soldier’s stomach.

    Speaking of ordering supplies… this same supply person deserves another beating for ordering the cheapest materials possible. I know that’s the Army way, but at what point does it become ridiculous? I have learned to bring at least three forks and three knives to the table, because guaranteed at least one knife will break while I’m sawing through my three-day old chicken-flavoured patty. I will bet money that I will apply the slightest bit of pressure to my fork with my teeth and a whole tine will come off in my mouth. You can pour yourself 108 ounces worth of Mountain Dew, but only three ounces of coffee in those tiny ass Styrofoam cups. You better not fucking bring your own coffee mug either: you will be shot on sight.

 

    1. It's 1530 and the DFAC is closed.  Since there is all this sand around, I figured...

      It’s 1530 and the DFAC is closed. Since there is all this sand around, I figured…

      You can only be hungry during DFAC hours. Thank God there’s midnight chow, not that I’m allowed to go, but it’s nice to know that it’s there. But forget it if you randomly get hungry around 3PM, or you feel like a late dinner after working out. Maybe you have a funny shift at work. Yes, they’re supposed to let you off for meals, but wouldn’t it be convenient to everyone if you could actually eat when you want to? The limited hours coupled with the ultra-inconvenience of taking food out makes it seem much more reasonable to just head to Nathan’s for a chili cheese dog, fries and a Monster.

To be fair, Soldiers do eat in the DFAC. I go every day. Really, I do.  That’s how I have the right to complain about everything. It would be different if I never stepped foot in the place. Higher, don’t think you’ve scored a victory because you got a handful of Soldiers showing up at the trough. Let’s look at the reasons Soldiers might choose to eat the DFAC.

Reasons Soldiers Eat at the DFAC

  1. They’re forced to. For the Soldier of limited financial means there is nowhere else to eat. There are no kitchens or places a Soldier can cook his own meal. There is no commissary. The PX doesn’t sell anything green. You are trapped and there’s nothing you can do about it.
It's this or Burger King.  Gee, tough decision.

It’s this or Burger King. Gee, tough decision.

And that’s really all I could think of. Really, if the Army would just put a little more effort into the food it serves to the troops it wouldn’t be such a joke. Stop buying the cheapest, lowest quality products. Stop hiring low-wage contractors to cook the food. Ease up on the ridiculous restrictions coming into the DFAC. It’s a great idea to wash one’s hands and ensure clothing is clean, but sunglasses on my head while wearing civilian clothes doesn’t affect anything. Unless you see obvious waste and abuse, don’t restrict how much food a Soldier wants to eat, or how they carry it out. I can assure you, if a Soldier wants a second helping of those sloops it’s because he actually wants to eat it, or he’s bringing it to someone who couldn’t get to the DFAC.

Like a lot of things in the Army, no common sense was applied to DFAC operations. You can’t a write memorandum for everything, or structure everything based on a battle drill. It’s okay to let things just be. I know that in the Army that’s a completely foreign concept. Hence, the reason why no one eats at the DFAC.

Operation: GTFO (Day 54)

The Adventure

I told you to make a LEFT!  You obviously failed land navigation.

I told you to make a LEFT! You obviously failed land navigation.

I’m so glad that we have more freedom than we had the last time.  Of course, they took away all the incentive pay to denote that new found freedom.  I guess there’s a tradeoff for everything.

We were told there was an amazing grocery store nearby, about 45 minutes outside the gate.  So the Shop got together and decided that we’d go out and find this store.  One of us had been before and I was sure I had drove past the place once when I came here in March.  But just because you drove past a place once before doesn’t mean you know how to get there.  In fact, just because you’ve been to the place a few times doesn’t mean you know how to get there, as evidenced by last night’s attempt.

47 uses her GPS to find the place.  We could find ourselves on the GPS, as well as the store but for some reason it wouldn’t route.  Madge had a strip map and CJ was the driver.  I fell asleep so I was no use to anybody.  We had been driving for a while when I woke up.  It’s amazing to me how much Kuwait reminds me of Arizona.  I don’t know why I’m amazed though.  Both locations are deserts.  There aren’t that many differences in deserts across the world; I’m sure one looks the same as any other.

At any rate, we started taking wrong turns after about 45 minutes of driving.  At one point we ended up at the Kuwaiti School of Science and Law.  Don’t know how those two subjects go together, but I do know that you shouldn’t put a speed bump at the end of an on-ramp to the highway.  They teach you in driving school to accelerate to the rate of speed on the highway, so you can merge without causing a 20 car pile-up.  What civil engineer decided a speed bump would be useful on the highway?  CJ accelerate to 60MPH only to have Madge scream at him, “Dude, watch out!”  There’s a giant speed bump right at the merge point.  Who does that?  He slammed on the brakes to avoid fucking up the already fucked up vehicle we’re in, but we still have to merge onto the highway.

Imagine this is at the end of your driveway

Go ahead, hit that bitch at 60MPH.

We took several more wrong turns before 47 realised the supermarket she GPSed was in UAE, an entirely different country.  We weren’t following her directions, rather the map Madge had, but still, let this be a reminder to everyone to actually read your directions before you blindly set off into that good sunset.

We did eventually make it to the store.  It was totally worth driving around aimlessly in the desert.  For whatever reason, although Kuwait is no longer a combat zone, the Army has not decided to upgrade any of its facilities.  Other overseas locations have commissaries and housing that supports cooking one’s own food.  For now, we’re stuck with whatever slops are served in the chow hall and toilet bowl wine.

I felt like the poor kid who recently came into a windfall.  I was in the store with deer-in-the-headlights look like I’ve never been anywhere with electricity before.  I’m gaping at refrigerated items, freshly butchered meat, freshly baked bread.  It’s like if Macy’s had a grocery store.

We spent about an hour in there, but next time I need to make a list.  There’s a lot going on in there and it was hard to remember everything I could want.  I specifically wanted fancy coffee creamer but I forgot because I spent 30 minutes at the hot food buffet.  There was all this exotic food and I couldn’t make up my mind.  Then we spent another 15 minutes just trying to figure out what juice to get.  I said I wanted cranberry but they had pure strawberry juice.  Never had pure strawberry juice before.  Then there was this mixed fruit guava, mango, pineapple juice.  I couldn’t make up my mind.

No, seriously, it's totally the same as real money.

No, seriously, it’s totally the same as real money.

Then they had crepes.  Crepes are kinda my weakness.  They aren’t sold everywhere so anytime I see one I always get one.  I order a nutella strawberry crepe and give the lady my credit card to pay.  She comes back and says it’s declined.  Uh, I have $7 million in my bank account, can’t be declined.  Although I know damn well I have enough money to buy a $6 crepe, I was sure it was more likely my bank was confused about charges coming out of Kuwait.  So I gave her my other credit card, the one I don’t use too much.  This is also declined.  I had to ask 47 to help me out, but her card was also declined.  So now we’re just standing there.  The lady laughs and says their machine is messed up, that’s why none of the cards are working.  Okay, that’s great but I need to pay you.  She asks me if I have Kuwaiti money.  I said no, and that was a fail.  Next time, bring Kuwaiti money just in case.  47 and I are standing there about to get our hands chopped off for theft of goods.  She asked them if they take American dollars and the guy looked at her as if she offered to pay him in goats.  Seriously, his face was comical.  American money is not worth as much here, so I can understand his reticence.  Imagine you’re working at Wal-Mart and someone is like, “Hey, do you take pesos?”  Uh, no, bitch, we don’t.

Luckily, one guy did not seem to mind the American dollars because he gave us the Kuwaiti money and we gave him $10.  Then we turned around and gave the Kuwaiti money to the cashier.  All is well that ends well but I was getting a little nervous.

It only took us 20 minutes to get back to the base, which just lets you know how far out of the way we were in attempting to get to the place.  At least I have some good snack foods and a few things to get me through lunch the next couple of days.

Operation: GTFO (Day 53)

Biggie, Gimme The Loot

My new battle buddy is awesome at bingo.

My new battle buddy is awesome at bingo.

To stave off boredom, the new thing is to play Bingo at the Community Center.  I’m sure none of us would have considered playing bingo back home, because that’s for old unmarried chain smokers with too many cats.  I didn’t participate in any of the MWR activities on my last deployment, and this trek to bingo was my attempt at being more social.  I’m not ashamed to say that it was actually kinda fun.

It was also stressful.  Yes, bingo was stressful.  At the beginning of the game, they allowed us to get two cards.  The guy called the numbers really fast and I found it difficult to keep up.  Then he said we could get three cards.  I started missing numbers and I’m certain that I had a bingo but didn’t realise it.  By the end of the game, we could have up to five cards.  Total chaos.  I’m looking for B-5 across five different cards and he has already called three more numbers.  I came close to winning several times but was not actually successful.

Unfortunately, airline tickets back to the US was not offered as a prize.

Unfortunately, airline tickets back to the US was not offered as a prize.

What is interesting is that the prizes are actually somewhat decent.  They don’t give away shitty ass t-shirts or some shit no one wants.  They gave away Toshiba portable hard drives, Bose speaker systems, gold watches, shit like that.  Okay, yeah, some of the prizes were lame:  Kuwait commemorative gold plate, plain black backpack (which he described as a slingbag and I thought he said slingbacks, as in a cute pair of shoes).  But the kicker is that whatever you get you can take it back to the PX and get a gift card for the monetary value.  Uh, yeah.

Just give me the laptop chill mat and nobody gets hurt.

Just give me the laptop chill mat and nobody gets hurt.

No one on my team won anything, and then we got pissed because one of the AAFES employees won twice.  He got the Toshiba hard drive AND the Sony blu-ray, which my battle buddy (47) really wants.  So we decided that we would just have to jack him in the parking lot.  I told our van driver, whom I’ll refer to as CJ, that 47 and I would beat him up as long as CJ didn’t mind driving the getaway car.  CJ said, “Fuck that, I’ll just run him over with the van.”

This lets you know how serious the bingo game was.  Of course, we decided our careers were worth more than a $100 blu-ray player that all of us could actually afford, but as CJ pointed out, “If we don’t win at bingo, how do we get Christmas presents for our families?”

Operation: GTFO (Day 51)

Real Housewives of Arifjan

Yeah, there's no Army reg for this

Yeah, there’s no Army reg for this

We haven’t even been here 15 minutes and already the drama has started.  I don’t know how we got off track.  When we were at Fort Dix, it seemed like we were all getting along.  Maybe that’s the problem.  You can never really have too many females in one spot.

Apparently, a situation between two females blew out of control.  One female don’t like the other, and the other don’t like that one.  They ended up being roomed together and when another Soldier tried to fix the situation, one of the females in question refused to be mollified.  I’m not even exactly sure that’s what happened, since I heard everything secondhand.  Regardless, the CSM ended up in the mix and it all went downhill from there.  Fire and brimstone rained down upon us and now we all hate each other.

BITCH, PLEASE!

GET SOME, BITCH!

The poor NCOIC tried to have a kumbaya moment, bringing us all together to air out our differences to come to a resolution.  That shit never works.  It began a recon mission to seek and destroy the person who supposedly said something to the CSM.  I kept thinking, who the fuck cares a Soldier spoke to the CSM?  I know there is such thing as chain of command, but the truth of the matter is that no one knows exactly how the conversation with the CSM even came about.  I can think of five different ways how a person ends up in a conversation with her.  I think our CSM is great; she can be a little extra but only because she actually cares.  If she comes up to you with a legitimate question I can’t see how a Soldier would be like, “Oh, not your business, CSM.”  She has the type of personality that just draws things from you, whether you want to be drawn out or not.  Additionally, who is to even say someone actually went directly to her?  Everyone has been complaining about their situation.  We all sit down at lunch and bitch about everything.  Shit gets around.

I just felt like nothing would be accomplished by attacking the person who supposedly spoke to the CSM.  How about moving forward and addressing issues we can fix?

You want guidance?  I got your guidance right here.

You want guidance? I got your guidance right here.

I became really pissed off because it was insinuated that we as NCOs are not providing guidance to the junior enlisted.  I took grave exception to that because all of us NCOs know that when you try to correct anyone they only get corrected if they want to be corrected.  This is not directed at junior enlisted; it goes to everyone.  If you tell an officer, “Hey, sir, you know that’s not authorised,” they just laugh at you like, “Who the fuck are you to say anything?”  If you tell an E4 they need to work on their PT, now they feel targeted.  One Soldier mentioned that she felt like NCOs were “out to get her.”  I was upset by that statement because it made me think what should I do when I see a behaviour that needs correction?  Should I not say anything because I don’t want a Soldier to feel like I’m attacking them, or do I do what I’m supposed to do as an NCO and make the correction?  It’s just everyone was in their feelings and I really did not want to be a part of the meeting anymore.  I could offer nothing substantive and mostly remained quiet.

I already know how I am.  When I get started, I get started and I felt like that was not going to accomplish anything.  We all walked away from the meeting even more disgusted than when it began.  One Soldier was flat out lying.  Another one had this deer-in-the-headlights look like she had no idea what the fuck was going on.  Then yet another one was on her personal soapbox, going on about herself and all this other irrelevant shit.

Obviously, the rules apply to YOU, not me.  I do what I want.

Obviously, the rules apply to YOU, not me. I do what I want.

I was an NCO on my last deployment, but I stayed to myself, choosing to hideout in my little corner of hell.  I was accused of being bitchy, reclusive and anti-social.  I believe these things were mostly true and I said to myself that I would try to do better on this deployment.  I would actually try to make friends and be better as a Staff NCO, actually try to mentor some junior Soldiers as I was mentored by my senior NCOs.  I’m not really into hand-holding and all that sensitive bullshit.  If I ask you to fix your hair, then fix your hair.  Don’t lie and say that I never said anything to you about it.  Don’t give me an excuse about how long you’ve known someone or “it’s not what you think.”  If I’m noticing a particular behaviour, you can believe that someone else has noticed the same thing.  Sooner or later, shit rolls downward and it will catch you in the mouth.  You can either take my friendly advice or get fucked in your own ass.  Please do not come to me with the, “Oh, I see other people doing it.”  What the fuck does that even mean?  Don’t use someone else’s shitty ass behaviour to justify your own.

Okay, I’m done.

Operation: GTFO (Day 23)

Disclaimer:  This is not an accusation.  This is not directed at any particular person.  In today’s SHARP climate I don’t find sexual harassment or sexual assault to be a joke, and neither do I find it amusing to fling accusations at someone who did not do anything.  This is all very general and nothing inappropriate has happened.

The Devil You Know

We're not even 30 days in and these dudes are already dehydrated.

We’re not even 30 days in and these dudes are already dehydrated.

You know what happens during these things:  people get thrown together so much they feel like they are attracted to each other and they start forming attachments and liaisons.  These romances are never real and when you get back to the world, you discover everything that attracted you to him in the first place are the very things that annoy the shit out of you.

I was never so desperate and lonely that I tried to seek out a deployment husband; rather, I avoided everyone like the plague so that no one could get the wrong idea about me.  I wouldn’t make eye contact with anyone.  I wouldn’t laugh at anyone’s jokes.  I did not want to seem flirty at all.  I just made it clear that I was not interested.  

Unfortunately, some people did not get the message.  I still had two Creepy McCreepersons in my face.  This is the thing about harassment.  You got those perves that are utterly blatant about their predilections.  Then you got the undercover creepers, the ones that are real sneaky about who they really are.  These dudes aren’t going to jump out at you in a dark alley.  They show up at your barracks door and act like you’re the one that invited them there because you happened to look at them on your way to the copier.

When you have to avoid the guy from S2, the two dudes from Supply, the chick from S1 and everyone from the Maintenance Platoon.

When you have to avoid the guy from S2, the two dudes from Supply, the chick from S1 and everyone from the Maintenance Platoon.

I received a gift from one Creepy McCreeperson and I was completely skeeved.  The item was small and unsuspecting, less than $5.00.  A person on the outside wouldn’t see the big deal, but that’s how these jerk-offs operate.  They make it seem like you’re the one with the problem.  “When I saw it, I thought of you.  No big deal.  It’s not that serious.”  Now everyone is looking at you like you’re seeing rapists around every corner.

I think I have picked up a creeper… already!  Usually, people don’t start getting thirsty until a few months in.  These dudes are damn near dehydrated, and it isn’t just the males.  Seriously, don’t ever believe that men are the only ones that can’t control their hormones.  The ladies too.  Especially these young ones, hot in the ass.

If I could walk around like this for the entire deployment, even in uniform, I think I might be able to survive.

If I could walk around like this for the entire deployment, even in uniform, I think I might be able to survive.

Other females have reported potential creepers.  And let me be clear, I’m not here trying to point anybody out, because on its face, nothing inappropriate has happened.  It’s not like that.  It’s far more subtle.  These individuals are making themselves visible.  What do I mean by that?  You go down to the day room to heat up a frozen pizza… he’s there with a Hungry Man.  You’re headed out for a run and he just so happens to be on his way for a run too.  You’re sitting by yourself in the chow hall, enjoying an all-purpose patty, here he comes, “Can I join you?”  

These guys are not rapists.  They’re not trying to sexually assault you.  They just want to let you know as soon as you’re ready, they’re ready.  Just name the time and the place and he’s gonna be there with a triple pack of Magnums.  

Time to take evasive action.

Operation: GTFO (Day 17)

Chow Hall Blues

I don’t care what anybody says, the chow hall is still a home-cooked meal.

~Anonymous Civilian

You do know that's a camel's rump, right?

You do know that’s a camel’s rump, right?

Uh, have you actually eaten at the chow hall?  I mean, really, we’re like one step above dog food.  Actually, no, I take that back. That’s being too generous.  I was lulled into a false sense of security when I learned this place was run by the Air Force.  I remember the days when I lived overseas and we considered it a treat to eat at the O Club on the Air Force base.  I remember my siblings and I would get real excited when my dad said we were going out to Kadena Air Force Base for dinner.  They had this bomb ass Mongolian BBQ and a guy who played the xylophone in the corner.  I don’t know what I was thinking to believe that such would be the case here.

The first day wasn’t really that bad.  Maybe because I was tired and really hungry.  But two days later they served pink chicken.  No, the meat wasn’t pink, as in not cooked all the way.  The sauce was pink.  Candy coated chicken?  They said it was sweet and sour chicken but I was scared to eat it because food doesn’t usually come in pink unless it’s some kind of sweet or something.  That was like the hot topic of the day, the pink chicken.

The struggle is real.

The struggle is real.

In every unit there is a Soldier who actually enjoys chow hall food.  It could be for a variety of reasons:  he doesn’t get home cooked food at home, there’s not a lot of money at home so he eats what he can get, he doesn’t know that dog food is not to be served to humans.  It could be anything.  We’ve been here about two weeks now, and even the most stalwart chow hall advocate is starting to fail in his resolve.  It is little wonder the Day Room is STACKED with take out menus.  Last night a Chinese carry-out sent a representative to the Day Room to take orders.  We were literally lined up, giving this man our money because there’s nothing else to eat. Even the broke mother truckers are coming out their pockets because it’s that serious.

For whatever insane reason we put in a request at the chow hall to help us with our Mandatory Fun Picnic we had on Fourth of July.  They denied our request because we didn’t get together a committee to form a discussion to submit a memorandum on time.  They said it had to be done five days out.  Trust me, I didn’t shed a tear over the fact that we wouldn’t be getting chow hall hot dogs and hamburgers.  But since none of the Soldiers were in the training area, that meant none of us were around to eat at the chow hall.  So what did they do with all the food they had prepared for the day?  Uh, how about they served it the next day?  And the next day.  One Soldier told me the menu stated sausage and peppers for lunch and ham and potatoes for dinner.  Well, when he got there, it was indeed sausage and peppers for lunch.  It was also sausage and peppers for dinner.  And breakfast.  And dessert.  They just put whipped cream on top of it and called Creme de la Sausage.

Dead.