Ain’t No Women Here, Just Soldiers
Forgive my extended absence, but it would have just been more of the same with nothing of any real significance occuring. I didn’t want this whole thing to be nothing but a rant against the man but they aren’t really giving me much to work with.
So the other day, the females were asked to remain behind after formation so that we could be spoken to. I wondered what exactly we had done this time. You know how it is with women. We’re hormonal and emotional, always up and down. One day we’re perfectly fine, the next day we’re on a rampage. I thought it was going to be another diatribe about the barracks, but it wasn’t.
We were reminded of Army Regulation 670-1. If you don’t know it, it’s the army appearance reg, dictating how a soldier must look while in uniform. If it isn’t one thing it’s something else.
A bunch of girls had gone to get their hair done the night before. Earlier that weekend other girls had gone to get their nails done. This was not going over well with the Powers-That-Be. About 75% of us had hair that was out of regulation. Most of us had nails that were too long or the wrong colour. Okay, I don’t have a problem with these things. The regulation is very clear about the length of hair. The regulation is vague about the colour of nails and it’s all very subjective but since I don’t wear nail polish I could give a shit less.
I thought the meeting was over but then it was said, “I don’t know why you women are trying to get all dolled up. You’re not here to look pretty. When you get Over There, you’re going to have nothing but trouble.”
I had so many problems with this statement. One the one hand, I do wonder why a lot of the girls take the time to pack on so much make up before PT or before we’re about to go work in the fields. Some days it is so hot that the makeup is melting right off. I don’t get that. No, I’m not really here to look pretty because there is nobody here that I am trying to attract. The male gene pool is seriously depleted in this company.
But I don’t think there is anything wrong in taking pride in one’s appearance. I could just get out of bed and throw on a uniform, all wrinkled up, smelling like the earth. It is not in the regulation to look like a sack of shit while in uniform. In my civilian clothes I love to wear make up, but while in uniform I am still going to wash my face and put on some chapstick and make myself presentable. The bottom line is that I am female. Yes, I am also a soldier but I don’t feel like I have to renounce my femininity in order to be a soldier.
I thought the entire conversation got so stupid. It was put out that we would have problems Over There if we “got too pretty.” Hate to say it, but after a dry spell, even road kill starts to look edible. I don’t think it really makes a difference.
I just thought the conversation could have been handled better, but I’ve been over this before. It’s the whole Ugly Sergeant, Pretty Sergeant syndrome. Who was directing the discussion?