23 June 2009

Top (or bottom) Army Sayings

After some additional input, I updated the list. Please feel free to contribute your least favorite Army sayings.

10. "I'd like to echo what [so-and-so said]": This comes from sanctimonious senior leaders who think that Soldiers hang on their every word, but are incapable of forming an original thought. Thus, they hang on other people’s thoughts and simply echo them.

9. "At ease the noise/ Lock it up": In the Army, “be quiet” means nothing. We need our own special phrase, and it is more effective if it is ungrammatical and nonsensical. Is “at-ease” a single word, an intransitive verb? Or does it take an object, “the noise?” We will never know, because whatever Soldier uses the phrase has no knowledge of the simple parts of speech.

8. "Next slide": This qualifies because of the number of times it is uttered. It is perfectly sensible to say it, but let’s examine why Soldiers say it. Because the Army still hasn’t discovered the wireless remote for PCs! We spend billions on weaponry and training, even countless man hours preparing lame slide presentations, but we can’t invest in some clickers? Do we really need a sergeant sitting there by the computer so a presenter can feel important enough to not advance his own slides? Why does a slide advancer need to be of higher rank when the presenter is?

7. "The Risk Assessment is low": Do NCOs know what an assessment is? Risks are low, not assessments of them. Saying the risk assessment is low is like telling an overweight Soldier, “Gee, your tape measurement is long.” Just say, “You’re fat!”

6. "Tracking": the verb “to track” is synonymous to both “to pay attention to” and “to know.” You can track someone by looking at and listening to them, or you can know what they’re up to. Either way, it is overused and irritating.

5. "Secure your gear": Only in the Army can one phrase have simultaneous opposite meanings. Secure usually means “to put something away in a secure place.” But if you want to tell Soldiers to grab something, you simply say, “secure it.” So, put it down, or pick it up. One phrase fits all.

4. "As I was": Notably illiterate NCOs will say this instead of the preferred, though no less annoying, “as you were.” It is a very difficult order (?) to follow since, (1) there is no verb, and (2) it leaves itself open to extraordinary ambiguity. How was I? How far back do I go? Can I go back to before I joined the Army, when I didn’t have to stand and listen to retarded Soldiers tell me how they were?

3. "I say 'hooah'": “Hooah” is bad enough, but you don’t need to tell me you’re saying it. Just say it. I don’t go around announcing what I’m saying. “I say hello.” “I say I’m saying hello.” “I say the Army is retarded.” Oh, did I say that out loud?

2. "Too Easy": Everything is too easy in the Army. As a teacher, I had a saying in my classroom: "It's easy if you know it." If something is too easy, why do we constantly train at it. Of course, someone could say "too easy" as a way to hype up the job, only to set himself up for some big time disappointment if he fails.


  1. I say, "Hilarious blog post!"

  2. This is by far the most comedic of all your posts. "I say hooah!"

  3. I say, "This post is what it is, FUNNY!" I also, say, nice photo on the banner, did you shower afterwards? :)
    -Uncle Rick

  4. I think "it's all good" is probably worthy of mention to go with "too easy"...