I'm just a civilian, apparently...
I've been silent on this issue for a long time because I felt that there was something almost unpatriotic about complaining about members of our armed forces. But just like everyone else, they can get drunk and act like total idiots. And just like I normally do, I'll find time in my busy schedule to write on here about how it's ridiculous.
The real difference is that some of them seem to believe that their military service excludes them from certain things that apply to everyone else in the entire world. But with the Naval Academy right down the street, we get a lot of military guys in town, and eventually they discover Athens nightlife and pay it a little visit.
Now, before I go into my rant about certain behaviors which I find to be completely annoying and unnecessary on their part, I want everyone to understand that for every annoying soldier that gets under my skin, there are 100 other guys in the military that know a thing or two about common courtesty and how to treat another person. Just so that's clear.
Now, with that out of the way, here's my impromtu list of things that annoy the shit out of me when it comes to drunk soldiers:
"I fight for your freedom!" This creative and entirely unique line is typically brought out when a soldier is rejected at the door for one reason or another - usually it's because they're too drunk or they've been thrown out for fighting. They incorrectly believe that their individual service in the military has a specific bearing on my personal freedom. While in the overall picture of things, they may have some kind of point, the truth is that everyones freedom was bought with the sacrifice of hundreds of thousands of soldiers, if not millions, over the past few hundred years. In addition, I seriously doubt that the soldier in question went into the recruiting office when they were 18 specifically to serve their country and "fight for everyones freedom". If that were true, then signing bonuses and college money after their dischange would be irrelevant.
It's simply tough to believe that one drunk 19 year old Marines year of service has made all the difference in my personal freedom over the course of my life and in turn, I'm obligated to thank them for that by completely ignoring rules and policies made by everyone who's my boss. How about you don't do shit to get yourself thrown out or rejected and then we won't be here having this argument on the sidewalk at 2 in the morning?
"I can fight for my country but I can't drink? That's bullshit!" This one is usually pulled out of somebodys ass because they're underaged and I won't let them in. A completely misdirected argument, the belief is held by some that I'm somehow obligated to let in members of our armed services regardless of their age. Wrong doesn't even begin to describe this. I'll reject you and anybody else regardless of what you do if you're underaged. And it's not even like I went and made up this rule myself. It's not even a policy of the bar. It's the law. You being in the military doesn't mean you're allowed to drink. Yea it might be a fucked up law, but I didn't write the damned thing myself, contrary to popular belief. I'm not an asshole because I refuse to allow you to break the law and risk my job simply because you just finished up basic and have an ID that says you're Army. So please, drop the attitude and write a letter to your polititian. And I'd be glad to give you directions to Level 131 since they're 18+.
"I'm shipping off to Iraq tomorrow at 0600!" At this point, if you don't know that signing up for the Army or Marines practically guarantees you a tour over in that hellhole of a country Iraq, then I have no sympathy for you. In addition, if you ship out at 0600 then you're gonna have a hell of a hangover for your day-long flight over there, which according to my watch, leaves in 4 hours. Sure you should really be out drinking right now, dude?
This line is even funnier when I see the same guy out the very next night using the exact same line on me. Even better, when they come out with that line in their dress blues. You don't have anything else to change into when you're out getting sloppy drunk?
"Soldiers get a discount here, right?" I don't know man, I'm the guy standing at the door, not behind the bar. And to try and answer your question, I don't think so. You can ask some of the bartenders but some of them are former military and did tours in Afghanistan and Iraq so does that mean you'll be tipping them more? I didn't think so. Pay for your drink, quit looking for a handout and go. Just go.
"I'm a fucking Marine!" I hate to generalize, but Marines are the worst. They travel in packs, they get fucked up, and worst of all they like to fight. They'll fight anyone. I guess if you go through all of that shit in basic, which I understand is a whole hell of a lot more involved than the other armed services, then you'd probably be pretty excited to try it all out on some unsuspecting drunk college kid talking shit to you in a bar - or a bouncer, too - as soon as you leave Parris Island.
I had a guy recently who came up to the door and refused to take his military ID out of his wallet. If you've ever checked a military ID, then you'll know that the date of birth is on the back. He figured being in the Army was good enough for him to get in. Again, everybody has a line and a reason that they should be allowed in without so much as a moment of hesitation at the door. Of course, this didn't work out for him and after making him take it out of his wallet so I could verify his age, he told me to "tell all of the bouncers that an airborne ranger is in the bar". I wasn't impressed.
That one was almost as good as the marine who told me I was "just a civilian".
I could go on - oh, how I could go on - but I won't. Like I said, there are countless numbers of military guys who are respectful and are out for a good time and nothing else, but it's always the jackasses who remain the most memorable, unfortunately.
Again, just so I'm clear, I'm a big supporter of the soldiers over in Iraq and I couldn't possibly imagine doing it. Trust me, your military service might get you free drinks from people in the bar and some hot girl to go home with you, but it just makes us laugh when you think your military service means you can beat us all up. So try and behave yourself, and if nothing else, please spare us bar employees all of the lines.