Basic Training Story
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Journey to Honor: Basic Training Story 4592

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February 2, 2017
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My flight was four weeks into basic training so we should have had our shit at least slightly together. It was early morning right after role call so every flight from every squadron was "all present and accounted for". There we stand at attention still barely awake when our Senior TI walks to the front of the flight, and yells "ight".Now this is where the wheels fell off our day.We were already standing at attention, so wtf does "ight" mean??? Did he mean Flight; which means we go to parade rest, or did he mean Right the prepatory word for a right face and we shouldn't move until we hear face. Well apparently none of us knew wtf he said so about a third of the flight went to parade rest and the rest of us stayed at attention. STI promptly loses his sh*t. "You are 2 weeks from grad and you can't even remember to go to parade rest. I'm going to recycle the whole lot of clueless morons back to day 1!"So now we are marching. He's furious. He continues the barrage of insults. I can't say that I really blamed him. We just looked like idiots in front of 400 basic trainees, dozens of TI's and several commanders and therefore made him look like an idiot.

What I did next sounded like a really good idea in my head. I don't like looking stupid. I had a lot of respect for my STI so I don't want him to look stupid.So... "Airman dumbass reports as ordered". "What" he replies."Sir, we know that flight means go to parade rest. We didn't understand you. We couldn't tell if you said Flight or Right for a right face. That's why some of us didn't move".I can still hear my flight give a collective "holy sh*t" under their breath. Flight halt.STI is now standing right next to me; smokey the bear hat pressing a nice crease into the side of my head. I think the only thing more terrifying than a pissed off STI screaming at you is a pissed off STI an inch from your ear whispering.I don't remember everything that he said to me. My psychiatrist thinks that I may have suppressed it.. But it wasn't nice and I thought the idea of getting recycled didn't seem that bad anymore.Every morning from that day until graduation, he called us to parade rest with a clear FFFFLLLight and gave me a side eye that still makes me shiver.

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