A Little Military TGIF Humor

They say humor is the sign of a healthy mind. And the ability to laugh at oneself is the product of humility. One of the things common to grunts and reconners is the basic patrol. Everyone who has been there can identify with elements of this comic take on at least four “types” of characters that can be found in any patrol unit.

There are more types that could be identified, of course, and those of you who have been there could easily have fun coming up with your own. There is always plenty of material to be had about the “newbies” or the newly-minted officers in the platoon, etc. You may even remember some of those humorous “types” from your own time in.

Photo: YouTube/Task & Purpose

Some military humor can be dark, and much of military humor is told with the common yet creative and expressive pattern of what might, for our purposes here, be called, “cuss-ology.” You know, the kind of language that uses certain, less than polite verbal “expletives,” giving them a surprising linguistic flexibility, using the same word as a noun or an advective or, most energetically and effectively, as a verb. This video somehow avoids these more colorful linguistic skills and leans more on the visual metaphor of “types.” And it is fun and funny.

The military is, by the nature of its duties and missions, serious work. But there has always been a healthy American sense of humor that can bring a bit of balance and release to what is generally called “serious” work, even the most serious work of all, war. This American sense of humor goes with the military wherever it goes.

Photo: YouTube/Task & Purpose

Humor is useful in relieving tension and can often help us get through the tough times. It is a way of staying sane in the most insane of situations. It is a means of coping with difficult or awkward circumstances. It is the capacity to see the hidden oxymorons, or, as my wife says, the “oxes and morons,” of human behaviors, or the silliness that lurks behind any particular situation.

The particular circumstances here in this video relate to generalizations that are common to the military. They are things like the typical enlisted personnel’s sense of the recently graduated 2nd Lt., who is generally an “innocent” in comparison to the hardened and experienced Sgt. Or like the “newbie” private tripping all over him or herself until after he or she has a few patrols under his or her own belt. Again, those who have been there will recognize these types and maybe even remember back to when they might have been one or another of these or many other “types,” whether on their first real combat patrols or as a seasoned veteran.

Photo: YouTube/Task & Purpose

The ability to poke fun, without malice or arrogance, is the real power of humor. Humor can liberate us from our prejudices or our misconceptions. It can help us see our own foibles and to laugh at ourselves. When it is used in this way, it is truly a sign of a healthy mind.

Enjoy this comic view of the military. If you’ve been there, you will get a kick out of these short, humorous vignettes. Good, clean fun.

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