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Romance in the military is no easy task. Looking for love amid deployments, exercises, and regular duty station moves across the world is daunting even for the most avid believers in love and all that other crap you see in Disney movies during which I pretend very hard not to cry.
Even so, the search for love and companionship is important to the mental well-being of everyone, regardless of the terrible life choices they've made. Working in a field that tends to take you all over the world introduces service members to a wide range of people to meet and date, and while some of them may be normal and well-adjusted people, chances are they'll fit into one or more of the following categories.
1. The Expert.
If the first thing someone you're on a date with asks you is "What's your MOS?" chances are you've got one of these on your hands. He or she somehow reads all the pubs and manuals, talks the lingo, and loves debating you about the merits of gear and vehicles that you really didn't even know or care about in the first place.
- Pros: Understands what you mean when you use an acronym. Will eat an MRE without being dared to.
- Cons: What would you rather talk about on a date for several hours: the new Avengers movie, or the complicated nuances and considerations of converting all the military's M63467.82 flangle-whatsits to M63467.83 dingle-whatevers? Exactly.
2. The Fetishist.
The first time the response to the question, "What do you want to do tonight?" ends with the phrase, "...with your boots still bloused," you can be sure you've found a fetishist.
- Pros: Let's just call it "eagerness."
- Cons: Will only stay with you as long as you stay in the service, wool dress uniforms do not breathe well when, ahem, "exerting" oneself.
3. The Gotta Catch 'Em All.
"Oh, you're a Marine, you say? Well let's see, I've already had three soldiers, four airmen, and a Coast Guardsman. After I'm done with you, I'll just get your Corpsman's numbers and my collection will be complete."
- Pros: Will inform you how your performance compares to that of personnel from other branches.
- Cons: Will inform you how your performance compares to that of personnel from other branches.
4. The Fellow Service Member.
Absolutely, 100% your best option to enter a world of love and joy made of unicorns and candy puppies. And I'm not just saying that because I'm dating a fellow veteran who's probably going to read this article. Hi honey!
- Pros: The same as when dating an expert, plus they hate all the stupid stuff about the military as much as you.
- Cons: None whatsoever in any way at all. It's inescapably wonderful all the time, always.
5. The Remora.
For those who don't watch Shark Week, a remora is one of those sucker fish that attaches itself to the stomach of a shark or other large fish and feeds off its scraps. In military dating terms, these are the men and women who ask to accompany you to the PX by your third date and want to know the details on getting a dependent ID by the fifth. If you stay with one long enough that they start using phrases like "our battalion" and "when we get promoted," run.
- Pros: That's a typo. I actually meant to write "Pros?" because I can't think of any.
- Cons: What are you still doing here? Run!
6. Mr./Ms. Insecurity.
These are the people who cannot handle the fact that you, as a military member, are generally seen as tougher than the average person. Every part of your one-on-one relationship with one of these can be fine and dandy. But every time some third person asks about one of your fields ops or deployments, you won't be able to respond over the deafening and endless bragging about Tough Mudders, kettle bells, and challenging you to push-up contests.
- Pros: Usually tend to be CrossFitters, so they'll keep you in shape.
- Cons: Usually tend to be CrossFitters, so they're terrible people.
7. The Imaginary Person.
You tend to see people dating these a lot in the more inhospitable shitholes like Twentynine Palms. I did the whole time I was there, after all. She was a model. And a nuclear physicist. You don't know her because she lived across town and had to fly her private jet on spy missions a lot. So shut up.
- Pros: As many as your imagination can conjure up!
- Cons: Crushing loneliness, weeping.
Yes, there are variations, but these are the main groupings of people you'll wind up taking for dinner, drinks, and dancing (or push-up contests, depending) while you wear a uniform. You can even have combinations. Like, for instance, an Imaginary Insecure Fetishist. In that case, you are undoubtedly from my old duty station. Please see your battalion commanding officer to receive the “Loneliest Marine of the Quarter” award. Congrats.
Editor's Note: The following story highlights a veteran at Iron Mountain. Committed to including talented members of the military community in its workplace, Iron Mountain is a client of Hirepurpose, a Task & Purpose sister company. Learn more here.
Jackie Melendrez couldn't be prouder of her husband, her sons, and the fact that she works for the trucking company Iron Mountain. This regional router has been a Mountaineer since 2017, and says the support she receives as a military spouse and mother is unparalleled.
Master Sgt. Larry Hawks, a retired engineer sergeant who served with 3rd Special Forces Group, is being awarded the Distinguished Service Cross on Friday for "valorous actions" in Afghanistan in 2005.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A 40-foot-tall (12 meters) cross-shaped war memorial standing on public land in Maryland does not constitute government endorsement of religion, the Supreme Court ruled on Thursday in a decision that leaves unanswered questions about the boundaries of the U.S. Constitution's separation of church and state.
The justices were divided on many of the legal issues but the vote was 7-2 to overturn a lower court ruling that had declared the so-called Peace Cross in Bladensburg unconstitutional in a legal challenge mounted by the American Humanist Association, a group that advocates for secular governance. The concrete cross was erected in 1925 as a memorial to troops killed in World War One.
The ruling made it clear that a long-standing monument in the shape of a Christian cross on public land was permissible but the justices were divided over whether other types of religious displays and symbols on government property would be allowed. Those issues are likely to come before the court in future cases.
A relative of the man who opened fire outside downtown Dallas' federal building this week warned the FBI in 2016 that he shouldn't be allowed to buy a gun because he was depressed and suicidal, his mother said Thursday.
Brian Clyde's half-brother called the FBI about his concerns, their mother Nubia Brede Solis said. Clyde was in the Army at the time.
On Monday, Clyde opened fire with an AR-15-style rifle at the Earle Cabell Federal Building. He was fatally shot by federal law enforcement. No one else was seriously injured. His family believes Clyde wanted to be killed.