Few things are more infantilizing than getting screamed at by a grown man because you failed to properly make your bed. It’s an experience all too familiar to those who grew up with an anal retentive parent, or for those who join the Marine Corps.
It’s also an experience shared by one unlucky, but brave, reporter.
Amanda Steen, a journalist with Staten Island Advance, went to Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, South Carolina, recently. There she met Staff Sgt. Ryan Granados, a senior drill instructor, who introduced her to the time-honored training method of making your rack.
Called “two sheets and a blanket,” it’s one of the many fuck-fuck games that drill instructors play in boot camp. It involves standing on line in front of your rack with a pair of sheets and a blanket and then being counted down by a drill instructor as you try to make the bed. Inevitably, the final numbers of the count bleed into each other until they come out sounding something like this: “10, 9, 8, 7-6-5-4, [unintelligible and angry sounding babble] 1, stop!”
In the video, Steen gets a small taste of recruit training as she desperately tries to figure out how to fold a sheet at a perfect 45-degree angle, while struggling to remember to respond to each question or command with either “Yes, sir” “No, sir,” or “Aye, sir.” Though she does her best, Granados is predictably unimpressed.
"That's probably the worst rack I've ever seen,” he says. “You unner'stand?"
It kinda makes you feel bad for the recruit who’s going to come into the squad bay later and realize that his rack looks like a bag of ass, right before his drill instructors encircle him like a pack of hyenas out on the savannas of Africa.
Two things are clear though, first: Nasty civilians can’t make a rack to save their lives. And second: Drill instructors are the undisputed masters of fuck-fuck games. Think about it, it takes a special kind of deranged dedication to make someone stress out over making a bed.
The Corps’ motto might as well be:
The Marines: Making adults cry with nothing but two sheets and a blanket since 1775.
Benjamin Franklin nailed it when he said, "Fatigue is the best pillow." True story, Benny. There's nothing like pushing your body so far past exhaustion that you'd willingly, even longingly, take a nap on a concrete slab.
R. Lee Ermey was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery on Friday.
Best known for his iconic role as the Marine Corps drill instructor Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in the war drama Full Metal Jacket, Ermey died April 15, 2018 at age 74 due to complications from pneumonia, Task & Purpose previously reported.
A B-2 Spirit bomber deployed from Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, and F-22 Raptors from the Hawaii Air National Guard's 154th Wing fly near Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, during a interoperability training mission Jan. 15, 2019. (U.S. Air Force/Master Sgt. Russ Scalf)
The U.S. Air Force has two of its most elite aircraft — the B-2 Spirit bomber and the F-22 Raptor — training together in the Pacific, reassuring America's allies and sending a warning to strategic competitors and adversaries about the sheer power the U.S. brings to the table.
These stunning photos show the powerful aircraft tearing across the Pacific, where the U.S. has increasingly found itself facing challenges from a rising China.
It's a familiar tale of service to American society far beyond the U.S. armed forces. A soldier encounters a traffic accident while traveling home and immediately rushes to aid a driver trapped in his vehicle and, after freeing him, saves his life with nothing more than a hoodie, a pen, and the training he received from his unit's medics. It's the stuff that Army recruiting commercials are made of.
Except there's one problem: It's most likely bullshit.