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8 Of The Worst Places To Sleep
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.
And no one knows that better than military service members and we have the pictures to prove it.
Here are eight of the worst places to sleep.
1. In a tent in the Arctic
U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Sean Carnes
If you love that feeling where you can't quite warm up and you're convinced you're going to die overnight from extreme temperatures, even though you're wrapped in foil like a burrito packaged with the expertise of a seasoned Chipotle employee, then we can't recommend the Arctic enough.
Let's be honest here: Even with your long johns and your heat mechanisms and your advanced survival training you're just lying to yourself. You're so damn cold you want to cry but you know your tears will freeze.
2. In the torpedo room
U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Darryl Wood
Nothing says "home away from home" like a temporary rack on a ship. "Join the Navy, see the world," really should have been, "Join the Navy, see the water."
Sure, on paper, sleeping between strangers on a ship cruising the open seas sounds like a new app we should develop, but sleeping right next to five coworkers and that one mouth-breather isn't probably what you had in mind. And if that wasn't quite enough, add the knowledge that you're in a room with several thousand pounds of bombs.
Sweet dreams, kid.
3. On a metal folding chair
U.S. Army photo by Robert Timmons
There's nothing quite like waking yourself with a massive head bob after dozing off while sitting straight up. You know the kind: when the weight of your giant brain falls forward too quickly and bounces at the bottom with enough force you have to wonder if you may have permanently damaged your neck. You play it off with a neck roll and look around to see if anyone noticed.
Spoiler alert: They did.
And, don't worry, you'll do it again in three minutes. Kudos to this dude who probably did that six times before he put his backpack on his lap to prevent it from happening again.
4. On the rocks
U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Peter D. Blair
That might be how you want your bourbon, but definitely not how you want your nap.
Just looking at where this guy is sleeping makes us uncomfortable (and not only because of the sunburn you know he's going to have on his face). There's something about gravel digging into that inch of exposed skin above your collar and tiny boulders in the small of your back that just screams nope.
5. On a stretcher
U.S. Army Photo by Staff Sgt. Erica Knight
Pretty sure that bad boy is for the patient, but sometimes you just have to fold your body completely perpendicular to catch a few zzz's. That's gonna feel realll nice in about 20 minutes. Nothing says "hazmat suit" like throwing your back out.
6. On the top rack
U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Allison M. DeVries
If you ever rock, paper, scissored over who got the top bunk as a kid, then wow, do we ever have a treat for you. Now available on select C-130s in the New Zealand fleet: the top "rack." We use that term super loosely because it's more like sleeping on a web of lies that your time as a Marine would be spent doing actual things, not just training exercises.
7. On coke cases
U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Chris Bowerfind
Soda or pop? We're just calling it ingenious and horrible. Nothing about 39g of sugar in those tiny little cans of brown water is appealing. But if you haven't slept in a grocery store, have you ever even done a relief mission?
8. On the floor of the Department of Agriculture
U.S. National Guard photo by Sgt. 1st Class Jimmy McGuire
Sure, the ground, the racks, the snow, the stretcher - it all sucks, but can you really beat the floor of the Department of Agriculture?
It might be the knowledge that every defeated farmer — who just that morning waded through pig and cow manure — used those same shoes to walk where you're sleeping in order to talk about the Farm Bill that makes this one the worst. Oh you're still okay with it? How about the countless bureaucrats who took the red eye in to make it to their 9:00 briefing and had those same shoes on in the Delta lavatory and then at Dulles? Add in some spilt coffee, regret and broken promises and the only thing you're dreaming about is getting the hell off the floor.
We've all been there … the point where you're so tired you will literally sleep anywhere. And when you're in those moments, you don't care how many people walked where your face is resting. It's also why it's so important that the times you are able to sleep in a bed, you not only cherish them, you enjoy them.
This is a sponsored post presented by Casper. Task & Purpose readers can get $75 off their Casper line and $150 off their Wave mattresses by using the coupon code TASKPURPOSE at checkout. Fatigue might be the best pillow, but Casper has the best mattresses.
- See How Soldiers Sleep in the Field ›
- The military secret to falling asleep in two minutes | The Independent ›
- Sleeping Soldiers • Tim Hetherington • Magnum Photos ›
Welcome to The Great Place! You have orders to Fort Hood, Texas, one of the largest military installations in the country. Fort Hood lives up to the saying, "Everything is bigger in Texas." You will see this with the vast spaces, houses, CAV patches, as well as great traditions you will come to love.
What do you need to know before you purchase those cowboy boots and head to the Lone Star state? See below for a list of pertinent information, unique customs, and a list of local points of interest all within your reach, then head over to PCSgrades.com to start your housing research or get connected with an A-graded REALTOR!
WHERE IS FORT HOOD?
First things first, Fort Hood is centrally located in Texas about an hour north of Austin and 3 hours south of Dallas. The base is enormous and spans 3 cities when including the training areas, but the central city that houses Fort Hood is Killeen. Harker Heights is to the east and Copperas Cove is to the west, rounding out the other parts of the post. The training and cantonment area combined to cover a whopping 340 square miles, rivaling most of America's larger cities. Fort Hood is also the largest single-site employer in the entire state of Texas with an estimated 45,414 assigned service members and 8,909 civilian employees. That means lots of people, lots of traffic, all converging in one area every day.
FORT HOOD HOUSING
Fort Hood housing is privatized and managed by Winn Companies. Homes range from townhomes to duplexes to single-family homes. West Fort Hood and a few other neighborhoods are considered "on base" but are located about 1-2 miles from the main base and can be easily accessed through multiple gates. Some of these neighborhoods are open to non-military families and not all have gate guards. To see updated photos and read reviews of the neighborhood your family would qualify for, click here. Fort Hood is located in Killeen and Copperas Cove, TX. On base housing is available for all ranks. However, not all neighborhoods fall within the main cantonment area with some communities being across the highway and not having gate guards. Check out photos of all the Ft Hood housing neighborhoods at PCSgrades.com.
The average cost per square foot in the Fort Hood area (Killeen, Harker Heights, Copperas Cove) is around $76, making it a very attractive place to buy a home. Many service members capitalize on the low mortgages and purchase to maximize their BAH. Another bonus…there are no state taxes for Texas! While it is not required to update your Home of Record, Texas has no state taxes, so making the switch will put some extra cash in your pocket! To read reviews from fellow military families on where to live off post, click here.
FORT HOOD WEATHER
You will experience two seasons at Fort Hood: hot and hotter. With mild winters and hot summers, it's rare you will experience all four seasons. With numerous water parks, pools, and lakes in the area to keep you cool, most people don't seem to mind the break from the cold weather. Stay hydrated and just get used to applying that sunscreen, even during Christmas break!
FORT HOOD AMENITIES
There are two large Commissaries and Exchanges located on each side of the main post, and the brand new Carl R. Darnell Army Medical Center opened in March 2016. Seven Elementary schools and two Middle Schools are located on post also. High Schools students living on post are zoned for Killeen High School or Shoemaker High School. Fort Hood also has many medical facilities, pharmacies, restaurants, parks, and pools on the post.
CULTURE AND CUSTOMS
FOOD AND BEVERAGE
One Texas landmark you will come to love is the grocery store H-E-B. Though it may be the only show in town, excluding Walmart and the Commissary, it will never disappoint. H-E-B sells every product you can imagine at low prices and houses a vast array of local Texas wines and beers. After experiencing it once, you will never want to shop anywhere else again.
As for local cuisine, Texas is home to some fantastic BBQ, all things Tex-Mex to include breakfast burritos, and Texas kolaches. What is a Texas kolache you might ask? It's a giant pastry stuffed with meat that you can get with cheese and jalapeños. If you are feeling thirsty after your local cuisine, head to one of the many drive-thru daiquiri bars. (Yep, you read that right… but as always, be responsible and don't drink and drive!) Each city in the Fort Hood area boasts a least one! If you would like something a little more elegant than the local "Brew Thru" you can head to any of the local wineries in the surrounding area. Did I mention Fort Hood loves its local wine and beer?
FORT HOOD TRADITIONS
Fort Hood has so many traditions that you find yourself quickly falling in love with the pomp. First, you have the Cavalry charges! Picture this scenario: cannon shoots, bugle sounds, horses running, guns firing in the air and everyone screaming "CHARGE" as the donkey-drawn wagon brings up the rear. You will feel like you are in an old western. Also, every Friday is "Stetson Friday" on base. That means that from Private on up, you remove your service cap and put on a giant Stetson (aka cowboy) hat. Complimenting that Stetson is either a gold or silver set of spurs, but don't go and buy them, those are earned either through a deployment or a Spur Ride. It's all very John Wayne and romantic.
The cities that make up the greater Fort Hood area are also very military friendly. The Independent School Districts (ISD), are sponsored by units on base and soldiers volunteer their time at those schools. Soldiers typically have late calls and can take their kids to school on the first day. Have a parent deploying or coming home on a school day? No problem! Schools treat this as an excused absence. You are not truly a local until you have a family bluebonnet photo. Bluebonnets are the cherished state flower of Texas and bloom for a few weeks each year. You will see photographers and families pulling off the side of the highway when they spot a "bluebonnet field" all to get that perfect shot.
Texas casual is an actual dress code that will come on event invitations. What does it mean? Jeans and cowboy boots are not only acceptable but encouraged. When in Rome, right? In addition to the boots, you will also see lots of large belt buckles, spurs, and Texas ties.
Homecoming Mums. You are in for a treat if you have never seen or heard of this practice that seems only to take place in Texas. Students will wear giant "mums" attached to their clothes during homecoming week and the contraption consists of anything and everything. They vary from small to large and have ribbons hanging off of them (typically one ribbon per year in school) and can even be blinged out with lights. The sky is the limit with how you decorate your mum. Guys give them to their homecoming dates; girls give them to guys in garter form to wear on their arm, and parents can make a killing if they design and sell these!Stationed at Fort Hood? Pay it forward with a neighborhood review!
AREA ATTRACTIONS NEAR FORT HOOD
Since Fort Hood is located in Central Texas, you have access to some amazing surrounding cities all within a few hours drive.
GEORGETOWN (45-MINUTE TRIP)
Georgetown is a quaint town you will pass on your way to Austin. It has a beautiful city square with local shops, antiques, and excellent restaurants. Not in the mood to shop? Head to the local winery and relax with a wine tasting.
AUSTIN (1-HOUR TRIP)
Austin is not only the Capitol of Texas but known as the music capital of the world. There is so much to do in Austin that you will need to make more than one trip. You can attend a music festival, watch the bats fly off the Congress Avenue Bridge, visit the Lyndon B Johnson Presidential Library, swim in Barton Springs Pool, pose in front of the famous "I love you so much" wall, or catch a University of Texas football game. The options are endless in Austin.
DALLAS (2.5-HOUR TRIP)
Dallas is a large city that deserves more than one trip to accomplish the checklist of events that the town has to offer. The most notable attractions include the JFK History Tour that ends in Dealey Plaza, the George W. Bush Presidential Library, the Dallas World Aquarium, Cowboys football games, Rangers baseball games, the Dallas Zoo and many more parks and museums.
SAN ANTONIO (2.5-HOUR TRIP)
What a fun place to visit! Military families love to take a weekend trip to San Antonio and visit the local attractions. The Riverwalk, lined with colorful umbrellas, restaurants, boat tours, and much more. Or head to Sea World and check out the aquatic life (they even have a great military discount program!). Probably the most visited site in San Antonio would be the Alamo. Just don't ask to see the basement.
HOUSTON (3-HOUR TRIP)
Houston is also home to the (NASA) Space Center Houston, Houston Zoo, Houston Museum of Natural Science, the Astros baseball team, the Downtown Aquarium, and the Children's Museum… just to name a few. Or take a boat tour and participate in one of the many crawfish boils the city hosts.
GALVESTON (4-HOUR TRIP)
Galveston is also where many families like to escape and enjoy a nice beach vacation. You can simply enjoy Island Time in a beach chair or shop around, tour the Moody Gardens, or head to the Lone Star Flight Museum and check out the historical air crafts and artifacts. Galveston is also a major port of call to hop on a cruise ship and take an extended vacation!
This post sponsored by PCSgrades.
At least one Air Force base is on the lookout for a sinister new threat: angry men who can't get laid.
Personnel at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland were recently treated to a threat brief regarding an "increase in nationwide activity" by self-described "incels," members of an online subculture of "involuntary celibacy" who adopt an ideology of misogyny, mistrust of women, and violence in response to their failed attempts at romantic relationships.
The brief was first made public via a screenshot posted to the popular Air Force amn/nco/snco Facebook page on Tuesday. An Air Force spokesman confirmed the authenticity of the screenshot to Task & Purpose.
"The screenshot was taken from a Joint Base Andrews Intel brief created following basic threat analysis on an increase in nationwide activity by the group," 11th Wing spokesman Aletha Frost told Task & Purpose in an email.
A Navy installation blasted 'The Star-Spangled Banner' at high volume for 3 days straight, scaring the crap out of its neighbors
From Long Beach to Huntington Beach, residents were greeted Saturday, June 15, at precisely 8 a.m. with "The Star-Spangled Banner." Then 12 hours later, the "Retreat" bugle call bellowed throughout Seal Beach and beyond.
At first, people wondered if the booming sound paid tribute to Flag Day, June 14. Seal Beach neighbors bordering Los Alamitos assumed the music was coming from the nearby Joint Forces Training Base.
But then it happened again Sunday. And Monday. Folks took to the Nextdoor social media app seeking an answer to the mystery.
Key witness says Eddie Gallagher stabbed wounded ISIS fighter in the neck but does not remember specifics
NAVAL BASE SAN DIEGO — The main thing to remember about Navy SEAL Chief Craig Miller's testimony on Wednesday is that he didn't seem to remember a lot.
Miller, considered a key witness in the trial of Chief Eddie Gallagher, testified that he saw his former platoon chief stab the wounded ISIS fighter but was unable to recall a number of details surrounding that event. Gallagher is accused of murdering the wounded fighter and separately firing on innocent civilians during a deployment to Mosul, Iraq in 2017. He has pleaded not guilty.
NAVAL BASE SAN DIEGO — An enlisted Navy SEAL sniper testified on Wednesday that Chief Eddie Gallagher told his platoon prior to their deployment that if they ever captured a wounded fighter, their medics knew "what to do to nurse them to death."
In early morning testimony, former Special Operator 1st Class Dylan Dille told a packed courtroom that he had heard the phrase during unit training before the men of SEAL Team 7 Alpha Platoon deployed to Mosul, Iraq in 2017.