Not like cosmetics, and not like missing work and having to come in extra time, make-up days in the Army appear to be days when someone loses something somewhere and decides to make things up instead of trying to find the actual data.
I am considering changing my Army slogan, previously “Everything Takes Forever… Always” to “If You Don’t Know and are Too Scared to Ask Someone Who Might, Go Ahead and Make It Up.”
Both of them seem to have more to do with the Army than Army Strong, and have a much better ring.
I submitted, about two months ago, some paperwork to the finance office. It came to my attention that coincidentally, my assignment halfway around the world from my husband’s assignment might not be in the best interest of the marriage and therefore not entirely voluntary. Therefore, I qualified for family separation pay. So I brought my orders and the requisite form to the finance office and they said they would take care of it.
By take care of it, they meant lose it, apparently.
Three weeks later I returned to the finance office to check on the status. I filled out their form, again, went back to my office, got another copy of my orders, and in the time it took me to cross the street, get a copy of my orders, and return they had lost the form and I had to fill out another one. I stapled my orders to the form and asked them, very politely, to please stop filing things in the trash can.
I thought there had been progress, as my mid-month pay was higher. Lo and behold, the end of month detailed statement revealed the sad and sorry truth. They had indeed given me family separation pay as backpayment from the date that I departed my previous station. They then stopped the family separation pay two months after that date, sometime in July.
What happened in July? Where was that date on any of the two pieces of paper that I submitted (multiple times) or on any of my or my husband’s paperwork in their little finance matrix? Where did they pull that date from, and could they please put it back where they found it and give me the rest of my backpay? What, exactly, is going on here?
I intend to get a question or two answered tomorrow, though my intentions may be for naught. I will bring with me a stack of orders and photocopy their little form in quadruplicate (whether or not that is a real word, triplicate obviously is not enough in this case), which I will then staple to the soldier who takes it from me and mail the soldier, my orders, and the form over to the main office somewhere near France. The soldier to whom the information will be stapled will also have a note, glued to his forehead, detailing what I would like to see done.
This is presuming the military police don’t get called in time, of course. Then again, if they have to go through the same finance office I strongly suspect they will just help me get the soldier lugged down to the mailroom…