And thusly I return from my travels to the far-off woodlands of Germany. With me I bring knowledge, leadership, and an air cast…
War Lord Class… rather Warrior Leadership Course… is now complete. It was an adventure, as most things tend to be, though this one also appeared to be a lesson in boredom and making the best possible use of wasted time. Coincidentally, I have had a decent amount of experience in such matters already, so I was well prepared to conquer the mind-numbing coursework set forth.
The class itself isn’t terrible. I had a good company, a good platoon, a good class, a good squad. Made a few friends, made fun of a few people, and generally had a pretty good time. The problems arose primarily because I have been a non-commissioned officer longer than about five minutes and have two tactical deployments under my belt, so the need for me to sit through classes on writing an evaluation report or traveling in a wedge formation weren’t all that entertaining.
What was entertaining was watching the marvel of people who have forgotten the absolute rediculousness of certain aspects of the Army. For instance, waking up at 0430 because one of our resident barracks Mop Nazi, who insisted that the floors needed to be swept and mopped at least five times a day (including before physical training formation) in order for us to stay out of trouble. This actually turned out to be fine, since formations moved earlier and earlier each day as a result of poor communication between various elements. The senior group leaders, the cadre at the school, would tell the student first sergeant a time for formation. The student first sergeant, wanting to ensure everyone was there on time, would tell the platoon sergeants the formation was ten to fifteen minutes earlier than his given time. The platoon sergeants, wanting to ensure everyone was there, would then tell the squad leaders a time ten to fifteen minutes prior to that. And so on, resulting in many of us standing around sleepily at ungodly hours wondering why the senior group leaders were so late. And many of the males wondering why many of the females smelled of bleach and mop water at such ungodly hours.
And mopping and standing in formation were not the only tasks for us. Because of my various maladies I found myself hobbling within the first week, dislocating my ankle while standing in a formation after a rather short ruck march. During the march I had rolled it a few times, but it wasn’t until we were standing still grumbling about how the company first sergeant wouldn’t let us drop our rucks until the last of the stragglers had completed the march that I moved to readjust my ruck and turned to grumble at the same time, proving to be a spot too much weight on one foot which rolled right on out. The challenge, once I had gotten my foot back to its proper location, was explaining to people how I had dislocated it standing still.
I popped it out twice more during the month, once playing in a sand pit and trying to do a smooth flip onto my back and once while running from simulated indirect fire, finally resulting in my being pulled from the combat missions and put on ammo detail.
It was there that I learned how to count to 100. Many, many, many times. About 270 times. I also discovered that when doing a police call, which is what the Army calls it when everyone gets together in a line and wanders around picking up spent ammo (brass), trash, and other miscellaneous items that don’t grow, if you stand off to the side it looks like someone is organizing a zombie race. Everyone gets on line and shuffles around while staring at the ground, but instead of moaning “brains” they moan “brass” or “trash” or something.
Other than that, the learning was limited. I sat through the classes I needed to sit through, I wandered around the woods making the decisions I needed to make, and I drank a good amount of German tap water in the hopes to increase my superpowers since I heard some of the water in that area had been found to be radioactive. Most importantly, I checked the block on course attendance, and can now move on to bigger and better things.
Maybe even counting to 101.