Before our Iraq deployment, we used to gather at our favorite watering hole, imbibe mass quantities of beer, dally with women of questionable moral virtues, and find ourselves in outrageous and bizarre situations galore.
After deployment, we found ourselves transferred to different units. Some of us wound up in command, some of us left command and moved on to other assignments, but we would still gather at the same bar. Only this time, things were slightly less cheery. Most importantly, there were fewer aforementioned women of questionable moral virtues, but there was something else as well. The captains who were in command, having recently returned from combat, were often being called away from the bar on Saturday nights to deal with issues involving Soldiers; reckless behavior such as alcohol-related incidents and domestic violence always seems to follow deployment. Those captains on battalion and brigade staffs tried to forget the plethora of PowerPoint slides they had made throughout the week.
As we sat around the bar, drinking our beer and comparing how miserable work seemed sometimes, we found that our little cloud had a silver lining.
"Well, no matter how much we get yelled at, just remember that, in all likelihood, we'll all still get promoted to major" said one captain.
"Dude, even Nidal Hasan made major. That's not exactly a feat of excellence."
There was silence at the bar.
"I think we need to upgrade to Jaegermeister."