June Makes Three

Monday, May 01, 2006


In previous musings about my future as a member of First Platoon Lansdale, I toyed with the notion that I might win some kind of award at the end of boot camp. With an hour’s worth of experience behind me, I can now safely say I’ll be lucky to make it out alive.

It was really freaking hard. I am really freaking out of shape. I’ve spent the last month “pushing” myself on the elliptical machine and thought I was doing well if I got myself sweated up within the first seven minutes of my workout. When we did our first set of pushups, I broke a sweat in seven seconds. By the time we finished the evil EVIL squats, I was almost calling out for mommy.

A quick run-down of yesterday's events:

We stood attention while Dr. Drill made inspections of our ammo cans, which had to be cleaned, rust-free and decorated with something personal. (I chose an “ultrasound” of China – fitting, no?) A few recruits were chastised for not cleaning theirs enough, and made to do 20 pushups each. I made the mistake of gawking at this and then had to do 20 pushups myself. The shame!

We divided into groups and did various fitness assessments, i.e. as many push-ups as possible in 2 minutes, running laps for 5 minutes, and then we had to hold a squat for an unholy amount of time till everyone got it right. Next time I suspect we’ll be holding something heavy when we do that.

After the assessments, we did loads of jumping jacks followed by running as a group in tight formation around the track. You’ve seen military groups running together as one? That wasn’t us. I’ve seen ants in better formation. Some ran ahead too quickly, others tried to close the gap, and I came dangerously close to tripping over the girl in front of me. And all the while, Dr. Drill sounded off cadences and we had to respond:

I used to drive a Chevrolet!
I used to drive a Chevrolet!

Now I’m running every day!
Now I’m running every day!

It was hard to understand him sometimes, and I could tell I wasn’t the only one, because he’d yell something out and we’d respond along the lines of “Bah bah mrah na ba da ba!”

We have a lot of work ahead of us.

As we wrapped up the session in a circle on the floor for our lecture on discipline, he said this was basically just a taste of what’s ahead. I don’t doubt it. Later, in the locker room, a girl who’s experienced his classes first-hand confirmed this by saying “that guy is just crazy”.


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