Man Walks Into A Bar

I was sitting eating dinner with my boss the other night and started laughing. He naturally checked to make sure I was all right and asked, “WTF?” I explained that sitting in the chow hall here in Camp Morningwood is very much like the cantina scene in Star Wars… Every. Fucking. Meal. Here’s a picture of the typical denizens:

Afghani Staff – They stand around in spiffy little white jackets and natty herringbone-check-pattern pants with beard nets while not serving food. Not bad, but usually they choose to stand right in front of the salad bar or coffee machine you need to get at. Dancing with Afghans! At the end of the mealtime, they can be spotted with three to five to-go boxes mowing through the leftover shit nobody ate but somehow never got put out on the main line.

U.S. Military – A bipolar crowd to be sure. Either we’re in a hurry to get back to the office and frustrate ourselves with more email and eat at the speed of sound, or we lounge about talking with our buddies about how awful it is that there’s only six kinds of ice cream available tonight, denying table space to us Type-5A’s who aren’t hungry but need the fuel. When not lounging, the Type-B’s are practicing for karaoke night or hitting the gym for the second time that day.

NATO Guys – Funny uniforms, funny accents, facial hair. And then there’s the other NATO Allies besides the Canadians. Generally not a bad crowd, unless we’re talking about the French, who will only eat with themselves, and generally wear spandex shirts. Eew.

Mongolians – Still providing us with kick-ass security, no doubt about it. However, woe be to you if you show up just after this swarm of human locusts picks clean every egg and bit of fruit out for consumption. It’s impressive, but scary. But, since no guys in semtex vests have come close to our gates yet, they can have my watermelon, no complaints.

Government Civilians – This is the guy in the sharp silk suit in the middle of a combat zone who had no idea what he was getting into when he agreed to come over. Guaranteed to drop something on the floor while eating. Half can be very self-important, the other half want to be your buddy, because hey, they got out as a Captain at twenty years. Their redeeming quality: the ones here are at least over here.

Contractors (Regular) – They have a house payment, a college payment, or other payments and this is a tax free gig. Plus, extradition is a bitch from the middle of Asia. Oh, did I put Network IT specialist on my resume? Must be a typo, but give me a few months because I’m sure I can pick that skill up. Note: almost everything resembling actual work is not in their PWS, but just try to tell them that two packs a day worth of smoke breaks is fucking close to eight hours.

Contractors (Armed) – Forty years ago in another insurgency fight, they were called ‘mercs.’ Today they ride around with the Silk Suit Guy in a five-ton up-armored SUV to make him feel safe. These dudes all have Special Forces type beards (unearned) and carry exotic sidearms (provided by their company), prominently displayed. Make no mistake, these guys are cool, just ask them. Like the French, they only eat with each other.

So at this point, I’m probably close to being in trouble. Also, Greedo just walked through the door. Best slip out the back, ‘cause I am not the ‘droid you’re looking for.

 

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36 Responses to “Man Walks Into A Bar”

  1. Sounds like high school.

  2. 1jaded1 Says:

    I censor myself. I love this post and im so fucking happy you are still here.

  3. I can so see the French guys in their tight shirts. Hilarious.

  4. …..sounds like the hospital I worked at for 25 years, except for the firepower. The tattooed 250 lb charge nurse, on sabbatical from the Hell’s Angels, with a 3″ syringe in her smock was enough….

  5. whiteladyinthehood Says:

    Loved it. (you describe it so well, I can really imagine it)

  6. Woe to the bastard who blocks me from the coffee machine! Great post..

  7. All I can say is that your gov. missed a rare opportunity to draft you into the diplomatic corp….:)

  8. twindaddy Says:

    Greedo shoots first now, too. Look out.

  9. Eating dinner with your boss? You suck up!!!

  10. We excitedly await you listing an address which includes some west longitude. The rants are tangier when they’re fresh. 🙂

  11. Great comparison with that cantina scene.
    You make it real, dude.
    Stay safe

  12. Hmm. So many choices you’re presented with. Me, I’d go for Murine in the drinks of the armed contractors. Yeah, the French are … well, FRENCH, but at least they have some heritage behind them. Besides, I’d have SO much fun introducing “random unidentifiable failings” into the up-armoured SUVs. You know, just ’cause I can. 😉
    Oh, and beware of Romanians, if you come across them. They are quiet, they keep to themselves, and just like that VERY quiet guard dog, they will rip you apart if you screw with them – but show ’em a little love, and they are yours for life. (Don’t ask how I know, just trust me on this one. If you can find a few Ukrainians, especially ones from the west of the country, they’re great to get into your debt. They’ll raise more stink about stealing a car then they will in killing a half-dozen guys via a slow bleed-out. Sweet, but scary! 😯 )

  13. Wait – so does that mean you are or aren’t leaving with someones arm as a souvenier?

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