The Officer and the Table

Posted on May 6, 2012


May I show you your table Sir.

Charlie Troop 1/9 Cavalry had a true cast of characters.  Relieving the tensions that each day in combat would bring requires a certain amount of animated and unusual behavior. This story is true. It happened in the summer of 1969. The names are not used to protect their families.

Charlie Troop was lucky enough to have a Lieutenant who while going to college played football. He was a big burly guy with a butter melting smile and a charismatic personality. Like many of the men in Charlie Troop throwing down a beer or two was not beyond him.

One night after an usually bad day, the talented Officers of Charlie Troop, got together for their usual one or two beers. After a couple of hours of sipping on those “one or two” beers they decided it was time to call it quits for the night. As they walked outside, they saw this hulk of a man standing on top of the building with his arms out to his side. Down in front of him was this old dilapidated wooden table. After turning to see what the excitement was, a Warrant Officer , who happened to be his friend, told the man to jump. Everyone else was telling him not to.

This brave officer, who had been on guard duty up on that roof, decided it was time for him to come down. With a bend of his knees and then a mighty leap forward, this courageous individual flew through the air. With a mighty crash he hit the table. The table had no chance under his presence and dust flew so thick no one could see this hero at first. Finally the dust settled and there lay the man with his arms somewhat still stretched out laying on top of that table but not moving. The Warrant Officer that told him to jump began begging him to breathe. The officer just laid there. Finally the Warrant Officer told the Lieutenant that if he would get up then he, the Warrant Officer, would buy him a beer. With that, the Officer jumped up and said “okay” and started to head back to the bar. The Warrant Officer just stood there in shock. Finally, he followed him in and bought the beer.

No Purple Heart was given because of this incident. The Officer was given a score of 8.0 for his performance and of course that other beer.

From Larry Donaldson

Doesn’t beat me when I walked into a USAF club and was told to leave because I was filthy ( I don’t remember swearing) and grungy and not to come back until I cleaned myself up and got rid of those disgusting fatigues! ( I wasn’t in C Troop then) I looked at the club manager and asked for just one beer and he roared for me to leave! Back out the door I went pondering where and how I could get a COLD beer. I then spotted a garden hose beside the building. AH HAH! I went over and was amazed to actually see a spigot! Twist turn. Out came a stream of water. I removed my pistol belt. I took off my boots and cleaned the red dust and caked dirt off of them the best I could. Looked at my socks and smelled them. They got pitched. Well….if they smelled maybe the lifer in the club had a point. Off went my shirt. Yep! Stinky. Washed it but it still smelled. Draped it over a nail sticking out of the building and concentrated on making my pants a little more presentable. Well after staring in the crotch area and noticing some camouflage down in there I decided that enough was enough. I put that hose over me and took what sand was nearby and gave myself a prairie shower! I then stood, sat, in the sun until I was almost completely dry. I put on my boots. Then my pistol belt. Then my beret at that cocky slant with the flash centered over the left eye and two fingers above the eye brow. I thought I looked pretty spiffy! Back in the club I went. The club manager was behind the bar BS’ing with some more off colored blue boys and looked up and saw me. His mouth dropped and his eyes bulged. His buddies had a mixed look of fear, shock, and WTF is wrong with this guy? Standing before a Master sergeant in the USA of F I reported. “Master sergeant. I have obeyed your order to the letter. Now gimme a beer.” in my best NCO voice and killer face! The beer was put before me instantly. I retreated to a table and gulped it down. I then went and got another off of him finished it at the bar and ordered another which I took back to the table with me. This one I actually tasted and back to the bar I went. I interrupted his phone call ( Real phones) and ordered another and headed back to the table. This one I sipped. While partaking of my R&R in walks four MP’s. I nodded. That air force dude was pointing at me. I figured he was upset about my appearance again. The MP’s approached me caustously spreading out. ( The old hey diddle diddle I’ll take the middle and you guys grab him from each flank play.) I stood up which halted their advance and asked what the problem was. I was told that I could not walk around wearing just a beret, pistol belt, and boots. I told them I completely understood but I thought they should inform the club manager of that. I was just obeying orders.

As with Nazi germans that excuse didn’t fly with the “P’s” and they cuffed and stuffed me. They drove me back to the compound ( good old Phu Bai!) and presented me to my commanding officer explaining where I had been and what I had done. He dismissed them and said he would handle it and me. (Oh Oh) I could see my rocker going right off of my sleeves.. Yes. I got my ass reamed ( well not really) he was straight….( I think) …. was yelled at a lot with spittle coming onto my face and from “Top”. at the same time. After the ass chewing session with me being the main course I was told to get out of their sight and NEVER EVER do that again. I was at a rigid attention ……well most of me was……Gave my best Airborne, “YES SIR!” I think I said that. Executed a smart About Face and left the AO at a forced march pace. Funny thing though you know? I swear as I departed the area the whole orderly room was yupping it up. War. Very strange people in charge.