so I'm considering enlisting...

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by xcental34x, Mar 2, 2006.

  1. xcental34x


    Feb 28, 2003
    Memphrica, TN
    I just had a crazy idea pop in my head this morning: "I have no job, no real reason to hold me at home, I need to get in shape, and I would love to travel." I was suddenly reminded of an old aquaintance who ran off an joined the Navy, and is now in basic training. I haven't heard from him since, but its an idea I'm considering. Can anyone offer some advice? Anything from offered incentives to which branch? Anything from "Don't do it!" to "I did it, and now I'm a killing machine?" Please offer any advice, and if you have any resources for me to check out to help me learn more, please send me a link. Thanks.
  2. bigtexashonk

    bigtexashonk Supporting Member

    The military is a good option for some.

    If I was young enough to consider it, I would think carefully at the point since we're at war and likely will be for some time to come.

    Just my 2...
  3. Sounds like a good idea, but what are you going to do about bass-playing? You won't have much free time I think...
  4. xcental34x


    Feb 28, 2003
    Memphrica, TN
    Well, thinking it over more, I've had my time away from bass playing for awhile, but I'd want only a short term commitment if that's possible (which I doubt.) Maybe the National Guard is more of something I should look into.

    Bigtexas, don't think I haven't taken that into account. Odd thing is, I'm a pacifist.
  5. Try the Coast Guard. Still military and all, but you probably won't end up having to kill anyone. You get to save lives, wear a nice looking uniform, ride around in a bada$$ helicopter (or boat, depends on what you do) plus the possibility of be stationed near your home town goes way up.

    Remember, whatever branch you go into, you might end up in combat. So think it over carefully. It's your decision, and you have to make it for the right reasons, not because we tell you one way or the other.

    Rock on
  6. Consider auditioning for one of the service bands. I've been in the USAF Band in Washington, DC for 20 years now. It's a great way to make a living as a full time player.
  7. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Stop. The purpose of the army is to defend the United States of America under the orders of the President. Not to get in shape. Not to see the world. Not to cure boredom. If you enlist, you will go to war. If you join the National Guard, you will probably still go to war. You may potentially be put in deadly situations you will be asked to kill the enemy. Once you join, you don't get a say in whether you have to kill or not. It would be hard for someone who joined DURING WARTIME to convince anyone they were a contenious (sp) objector. Now, what part of that sounds like a great place for a pacifist?

    If you had said you wanted to join to serve your country, defend the defenseless, etc, I would be encouraging you all the way.
  8. xcental34x


    Feb 28, 2003
    Memphrica, TN
    So I guess all that "Be all you can be" and "Earn money towards school" is just wish wash? People really go because they want to fight in combat?
  9. plexibass


    Jun 30, 2005
    there is no more noble act than defending ones country. my father fought in ww2 and did 2 tours in korea. i just noticed in the classified ads in the back of bass player magazine the military is looking for musicians soooooooo it may be the best of both worlds for you. good luck and thank you for considering defending our country!
  10. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    No. It's a marketing pitch. Would you want to sign up if their slogan was "Join the Army and die a horrible death in a foreign country"? Believe it or not, many people join because they WANT to fight for their country. My uncle and my grandfather both volunteered for the military, and they surely didn't do it for the benefits.

    While many people excel in the military and do earn money for college, you have to go into it understanding the job. The job is to serve this country and protect it's interests. You may be put in harm's way. You may be asked to kill. You won't get to choose whether or not you want to participate in those activities. In the army, you will learn to exceed your limitations and you will become a better man. It's just not the place for a person who would label themselves a pacifist.

    If you want to get in shape, join a gym. If you want to travel, join a gym in Europe. If you want to serve your country, join the military. Turn on your tv and watch the news. We are at war and we aren't getting out any time soon. If you join the army, expect to go to war.
  11. Bad Brains

    Bad Brains Banned

    Jan 7, 2004
    Detroit, michigan
    Think about it long and hard. As said it could be good or bad for you.

    Back when I was in Highschool there was a period where a bunch of my friends started joining the Navy out of the blue. One I never heard from again, but found out though others he's doing quite well.

    The other served his 5 years and now he sits at his parents house all day with no job.
  12. UnsungZeros

    UnsungZeros The only winning move is not to play.

    No. People don't join because they want to fight in combat. They join because they want to defend our country.

    What he was trying to say is that there are other, usually more effective, ways to achieve your goals. You don't have a job/money? Get a job and earn money. Want to get in shape? Start exercising. Want to travel? Save up and buy a plane ticket.
    To half quote Jeff Foxworthy - Joining the military for the benefits "is like buying a 747 for the free peanuts."

    Sure the military offers great benefits. However, if you aren't willing to take orders and kill people, then the benefits mean nothing. Don't join unless you can handle that.

    That being said, if you join for the right reasons, by all means I will salute your bravery, commitment, courage and sacrifice.
  13. You guys just made a middle-aged 19E treadhead's chest swell up with pride. Thank you. That's a tank crewman for you civilians. :ninja: I am proud of my service to our country.

    I enjoyed my years in the Army and did get to play music fairly often but my job was to train to kill people. With that said, there are quite a few MOS's (jobs) outside of Combat Arms that lend themselves to "decreased" danger. The military puts you where they need you and even a truck driver in a Supply company might someday find themselves in harms way. Remember Jessica Lynch?

    Some of our medics were pacifists and this might be a field you could consider. I really don't know how they rationalized fixing a guy up so he could get back into the fray, but they did. I guess it depends on how pacifistic you are because all the jobs support combat arms. :meh:

    Coast Guard is looking better & better, eh?
  14. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta / Macon (sigh)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Hey, I was 19E! Alpha Co. 2/77 Armor! I wouldn't do it again, though.
  15. Toasted


    May 26, 2003
    Leeds, UK
    This thread makes me "lol" for so many reasons. Mainly guy n. cognito's responses.
  16. If I were to do it again, I'd totally go Air Force. Screw that combat arms stuff-
    Going through military training is a great way of making you realize you're capable of a lot more than you ever could have thought of. Yes, you will do more before 0600 than most people do all day. Yes, GI Bill benefits are more than twice what they were when I got out 15 years ago. There are people that really want to go fight. There's people that I know that couldn't wait to grease someone. There's people that want to "defend their country." There's people that are there for college benefits. There's people that are just professional soldiers.
    All branches of the service are having a hard time meeting recruiting quotas. I know a major who's S-3 in a National Guard division that said would have been happy to take a 35 year old guy with a bad back and put him in an armored cavalry unit, and I'd get to keep rank. That's how bad they're hurtin.'

    The way the world is today, you'd better be very clear of what you really want to do before making a commitment for the next 8 years of your life.
  17. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    If you do decide to join up, be sure to read (or better yet have a lawyer read) the fine print in the contract. Some people who got out of the military many years ago were called up again against their will due to recent manpower shortages. They were pretty outraged, but judges ruled that they had to go anyway.

    The military is a great place for some people, but it's not a short-term commitment. Think of it as a marriage -- even after it's over and you've parted ways, you'll still be massively affected (for better or worse) by your experience, and you'll always have a connection of some sort. And unlike a marriage, you can't get it annulled and pretend it never happened.

    Take your time in your decision. It's not something to be entered into lightly. If you do enlist, there are options that don't involve killing, but the medical corps and explosive disposal, while heroic and non-aggressive, have some of the highest mortality rates in the entire armed services.
  18. AxtoOx


    Nov 12, 2005
    Duncan, Okla.
    I did 4 yrs in the Air Force and it was great, worked on the flightline on fighters, got to play with some really neat toys, but at that time there was no doubt in anybody's mind we were standing toe to toe with the Soviet Union and we were pointing some pretty nasty stuff at each other. I practically lived in chemical warfare gear. For some reason Nukes didn't bother us so much. We were at ground zero so Poof that's it.
    I had a blast and would reccomend it to the right people, but I have seen people who signed up for the benefits throw a fit when it looked like the real thing and to be honest, we would have rather they weren't there.
    It has it's pluses and minuses, do what's right for you.
  19. crikker

    crikker Yooper From Way Back Supporting Member

    Sep 25, 2004
    When I was in the AF, I ran a section of bomber aircraft mechanics. When we'd get a new mechanic in, I would introduce him or her to the section and one of my mechs would ALWAYS ask the person why he or she joined. I would bet over 95% answered to serve their country. Once in awhile we'd get someone that would say they joined to go to college or some such thing. Sometimes it's not easy to call off the dogs is all I'll say. Join for the right reasons.
  20. Aaron


    Jun 2, 2001
    Bellingham, WA
    In the people I've known personally, this is rarely the case. After the army, my step-uncle has lived a life a seclusion away from anyone and not even talking to anyone in his family for the better part of a decade. At the same time, he could barely support himself, as he had learned to become dependent on others and learned always to look at someone else for direction. Being that there hasn't been anyone to guide him (partly due to his seclusion), his life has no direction.

    A person I met that was in the military in Israel made some very insightful comments on his service. He said that joining the military doesn't 'make you a man' but even more so a boy. He talked about after the military, he didn't really know how to think for himself and he grew dependent on others.

    I'm not saying these are the norm, but these are possible consequences of joining the military. Even people that never enter combat can become altered for the rest of their lives. But I'm sure the military works out better for many individuals, as well.