The condition and overall demeanor of a Marine’s uniform can say a lot about that individual. At a glance, the subtleties of a uniform unapparent to the average person become immediately noticeable to the average Marine.
Low or sloppily bloused boots, dirty cammies (we don’t call them utilities), patches or holes, hand-sewn name tapes, faded cammies, a cover with a ring of sweat around the brim, salt rings on the blouse, worn-out and destroyed boots, black rifle stains and scratched rank are all component signifiers of the typical “salt dog”. These Marines have been around the block (or the world, literally) a few times and have decided that the intricacies of maintaining a proper appearance are no longer a priority. These small, seemingly insignificant additions to the uniform say more about the experience and character of a Marine than even their rank.
This is the Uniform of the Day for the average Terminal Lance.
With that said, not all Marines choose to look this way. Even as the most Terminal of Terminal Lances, I actually liked maintaining a good appearance for my own sake. Simply put: I just liked to look good–but to each his own. If a Marine chooses to wear his saltiest of garments, then he should be allowed to do so, and not a single fuck should be given.