During my last 4 or 5 months in the Marine Corps I FAP’d over to the MCBH Combat Camera shop to finish out my contract in relative peace. The mere fact that the FAP (Fleet Assistance Program) exists is in a way the Corps actually acknowledging how shitty being in the infantry can be. Generally (ideally), when a Marine comes back from their 2nd deployment they usually don’t have much time left on their 4 year contract. As a general attaboy, the command will often let Marines go to other parts of the base to finish out their contract without having to be bothered with the daily grind of being in an infantry battalion.
When I went to ComCam, I remember being in a constant state of awe at how different it was.
Marines live like this?!
I thought to myself daily.
It’s true, the grass is actually much greener on the other side. Much, much greener. That’s not to say that the daily tasks of being in a “shop” (as they call it) don’t get monotonous or even stressful at times. But it’s a different world. There’s no bullshit formations every day, there’s no standing by to stand by, there’s very little to no yelling. The rough-housing and hazing is replaced with office drama and busy-work.
Once, a Marine in the shop was explaining to me how they were going to get office and cleaning supplies at the supply place. My typically ignorant infantry response was something like, “There’s a place where you can get that stuff?” Of course, they all just stared at me like I had a dick on my forehead. I explained to them that we usually had to buy our own cleaning supplies for the company office or Gunny would give us a few bucks to run to the PX. Adams, a videographer, said to me, “You poor thing… you’re like an abused wife that just found out that not everyone beats their wife.”
He was right. Grunts are abused wives.