In the famous words of Jedi master Qui-Gon Jinn, there’s always a bigger fish.
This is especially true in the military, where everything is based on clearly defined ranks and rate. As such, no one is immune from a good, old-fashioned ass-chewing; not even your company Gunny or First Sergeant. Given that the demographic of Lance Corporal is one that involves regular blasting from SNCO’s and above on a near daily basis, it’s understandable that in those rare moments when you get to see your superiors reamed as badly as you were the day before, it’s a somewhat magical event.
This isn’t something you normally see simply because no one wants to undermine someone’s authority in front of their subordinates. It’s a bad practice in the military environment (or anywhere else, really), but it does occasionally happen. My Battalion Sergeant Major was not a man of large physical stature, but that didn’t stop him from getting into someone’s ass any chance he could, regardless of rank.
I recall being on a working party at Battalion Headquarters (enemy territory by any means), mopping the floors as people of countlessly higher ranks sped by, constantly greeting every person I saw with the appropriate greeting of the day as a lowly Lance Corporal. Outside of the Sergeant Major’s office, I saw one of the HQ Company Gunnies catch the SgtMaj as he was leaving. The Gunny was approaching the SgtMaj about a leave request he had submitted, and the SgtMaj said no.
The reasoning was of no concern to me, but the Gunny was unsurprisingly unhappy about the affair, and he mistakenly let the SgtMaj know about it in a rather ungraceful way. While trying to keep my eyes on the floor of the HQ, I overhear a quaint yet powerful, “Who the fuck do you think you’re talking to?”
The Gunny then proceeded to receive an epic ass chewing not normally witnessed by people of my lowly stature.
It was glorious, and made the working party totally worth it.