Terminal Lance “Barracks Lawyer”

September 19, 2020

In every barracks exists one Marine that’s been through the ringer so many times, he has become an expert on Marine Corps Orders and regulations, and all matters pertaining to the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). That Marine is the Barracks Lawyer, and he’s there to represent you in your time of need.

He knows that Article 134 is a bland catch-all that essentially means nothing. If you take it to Court-Martial, there’s no way they can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you did anything wrong.

You got this in the bag, bro. They got nothing on you.

The reality is that he’s probably right. While many Marines make mistakes worth real punishment, some just get burned by their command for the sake of getting burned. In these unfortunate instances, when you’ve been truly wronged by a system that cares more about itself than its Marines, its time to seek out a barracks lawyer.



Terminal Lance “Stars and Stripes”

May 1, 2020

America’s enemies wish they could damage the lives of Marines as drastically and efficiently as the MILITARY STAR CARD offered by the Military Exchanges (PX).

Readily available to literally any Marine that wants one, the STAR CARD is a credit card ubiquitous for sapping the financial souls of our young men and women of the armed forces. This card by itself was probably the reason for the Personal Financial Management course, putting people of all ranks out of cash for years to come.

Financially independent for the first time in their lives, young Marines aren’t exactly great with money. Throw in a credit card offered by the base’s own sales tax-free store and you have a recipe for long term financial damage.

If ISIS really wanted to hurt America’s military, they’d offer a credit card with a high limit and fuck them for life.



Terminal Lance “A Damn Good Friday”

April 10, 2020

Poor Easter Bunny… If only he would have known that Marines engage in a level of nightly debauchery reserved only for the deepest layers of hell itself. The activities of bored Marines on a Friday night are not one for the eyes of mere mortals, or even mythological creatures like the bunny of Easter. If only he had known…

With Easter on Sunday, I hope everyone can take a moment to think and talk about something other than Coronavirus. Take some time to call home, check in with mom, eat some chocolate, and leave that poor Easter Bunny alone if you see him.

Happy Easter from Terminal Lance.



Terminal Lance #573 “Safety Concern”

March 10, 2020

Marines lead a peculiar double-life while enlisted. On one hand, they are entrusted with some of the most technologically advanced, deadliest weaponry known to all mankind. They execute their particular set of skills with renowned efficiency, known worldwide as the world’s most deadly fighting force. Some of these technological marvels cost upwards of hundreds of thousands, or even millions of dollars, and they are given to none-other than our beloved Lance Corporals and PFC’s to effectively utilize against our nation’s enemies.

And yet, they can not have a toaster oven in the barracks.

Mind you, Marines literally sleep with their rifles in their sleeping systems while deployed or in the field, often with live ammo. And yet, they can not cook four slices of toasted bread in the confines of their own barracks room. For the amount of trust given to Marines to utilize the most lethal armaments known to the world, little trust is given to Marines in their privacy and free time. Every move watched and accounted for.

Thus is life as a Marine…

Peculiar, and often unexplainable.



Terminal Lance #557 “Restriction”

August 30, 2019

Before we begin this post, I just want to take a moment to honor all of my boys that can’t be with us today because they’re on restriction in the barracks. May they yeet in peace in between their hourly check-ins with the duty desk.

Restriction is one of those uniquely military things that only kind of makes sense in context, and would be absolutely outlandish in the civilian world. You see, the reason they call the weekends and other days off “liberty” is because you are off work at the liberty of your commanders. Your time doesn’t belong to you, it belongs to the Marine Corps. It’s important to see it this way, because the Marine Corps considers that liberty a gift.

A gift that can be taken away.

Do something dumb enough and you’ll land yourself on “Restriction” status, which is where all your friends go have fun and you get stuck back at the barracks day and night, in uniform, being forced to check in with the duty every hour and do menial work. In typical military fashion, this punishment is nonjudicial, and is basically a long, annoying time out.

So while all of you are out this weekend, make sure to keep in your thoughts and prayers those Marines stuck in cammies in the barracks that couldn’t be with you. Thoughts and prayers.



Terminal Lance #549 “Meet the Fleet”

May 31, 2019

During your stay at the luxurious Marine Corps resort and spa, you’ll have numerous days and moments that will stick with you and many that you would consider somewhat terrifying. There are few days as nerve-wracking as those first moments of arrival at an infantry unit.

Fresh off the parade deck, little boots from SOI are shuttled over to their new place of duty on the same day of graduation, still paying off their negative leave balance from the 10 days of boot leave a couple of months prior. For some, it can be a short drive across the base from 52 Area of Camp Pendleton to one of the infantry strongholds. Others may spend a couple of hours driving over to Twentynine Palms.

For myself and the other 15 boots in my section, we were taken over to San Diego International Airport, where we hopped on the next evening flight to Honolulu, arriving at my new infantry battalion home sometime around 9 or 10. At this point, the barracks was awash with the lingering smell of alcohol abuse and depression, with shirtless Lance Corporals catcalling from the catwalk as we arrived at Mackie Hall.

I suppose I lucked out personally, because the two Machinegunners I got roomed with were too drunk and tired to care that I arrived. They pointed to a rack and said “that one’s yours,” and went back to sleep in their silkies.

The boot friends that I arrived with?

Well they weren’t as lucky. They were fucked with until the wee hours of the morning.



Terminal Lance “Harvey Relief”

September 1, 2017

Texas loves the military. The state of Texas supplies the United States Armed Forces with about 10% of its total personnel, making your odds of running into a Texas Marine pretty significant during your active duty time.

Every platoon has at least one (if not more), and they’re always the most obnoxiously proud people you’ll ever meet. Dallas Cowboys and Texas state flags decorate their rooms, their liberty attire consists of cowboy hats, boots and large buckles (making them quite the odd man out in places like Southern California or Hawaii). However, they’re as lovable as they are loud, always gracing us with a twang in their voice and a pride matched only by each other.

I had the great fortune of visiting Texas during my book tour and some other travels after I got out of the Corps, and it has quickly become one of my favorite places. The people were always wonderful to me and Whataburger is pretty legit. It’s because of this that my heart goes out to all of those affected by the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, and I took the opportunity today to donate $100 to Team Rubicon to support their efforts in the disaster. I encourage everyone to help in whatever way you can, and even if you can’t give much, every dollar counts.

If you’re not familiar with Team Rubicon, they’re an organization that gathers some truly great veterans and puts them to work assisting in disaster relief efforts all over the globe–from rescuing to rebuilding. Find out more about them here.



Terminal Lance #487 “Work Ethic”

August 4, 2017

Avoiding work is hard work.

Skating is a term commonly used in the Marine Corps to describe the act of avoiding any kind of actual work while in uniform. Some have even claimed this to be an acronym.

S= Seek Cover

K= Keep Quiet

A= Accept No Responsibility

T= Take No Action

E= Evade

In the Army they refer to this as “shamming.” (In the Navy and Air Force, they don’t actually work anyway, so no one has invented a term for avoiding it.)

The only people more adept at avoiding work than Lance Corporals are Chief Warrant Officers, who have gone so far as to convince the establishment that they need their own type of rank that needs to be saluted and not bothered with trivial, human matters. Lance Corporals are crafty, and they will avoid work and responsibility at all costs unless absolutely necessary.

What most fail to understand is that there is true work involved in avoiding work. It’s difficult to cover up a lie about going to medical with a lie about being at dental. A true skater makes this his full time duty, while ironically working parties usually don’t take longer than an hour. It’s not about time or money though, it’s about the craft. The art.

Skating at this level involves dedication worthy of the title of Marine.



Terminal Lance #483 “Married Marines II”

July 18, 2017

Marines often get married younger than most civilians. There’s a number of reasons for this: most of the time the only way for a couple to be together in the military is to be married, since Uncle Sam doesn’t care much at all for girlfriends. Some Marines just get married for the money or to move out of the barracks. Either way, once you leave the barracks… You’ll never be one of the bros again.

The barracks is a special place filled with its own culture of depravity and buck wild shenanigans… most of which are not compatible with a married lifestyle. There’s few things more sad than the married Marines that still try to hang out in the barracks on Friday nights.

Like, dude, go be with your wife.


Leave the barracks to the manically depressed single Marines, it’s bad enough that no one loves them as it is.

I suppose I have marriage on the mind recently since I just tied the knot myself on Friday. Don’t worry, I won’t be hanging around the barracks, but you’re still welcome to come over for game night.



Terminal Lance #481 “This Guy”

July 7, 2017

We’ve all lived with this guy.

There’s always that one fucking douchebag that is dirty, smells bad, talks loud, has zero consideration for his other roommates and makes you hate your fucking life. And somehow, you always end up living with him.

He’s the guy that doesn’t help clean the room, even though most of the shit on the floor is his. He’s the guy that always eats a slice of your pizza without asking. He’s the reason your room failed field day inspection, but he just doesn’t understand why everyone is being such a dick. He’s the guy that saves over your Bloodborne game halfway through New Game+.

He’s the shitty roommate.

If you don’t know who I’m talking about, it’s very possible that you are in fact the shitty roommate.