Thursday, February 19, 2009

"What Exactly is a Processing a Person?"

Today I was the escort for a soldier who is going home and not deploying with us. I told a friend who is a chemical engineer that I was getting this soldier processed.

"Processed," he said. "What Exactly is a Processing a Person?" He said his mind went straight from chemical processing to food processing to processing a chicken. I laughed at the image then told explained that processing in the Army means filling out all the papers necessary to get someone in, out or to a new duty assignment.


I could have posted some really disgusting chicken processing photos, but the cut-in-pieces image seemed appropriate.

I will try to be careful to explain the acronyms and Army-specific terms I use, but every day I am being "processed" further into the abyss of Army language. I am re-reading Strunk and White (The Elements of Style) now so I keep standard English in my mind while the acronyms pile up.




By the way (BTW), my friend knows by now that any three-letter military acronym with the letter 'F' in the middle is always the same participle used as an adjective. So a BFR (Big F#&king Rock) is a large stone and if a soldier uses it, BFF may or may not mean Best Friends Forever.

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