"We love it here, we love it here, we finally found a home.
A home - a home - a home away from home."
Airborne Running Cadence
Airborne Running Cadence
I recently spent three hours on the phone with an Army buddy I haven't seen since 1977. It was good to catch up and he told me about an airborne recruiting film from the '70s and asked if I'd ever seen it. It didn't ring a bell and, having just watched it, I still don't recall the video, but it does help bring back ground, tower and jump week like they were yesterday.
16 weeks of basic and infantry prepared me physically for jump school but I'm not so sure about my mental condition. There was amazing freedom in jump school compared to infantry. Once Friday at 5PM rolled around - we were free to go where we wanted - just as long as we were in formation, and conscious, by 5AM Monday morning.
In order to hide shaved heads, a buddy and I bought hippie wigs in downtown Columbus and wore them to a disco at a Sheraton. Mine was blonde and shoulder length while my buddy donned a red 'Fro. I'm pretty sure we were both in leisure suits, of which, one was denim with white stitching. Maybe mine. Maybe not.
We sat at table between the dance floor and the bar and ordered beers. Feigning stoned absentmindedness, I pushed the long synthetic hair behind my right ear with the flick of a hand and with a twist of the neck, saw people at a table behind ours laughing. With unease, I turned to my buddy and saw people behind him laughing.
Someone pointed and it was obvious everyone in the bar was laughing at us. We left before our beers arrived and took a cab back to the barracks. I had every intention of chucking my wig out of the cab window, but it cost $30, and I thought I might be able to salvage it by having the length shortened.
In the barracks, we grabbed a couple beers from an old converted Coke machine and went up to our floor where I threw my blonde wig on my bunk in disgust. My buddy told those who had not gone out yet our tale of woe. Cromer, at least six-three and covered in black chest hair, headed toward us from the showers with a towel around his waist and cheap shower shoes snapping at his heels. He would wash out during tower weeek thanks to a severe case of shin splints, but get his wings in the following class.
Cromer grabbed the blonde wig, threw it on his head while dropping the towel and shoved his balls and penis between his legs revealing what looked like a woman's triangle of thick black pubic hair. Pigeon toed, to keep his privates concealed, Cromer ran across the barracks screaming, "Fuck me! Fuck me! Somebody give me some diiiiiiii..."
The barracks erupted in screams as Cromer was attacked and Polaroids taken. Needless to say, his simple comic originality was immediately copied and my $30 wig disappeared for good into the the bowels of the 44th Airborne Company where men donned long synthetic hair and took turns running with their genitals tucked between their legs screaming, "Fuck Me!" Never in the history of the Airborne was so much owed by so many to a wig.