|The phone call.|
I recall a story my dad told me about a phone call he got one weekend about a fight in a local bar somewhere in San Diego. In those days talking trash wasn’t an end of itself. It was designed as an opening salvo in what was intended to end in a fist fight. For some, getting into fights in bars was the sole purpose of going out on the weekends.
Some of his Marines were enjoying an innocent beverage at the establishment when a bunch of football players swaggered in. A collision of testosterone was about to occur.
Compared to the type of cro-magnon who excels at activities on the grid iron, Marines tend to be rather diminutive. This night a linebacker decided the smallest Marine in the bar would be the target of his ire and started in the little fella. The verbal back and forth went on until the football player made a remark about the Marine’s wife. This was the signal for hostilities to transition from verbal to physical.
Leaping from his bar stool, the compact Marine hurled himself at the robust frame of the linebacker like a spider monkey. Not only did a brawl wreck havoc on the furniture but the burly football player came away light one ear. It had been bitten clean off.
So whenever I have to report to higher headquarters about the misconduct of any miscreants in my command, I’m glad I’ve never had to explain why my Marines felt the need to bit off people’s body parts.