Insult -> badge of honor

Wilson Gray wilson.gray at RCN.COM
Sun Dec 5 03:03:22 UTC 2004

One day, when I was in the now-defunct  Army Security Agency, the other
members of my "trick" (local jargon for "work group") and I were
gossiping about the newly-arrived replacements. Our sergeant asked
whether anyone knew which new guys would be assigned to us. "Yes,"
someone answered. "It's going to be [various names and] Clayton."
"Clayton?" asked the sergeant. "Which one is that?" After Clayton had
been described to him, the sergeant ejaculated, "Jesus! Not *that*

 From that moment on, Clayton was known to all and sundry among his
enlisted peers as "The Dipshit" and addressed by them as "Dipshit" or
as simply "Dip."

What made what normally would be an insult into a badge of honor is the
fact that Clayton's mere presence in our unit was sufficient to cause
our immediate superior to freak. Yet, there was no way for him to do
anything about it. Under military discipline, it doesn't get much
better than that! As it happened, after Clayton had become part of our
trick, the sergeant himself always referred to him as "Blinky," - he
blinked a lot because he wore poorly-fitted contact lenses - and had no
idea why the rest of us referred to Clayton as "The Dipshit" or why
being addressed as "Dip(shit)" didn't faze him.

-Wilson Gray

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