[Ads-l] According to =?UTF-8?Q?=E2=80=9CBasic_Training_Memories=2C=E2=80=9D_?=a Facebook S.I.G.,

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Thu Sep 21 02:56:58 EDT 2017


> Acc. to HDAS, a private temporarily acting as corporal was the original
sense.

Yeah. Until recently it was really hard for an EM to get rank. My
father-in-law fought in WWII, nearly getting his ass shot off, a couple of
times, getting two Purple Hearts, never rising above the rank of Pfc.

Of course, that mosquito-wing may have meant something, then. Whenever a
change is made, there’s no way to compare the old to the new. Besides, the
circumstances matter. In my day, all Language School grads Russian, made
Sp5 within two years.As a result, my unit was made up entirely of Sp5’s.
So, we E-5’s cleaned latrines and waxed and buffed floors as though we were
still E-1’s. But, when I had occasion to cross the Nahe River valley in
Baumholder to Smith Barracks, then the home of the 8th Infantry Division,
when the troops saw me coming, they got that deer-in-the-headlights look of
fear and respect and addressed me as “Sergeant,” even though they could see
that I was only a specialist, and not as “You, there” or “One soldier.”

In those days, the 4th Infantry Division was stationed at Fort Lewis,
Washington. These days, the 8th Inf Div is stationed at Fort Lewis and the
4th Inf Div is stationed at Smith Barracks.

Brilliant!

On Wed, Sep 20, 2017 at 1:19 PM, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com>
wrote:

> Acc. to HDAS, a private temporarily acting as corporal was the original
> sense.
>
> JL
>
> On Wed, Sep 20, 2017 at 1:54 AM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > An “acting jack” is now an Sp4 holding the acting rank of corporal. Back
> in
> > my day, an “acting jack” was an Sp5 holding the acting rank of sergeant.
> >
> > My analysis: today, the only specialist grade is Sp4 (E-4), with the pay
> > and privileges, but not the rank and duties, of a corporal, the
> > lowest-ranking NCO. Everyone with the grade of E-5 or higher is a real
> > sergeant/NCO.
> >
> > Back when, the highest specialist grade was the same as the highest NCO
> > grade, E-9, with a specialist having the same pay and privileges, but not
> > the rank and duties, of the corresponding NCO. But, in fact, a specialist
> > of a grade higher than E-5 was so rare as to be merely theoretical - I
> saw
> > an Sp6, *once*, in my three years of service - making E-5 effectively the
> > highest specialist grade then, as E-4 is actually the highest specialist
> > grade, now. So, a specialist acting as an NCO - an “acting jack” - was an
> > E-5.
> >
> > --
> > -Wilson
> > -----
> > All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
> > come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
> > -Mark Twain
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> >
>
>
>
> --
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>



-- 
-Wilson
-----
All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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