strack--was troops

Peter Richardson prichard at LINFIELD.EDU
Tue Apr 15 17:37:13 UTC 2003

Strack is German, meaning 'straight, taut.' It's usually used these days
in schnurstracks 'straight as an arrow' (lit. straight as a string); you'd
go schnurstracks to the office of some official, for example, to complain
about something. Maybe 'make a bee-line' would be an appropriate
dictionary entry for _schnurstracks gehen_.


On Tue, 15 Apr 2003, James A. Landau wrote:

> In my long-ago Army service (1969-1971) the unit I was in used "troop" as a
> singular to mean one soldier.  Most often it was in the expression "a strack
> troop" meaning a soldier who was ready to pass inspection at any time.  (I
> have yet to find out where "strack" came from).
> I don't know how widespread this usage was.  Possibly it was a local usage,
> as was "No alligators.  No hermit crabs" (the CO's catch-phrase after one of
> each had been found during a surprise barracks inspection.)
>               - Jim Landau

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