Woes from a Former JROTC Student
Politics and Activism

Woes from a Former JROTC Student

Anyway, so I heard y'all attracted by the green uniforms.


I was in JROTC in high school. Throughout my entire time, I had the company slogans, the army chain of command, the values of leadership, and all that stuff drilled into my head like I was a machine. But, I was a diligent machine. I served in community activities like a smiling soldier giving out candy to children in West Berlin, marched in parades in goosestep to goosestep, banged the drum so mechanically, and yelled out orders to my cadets. Oh, and I aced the inspections perfectly.

Wait, inspections? Now, I remembered vividly. I remember the late nights of trying to put the yellow star "perfectly aligned" with the middle of my nameplate and if I cannot get that done, then I would have to wake up early in the morning. Sometimes, I won't even align the star with the nameplate at all.

And then, I had to gel my hair so perfectly that none of my hair strands stick out. So I put an immense amount of gel onto my hair. Even so, my hair strands still stick out, and the inspectors continued to give me points off

And then, I had to stare at my uniform--my ugly, pickle green military uniform--to determine if it even needs ironing. Most of the time, I've decided no because I am too lazy to iron. But, in special cases where I do (mostly when the inspectors told me to), I had to watch my mother do it and complain.

And then, I had to put my shoes--my ugly black and scratched shoes. Of course, my shoes weren't tied properly. But they were tired, end of the discussion. One inspector told me that I do need to tie them properly. But I still decided not to tie them anyway because, you know,

The constant agony over my crooked nameplate, the messy hair strands, and the improperly tied shoes-- these inspections ruined my Wednesday. My Army Instructor justified the inspection as a way to care about your appearance for the "real world" or whatever that means. But, during my high school years, I have become more conscious in my appearance and that is not in a good way.

Is my hair too messy?

Are my nails that crooked?

Can I tie my shoes good?

These are the questions that haunt me Wednesday night--the same Wednesday night where I just stared at my ugly green military uniform and wonder what's wrong. Despite being in college, I still remembered JROTC but not with fondness. I will remember the stress of getting one single nameplate right on a uniform and just wince. I am glad that I never did an inspection after my high school years. But, even so, I will remember these memories and then shudder.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Everyone remembers the first time they went to one of the Disney parks. Spinning in teacups and having Goofy wrap his arms around my 8-year-old self were some of my fondest childhood memories, and I'm surely not alone in that.

Keep Reading... Show less

These Superfood Beauty Products Show Kale And Matcha Work For SO Much More Than We Thought

Just another summer's day with a cold glass of kombucha on my face.

I've been vegan for about six years now, so a love for fresh vegetables and superfoods has now become a core part of my being. Don't get me wrong. I love my indulgent, creamy pastas and truffle fries more than anyone. But I keep most of my focus on eating clean and healthy so I can indulge guilt-free.

But I'd say about a large part of my diet has always, unknowingly, included superfoods. Being Indian, lentils, beetroot, garlic, ginger, and whole grains have been core essentials on the family dinner table since I could digest solid foods.

Keep Reading... Show less

Now that college is around the corner for most if not all young adults, students once shook by a pandemic now have to shift their focus on achieving their career goals. As if we thought we had it together already! As an NYC girl, I have always seen myself as a hustler, hungry to advance my career in journalism by having one skill: working hard.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 BBQ Essentials Every Vegan Should Bring To Avoid Summer Cookout FOMO

You'll have your whole family drooling when you bring these goodies over too.

All vegetarians and vegans can relate when I say this: summer barbecues aren't fun when there's nothing you can eat.

Keep Reading... Show less

Kourtney Kardashian has decided to leave "Keeping Up With The Kardashians" after nearly 14 years and although we saw this coming, it breaks our heart that she won't be there to make us laugh with her infamous attitude and hilarious one-liners.

Kourtney is leaving the show because it was taking up too much of her life and it was a "toxic environment" for her.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

We Asked You How You Felt About Resuming 'Normal' Activities, And Some Of Your Answers Shocked Us

The New York Times asked 511 epidemiologists when they'd feel comfortable doing "normal" activities again, considering COVID-19. We asked our peers the same thing, for science.

Last month, the New York Times surveyed about 500 epidemiologists asking about their comfort level with certain activities once deemed normal — socializing with friends, going to the doctor, bringing in the mail. That's all well and good for the experts, but they are a very niche group, not the majority of the population. What do "normal" people feel safe doing? In certain states, we've seen how comfortable everyone is with everything (looking at you, Florida), but we wanted to know where Odyssey's readers fell on the comfort scale. Are they sticking with the epidemiologists who won't be attending a wedding for another year, or are they storming the sunny beaches as soon as possible?

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments