Your first duty station is always full of surprises. You'll quickly learn that your career is nothing like how you envisioned it in the recruiter's office. The troops you serve with are nothing like the ones portrayed in films.
Every troop comes from a different walk of life and each has their own story. That being said, when you finally get to know the troops you're serving with, there are always going to be a few of the same archetypes.
These are the guys you're going to meet when you visit the commo shop.
1. The bonus chaser
It's no secret that the commo world is extended some nicer enlistment bonuses. The Pentagon sees it as a necessary bribe to fill a high-demand MOS within the service. The bonus chaser signed up for these benefits and they'll happily let you know it.
This troop is completely average. They're nothing special, they keep their nose clean, and they begrudgingly say "roger" to every task that comes their way. They're boring and, chances are, they've never said a word to anyone outside of the S-6 — they probably won't say anything to those guys either.
Yep. Just holding the handmic for 12 hours, pretending they're awake. (Photo by Senior Airman Chris Willis)
2. The "trooper"
Commo guys work closely with the higher-ups. The radio guy never leaves the officer's side and the computer guy is always fixing their email. The "trooper" enjoys the attention.
They belt out, "you've got it, sir! Right away, sir!" like it was their calling card. They do this because they enjoy the fact that they're needed more than the average Joe and take pride in their work.
Some call it brown nosing, others call it wanting to be useful. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Shiloh Capers)
3. The talkative nerd
There's no denying it: the computer side of the commo world attracts a lot of nerds. At some point you'll probably hear the sergeant major scream, "my internet went out! Someone get me those S-6 nerds!" And, for the most part, they're right.
These aren't your typical high-school nerds who sit quietly in the cafeteria. No, these nerds have learned how to talk to others and the military encourages troops to interact — which gives the computer guys an opportunity to explain all of their Game of Thrones fan theories... even if you've never watched the show.
On the other hand, they're probably the person you go to get movies down range. (Photo by Spc. Kirby Rider)
4. The extreme jock
This commo hates everyone they work with — almost entirely because of the talkative nerd. They've heard all about Bitcoin investing, they've heard every reason why the Star Wars prequels were just misunderstood for their time, and they'll probably snap the next time they hear the phrase, "anime waifu."
They'll do anything to get away and have at least one conversation involving a sport. They'll overcompensate to prove to everyone that they're not the talkative nerd.
Anything to get out of the office, right? (Photo by Pfc. Kirby Rider)
5. The former grunt
This commo guy reclassed for better benefits after a few deployments, during which they did some real sh*t.
It's sad watching the former grunt work. It eats them up inside every time they need to fill out a work order to get sent to civilian contractors to finally get the admin password so they can reinstall the operating system. This just isn't their world. Watching these guys work with technology is like seeing a former college football star work at the Apple Store.
If you listen closely, what sounds like a head banging against their desk is actually "kill me" in Morse code repeated over and over again.
They're probably the guy who says, "only 245 more days and my contract is up." (Photo by Lance Cpl. Jailine L. Martinez)
6. The POGiest POG to ever POG
On the scale of grunt to POG, you can typically put most combat arms troops on the grunt side. Even a support MOS is part grunt by proximity. But then there're these guys.
Their pay grade says E-6, but their actions make you question how they even passed Basic Training. Hell, they won't even make excuses when you call them a POG. They'll probably just retort with some sh*t like, "Yeah? Well, I can take away your computer access with the stroke of a keyboard!"
"Yep! These cables are placed. Mission accomplished!" (Photo by Staff Sgt. Renae Pittman)