First Meeting Michelle—Did Not Go So Well

Dateline: Late 1985

Time: 0800 hrs.

Geographical Location: Great Mistakes Naval Training Center—Just south of Chicago.

Venue: A Navy Auditorium

Suspect: One Ricky-Recruit, AKA Marcom

*Slips now into first-person narrative*

I had arrived just a little later than was prudent.

Hence, no seats in the back of the venue.

Searched about. Scanning…

Only open seats were in the front row.

****

I took myself up-front, found a seat next to a serious-looking blond sailor, decked out in freshly pressed dress blues. AJ-Squared-Away, she was.

(Old mil saw: never sit up front and never volunteer for nothin’

I had already broken the first rule. I was about the break the second)

****

I was in dungarees—not pressed. Certainly not ‘AJ-Squared away’… slightly hung-over, if I am aiming at honest narrative here.

‘Under-Dressed’ does not even come close.

I had plopped down to her starboard.

Risked a look at her.

She sensed my gaze, looked me dead in my eye and said,

Hi. My name is Michelle. What’s yours? She said as she extended her hand.

I shook her hand and was surprised to experience a very firm grip/handshake.

A Naval Officer took to the old, very old wooden podium and began his spiel.

Michelle went Eyes-Front: Intensely paying serious Military Attention.

I did not.

I kept gazing at her…

To the point of being too obvious.

Oh! And BTW, it did not escape me that she was a 3rd Class Petty Officer.

An E-4

(She seriously ‘out-ranked’ me.

And, obvious to me:

Out-Classed me.)

In the Nav, we called them ‘IPO’s

“Instant Petty Officer”

If you Graduate from the ‘Right Navy School,’ you are auto-magically promoted.

I was, my own self, enrolled in such a school, but the successful end game—of MY Graduation—was tenuous at best.

Not my intent to bash Y’all over the head with a not-so-subtle…

But this do serve my narrative.

Serves it well.

Well….

Credit: Ethereal Music

To be continued…

Previously

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