SEAL Training: Psych Eval

 

While stationed at Great Mistakes (Errrr…Great Lakes) Naval Training Command, I did my due diligence and qualified for BUD/s (Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training in Coronado, California)

After passing the physical physical and clearing all the other stuff (mostly based upon my ASVAB scores and my ability to swim like a dolphin), A Final Task faced me: I had to pass unblemished through an interview with a psychiatrist. Just a formality, right? (Last hurdle: “Lance, do NOT fuck this up.”)

Sailor

Sailor Lance

This should be fun,” I recall thinking as I waited for my interview.

I was eventually summoned and sat my ass down in front of a geeky, mouse-eyed shrink. He obviously had ‘issues’ of his own. This I could discern straight-away from his limp-wristed demeanor. And obviously the only SEAL he had ever met was in some vain dream fantasy.

No matter. I was there just to get my ticket punched.

After a dozen or so stupid questions about such things as how did I feel about my mother, have I ever killed anything (Uh, do frogs count?), the price of tea in China, ad nauseam, he came to his pièce de résistance:

“Seaman Marcom,” he broached, “If you were ordered by your SEAL Team Leader to go in and clear a room whilst on a mission, and you burst into this room only to discover an elderly lady in a rocking chair reading a bible, what would you do?”

I waited for my dramatic pause, then said,

“Sir, I would shoot the bible.”*

Smiling, I observed him take his rubber stamp out and stamp “Approved” on my papers.

“California Here I Come!”

 

Right Back Where I Started From

*Footnote:

In the Nav, we have bombastic bullshit ‘tellings’, euphemistically known as ‘Sea Stories’. These are always introduced with the mandatory preamble:

“Now, this is a no-shitter…”

The above telling (though completely factual) is a wonderful example of same.

It’s Memorial Day Weekend: Go find yourself a Sailor and say, “Hey Sailor, New in Town?” Then hug him/her.

2 thoughts on “SEAL Training: Psych Eval

  1. Dear Sir,
    Reblog away if you can.
    I would be honored.
    But
    WP is fucking broken….
    Great comment.
    I sincerely appreciate the well-thought out deep-in-the well-wishes…
    I am not being sarcastic here.
    If you explore here, you will discover that my sense of humor is often off-putting to most.

    Thank you again for your visits and for spending some of your finite time to comment.

    Folks like you are the reason I continue this vain fantasy of trying to become a writer.

  2. OK, Lance, you asked for it by reading my richwrapper blog…why am I finding it so difficult to reblog some of your wildly wicked words on WordPress? This semi- – ckay near completely – Luddite of a onetime active duty U.S. Marine Corps(e) – the ‘e’ being optional – Combat Correspondent who continued to get yelled at because during “Drownproofing” at PISC I found myself head-shoulders floating above the pool (well, almost shoulders, the place where my neck arches to either side – and boy did that piss off the swim instructors, which then cataclysimed to mine own very dear sweek drill instructors. Last night before grad, my favoritest one “shaved” my awfully hirstute self with needlenose pliars. And everytime I’ve been to Texas I keep reminding myself to carp: “not enough surf.” So, Lance, fill me in on whether ’tis noble to reblog to WP and howsomeshallitbedone.
    J Richards
    Sergeant of Marines (1967-72)

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