Sunday, January 31, 2016

Learning the Dogface Soldier and enough Germany in 2 weeks.

Back in 1975, when you were assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division, you had to go through a training program which was held at the 3rd Infantry headquarters in Wurzburg, Germany
There is set of  dots over the first "u" so you will find the spelling sometimes: Wuerzburg.

One part of it was to learn enough German to be able to ask directions, know the date and time, read the train time schedules, and the most important part of the German lifestyle, read the menu. Phrases such as:

Entschuldigen Sie bitte, wie spät es ist?
Entschuldigen Sie bitte, wo ist das Gasthaus?
Entschuldigen Sie mich bitte, wenn kommt der Zug?
Entschuldigen Sie bitte, wo ist der Kentucky Fried Chicken befindet?

And the most important question of all:

Entschuldigen Sie bitte, wo ich die Personalvermittler, die mir melden Sie sich für diese hatte zu finden. Ich möchte haben seinen Hals umgedreht.  

I was glad I knew some German before I arrived in Germany. 

The other part of the requirements was to know and sing "Dogface Soldier".  Which was also something I had already knew.  Not necessarily by heart.  It was more by nausea.  Seems my father was assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division during World War II.  Needless to say, I knew the  "Dogface Soldier" song:

I Wouldn't Give A Bean
To Be A Fancy Pants Marine
I'd Rather Be A
Dog Face Soldier Like I Am

I Wouldn't Trade My Old-O D's
For All The Navy's Dungarees
For I'm The Walking Pride
Of Uncle Sam

On Army Posters That I Read
It Says "Be All That You Can"
So They're Tearing Me Down
To Build Me Over Again

I'm Just A Dog Face Soldier
With A Rifle On My Shoulder
And I Eat Raw Meat
For Breakfast E'V'RY Day

So Feed Me Ammunition
Keep Me In The Third Division
Your Dog Face Soldier's A-Okay

From Dog Face Soldier Song

I knew the lyrics before "The Politically Correct" took it to the cleaners. And I'm pretty certain that the song would have had a stanza about the Air Force had it been written after September 18, 1947 when the Air Force came into its own.
The last two original stanzas were written as below:

I’m just a Dogface Soldier,
With a rifle on my shoulder,
And I eat a Kraut for breakfast every day.

So feed me ammunition,
Keep me in my Division,
Your Dogfaced Soldier boy is A-okay.”

But this was another soldier's reality namely my father's, not mine. Running old movie theaters and inviting the Army and Navy teams to his theater before the big Army\Navy game in Philadelphia, PA  was what he did.

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