Chapter 7: It's a Man's Corps and I am stuck in the middle

It took about a week for me to become comfortable with my new surroundings. I was the only woman of the group, so of course, all eyes were on me to screw up. The office was full of testosterone. In this little trailer, there were 9 enlisted male Marines, 4 male officers, and me. I think the mission of the office was to make my life a living hell. It just wasn't in writing.
At this point, I didn't have my car yet. My parents were coming up the following month with it, so I had to walk to work everyday. One day, I noticed Elmer Fudd driving next to me and never offered me a ride. Nice. We lived in the same barracks and worked in the same shop, yet he never offered me a ride. By the time I made it to work, the whole office was already settled into their spaces and jamming to the Spice Girls. I highly detested these guys.
Since I had that long haul to work, by the time I got there, by hair was as large as Homie the Clown's. How I hated the humidity of North Carolina. So I started trying to find ways to calm the beast. My hair wasn't long enough to wear in a braid or a bun, so I had to wear it down. I found this gel that really helped with the humidity. Next thing I know, two jokers from the Commanding Officer's Office came over. I had met them in passing when I checked in, but never spoke to them. They stood in the back of the trailer, looked at me, and said, "What's going on, Sting?" Sting? I looked around trying to figure out who "Sting" was. "Hey, Sting, what's going on?" he asked again. I continued to ignore the question. Then Sgt. New England Accent replies, "PFC Cox, I believe the Corporal was speaking to you?" All eyes were on me. I am thinking, "Why in the hell does he keep calling me Sting?" I didn't have Google to come rescue me back then, so I just had to grin and bear it. "Fine," I answered. Then of course, laughter erupts. They got me. Men - 1, Lady - 0. Turns out Sting was a wrestler who's hair looked mine. It was a man's world and I needed to learn about it fast.
The typical hazing went on for a new couple of weeks. "Hey Cox, go next door and get a stack of 6112s". Since I had to be obedient, I went to the trailer next door and found a group of Marines sitting in the trailer in a circle. One Marine was in the middle of the room with a gallon of milk and a trash can. It was loud as the Marines were yelling, "Chug, chug, chug." Next thing you know, milk was spewing out of every hole of this Marine's body.  What the hell? After the laughter subsided, some Marines noticed me standing there. I had breasts, so I stood out like a sore thumb. "What do you need, Pog?", one Marine asked. "I was told to get a stack of 6112's?", I answered. Out of no where, a woman Marine comes out and pulls me out of the trailer. She saved my life. I am not sure what I was more in shock over; almost getting "stacked" by a bunch of CH-46 mechanics or that there were female Marine in the squadron. There is some estrogen around here! Turns out there were couple more females in the squadron, so I started to feel a little bit of empowerment. Until I was asked to go to Avionics and ask for a ID10T Form. Men -2, Lady- 0. Jokes, they have jokes.
Field Day was always fun. Nothing like messing with urinal cakes and pulling pubes out of the urinal. And why is this my job? I often wondered. It sucked. I had to clean up after the Marine that dipped non-stop, clean the coffee mess, although I never drank the coffee, and shred paper. Oh, the highlights of my day. It took me awhile, but I finally learned the way to escape of these tasks was to act busy or say you have the runs (let me explain "the runs". The runs is not what you think. It's when a Marine has to go deliver items to other Units or the Base Headquarters). Or the most brilliant plan of all? Start becoming friends with these fools. After a few weeks, they became putty in my hands.
I started to slowly make friends in the unit. I was friends with a Marine in the Training Office. We lived in the same barracks as I did and he was kind enough to give me a ride to work. He was Elmer Fudd's roommate, so since I hung out in their room every morning waiting for a ride, Elmer Fudd actually started being nice to me. Friend count? 2. I was getting there.
Cpl Sting made fun of me a lot. It turns out he had a liking to my lovely hair and Bert and Ernie eyebrows. I didn't know much about him except that he really liked wrestling, but he seemed harmless. He was nice to me for the most part, but teased the hell out of me. I found this to be a common trend with men. When they liked you, they made fun of you. When they don't make fun you, they don't like you. Leave it to a man to get it backwards. Things eventually started falling into place and this is when the fun began.


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