All of us here at TAH probably have funny stories about run-arounds, SNAFUs, and the like involving military bureaucracy or paperwork. So it occurred to me that posting an article on the subject and inviting comments from TAH’s readers might be worthwhile.
Since I’m posting the article, I guess that means I’m “on the hook” for the first such story. Fair enough; here goes.
Each service has its own admin practices and procedures. Most of the time, they actually work fairly well.
Even the Army’s orders process generally works – though like a dancing bear, it often does so somewhat less than gracefully. Once it took 3 tries for DA to slide a reporting date of mine 30 days “to the right” (later). I guess that change must have had the same clerk-typist processing it that had trouble spelling “Fort Rucker” in this article. (smile)
But that’s not the funniest admin SNAFU that ever happened to me personally.
In 2007-2008, I was ordered back to active duty for a tour in the CENTCOM AOR. I spent virtually all of that year serving in either Afghanistan or Iraq.
During January 2008, my duty station was in Iraq – Baghdad, to be precise. Except for R&R, I’d been there since August and in theater since April.
Well, in January 2008 I got the following amendment to the orders recalling me to active duty and sending me to the sandbox. It was sent to me at my home of record; my spouse forwarded me a copy.
I’ve redacted PII and a couple of other bits of info. Take a look at the text in the red box. (Click on the image to enlarge it.)
Yep, you read that right. I’m deployed to the sandbox, stationed in Baghdad and have been there for months, in the middle of a no-joke shooting war. And the Army sends me an amendment to my freaking orders telling me I need to check in with Post billeting and reminding me that if I want to live “on the economy” I need a statement of nonavailability.
I got a really good laugh out of that bit of bureaucratic idiocy. (smile)
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OK, there have to be better stories than that out there. Fire away!