Boy (or girl), do I remember this:
Many years later, I’m 22 and I’m in the U.S. Army at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri in basic training. We were at the armory and had just finished watching a film on the care of our weapon, the M-16, and were being issued the weapon we would have all through training. Now remember, a lot of the girls there were barely 18, had never touched a gun in their lives, and all of them had just watched a film about “Joe” mishandling his weapon and then it blowing up in his face when he went to fire it. Now imagine some of them being handed their M-16 and majorly freaking.
I was 18 when I hit Fort Lost-in-the-Woods, but I can assure you, we had some guys freaking out at their first contact with Uncle Sam’s Plastic-ish Rifle.
And this is somehow reassuring:
Weeks later, Sergeant Walters placed a bet with the three other drill sergeants in the company that I could out shoot their guys. I won that bet for Sergeant Walters and he gave me an extra turn firing the LAW.
We didn’t get a whole lot of time to play with the LAW, and I wasn’t among the best shooters in the company I was among the better wielders of the Unholy Hand Grenade but we got to the point where we really enjoyed taking out whatever targets were presented to us. Which, you have to admit, is a useful characteristic for a soldier.