19 things you learn about your buddies on deployment

You don’t really know your buddies until you deploy together. At that point you get to see a side of them that their families and closest loved ones have never seen — a side effect of spending every hour with them for months on end in a foreign land where all you have is each other.

You get to know the good, the bad, and the weird. Here’s what you can expect:

1. You’ll learn that insults are endearing.

Tropic thunder ben stiller nope

Tropic Thunder, DreamWorks

2. . . . as is antagonizing each other.

generation kill nazi antagonize

Generation Kill, HBO

3. You’ll learn exactly how to take the edge off when you go too far . . .

2. smoking military

Zypee1212, YouTube

“I was just pulling your chain. Here, take a chill smoke.”

4. . . . because you’ve shared nearly every single thought that you’ve had over the last few months.

a little gay

Tropic Thunder, DreamWorks

Ummm …

5. You’ll learn to think of buds as family.

uss kitty hawk flight deck mechs

Photo: Orvelin Valle, We Are The Mighty

6. You’ll learn to communicate with each other just by grunting.

grunting tropic thunder

Tropic Thunder, DreamWorks

7. (Aviators learn hand signals.)

goose fuck you

Top Gun, Paramount Pictures

8. Your comfort levels will approach new highs (and lows).

caught masterbating


9. And you’ll learn to be totally fine with complete silence.

Image: U.S. Navy

Image: U.S. Navy

10. And you’ll learn to be brutally honest with each other.

full retard tropic thunder

Tropic Thunder, DreamWorks

11. You’ll learn who will be the first to put on his or her “deployment goggles.”

deployment goggles terminal lance

Deployment Goggles II. Courtesy of Terminal Lance

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12. And you’ll learn how to read the signs if something more develops.

mash lying

MASH, 20th Century Fox

(In fact, you can pretty much read his or her mind.)

13. You’ll learn where they stash all of their goodies.

Girl Scout cookies deployed Afghanistan Kandahar airfield deployed currency barter economy soldiers marines OIF

Photo: DoD by Capt. Andrew Adcock

(And it’s a general rule that whatever is his is also yours as long as you replenish it.)

14. And you learn exactly which items in your MRE to trade with whom.

090814-3834S-5553. Members of the 338th Engineer Company test Meals, Ready-to-Eat at a Fort McCoy training site on South Post as part of a Natick Soldier Research project at Fort McCoy Aug. 14. Photo by Rob Schuette, PAO, Fort McCoy, WI. Publication or commercial use of this material requires release by a U.S. Army Public Affairs Officer. Credit U.S. Army photograph.

Photo: U.S. Army

15. You’ll learn not to rat each other out to superiors.


(Nobody likes a Blue Falcon, or Jodies.)

16. You’ll learn where to find your buddies when no one else can.

sleeping on the boat

Photo: Orvelin Valle, We Are The Mighty

17. You’ll learn the most effective ways to settle your differences.

soldiers fighting

Image: U.S. Army

18.You’ll learn to always have each other’s backs, no questions asked.

liberty buddy navy sailors

19. And you’ll learn that other units can’t bitch about your buddies. Only you can bitch about your buddies.

you people tropic thunder

Tropic Thunder, DreamWorks