Marine Jargon

Marines Forever March 11, 2010 12
Aboard
on base; on ship
alibi
round fired to compensate for stoppage or misfire
ALICE
standard field pack, acronym for All purpose Lightweight Individual Carrying Equipment
all hands
everybody
ashore
off the base
As you were!
Resume what you were doing!
Aye, aye, sir!
acknowledgement of a superior officer’s command
barracks
communal living quarters
BCD
Bad Conduct Discharge (also known as "Big Chicken Dinner")
berm
earthen rampart protecting butts
BFA
Blank Firing Apparatus – small metal box screwed on a rifle flash suppressor to avoid accidental burns while shooting blanks
Big Dad
Senior Drill Instructor
bivouac
campground
black belt
Senior Drill Instructor
blanket party
admonitory punishment of misfit by shipmates, who beat victim wrapped in blanket so he can’t identify them
blister bandits
recruits whose blisters exempt them from heavy duties
blouse
uniform jacket
blousing garters
elastic retaining bands for trouser cuffs
Blues
Dress Blue formal uniform
boot
recruit
brass
officers, as a class; brass fittings, such as belt buckles and door knobs
brig
jail
bug juice
government issue insecticide, notoriously ineffective
bulkhead
wall
butts
sheltered area behind and below Rifle Range targets
BZO
Battlesight Zero
cadence
rhythmic chant to keep unit in step
cami
camouflage; camis: short for camouflage utility uniform
carry on
continue as before
Casual Company
catchall company for men awaiting reassignment or discharge
chow
food
circuit course
series of timed exercises to promote development of specific muscle groups and endurance
CLP
Break-Free oil (cleans, lubricates, penetrates) used to clean rifles
cleaning rack
outside concrete washstand where recruits clean rifles after firing
CMC
Commandant, Marine Corps
CO
commanding officer
com rats
commuted rations: subsistence payment for those not eating in the chow hall 
corpsman
Navy enlisted medic: those serving with Marines are considered Marines
cover
hat
cruise
enlistment period; shipboard deployment
dark-green
black 
deck
floor 
deuce gear
782 gear – ALICE pack, web belt, and other gear carried by Marines in the field
D.I.
drill instructor
ditty bag
issue zip bag for athletic gear
dope
adjustment of rifle sights for various ranges and wind conditions 
double-time
run thirty-six-inch-steps at the rate of one hundred eighty a minute
down-range
between shooters and target
dry fire
rifle practice without ammunition 
esprit de corps
along with rigorous training, the main distinguishing feature of Marines, SEALS, Rangers and other elite troops
eye relief
spatial relationship between shooter’s eye and rear sight
fall in
assume military formation  
field
training or battle area
field day
barracks clean-up
field fire
marksmanship practice in simulated battle environment
fleet
short for FMF
float
sea deployment by Marine unit
FMF
Fleet Marine Force, the basic infantry fighting force
galley
kitchen
gangway
gangplank
Gangway!
Make way!
gear locker
room for brooms, swabs and other cleaning gear 
geedunk
Another term for food, usually a snack
go-fasters
running shoes
Grass Week
week devoted to dry fire, before firing for qualification
grinder
the parade deck
grunt
Marine infantryman
guide
bearer of guidon, usually best recruit
guidon
small rectangular flag with platoon number, borne on staff by guide at head of platoon
gung ho
Chinese for "work together"
hat
drill instructor
hatch
door
head
toilet or bathroom
head call
trip to the bathroom
high and tight
shaven head, except for about one quarter inch of hair on very top
hootch
two-man field tent
ILBE
Improved Load Bearing Equipment, New pack system
Irish pennant
dangling thread or strap 
junk-on-the-bunk
equipment laid out on bed for inspection
klick
kilometer
knowledge
facts and principles recruits must master
ladder
stairway
leave
authorized extended absence from duty
liberty
absence from duty not exceeding seventy-two hours
light-green
white; Caucasian
LP
listening post
maggot
DI’s affectionate name for a recruit
mainside
main base
moon beam
flashlight
MOS
Military Occupation Specialty
MRE
Meal-Ready-to-Eat
M16Al
standard infantry rifle since Vietnam days, replaced in 1985 by M16A2
NBC
Nuclear, Biological, Chemical
NCO
non-commissioned officer
NCOIC
non-commissioned officer-in-charge 
parade deck
drill field, parade ground
peepsight
rifle’s rear sight
PFT
Physical Fitness Test
piece
rifle
pits
dirt covered area between barracks where IPT is inflicted
pogey bait
candy
PX
Post Exchange, The base department store
quarterdeck
area outside D.I. shack. IPT is administered in this area
quarters
living space
QEP
Quality Enlistment Program
rack
bed
rappel
descend from helicopter or precipitous slope by rope
ready box
wooden ammunition box
reconn
reconnaissance
reefer
galley’s walk in refrigerator
reps
repetitions, as in weight exercises
Reveille
wake-up time
road guards
Marines assigned to stop traffic while platoon crosses roadway
round
bullet or artillery shell
scuttlebutt
gossip; water fountain
scuz rag
rag for wiping floor and other chores
scribe
recruit detailed to assist D.I.s with paperwork
seabag
sausage-shaped canvas bag, big enough to contain recruit’s gear
secure
stop; lock; put away
shelter half
half of two-man tent, carried by each Marine in the field
short
near an end, as in "getting short." Nearing the end of an enlistment
sick bay
base hospital
sick bay commando
recruit or Marine with a talent for falling sick upon the approach of work
sick call
formation for the sick and ailing
skivvies
underwear: skivvy shirts, skivvy shorts
slop chute
bar
snap in
to practice firing position and operation of rifle
sound off
shout; complain
square away
put in order
squared away
in order; near; savvy
782 gear
equipment carried by Marine in field
spit shine
mirror like sheen put on leather by means of spit, polish and infinite labor
Suzie
short for Suzie Robincrotch; generic term for the girl left behind
swab
floor mop
thunder
the crash of boot heel on pavement
Tiger Piss
coined in Vietnam, rotgut booze in a brand name container
topside
upstairs
Twelfth General Order
"Don’t get caught"
UA
unauthorized absence, AWOL
unk
unqualified
unsat
unsatisfactory
wagon wheel
large cool-down circle in which recruits walk after PT
war belt
wide web belt on which Marines in field hang canteens, ammunition pouches, etc.
whitewall
standard Marine haircut

12 Comments »

  1. martinez March 13, 2010 at 9:36 am - Reply

    How about
    “POLICE CALL”

  2. Hash May 14, 2010 at 7:58 pm - Reply

    Actually it’s Suzie Rottencrotch. :-)

  3. Henry West May 27, 2010 at 12:51 pm - Reply

    Greetings! Is there an explaination for the USMC blousing garter and it’s history. Many years ago someone mentioned that when Marines were placed on board NAVY ships, in the days of large cannons, the Marines were never exposed to very loud cannon fire. On the first volley, many peed or pooped in their pants and made the decks slippery. The Navy issued gaters for their trousers. Is there any truth to this story/explaination? Thanks. Sincerely,Henry

  4. Recruit Caleb Edgerton June 30, 2010 at 10:02 am - Reply

    never request an emergency head call when you get to your senior D.I. unless you like running in circles making siren noises for 15 minutes.

  5. Speights September 29, 2010 at 7:11 pm - Reply

    How about under the bus? To be a rat
    Blue falcon – buddy f***er
    Prick – radio
    Truck – virally any vehicle
    Vic – vehicle
    Pack – person in vehicle
    And just know that your mom is an acceptable comeback to anything

  6. K.L. Davis Jr. December 23, 2010 at 12:25 am - Reply

    How bout ” By Your Leave Sir” walking up in close proximity to an Officer.

  7. Piotr Obminski February 20, 2011 at 6:35 pm - Reply

    Thanks for this great info!

    Regards to all Marines from… Let’s simply say “Poland”.

  8. Daniel Hansen July 24, 2011 at 12:42 am - Reply

    POV for Privately-Owned Vehicle.

  9. Kaylah Allen August 18, 2011 at 10:53 pm - Reply

    Tank-another name for bladder
    Ways to use it:”I need to empty my tank.”"My tank is full.”
    BTW, I came up with these they aren’t quite official yet. Just incase anyone needs to know.

  10. Kaye Allenson August 18, 2011 at 11:02 pm - Reply

    Tank could be a replacement name for the bladder so if you’re useing Jarhead Jargon you could say,” I need to hit the head to empty my tank.” Or something like,” My tank is full.”-from a Devilpup/Jarhead in the making.

  11. Mark Brown September 9, 2011 at 3:09 pm - Reply

    How about “As you were”

  12. Bob May 5, 2012 at 2:16 pm - Reply

    As retired USAF Combat Crew Member – how about the term “ZOOMIE” which as from my in country days at Da Nang AB

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