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IRAQ: You've Been in Iraq Too Long If....

"You start to think 'it's not so bad here.'" A joke e-mail being circulated among contractors in Iraq.

by AnonymousE-mail
April 26th, 2005

You know you've been in Iraq too long if:
General
       You start to think "it's not so bad here".
       You say "this place sort of grows on you".
       You say, "it feels cooler today" and find out that the temperature is 110.
       The term "trailer trash" is a term of endearment.
       You call your tent (trailer if you're lucky) 'home'.
       You get excited at the idea of ICE.
       Apaches excite you much more than Blackhawks or Kiowas
 
Armaments
       You don't jump when a door slams or someone drops something.
       You aren't alarmed when every second person you see has a gun . . . or two . . . or three.
       You kick the M-16 on the floor aside without a second thought when you sit down to eat in the Dining Facility.
       A Gloc or 9 mm on a lady's hip is considered sexy.
       Mortars and rockets sounds are "okay" compared to Vehicle bombs (IED's).
       You can measure distances based on explosion sounds.
       When a "Red Alert" sounds and you're leaving a DFAC, you rather go back in and have more coffee instead of seeking shelter in a bunker somewhere.
       You know the difference in sound between "incoming" and "outgoing"
 
Entertainment
       You get excited at the prospect of seeing the latest gun camera videos
       $5 for a dvd is a little pricey...especially if there is only one movie on it.
       If you can't find a new movie a day after it is released in theatres state side you are disappointed.
       Sitting around with your coworkers talking about different ways to be killed is considered "water cooler talk".
 
Travel
       You are soothed by the sounds of helicopters flying six feet over your trailer.
       Bullet holes in cars are no longer alarming.
       Car selections consist of "hard" or "soft", not Cadillac or Mercedes.
       Road trips consist of 6 vehicles and large caliber weapons.
       Driving on the sidewalk is normal.
       Driving on the wrong side of a divided four lane street is normal.
       Hit-and-run fender benders are treated as mere warnings.
       You get upset that you don't get C-130 Frequent Flyer Miles.
       Your carry-on luggage includes a flack jacket and helmet.
       Driving through the traffic circle of death has lost its thrill.
       If they had had one, you would have paid every dollar you had in your wallet for a bottle of frozen water one very long day at BIAP.
 
Hygiene
       You enjoy waiting 45 minutes for the toilets to refill.
       It's ok to brush your teeth with the brown water that comes out of the faucets.
       KBR buzz cuts begin to look stylish (even on girls).
       Flies don't even hang around the truck drivers
       You have your own roll of toilet paper stashed in your tent/office and car.
       You are not surprised to see someone performing morning ablutions in the office restroom
       A shower with water that is neither to cold to hot and contains no mosquitoes is a priceless unattainable luxury.
 
Surroundings
       "Texas Barriers" are something other than a device to keep Texans out.
       "Jersey Barriers" are something other than fences to keep Holsteins away from Jerseys.
       You begin to believe that project construction being blown up only twice a week is progress.
       You get excited with the presence of clouds.
       You know ten times as many South Africans as you've ever known before.
       The security guards are Ghurka or South African.
 
Dining
       You look forward to Mohammad's Mango ice cream as the treat for the day.
       Powdered eggs taste ok.
       You consider plastic ware the Palace China.
       You can distinguish inherent qualities of various plastic utensils.
       The quality of the plastic utensils becomes a hot dinner topic.
       Having to separate plastic plates causes you undue stress.
       Lettuce for your salad becomes a luxury.
       You believe that bacon and ham should be grey in color.
       No matter what animal you are eating, it will be flavored with curry.
       Scamming a 3rd can of soda makes you feel like you got even with someone.
       You are putting on weight because the Saddam's Revenge Diet no longer works.
       Going to another mess hall is an adventure.
       Putting Thousand Islands on your hamburger bun instead of mayo/mustard/catsup is normal.
       You automatically pick up two plastic forks whenever beef is on the menu at the DFAC
       You accept the fact that fajitas do not require tortillas
       Sliced hot dogs on a pizza served in a Chinese restaurant is good eats.
       You have ever considered leaving for a brownie and some milk during a mortar attack at the palace.
 
Fashion
       You think desert combat boots look great with shorts.
       Sand between your thong sandals actually feels good.
       The color white is no longer an option.
       Speedos for security guards seem right.
       You can recognize 12 different camouflage patterns.
       You've given up on shoe polish.
       T-shirt sizes at the PX are: M, L, XL, XXL & KBR
 
Living Conditions
       You get a big smile when you see your pressed clothes at the laundry.
       You get a bigger smile knowing they didn't lose your laundry.
       You get the biggest smile when you get back someone else's laundry and now you have more underwear then before.
       You think the bullet holes in the roof of your trailer is just another form of ventilation.
       You get upset because the post office won't ship your looted artifacts.
       You haven't had water from anything other than a bottle for months on end.
       You consider broken sandbags just a new beach expansion.
       The idea of a double wide is only for the fortunate or very powerful.
       Forgetting your military ID makes you feel naked...but pants are optional.
       A bootleg of the new stateside release is not available at the PX 2 days later.
       "Only one rocket has hit the camp" is excellent news.
       Cardboard boxes have become substantial pieces of furniture.
 
Communications
       Stars & Stripes seems to be a liberal newspaper.
       Acronyms become the acceptable language.
       It feels normal to have to run outside to make a cell phone call.
       You call your coworkers as soon as new T-shirt patterns arrive at the PX.
       "Can you hear me" takes up 50% of your cellular telephone conversations.
       You realize it is Saturday or Sunday because no one from DC/Houston phones.
       Your conversations with co-workers are sprinkled with "Roger that" and "Good copy"




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