He comes to the platoon, the first week on the job. He is five minutes late to a briefing with the 1st Sgt. since he was busy working out the logistics of the new truck he just bought (which has an APR that’s through the clouds). He’s not good at PT, but you think that maybe he’s got potential when it comes to more tactical skills — he doesn’t seem stupid, after all. And he is alright, but he keeps making the same mistakes over and over. When you speak to him about it, his eyes are glazed over, and he nods, responding with a “Roger, Sergeant.” You can tell that he knows he messed up, he’s beating himself up about it, and yet he continues to make the same mistakes over and over — at the end of the day, these mistakes might not only get him killed, but they might get his friends killed too. They might get you killed.

Most military veterans know this guy, and if you don’t, then I hate to say, but it might have been you. That is, he’s that guy who, in one way or another, always falls into trouble. He breaks a bone at the worst time possible, and before you hear the name of who broke what, you know who it is. Oh, and it’s never their fault either — they always have an excuse for everything.

But I know plenty of people like that, and I’m not in the military.

You’re absolutely right. People like this are everywhere.