When I go into a room full of civilians, I naturally gravitate toward other military people if possible. It's like finding a long lost family member, and it doesn't matter whether they are also Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines, or Coast Guard. We're related; or so it seems anyway when we are surrounded by civilians.
And since hubby started out his career in the Army, and because we've had very few Big Blue assignments, and because all hubby's deployments have all been with primarily Army units - sliding into the Army family and way of life is no stretch for me.
But... and there is always a but (and in my case, one that really does NOT need this Girl Scout cookie season at all), there can sometimes be a bit of tension between services and service wives.
In all the time we've been a military family, I've only had one nasty encounter with a wife from another service, and it wasn't even in person, but on line. In fact, as the following conversation will show, we have a great deal of fun with the inter-service rivalries with our friends. We have developed our own version of the "Yo Mama" jokes, and after an evening of such conversation we are often gasping and in tears of laughter.
This was very blazingly obvious a few nights ago at my daughters' Brownie meeting, which is held on an Army base and has both Air Force and Army brats in attendance.
As often happens at military family functions like Brownies and Cub Scouts, the Dads are very much in evidence when they are home. In fact, I remember how uncomfortably odd it felt for me to take my children to their functions when we were not stationed near a base and see almost no men (and no one in uniform, but that was to be expected). I think that when a family member is gone so often and under such dangerous circumstances, there's a very different perspective about how important such seemingly things are.
In any case, one of the fathers was in attendance with his wife and daughter, and sure enough - the "Yo Military" jokes began.
AFW: I hate going to the gym, I feel like everyone's watching me. I do yoga dvd's at home instead.
ArmyDad: How can you hate going to the gym? I've BEEN to your gym! It's got a FRUIT STAND!
AFW: It's not a fruit stand, really. It's a smoothie bar.
ArmyDad: *silence* //incredulous look
AFW: Each bike has it's own TV, too
ArmyDad: Yes. I know.
AFW: But you have towel service.
Or, in another conversation, between a deployed hubby and one of the Army Units on his base in Afghanistan about setting up a Volleyball game...
Hubby: We'll go easy on you old guys. We'll even bring the Glucosamine/Chondroitin for your joint pain.
ArmyUnit: And we'll be very careful to avoid messing up your hair. We'll bring you a comb.
When I go home for visits now, much of my family often doesn't "get" my humor, and I'm pretty sure this is a big part of the reason why. Somehow, you just can't communicate with your family politely using "Yo Family" jokes.
At least, not if you want them to keep you in the will.