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Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
In a different thread I highlighted the fact that members of the mob have a certain way about them with regards to dress sense and style.

Matelots, squaddies, booties and even crabs are easy to spot, you can see them a mile away, but why?

I see all these Walters at Remembrance parades with their bling medals and wonder what is the point?

To be confused for a member of HM Forces all you need are the following convincing items:

A train platform:

Gash haircut:

Sideys (matelots, booties and very ally squaddies only):


Crap shirt:

Some light refreshment for the train journey home:

Have I missed anything? What other items/characteristics make us stand out?
< 3 years service: a bright eyed and bushy tailed and slightly nervous look, still sporting a skinhead due to actually caring about dress regs and still being scared of the RP staff.

> 3 years service: An exasperated and disillusioned look brought on by knowing that everything you joined up for will be gone this time next year and replaced by eastern european goons from G4S, and AT packages from Sodexo. Hair as long as you can possibly cheek it, around 2 days growth of whiskers because you 'don't give a fuck' and daydreaming of going AWOL and doing bar work in Australia.


Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
G10 watch strap is always a winner. As are Casio G shocks and Suunto watches for the slightly more flush lads.

A copy of Zoo or Nuts magazine recently robbed from the mess is also a must.


A TFI look Friday when you've just wrapped for the week and now have 2.5 days of excessive drinking and loose tarts. The exact opposite look on a Sunday evening when it's all over, you're still pissed but skint, and you still have your rig to iron when you get in.
In the good old days when I was a young sprog, it was very easy.

You needed some of these

and one of these
OR one of these

and a pair of these

I was always easy to spot

It's not just Friday afternoon at Waterloo either.

I was waiting in line at Baltimore airport about a year ago for security. Friday afternoon, as it happens. I eventually get to the TSA officer, and she says "I've been watching you in the line. Are you military?"

I've only been out 10 years! What is it? Keeping an eye on your surroundings? Not slouching? Shoes polished? I've no idea, but the TSA officer had me pegged.
Maybe because you walk like you had been fucked for a number of years?


Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
I suppose it varies from base to base, unit to unit, but when I was doing a course at Collingwood a few years back, it seemed that the only cars on the base were the following:

Peugeot 309 - For old school killicks. (Corporals)
Peugeot 306 D Turbo - For those newly promoted.
Subaru Impreza - For newly promoted POs and Chiefs.
Citroen Saxo VTR - For ABs who had completed a bit of sea time.
Ford Focus - For married types.
Honda Civic Type R - For newly promoted Artificers.
BMW 3 Series - For Lieutenants.
Silver Golf GTI - For Young Officers.
Vauxhall Corsa - For sprogs fresh from phase 1, financed up to their eyeballs.

I honestly don't think I saw any other types of car there between 2002 and 2004.
BFG number plates? ;-)

RE were easy, the 3-tone suntan:
A deep brown tan on the head, neck, v-of the chest, and arms (well, mid-arm down)
Tanned upper body
White legs

Desert wellies, Brutus jeans, red-check "lumberjack" shirt - tucked in
A belt, worn with everything
Clean shoes

officers: Wax jacket, brown brogues, corduroury trousers. And over-use of the term "in the final analysis"


Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Other items that I've seen creeping in, especially at phase 2 training establishments are those SuperDry jackets.

I also recall a time (around 2005ish) when Von Dutch baseball caps and Evisu jeans were all the rage for the young matelot/squaddie at large, luckily this gopping state of affairs disappeared fairly quickly.


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