Etiquette and disagreements

#1
Just wanted to know what the etiquette is when you disagree with a more senior officer or when said officer is completely in the wrong but throws his weight around a little.
As a lowly 2Lt very soon rising to the dizzy heights of Lt the best thing would be to keep your head down when it comes to disagreeing with seniors and most of the time i'm happy to 'wind my neck in' and do as i'm told but on the odd occasion it does grate me.
I refer to an incident regarding mess rules within the mess between a 2Lt and a Capt where the Capt gave said 2Lt a dressing down over what he was wearing (no pun intended) and told him to leave the public room rather bluntly.
On checking the mess rules the 2Lt found he was actually correct.
Would it have been acceptable do you think for the young'un to respectfully refer the captain to the mess rules or later point out the error to the captain and show some displeasure in the way in which he was spoken to or is it a simple paper/scissor/rank affair.
I assume it isn't one of those situations where you rely on instinct and call said officer a cnut and tell him to go check the mess rules while reminding him he isnt a Lt-Gen?

Thanks, T
 
#5
thebigtone said:
Just wanted to know what the etiquette is when you disagree with a more senior officer or when said officer is completely in the wrong but throws his weight around a little.
As a lowly 2Lt very soon rising to the dizzy heights of Lt the best thing would be to keep your head down when it comes to disagreeing with seniors and most of the time i'm happy to 'wind my neck in' and do as i'm told but on the odd occasion it does grate me.
I refer to an incident regarding mess rules within the mess between a 2Lt and a Capt where the Capt gave said 2Lt a dressing down over what he was wearing (no pun intended) and told him to leave the public room rather bluntly.
On checking the mess rules the 2Lt found he was actually correct.
Would it have been acceptable do you think for the young'un to respectfully refer the captain to the mess rules or later point out the error to the captain and show some displeasure in the way in which he was spoken to or is it a simple paper/scissor/rank affair.
I assume it isn't one of those situations where you rely on instinct and call said officer a cnut and tell him to go check the mess rules while reminding him he isnt a Lt-Gen?

Thanks, T
Was your Burberry shirt in the wash?
 
#6
Just ignore Gremlin, he knows not of that which he speaks. The answer is simple; you must offer the Capt out immediately. Your integrity and honour is at stake here. Dispatch a second immediately to his place of residence and challenge him to a bare-fist duel on the mess lawn.
 

the_boy_syrup

LE
Book Reviewer
#7
Swords or pistols at dawn

However for the love of God if you turn up with a sword make sure he hasn't brought a pistol it could get messy
 
#8
throw the mess rules at him and tell the capt to stop being a prick. he's a capt only because he's been in 5 mins longer than you have.
 
#9
Can I suggest you bite your tounge and pray hard he gets posted, taking on Captains in a mess in my experience is a silly move, and, if you are about to get your second pip arn't you soon to be posted to the delights of a Depot? If so shut up and spend more time doing sport or out of his orbit.
 
#10
Pimpernel offers the most sound advice. Your circumstances are of a kind where discretion is usualy the better part of valour.
 
#12
eodmatt said:
Pimpernel offers the most sound advice. Your circumstances are of a kind where discretion is usualy the better part of valour.
Thanks eodmatt, I would also point out if you intend to go the whole 9 yards with HMF then this offending Captain could well become important in your carreer, so be careful who you piss off as a puppy!
 
#13
get real...its a fooking captain...unless he's the Adjt or an LE he's a nig and in 18 months you'll be the same rank...may be different in an inf / cav unit but in a corps Capts are ten-a-penny with 4 or 5 per sqn
 
#14
Speak to a more friendly Captain in the mess and explain it to him and he can have a word.

Incidently there is no rank in the mess less for the PMC and CO. Or at least there shouldn't be. Some Regiments take this so seriously they do not wear rank on there mess kit based on the premis that all mess members are gentlemen and thus will conduct themselves as such.
 
#15
cloudbuster said:
Bugger discretion; next time you see him at the bar, march up to him and offer him out.
Tempting, but probably unwise. A mate of mine did something along those lines as a Cpl, to a Lt. Later on as a Ssgt, he had the former Lt as an OC in Germany. Career ended! There are many other ways that you can extract revenge - a dish that should be eaten cold.
 
#17
thebigtone said:
As a lowly 2Lt very soon rising to the dizzy heights of Lt the best thing would be to keep your head down when it comes to disagreeing with seniors and most of the time i'm happy to 'wind my neck in' and do as i'm told but on the odd occasion it does grate me.
You give yourself much good advice. Cheese-graters hurt.

I refer to an incident regarding mess rules within the mess between a 2Lt and a Capt where the Capt gave said 2Lt a dressing down over what he was wearing (no pun intended) and told him to leave the public room rather bluntly.
On checking the mess rules the 2Lt found he was actually correct.
The standards of what is considered acceptable dress in messes have dropped dramatically in the last few years (this is a general comment - and I'm sure some messes are still reasonably smart. But it applies to Wilton, Andover and Worthy Down, as well as unit messes I've visited. The Capt might merely have been being obsolete.

Would it have been acceptable do you think for the young'un to respectfully refer the captain to the mess rules or later point out the error to the captain and show some displeasure in the way in which he was spoken to or is it a simple paper/scissor/rank affair.
2 choices - cast your gauntlet in his face and retire to the bar to duel with champagne corks - the usual load is a case each, which makes it a reasonable spectator sport. It's far too much trouble drawing pistols from the armoury and you'll find your dress sword isn't really sharp enough. Or stag on.

Having said that, it is your home too - is the Capt the senior living in member? If not, a quiet word to the chain to see that they are gently reminded of the way the mess should run and the importance of politeness as well as following the rules.
 
#18
eodmatt said:
cloudbuster said:
Bugger discretion; next time you see him at the bar, march up to him and offer him out.
Tempting, but probably unwise. A mate of mine did something along those lines as a Cpl, to a Lt. Later on as a Ssgt, he had the former Lt as an OC in Germany. Career ended! There are many other ways that you can extract revenge - a dish that should be eaten cold.
If it's a dress dispute - bring it up for the benefit of new members at the next Mess meeting "to save confusion" and let the PMC clarify the dress rules and the application of said rules. If the Capt is just throwing his weight around for the ego-kick, probably better to bite tongue.

eodmatt's comment re Career ended is about right.
 
#19
Don't sink to his level. I've had the misfortune of running into arrogant, obnoxious turds in my mess - I deal with it by not speaking with them. Easy.
 
#20
ABrighter2006 said:
If it's a dress dispute - bring it up for the benefit of new members at the next Mess meeting "to save confusion" and let the PMC clarify the dress rules and the application of said rules. If the Capt is just throwing his weight around for the ego-kick, probably better to bite tongue.
What ABrighter2006 suggests is probably about as far as I would take it. If he's been obnoxious towards you, he's probably obnoxious towards others. If this is the case, his reputation will generally take care of him, and fairly shortly he'll only have his self-righteousness to keep him company at coffee.
 
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