Today is the 20th anniversary of my first day in the Marine Corps. If I had stayed in and made Gunnery Sergeant then I could retire today with a pension of $2000 a month.

Totally not worth it.

Not that saying in was an option, I was ready to get out within a year. Even with the long periods of unemployment that I’ve had to put up with I’m better off, financially and physically. I think back about the lifers that I knew back then and how they looked so goddamn old. These guys weren’t even 40 yet and they all looked like grandpas and worn out leather boots.

The Marine Corps taught me the value of freedom, but not the way they advertise.

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