Life in the Military

Veterans in Practice have put together a glossary of words used while they were in service. Have you got one? Please email.

Veterans in Practice will be adding further projects about life in the military soon.


2

26 heave

Move something (Navy)


A

A smoker

A p*** up after an exercise

Adrift

Being late (Navy)

AK

automatic kalashnikov. Derived from the AK – 47 and the popular culture surrounding it, generic reference to enemy small arms.

ALL FAIR AND ABOVE BOARD

Utterly fair, nothing hidden –  things “above board” were on or above the upper deck and so open for all to see.

ARAB

Arrogant Regular Army Bastard

AWOL

Absent Without Leave


B

Babies Heads

Steak and Kidney Pudding

BACKING AND FILLING

constantly changing your mind

ball of chalk

Situation deteriorated beyond repair, about as much use as a ball of chalk

Basher

Shelter

Bed legged

Getting a kicking while in bed

BFT

Basic fitness test

Blag

To acquire something

bodysnatcher

(Army) stretcher bearer

buzz

gossip, rumours


C

Cannon fodder

Infantry (front line troops)

Casevac

casualty evacuation

CFT

Combat fitness test

Chin strapped

Tired

COY

short for company. ie A COY, B COY

CRABS

RAF personnel


D

daisy cutter

RAF) faultless landing

Dhobie

Laundry

Dhobie rash

Not washing your pants properly and it giving you a rash

Diggers

Knife, Fork, Spoon

dip stick

(RM) idiot

Drop shorts

Mortar platoon

Dropping a link

Going to the toilet


E

Egg Bango

Egg buttie

EOD

Explosive Ordnance Disposal

ETA

Estimated Time of Arrival


F

FAC

Forward Air Controller

Fat Albert

The nickname for the Hercules plane of the RAF

FOB

Forward Operating Base

Full screw

Corporal


G

Gat

(Army) infantryman’s personal weapon (rifle)

Getting a beasting

Getting punished in double quick time

Glass House

Jail

Gongs

Medals

Greenfly

The nickname of the British Army Intelligence Corps

Guz
(RN/RM) Plymouth, said to have originated from the World War I radio ID letters for the city’s port (GUZ)

 


H

HLS

Helicopter landing site

Hot bagging

Sharing a sleeping bag whilst on duty

Hurry up and wait

Being made to rush, getting ready but only to sit about waiting for ages


J

Jankers

Extra duties

Jenny, Jenny Wrens

members of the (former) Women’s Royal Naval Service


K

KFS

knife,fork,spoon


L

Lance Jack

Lance Corporal


M

Maggot or Doss Bag

Sleeping bag

Minging

Dirty


N

NAAFI

Navy, Army, Air Force Institute

NFI

Not F****** Interested


O

On Me

Come here


P

Padre

generic term for chaplain

Pan Bashing

Washing pots in the cookhouse

Pokey Drill

Rifle exercises

Pongo

Royal Marines for Army

PONTI


Person Of No Tactical Importance. A more polite form of REMF (unpopular)

PUFO

Pack Up – F*** Off


Q

QM

Quartermaster


R

Rag Order

Looking like S***, Scruffy B******

Regimental Bath

Thrown in a bath of p*** and s*** and cleaner for being a meff

REMF

Rear Echlon Mother F***** (people at the back when going into battle – originally American)

rubber dagger

 Royal Marines Reservist

Rupert

a commissioned officer, including medical officers (physicians)


S

Sanger

Watch tower or Lookout post

Scoff House

Dinner Hall

Scran

Food

Slop Jocky

Army Chef

SNAFU

Situation Normal All F***** Up

SNLR

Service No Longer Required (kicked out of service)

SOPs

Standard Operational Procedures

spin a dit

(RN) tell a story

Square Bashing

Drill or Marching

STAB

(Army) Stupid Territorial Army Bastard


T

The NAAFI

The bar

TO SWALLOW THE ANCHOR

To leave the Navy for good

Trogg

A new recruit


W

wibble


(RN, spec. Submarine Service) crazy; “to go wibble” means to go crazy after being at sea too long

wooden-top

(Army) a soldier from the Guards Division


Y

Yomp

(RM) To force march with a heavy load

yoyo

Young Officer, an officer in training