Dictionary of Marine Corps
Terms and Words
ABOARD: on base; with us.
ACTUAL: radio talk for unit commander.
ALL HANDS: everyone.
AMTRACK: amphibious tractor; landing craft.
AO DAI (Viet.): formal attire worn by Vietnamese women.
AS YOU WERE!: resume what you were doing; correction.
ASSHOLES AND ELBOWS: in a hurry; quickly.
BA MUI BA ("33"): Vietnamese beer.
BAC SI (Viet.): Doctor, used for Corpsman.
BAM: Broad Ass Marine; derogatory name for Woman Marine.
BARRACKS COVER: garrison (frame) cap.
BATTLE PIN: necktie clip.
BCD: Bad Conduct Discharge.
BELAY: stop; quit.
BILLET: assignment or job; place of residence.
BLOUSE: n. jacket; v. tuck in, secure.
BLOUSING BANDS: elastic bands used to secure utility trouser cuffs.
BLUES: Dress Blues.
BLT: Battalion Landing Team.
BOONDOCKS (BOONIES): rugged isolated back country.
BOONDOCKERS: low-topped work boots issued to reservists.
BOO-COO: (Fr. beaucoup) much, many.
BRAIN HOUSING GROUP: your gourd, mind, brain, or head.
BRIG RAT: jail inmate.
BRIG CHASER: MP assigned to escort prisoners.
BROTHER: black Marine (also Splib).
BROWN SIDE-OUT: desert camouflage pattern.
BY-THE-NUMBERS: in sequence.
CANNON COCKERS: artillerymen.
CARRY ON!: resume what you were doing; as you were.
CASUAL COMPANY: unit of Marines awaiting reassignment.
CC: Corrective Custody; jail, the brig.
CHUCK: black Marine's term for white Marine.
CG: Commanding General.
CHIEU HOI (Viet.): freedom; safe conduct pass; program whereby VC who
surrendered were assured safe conduct.
CHIMPO: see choda.
CHIT: written authorization or receipt.
CHODA: same as chimpo.
CHOW HALL: mess hall.
CLICK: one notch of adjustment on a rifle.
CO (Viet.): girl, woman.
COLORS: n. the flag; v. ceremony of raising or lowering the flag.
CON BIET? (Viet) do you understand?
C-RATS: C rations, canned field rations.
COM RATS: commuted rations; in lieu pay for meals eaten off base.
CORPSMAN: Navy medic serving with Marines.
COVER ASS: take precautions to avoid blame.
THE CROTCH: derogatory term for Marine Corps.
CRUISE: period of enlistment; tour of duty.
DEUCE-AND-A-HALF: 2 1/2 ton truck.
DI-DI (Viet.): leave, go, move out.
DI-DI MAU (Viet.): emphatic of Di-di.
DIDDY BAG: cloth, draw-string bag for small items.
DIDDY BOP: swagger; affected walk.
DINKY-DAU (Viet): crazy.
DOG-AND-PONY-SHOW: special presentation put on for visiting dignitaries.
DOUBLE TIME: quickly; at a run.
DRY FIRE: practice.
DRY RUN: practice.
DU-DIT (Viet): fuck you!
EIGHTH & EYE: Headquarters Marine Corps.
ENTRENCHING TOOL (E-TOOL): small folding field shovel.
EVERY SWINGING DICK: All hands, everyone.
EYE FUCK: scrutinize; inspect closely.
FARTSACK: mattress cover.
FIELD DAY: general cleanup of barracks.
FIELD SCARF: necktie.
FIELD STRIP: disassemble; take apart.
FIRE IN THE HOLE!: warning that explosives are about to be detonated.
FIRST SHIRT (ALSO TOP): First Sergeant.
FLOAT PHASE: sea deployment of a Marine unit.
FMF: Fleet Marine Force.
FOUR-BY: light truck.
FRONT LEANING REST POSITION: pushup position ("the Position").
GANG WAY!: stand back! move away!
GEDUNK: sweets or a store that sells sweets.
GI CAN: garbage can.
GIZMO: gadget; anything that defies description.
GOURD: head; where you hang your cover.
GREEN SIDE-OUT: woodland pattern camouflage.
GRAB A HAT: leave.
GRINDER: parade ground.
GUIDON: pennant bearing unit designation.
GUNG HO: lit. work together; (from Chinese) highly motivated.
GUNGY: gung ho.
GUNNY: Gunnery Sergeant.
GRABASS (ORGANIZED GRABASS): play; sports, frivolous activity.
GREEN MACHINE: Marine Corps.
HAM: Hairy Assed Marine; male Marine.
HAM AND MOTHERS: "Ham and Motherfuckers;" generally detested C-ration
meal posing as ham and
HARD CHARGER: motivated Marine.
HIGH-AND-TIGHT: standard Marine haircut; shaved sides and short on top.
HOOCH (Jap.): any kind of shelter, residence.
HONCHO (Jap.): boss; man in charge.
HOUSE MOUSE: Drill Instructor's go-fer.
HUMP: to march; to carry; to be burdened with.
HUSS: a favor; a break e.g., "gimme a huss;" archaic name for HU34D helicopter.
INCOMING!: hostile fire being received!
IRISH PENNANT: string dangling from clothing indicating unkempt appearance.
ITR: Infantry Training Regiment.
JIBS: teeth, esp. front incisors, e.g., "I'll bust your jibs."
JING (also jing-wa, Jap.): change; money.
JOE SHIT THE RAGMAN: bad example, un-squared-away Marine,
boyfriend of Rosy Rottencrotch.
JUNK-ON-THE-BUNK: complete clothing and equipment inspection
(also Things-on-the-Springs) laid out on the rack.
K-BAR: Marine-issue fighting knife.
LADDER (or ladder way): stairs.
LAI DAY (Viet.): come here!
LEAVE: authorized absence of more than 24 hours.
LOCK AND LOAD: arm and ready your weapon; get ready!
MAKE A HOLE!: stand back! gang way!
MAGGIE'S DRAWERS: red disc used on the rifle range to signify missing the target.
MOS: assigned job specialty.
MUSTANG (Mustanger): enlisted man who becomes an officer.
NON-QUAL: Marine who fails to fire a qualifying score at the rifle range.
OFFICE HOURS: summary court marshal, official inquiry or reprimand.
OFFICE POGUE: desk-bound Marine.
ONTOS: armored tracked vehicle mounting six 106 mm recoilless rifles.
OUTSTANDING!: exceptional; well done!
OVER THE HILL: absent without authorization.
OVER THE HUMP: more than halfway through enlistment.
PASSAGEWAY: corridor; hallway.
PISS CUTTER: envelope-shaped overseas cap.
PISS-AND-PUNK: bread and water punishment.
PISS TUBE: field urinal; rocket launcher (bazooka), which resembles one.
POGUE: lazy individual, also office worker.
POGEY BAIT: candy, sweets.
POLICE CALL: time allocated to clean up an area.
POLICE UP: clean up.
POOP (also dope, scoop): information.
POP-FLARE: hand held and launched aerial illumination flare.
PT: Physical Training; exercise.
QUARTERS: living space.
RACK: bed, bunk.
RAPPEL: descend from cliff or helicopter by rope.
RECON (also Force Recon): Force Reconnaissance Marine.
ROMP 'N' STOMP: to drill, march.
ROUND: bullet or artillery or mortar shell.
RUBBER LADY: inflatable air mattress.
SALT: experience; an old-timer Marine.
SALTY: smart-mouthed; opinionated.
SCOPE OUT: look at.
SCOSHI (or scosh'): small, short, a little bit.
SCUTTLEBUTT: rumors; a drinking fountain.
SEABAG: duffle bag.
SEA DUTY: billeted aboard a ship.
SEA GOING BELLHOP: derog. for Marine, from Marines assigned to the bridge of a vessel.
SEA STORY: a lie or an exaggeration.
SEA LAWYER: self-appointed expert.
SECURE: tie down or make fast; also to recycle or dispose of; to put something
in its proper place; to desist.
SEVEN-EIGHTY-TWO GEAR: field equipment; canvas web gear.
SHIT BIRD: messy or undisciplined; a fuck up.
SHIT CAN: (v) to dispose of; (n) garbage can.
SHORT: nearing the end of a tour of duty or enlistment.
SHORT ROUND: ordnance which is landing short of the intended target.
SHORT TIME: a very brief love affair.
SHORTTIMER: Marine nearing the end of an enlistment period.
SIX-BY (six-by-six): standard three-axle truck.
SIX-SIX-AND-A-KICK: The ultimate General court marshal punishment consisting of
six months forfeiture of pay, six months hard labor, and a
SKIPPER: captain; commanding officer.
SKIVVIE HONCHO: a lothario; a ladies man.
SKIVVIE HOUSE: brothel.
SLOPCHUTE: diner; restaurant.
SMOKING LAMP: authority to smoke when it is lit.
SNAP IN: practice, esp. on the rifle range.
SNOOPIN' AND POOPIN': reconnoitering.
SNOT LOCKER: nose.
SOUND OFF!: assertively voice.
SORRY 'BOUT THAT!: assertion of mock apology.
SPLIB: white Marine's term for black Marine.
SPUD LOCKER: pantry.
SQUARED AWAY: neat, orderly, organized.
SQUID: (derog.) sailor.
STACK ARMS!: command given to place 3 rifles in a pyramid.
STACKING SWIVEL: appendage near muzzle of rifle allowing stacked arms; neck.
STAND BY!: prepare.
STANDBY: waiting status.
STARCHIES: starched utilities.
STROKE BOOK: porno magazine.
SURVEY: dispose of; recycle.
TI TI (Viet.) (pron. tee-tee): little, small.
TOP: Sergeant Major.
TOPSIDE: upstairs; on deck.
TROPS: khaki tropical summer dress uniform.
TURN TO: begin work.
UA: Unauthorized Absence.
UD: Undesirable Discharge.
UTILITIES: olive drab field uniform.
WILLIE PETER: white phosphorus.
THE WORD: confirmed official information; the straight scoop.
ZERO-DARK-THIRTY: pre-dawn; early.