Oh, I Am “Ate Up”

Have you ever wondered how legends begin?

This is the legend of how a one Russell Gayer got the phrase, “What’s So Funny?”  I dedicate this story to him, being as how I was the subject of a previous tale of his.

Now, if you ever were in the U.S. Army (or anyone else’s) then you have stories.  This one did happen (I changed some of it, for obvious reasons).  Two names are mentioned but the guy in question this actually happened to … well … his last name really was “Perry.”

SO …

Rochelle Wisoff-Fields has more than she can handle with these bad boys, but maintains the Royal Dignity as the FF Central leader of the pack, meaning the aspirin bottle is still fairly full.  For the next six minutes.

The phrase in the title “ate up” instead of “eaten up”(grammatically wrong, but that’s the Army for you) means you have failed immensely.

Photo by Madison Woods, creator of Friday Fictioneers.

Barbed wire prompt.jpg

At bootcamp, Private Russell was eating breakfast in the chow hall.  Some trainees waiting in line to eat were laughing (they weren’t even supposed to talk).

The Drill Sergeant approached.  He knew exactly why they were laughing.  “What’s so funny, gentlemen?”

A trainee giggled then whispered,  “Private Perry wet the bed last night!”

With a completely straight face, Drill whispered back, “There, you see?  It’s OK.  We’re all adults here.”  He turned, saw Perry, and hollered across the room, “Hey, PERRY!  Is that TRUE?”

Private Russell left chow fast to remove that pan of warm water hidden underneath Perry’s bunk.


BTW, this is me in 1996, Tegucigalpa, Honduras on a two-week Kansas Army National Guard Tour.  I had just been promoted to Specialist (Corporal) that year.  I played in the Governor of Kansas’ Own Band.  French Horn player.

Honduras 1996.jpg



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41 Responses to Oh, I Am “Ate Up”

  1. Dear Kent,

    Somehow I could see this actually happening. Of course I foresaw the pan of warm water. Too bad you didn’t have enough words for Perry’s retort. No doubt it would’ve been classic. En otras palabras jajajajajajajajajajajajajajajajajaja.


    Cuzzin’ Shelly reigning Queen of Fools

  2. wmqcolby says:

    Well, the truth of that story is Private Perry was pretty much dead to rights as to a retort. The other is that he didn’t wet the bed.
    I hope the boys will like this one.

  3. Mike says:

    Tricks and stones break bones. Like your tale of boot camp. Mike

  4. Ha.. yes that was funny.. I can see a retort coming up… I truly look forward to next week.

    Private Perry has a nice ring to it.. a little bit like Major Major.

  5. ansumani says:

    ha ha. Nice one. I like how you dragged two other FF legends into the story.

  6. rgayer55 says:

    What makes you think I’d do something like that? 🙂

    We pranksters have to stick together, don’t we? I hope Private Perry doesn’t decide to slip some Exlax into our MREs disguised as a chocolate bars. Things could get real messy.

  7. wmqcolby says:

    Hahahaha! Or put the Miralax in the canteen water.
    As for you doing something like that? Au contraire!
    Actually, the real Perry in the story didn’t wet the bed. Well, he did, but … I’ll let you figure out the rest. Needless to say, in real life, it was an embarrassing situation times ten.

  8. Dale says:

    Oh boys! What is it with boys and wanting to prank?
    Poor Private Perry… Wretched Russell! (I felt like misspelling but just couldn’t…)

  9. gahlearner says:

    LOL. So that’s how Russel’s blog got its name.

  10. wmqcolby says:

    Hahaha! Well, according to ME, that’s how he did. 😀

  11. plaridel says:

    funny, funny. i felt relieved that it wasn’t true. then again, even if it was true, i wouldn’t know the difference. 🙂

  12. wmqcolby says:

    Ohhhhh, don’t tease me! 😀 😀 😀

  13. A handsome picture and another funny story Kent.

  14. Sandra says:

    The lighter side of national service, though I did kind of feel sorry for Perry. And now I’m feeling sorry in advance for both you and Russell,( ‘cos he gonna get you!)

    • wmqcolby says:

      Hahahaha! Well, the real Perry did have an embarrassing moment, but that was … wow! 25 years ago! YIKES! As for “our Perry,” he hasn’t read it yet and it seems only natural that he and Russell have a story since Russell writes so many of them about him. I have a feeling Perry is Russell’s muse — we’ll call him “Trips Hickory.” 😀

      • rgayer55 says:

        It’s easy to work Perry into a story. He always finds a way to get me back. It would be fun to write a book together, alternating chapters.

      • wmqcolby says:

        I think you two should try it, really. Just for kicks to see how it works out. BTW, he hasn’t read this story yet. Someone needs to tell him … and to also tell him to get rid of blogspot and come to the good guys’ side.

  15. Alice Audrey says:

    You gotta watch out for those practical jokes. They tend to come back on you.

  16. wmqcolby says:

    I think it’s a guy thing. I never was a practical joker. I’m too honest. 😉

  17. wildchild47 says:

    I suppose “boys will be boys” … regardless of age or uniformed or not 😉

    And well, creative license to perhaps allow for one’s, ahem, right to some semblance of privacy and/or dignity?

    I guess the real truth is that if one can remember, share and laugh about moments in life, especially the embarrassing ones, with friends, buddies, then it’s not really so bad after all. Maybe this is what keeps us going through the rough times.

    Interesting story here – and well written 🙂

  18. Just like the army to do so! Real funny!!!

  19. wmqcolby says:

    Yeah, those drill sergeants couldn’t beat us up for cuss us out, but they did everything else to make our lives miserable! 😀

  20. IfeomaO says:

    Lovely story and photo 🙂

  21. That drill sergeant! So harsh. I particularly like the moment where “he knew exactly why they were laughing” but still asked what was funny. It said a lot about Drill’s character and his position with the men. You actually reveal a lot about him in 100 words—well done. I can’t imagine how embarrassing that whole thing must have been. Actually I can, because I remember an incident when I was five at school…but it didn’t happen in a chow hall with a drill sergeant making it a whole lot worse!

    • wmqcolby says:

      Gee whiz, Helena, I never saw that with the drill sergeant. I guess I did something right! Haha! Those guys made our lives miserable, but after a couple of weeks, they figure you out, you figure them out and they ease up on you. The incident with Private Perry was not quite what I wrote. It was a lot more delicate than that. But, it sure was funny! That was the last training cycle before they started mixing in girls. Thanks for your nice comments! 🙂

  22. Good story, Kent. Russell probably heard that expression first from a teacher. They’re always saying things like that. Your story was funnier, though. Well done. 😀 — Suzanne

  23. P.S. Good picture of you, Kent. 🙂 — Suzanne

  24. wmqcolby says:

    Thanks, Suzanne. Yes, I’m sure Russell heard that expression from a teacher, too. I understand he had his own desk in the Principal’s office.

    As for the picture, thank-you. Yes, I like that pic. I’m proud of having served but also to have gone places I wished I had when I was younger.

  25. subroto says:

    Ah! This sounds like the start of Friday Fictioneers’ three stooges series. Surely the revenge of Private Perry is up next.

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