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Topic: Olive Drab
Replies: 2   Last Post: Aug 16, 2017 5:44 PM by: InletTiger15
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Olive Drab

[11]
Posted: Aug 16, 2017 5:25 PM
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Discussing men's underwear is not a hot topic in the scheme of things in my life, but a conversation with an old WW2 veteran brought back memories of experiences following WW2 and my marriage.

Most ground forces during WW2 were issued clothing items in that beautiful olive drab color., probably the ugliest color ever invented. Even our underwear and handkerchiefs were olive drab. Some GIs said we could never surrender because we did not have anything white to serve as a flag of truce.

The olive drab underwear, particularly the shorts, were made of an indestructible material. It was supposed to have been made from cotton but could have been a substitute for a bullet proof vest. Several ply of that material could have stopped a torpedo aimed at a battleship. A tug-of-war with five strong men on each side and using a rolled up pair of shorts as a rope, could not tear those rascals. They didn't fade, they didn't tear and they never wore out.

When I was discharged from the Army in early 1946, I had an ample supply of olive drab underwear, a supply that should last me for many years. After my discharge, I resumed my studies at the University of Florida. With the influx of veterans, many colleges built special housing for the married veterans. The old outdoor clothes line was usually filled with olive drab underwear flapping in the breeze, a sure sign a veteran was in residence.

In the fall of 1946, the future Mrs. Joe21 said "yes" to my proposal and we were married on Sept. 3, 1947. My entire underwear ensemble consisted of those olive drab beauties I inherited from Uncle Sam. Soon after our marriage, Mrs. Joe21 suggested I discard those olive drab undies for something more in line with civilian underwear, something white or colors. I saw no need to discard something still in almost perfect condition and, as I told her, I was not in the habit of dropping my pants in public to show everyone my underwear.

As is always the case, time passes and things gradually wear out. But, in this case, I believe Mrs. Joe21 was relegating my olive drab underwear to a rag bag and replacing them with white undershirts and colorful shorts. By the summer of 1950, there were no more olive drab underwear in my underwear drawer. I looked upon that rag bag as a status symbol.

In September 1950, Uncle Sam issued me a personal invitation to return to active duty for n all-expense paid vacation, this time to the Far East. I received an entirely new wardrobe and, you guessed it, another ample supply of olive drab underwear. My tour was for 14 months , or less, rather than the 3 1/2 years during WW2 so my underwear was in excellent shape when I returned home.

Arriving back in Florida after my discharge, I opened my duffel bag and said to Mrs. Joe21, "look what I've got" and showed her my new supply of olive drab underwear. We both had a big laugh and then I told her, "if it will make you happy you can put them in the rag bag".

And she did !!!!!!!


Re: Olive Drab

[1]
Posted: Aug 16, 2017 5:36 PM
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Don't remember seeing any of my Dad's olive drab underwear but I do remember seeing some of those handkerchiefs. Talk about a different time, so many men no longer even carry handkerchiefs, can't imagine our soldiers in Afghanistan carrying hankies!


Thank you for your service Joe***

[1]
Posted: Aug 16, 2017 5:44 PM
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