View Full Version : Meeting cute girls, seeing future Marines

08-19-06, 06:25 PM
Meeting cute girls, seeing future Marines
Saturday August 19, 2006
AP National Writer

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) On a warm spring Tuesday, a 19-year-old girl walks into the Marine Recruiting Office and flings herself into the fake leather chair, adjusting a spaghetti strap on her skimpy tank top.

Marine Corps Sgt. Edward Green, in a pressed and neat uniform, greets her warmly, with a genuine smile and a handshake. Green has long dark lashes, tight shoulders and the chest of a wrestler. He's 23, opens doors for women and remembers everyone's names.

If girls are flirting with him, he says he doesn't notice. And he certainly doesn't respond.

This girl had filled out an online form from the Marine's recruiting web site asking for more information. Green called her up and invited her in.

For the next hour, an intense conversation ensues. She talks fast, her voice shaking at times as she explains that her father is urging her to enlist, that he wants her to have some structure in her life.

``I want the courage to stand up for myself,'' she says. ``I never looked up to my mother. She was nothing. She never did anything. I don't want to stay at home like my mother. But I can't do a push up, just to let you know. I don't know how. Can you teach me?''

She slouches forward onto the table, leaning her chin onto her folded hands and pouting for a moment.

He asks why she wants to be a Marine.

``I just want to be hot. I just want to be buff. I want to be fit,'' she sat of four say they would choose another assignment if they were allowed to, according to a 2005 internal Defense Department survey of recruiters, released in part last week in a General Accounting Office report.

Suicide, drugs and alcohol are a problem among recruiters in all branches. So is sexual misconduct.

``Look,'' says Green, grabbing a quick sandwich between recruiting sessions. ``It's easy to stay out of trouble at this. All you do is stay professional. Every day, all the time. I'm a Marine all the time, not just sometimes. I take that very seriously.''