A US Air Force C-130 was scheduled to leave Thule Air Base, Greenland at
midnight. During the pilot's preflight check, he discovers that the
latrine holding tank is still full from the last flight. So a message is
sent to the base ops and an airman who was off duty is called out to
take care of it.
The young man finally gets to the flight line and makes his way to the
aircraft only to find that the latrine pump truck has been left outdoors
and is frozen solid, so he must find another one in the hangar, which
takes even more time. He returns to the aircraft and is less than
enthusiastic about what he has to do. Nevertheless, he goes about the
pumping job deliberately and carefully (and slowly) so as not to risk
As he's leaving the plane, the pilot stops him and says, "Son, your
attitude and performance has caused this flight to be late and I'm going
to personally see to it that you are not just reprimanded but punished."
Shivering in the cold, his task finished, he takes a deep breath, stands
up tall and says, "Sir, with all due respect, I'm not your son; I'm an
Airman in the United States Air Force. I've been in Thule, Greenland,
for 11 months without any leave, and reindeer's asses are beginning to
look pretty good to me. I have one stripe; it's two-thirty in the
morning, the temperature is 40 degrees below zero, and my job here is to
pump shit out of an aircraft. Now, just exactly what form of punishment
did you have in mind?"