“The dream world of Walter Mitty continues to entrance the rabbit people. Rambo and his clones are all the rage. We note, however, that they seem to have got it wrong. This combination of bare skin and a gloomy visage is totally out of touch with reality. One does not enter a fight with his oiled muscles gleaming and the facial expression of a freshman who has just flunked math. One keeps his skin covered when there is any possibility of flashburns, and the killer hero, if he manifests any expression at all, grins.” – Gunsite Gossip, 1986
Jeff Cooper was a very astute man. Back in the late 80’s and early 90’s, the imaginary action hero was in fact just as described, oiled up and grimacing on the battlefield. Fast forward to 2009, and our Walter Mittys have changed their appearance to more closely emulate the true warrior; but their lack of understanding at the warrior’s mind is still evident in their grimacing faces. While real fighters are very serious about their work, I have never met a single combat vet or high-speed type that did not have a very well developed sense of humor.
Anyone who’s been in the service can attest to this – when they’re “on the job”, our soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines are all business. But off the job, the jokes and humor run free. Rarely will you find the sort of grim “end of the world as we know” sort of mindset that seems to dominate the websites and blogs of those self-styled “warrior-patriots”, people whose only combat action was that time they had to elbow for position at the Dunkin’ Donuts counter.