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TYPICAL AMERICAN EXPRESSIONS

EXPRESSION

DEFINITION/EXAMPLE

A‑1

Excellent; first class;
Our Colonel is also an A‑1 pilot.

AAFES

Army Air Force Exchange Service;
We buy most of our office supplies from AAFES.

ABOUT RIGHT Adequate; correct;
The Captain thought that we would need twelve trucks, and the estimate was ABOUT RIGHT.
ABOVE BOARD Honest; straightforward;
Rapid advancement is likely uf one is consistently ABOVE BOARD.
ABREAST OF THE SITUATION

To know what is happening;
These reports keep the staff ABREAST OF THE SITUATION.

ACE Excellent; star;
Captain Bradley was an ACE engineer even before joining the Army.
ACE IN THE HOLE A surprise; an advantage;
The reserve force is the General's ACE IN THE HOLE.
ACQUIRE To obtain;
It is not uncommon for the victors in battle to ACQUIRE the weapons of the defeated enemy.
ACTING JACK Acting Sergeant;
Specialist Cooke is ACTING JACK while Sergeant Davis is away.
ACTION Activity; excitement;
There hasn't been any ACTION in the battle zone since early Tuesday.
ALIVE AND KICKING Very alert and active;
The 58th Infantry has been ALIVE AND KICKING since 0500 hours.
ALL FOR IT Agree with entirely;
This is a good plan and I am ALL FOR IT.
ALL OUT Complete;
The light scrimmaging has not turned in an ALL OUT war.
ALL SHOT RuIned;
If the bridge is destoryed, our placs will be ALL SHOT.
ALONG WITH, TO GO Agree with; to follow;
I advise you to go ALONG WITH the idea; it is very sound.
AMMO Ammunition;
Safety rules must be rigidly observed in handling AMMO.
ANCHORMAN The one who is last;
Being the last Jones was the ANCHORMAN in his group.
AROUND THE CLOCK A full day; 24 hours a day;
The staff worked AROUND THE CLOCK to finish on time.

ASAP

As soon as possible;
Since we are running low on ammunition, we need to land the helicopter ASAP.
ASK FOR IT Invite trouble;
He will ASK FOR IT if he fails to report as scheduled.
ATTACK JUMPS OFF The arrack begins;
The ATTACK JUMPS OFF at 0430 hours.
ATTACK STALLS The attack is retarded or slows down;
Our ATTACK STALLS whenever we encounter heavy fire.
AWOL Absent Without Officer Leave; Sometimes said to represent "After women and liquor" or "A wolf on the loose;"
The Sergeant was court martialed for being AWOL for nine days.
BABY A problem, job, or assignment;
Making the estmate of the situation is you BABY.
BACKBREAKER Difficult job;
Turning in all of these small tools is a BACKBREAKER.
BACKED UP BY Reinforced by;
The 58th Infantry will be BACKED UP BY supporting artillery.
BACKTRACK, TO To return over the same course or route;
Because of bad roads, the supply convoy had to BACKTRACK six miles.
BAD SHAPE, IN In a difficult position; in a bad physical condition;
Our reserve failed, so now we are really in BAD SHAPE.
BAG, TO Capture; to get;
We expect to BAG five hundred prisoners in the next twenty four hours.
BALL, ON THE Correct; efficient;
The G3 in that offis always on the BALL.
BANK ON, TO Depend or rely on;
Is it safe to BANK ON the Colonel returning tomorrow?
BARK UP THE WRONG TREE Look for a solution in the wrong place;
Smith couldn't get a correct answer because he was BARKING UP THE WRONG TREE.
BARREL THROUGH Travel or drive through quickly;
The armor will have to BARREL THROUGH the gap in hot pursuit.
BARREL TESTED Proven worthy;
The division was a BATTLE TESTED unit after four months of combat.
BEAT, TO Defeat;
Our purpose in every encounter is to beat the enemy.
BEAT AROUND THE BUSH Delay coming directly to the point;
Instead of telling the truth, they tried to BEAT AROUND THE BUSH.
BEAT TO THE PUNCH Take action before another acts;
We must get there first in order to BEAT them TO THE PUNCH.
BEAT FEET Run;
We had better BEAT FEET out of here.
BEATS ME I don't understand this;
What does this dispatch mean? It BEATS ME.
BEEF UP, TO Reinforce;
We'll have to BEEF UP the main effort with extra artillery support.
BE IN CHARGE OF, TO Command;
You are supposed to BE IN CHAGE OF these soldiers.
BE ON TAP, TO To be present; ready, waiting;
Make sure that you are here at 0800 hours; the Commanding General will also BE ON TAP.
BE STUCK WITH To be obliged to keep or continue on with something;
Charles asked for the job initially, and now he is STUCK WITH it.
BE UP AGAINST To be faced with;
Being inexperienced, he really doesn't know what he is UP AGAINST when he accepts a mission like that.
BENDS OVER BACKWARDS To try hard; so all in your power;
Bill BENDS OVER BACKWARDS to be nice to everyone.
BET Wager, often without putting up stakes;
I'll BET he doesn't finish his project on time.
BIG PICTURE, THE Complete view or plan;
After the briefing, we could see the BIG PICTURE much better.
BIRD DOG, TO Supervise or watch closely;
I'm going over there to BIRD DOG the problem tonight.
BIRD'S EYE VIEW Overall explanation;
Before starting the movement, I will give you a BIRDS EYE VIEW of the plan.
BLAB To talk without discretion;
Tell someone a secret and they will surely BLAB it.
BLACKED OUT Without lights for security;
All vechicles will be BLACKED OUT tonight.
BLAST, TO Strike a hard blow;
This tank is able to BLAST any pillbox.
BLAST, TO HAVE A To have fun; a good time;
Now that the war is over, we will have a BLAST when we get home.
BLINK, ON THE Not functioning;
My jeep is on the BLINK. May I borrow yours?
BLITZ, TO Attack and overcome quickly;
With this plan, we hope to Blitz the enemy.
BLOW A BRIDGE Destory a bridge;
Great skill is required to safely and effectively BLOW A BRIDGE.
BLOW UP; BLOW YOUR TOP; BLOW A GASKET; BLOW A FUZE; BLOW YOUR STACK. To become angry or excited; to lose self control;
The colonel BLEW his stack whe he saw the sloppily written report.
BOG DOWN Slow down or stop.
The attack will BOG DOWN if we do not get more fire support.
BOOMERANG, TO Come back and cause unexpected harm to the orginator;
You don't want this whole thing to BOOMERANG on you.
BOTTLE UP Trap or encircle;
If we attack at once, we will BOTTLE UP the enemy.
BOWL OVER Defeat in one blow;
With a strong reserve, our team could easily BOWL OVER all opponents.
BRAIN Intelligent person;
He was the BRAIN in class today.
BRASS, THE High ranking officers;
The BRASS will inspect us today, so get everything ready.
BREAKDOWN An analysis;
Give me a BREAKDOWN of your air requirements for tomorrow.
BREAKDOWN Failure;
The message did not get through because of communications BREAKDOWN.
BREAK OUT AGAIN, TO Occur again;
We believe heavy firing is about to BREAK OUT AGAIN.
BREATHE DOWN THE NECK Follow closely in pursuit; It is sometimes dangerous to BREATHE DOWN THE NECK of an unpredictable enemy.
BRIEFING Explantion of a plan;
To let the men know what is going on..Before the attack begins, the soldiers are given a complete BRIEFING.
BRING OUT A POINT, TO Illistrate;
I want to BRING OUT the following POINT as a summary.
BRING TO LIGHT, TO Reveal; illustrate;
This intelligence is likely to BRING TO LIGHT to presence of new enemy reinforcements.
BUFFALO, TO Confuse;bewilder;
An instructor who tried to BUFFALO students will lose their respect.
BUG Defect;
This radio sat has a BUG in it.
BUG, TO To bother or annoy;
It is not smart to BUG the General with trivial, insignificant matters.
BUILD AN EMPIRE Enlarge; increase;
That supervisor is trying to BUILD AN EMPIRE in his unit.
BUMP INTO, TO Meet; engage;
Opposing flank movements tend to BUMP INTO each other.
BURN A COPY To Xerox; to make a Xerox copy;
Specialist Smith, BURN me A COPY of those orders.
BUST, TO Demote in military rank or grade;
Sergeant Yeager was absent without leave and was BUSTED to Specialist.
BUTT HEADS WITH, TO Argue; engage in a fight or violet discussion;
They are going to BUMP HEADS WITH each other because they both insist that the other person is wrong.
BUTTON, ON THE Exactly correct;
I answered every question on the BUTTON, so my grade is 100%.
BUTTON UP, TO Finish; close;
This memorandum will serve to BUTTON UP the issue.
BUY, I'LL Accept; agree with;
That is a good plan, I'll BUY it.
CALL YOUR SHOT, TO Estimate correctly;
Just as you said, The enemy is trying to envelop us, G2. You sure know how to CALL YOUR SHOT.
CAN MAKE IT Arrive on time; be there;
Even though I have a meeting at 8 o'clock, I believe I CAN MAKE IT at 9 o'clock.
CANNED MESSAGE A prepared message;
During pracital exercises, we use many CANNED MESSAGES.
CAN'T BE BOTHERED WITH To be unwilling to do;
I CAN'T BE BOTHERED WITH that job. I have too many others.
CAN'T PUT ONE'S FINGER ON Cannot locate or specify;
This radio is on the blink, and I CAN'T PUT MY FINGER ON what's wrong.
CAN'T SEE THE FOREST FOR THE TREES Too busy with details to see the overall plan;
All the men in the division are not kept informed; therefore, the CAN'T SEE THE FOREST FOR THE TREES.
CARE FOR To like;
Does John really CARE FOR Jane?
CARRY ON WITH, TO Continue;
After the briefing, each section will be able to CARRY ON WITH its work.
CARRY OUT AN ORDER, TO Execute an order;
To CARRY OUT AN ORDER efficiently, one must first understand it.
CATCH, THERE'S A There is a trick or concealed drawback;
This plan is OK, but there is a CATCH in it; we do not have enough transportation.
CATCH ON, TO Understand;
We don't want them to CATCH ON to our plan because he is the enemy during the field exercise.
CAUGHT OFF BASE Unprepared;
We had better think of a good answer if we don't want to be CAUGHT OFF BASE.
CAUGHT SHORT, TO BE Unprepared; without supply;
We will need extra ammunition; we cannot be CAUGHT SHORT.
CHECK! Right! Correct!
Is this what you wanted? CHECK! Thanks.
CHECK IT OUT To look into a matter;
Smith said that there was 6 inches of snow on the ground. CHECK IT OUT.
CHECK UP ON Verify or inspect;
Good staff officers CHECK UP ON orders being carried out correctly.
CHEW OUT, TO Reprimand;
It is not good to CHEW OUT a person in the presense of others.
CHEWED TO PIECES Severly damaged;
The enemy forces were CHEWED TO PIECES by our accuract artillery fire.
CHICKEN OUT To lose heart; abandon a course of action;
The attack was proceeding nicely until the second platoon CHICKENED OUT.
CHIEF AND INDIANS Leaders and assistants;
There are too many CHEFS and not enough INDIANS in this office.
CHIN, TO TAKE IT ON THE To endure suffering;
Because we are not yet prepared, we will have to take it on the CHIN is the enemy attacks now.
CHOPPER Helicopter;
The wounded soldiers were taken to the hospital be CHOPPER.
CHOW Food;
What time is CHOW served in the cafeteria?

CLEAN UP, TO

Finish;
Our division took two days to CLEAN UP pockets of resistence.

CLEAN OUT

Definite, specific;
It was undoubtedly a CLEAN CUT victory.

CLEAR UP, TO Explain; solve;
I don't understand this point. Will you plase CLEAR it UP for me?
CLICK Work harmoniously;
Well drilled units can be expected to CLICK in any situation.
CLOBBER Destory; deliver hard blows;
Our overpowering tanks will CLOBBER the enemy reserves.
CLOCKWORK Smoothly;
The operation was running like CLOCKWORK.
CLOSE SHAVE Just barely successful; just barely avoiding an accident;
The enemy attack failed to destory the bridge, but it was a CLOSE SHAVE.
CLOSE THE PINCERS Surround; isolate;
By a double envelopement, we can CLOSE THE PINCERS on the enemy.
CLOUD THE ISSUE Make something less easy to understand;
His lengthy explanations tend to CLOUD THE ISSUE.
CLUTTERED UP Congested; includes many minor details;
Your overlay is too CLUTTERED UP to understand.
COCK AND BULL STORY An unbelievable, improbable story presented as truth;
His explanation was just a COCK AND BULL STORY.
COLD WAR Intense ideological rivalry just short of military conflict; war without shooting;
The conflict between the East and the West is a COLD WAR.
COMB THROUGH Search thoroughly;
Someone ought to COMB THROUGH these reports carefully to find any errors.
COME OUT IN FOOD SHAPE, TO Withstand an attack;
All regiments will COME OUT IN GOOD SHAPE if the plan is executed correctly.
COME UP WITH THE SOLUTION, TO Solve; to find an answer;
You know the problem, now your job is to COME UP WITH THE SOLUTION.
COOK UP, TO Prepare; make a plan;
Try to COOK UP something new to surprise the enemy.
COUNT ON, TO Depend or rely on;
To COUNT ON others all of the time is unwise. One must learn to be self reliant.
COVER A LOT OF GROUND Discuss a lare amount;
We have to COVER A LOT OF GROUND during this period.
COVER THE HIGH POINTS Cover the important points;
I want to COVER THE HIGH POINTS once again so that you will understand the lessen thoroughly.
CRACK DOWN Deal with severely;
He will CRACK DOWN on us if we don't complete all of the reading assignments.
CRACKPOT One given to ecentric or lunatic notions;
That CRACKPOT thinks he can ski in Kansas during the month of July.
CRACKUP An accident;
Three fighter planes had a CRACKUP on landing.
CRANK UP Start;
It's nearly time to cross the initial point; CRANK UP your motors.
CRAP OUT Stop functioning; fall asleep;
Boy, what a place for this truck to CRAP OUT!
CROP UP, TO Appear suddenly or unexpectedly; to occur;
Remember how you handled the situation because it is likely to CROP UP again.
CROSSCHECK, TO Verify from different sources;
I want you to check with the Captain and to CROSSCHECK with everyone else involved.
CURTAIN OF FIRE Barrage;
Our troops advanced behind a heavy CURTAIN OF FIRE.
CURVE BALL Trick, unfair solution;
There are no CURVE BALLS in this examination.
CUSTOMER A user of;
Division Artillery is the big CUSTOMER for 155mm shells.
CUT OFF Surround; isolate;
In the defense of an extended front, some units may be CUT OFF for a while.
CUT TO THE BONE Reduce to adsolute minimum;
If we send this group to Corps, we will be CUT TO THE BONE.
DARK, IN THE Ignorant of;
What does this mean, G2? Don't keep me in the DARK.
DEAD WEIGHT Heavy or oppressive burden; useless;
T hat clerk is just DEAD WEIGHT in the orderly room.
DEAD DUCK; DEAD IN THE WATER Precarious position; defeated; He should prepare throughly for his mission, or he'll be a DEAD DUCK.
DEAD WOOD Worthless;
I'd like to transfer the soldiers who are just DEAD WOOD in the section,
DEADLINE Prevent the use of;
We should DEADLINE that vehicle because the brakes are faulty.
DEAL To distribute playing cards in a card game;
Mary DEALS cards quickly.
DEAL ME IN Include;
DEAL ME IN if you go to the movies.
DEAL ME OUT Exclude; do not rely or depend on;
DEAL ME OUT if you go shopping.
DEAL WITH Do business with; handle a situation;
We must DEAL WITH that problem before we can begin.
DEUCE AND A HALF 2 1/2 ton truck;
That DEUCE AND A HALF has plenty of power.
D DAY Day of attack;
We were all nervous when we woke up because we knew it was D DAY.
DENT Make a slight gain;
Our secondary effort will probably only DENT their lines.
DIG OUT, TO Discover; study;
You will have to DIG OUT these experience actors from FM 101.10
DISH IT OUT, TO Give hard blows;
We've taken a lot of damage; now it's our turn to DISH IT OUT.
DIVVY UP Divide;
The Supply Sergeant will DIVVY UP the rations for each company.
DO YOU MIND Are you willing;
I know you are busy, but DO YOU MIND coming early tomorrow?
DONE FOR Finished; defeated;
If the storm hits now, we'll be DONE FOR; we have no cold weather gear.
DONE IN Tired;
After sitting in class all day. I'm really DONE IN.
DON'T BET ON IT Don't depend or rely on it; I will try to be there but DON'T BET ON IT.
DON'T FIGHT THE PROBLEM Accept things as they are; don't offer resistance;
I know that this is a difficult matter, but DON'T FIGHT THE PROBLEM. We must work slowly and carefully.
DOUGH Money;
I don't have enough DOUGH to buy that expensive computer.
DOVETAIL Coincide;
The adjacent division's plas for the attack DOVETAIL very well our own.
DOWN A BLIND ALLEY Reach an impasse;
You're DOWN A BLIND ALLEY, we won't get extra trucks for this movement.
DOWN THE HOME STRETCH Finishing or ending;
We'll be going DOWN THE HOME STRETCH in Phase I in two weeks.
DRAG OUT, TO To last a long time; slow;
The attack through the fortified position is likely to DRAG OUT for some time.
DRAW THE LINE Prohibit from going any further;
When it comes to smoking during instruction, he DRAWS THE LINE.
DREAM UP Think up or create from nothing;
Boy, he can really DREAM UP the answers.
DRIVING AT An attempt to communicate an idea;
I do not know what he is trying to tell us; do you know what he is DRIVING AT?
DROP THE BALL Committed an error; missed an opportunity;
We certainly DROP THE BALL when we didn't follow the instructions in the manual.
DRUCK, BLASTED, FRIED, BLINKED, STIFF, BOILED, STONED, SWACKED, HIGH, CROCKED, TIPSY Intoxicated;
At the party, Larry got DRUCK before I arrived.
DUCK Evade or avoid;
Let's DUCK into the nearest building to get away from sniper fire.

DUD, A

A disappointing failure;
The comedian was a DUD; his jokes were not funny.

EAGER BEAVER

First in line; volunteer;
Captain Bean is an EAGER BEAVER; he is always happy to take on any mission.

EARMARK

Set aside for a specific purpose;
Your infantry battalion is EARMARKED for division reserve.

EGGS IN ONE BASKET,  ALL YOUR

To venture everything in one enterprise; chances of success in one effort;
Make out three separate plans; don't put all your EGGS IN ONE BASKET.

END PRODUCT

The result;
The END PRODUCT of this training showed up well in the training test.

END RUN AROUND, TO MAKE AN

Envelop;
Our best course of action is to make an END RUN AROUND the enemy's left flank.

EYEBALL TO EYEBALL

Face to face;
Our doughboys fought EYEBALL TO EYEBALL in the enemy trenches.

EYE ON, TO KEEP AN

Watch closely;
You ought to keep an EYE ON enemy activity.

FALL DOWN ON

Fail; to be inefficient in;
This operation is of supreme importance. No one must FALL DOWN ON the job.

FAN OUT, TO

Disperse; deploy;
The leading battalion will FAN OUT to cover our advance.

FEDERAL CASE, MAKE A

Exaggerate; stress something which is not important;
Don't make a FEDERAL CASE out of this matter because it's not very important.

FEED, TO

Send; transmit;
The job of the division is to FEED G2 information on daylight movements of the enemy.

FIFTY‑FIFTY

Half and half; equal;
Let's split the dinner bill FIFTY‑FIFTY.

FIGHT TOOTH AND NAIL, TO

Fight heavily; closely engage;
To take that hill, you'll have to FIGHT TOOTH AND NAIL.

FIGURE OUT, TO

Understand; solve;
Speak slowly so that I can FIGURE OUT what you are trying to say.

FILL THE GAP

Stop a breakthrough;
We were threatened, but arrived in time to FILL THE GAP.

FILL IN THE GAPS

Provide missing information;
We FILL IN THE GAPS on our intelligence of the enemy by careful observation.

FINE TOOTH COMB, WITH A

Search very carefully;
Search the office with a FINE TOOTH COMB for the missing reports.

FINGERTIPS, TO HAVE AT YOUR

Available; accessible;
What's your estimate, G3? 
Do you have it at your FINGERTIPS ?

FINISH OFF

Defeat; end;
When that last strong point surrenders, we can FINISH OFF the rest easily.

FIRM UP, TO

Complete; finish;
The General wants us to FIRM UP all plans by 1300 hours.

FIRST SHIRT

First Sergeant;
When the FIRST SHIRT is not around, I am in charge.

FIX, IN A BAD

In trouble;
When the jeep axle broke, we were really in a bad FIX.

FIX THE ENEMY, TO

Keep the enemy inactive;
The base of fire serves to FIX THE ENEMY in place.

FLAIR UP, TO

Begin action;
Sporadic firing is expected to FLAIR UP all through the night.

FLAP, IN A

In great confusion;
Because of a lack of information, the staff was in a FLAP.

FOLLOW‑UP, TO

Verify; supervise;
Staff officers are to FOLLOW UP on all plans and orders issued.

FORCE one's HAND

Cause one to reveal planned action;
This reconnaissance may cause me to FORCE MY HAND.

FOR THE BIRDS

Unrealistic;
The irresponsible answer he gave us is FOR THE BIRDS.

FOULED UP

Wrong; thwarted; confused;
Because of unexpected guerrilla activity, all our plans for secrecy were FOULED UP.

FOXHOLE

A single soldier's fighting position;
Sergeant Smith told all the soldiers to dig a FOXHOLE.

FREEZE, TO

Restrict or stop in place;
If there is not enough time to evacuate civilians, it will be necessary to FREEZE them in place.

FRESH BLOOD

Reinforcements or replacements;
The enemy was waiting for FRESH BLOOD before making a new attack.

FRIEND OR FOE

Ally or enemy;
We did not know if the troop we saw in the distance was a FRIEND OR FOE .

FRITTER AWAY, TO

Waste; employ piecemeal;
An uncoordinated attack may cause you to FRITTER AWAY your advantage.

G1

General staff member responsible for personnel issues, i.e. assignments, morale, and discipline;
G1 has been working around the clock to get our replacements here.

G2

General staff member responsible for gathering information about the enemy force;
The enemy is trying to envelop us, just as the G2 predicted.

G3

General staff member responsible for operations and training;
The Corps G3 gave us a brief summary of Corps Operations.

G4

General staff member responsible for logistical issues, i.e., maintenance, bookkeeping, and supply;
G4 , are the plans for the forward movement finalized yet?

GEAR

Equipment;
All right, men, make sure all your GEAR is clean.

GADGET

Any mechanical device;
What's that GADGET, Captain? I think that it is a special tool for radios.

GEARED TO

To prepare or adapt to a particular situation;
Our advance must be GEARED TO that of the adjacent divisions so we can accomplish the mission.

GET ACTION

Obtain results;
We need that material right away.  We must GET ACTION on the requisition.

GET A LUCKY BREAK

To be fortunate; gain an advantage;
We will GET A LUCKY BREAK if there is no heavy precipitation.

GET AHEAD, TO

Advance;
Don't try to GET AHEAD too fast.

GET A KICK OUT OF

To enjoy;
I really GET A KICK OUT OF that humorous person.

GET ALONG WITHOUT, TO

Exist without; to tolerate the absence of;
We will have to GET ALONG WITHOUT hot meals for two or three days.

GET AROUND A DIFFICULTY, TO

Find an answer;
A resourceful staff officer knows how to GET AROUND A DIFFICULTY.

GET AWAY WITH

Succeed by taking a chance;
You may GET AWAY WITH it this time, but you won't always be so lucky.

GET BY WITH, TO

Manage; succeed;
We may have to GET BY WITH only a few men because we have many training exercises to support.

GET GOING

Begin; start;
Sergeant, GET GOING on the report because I will need it in fifteen minutes.

GET HANDS ON

Obtain;
Do you know where to GET your HANDS ON any more ammunition right away?

GET IN THE ACT

Join in doing something, usually without being asked;
Every time we plan to go to town, he tries to GET IN THE ACT.

GET IN YOUR HAIR

To bother; to annoy;
That child really GETS IN MY HAIR.

GET LOST

Go away;
I told the troublemaker to GET LOST; we do not want any distractions while we are working.

GET ON THE STICK

Get ready; Start moving;
We have to GET ON THE STICK if we want to get to the next village by nightfall.

GET OUT OF

To avoid;
He GOT OUT OF the call by going on sick call.

GET OVER

To overcome the bad effects;
He GOT OVER his illness quickly.

GET IN TOUCH WITH, TO

Communicate with;
If you want to GET IN TOUCH WITH the Colonel, it is best to call the office.

GET ON WITH

Continue;
Excuse the delay, class -- let's GET ON WITH the lesson.

GET RID OF, TO

Eliminate; send away;
Prior to combat, we want to GET RID OF all physically unfit soldiers.

GET ROLLING

Begin; start;
Promptly at 2030 hours, the column will GET ROLLING.

GET THE HANG OF

To understand the general idea;
I can't GET THE HANG OF this complex procedure.

GET THE SHOW ON THE ROAD

Begin; start;
We have been ordered to GET THE SHOW ON THE ROAD at 2245.

GET THE WORD

To find out the information;
I GOT THE WORD about the next problem.

GET TOGETHER WITH

To meet or confer with;
G2 and G3 GET TOGETHER WITH each other on all operations.

GI

Government Issue, as in a soldier;
Every GI has opportunities for advancement.

GI

Government Issue;
Our GI clothing is given free in wartime.

GIMMICK

A troublesome point or hidden disadvantage; a device;
This GIMMICK is causing the bearing to wear away.

GINGERLY

Softly; carefully;
Mines must be placed in a position GINGERLY.

GIZMO

Anything whose name you don't know;
What's that GIZMO?  It's a new safety device.

GIVE A HAND; LEND A HAND

Help;
He will GIVE OR LEND A HAND to help move the furniture.

GIVE A RUNDOWN ON

Give a summary of;
GIVE me A RUNDOWN ON the situation; I must brief the Colonel in 15 minutes.

GIVE AWAY

Fail to deceive; to make known;
Those newly cut trees in that area sure GIVE AWAY our position.

GIVE GROUND

Withdraw; fall back;
The enemy is expected to GIVE GROUND slowly and stubbornly.

GIVE IT THE ONCE OVER

Scrutinize or examine;
This order needs checking . . . GIVE IT THE ONCE OVER, will you?

GIVE IT THE SHOTGUN METHOD

Do quickly;
Don't try to GIVE IT THE SHOTGUN METHOD.  I want you to be specific.

GIVE THE BROAD BRUSH, TO

Cover in very general terms;
It will take just two minutes to GIVE THE BROAD BRUSH to the situation.

GIVE THE HIGHLIGHTS

Cover only the most important points;
Reports which GIVE THE HIGHLIGHTS are useful in getting the overview quickly.

GIVE THE NOD TO, TO

Approve;
Tomorrow I may decide to GIVE THE NOD TO your suggestion.

GIVE THE GREEN LIGHT

Signal to continue; to signal agreement;
The bottleneck is cleared up, so GIVE them THE GREEN LIGHT.

GIVE THE ONE-TWO PUNCH TO

Strike your hardest blows;
Because of our artillery and pre‑planned air strikes, we are in a position to GIVE them THE ONE-TWO PUNCH.

GIVE THE WORKS, TO

To give everything needed I required;
Now it's time to GIVE them THE WORKS.

GIVE UP

Surrender;
If you're surrounded don't GIVE UP.  We will get help to you somehow.

GO ALONG WITH

Agree;
I don't GO ALONG WITH what you recommend, Captain.  We need more time and more soldiers to accomplish this mission.

GOBBLEDY‑GOOK

Unintelligible information;
What is that GOBBLEDY‑GOOK?  It's a cryptographic message.  Here is a clear text.

GOBBLE UP

Capture; to take;
A rapid advance may GOBBLE UP many prisoners of war.

GO FOR BROKE

A final desperate effort;
We will have to GO FOR BROKE or face certain defeat.

GO FOR RECORD

Do something officially;
The General remarked to the staff prior to engaging in combat for the first time, "Now we GO FOR RECORD.”

GO OVER

To be received; accepted;
Valerie GOES OVER big at the pool in her new bikini.

GO OVER LIKE A LEAD BALLOON

Not well received;
His old jokes GO OVER LIKE A LEAD BALLOON.

GOES OUT

Fails to function;
My receiver GOES OUT as soon as I move it.

GOING OFF HALF‑COCKED

Speaking or acting without proper preparation;
The commander was unhappy with our briefing; that's what we get for GOING OFF HALF-COCKED.

GOOD DEAL

Wonderful; To one's liking;
How do you like your new job?  It's a GOOD DEAL.

GOOFED OFF

To avoid work; to act foolishly;
That young soldier is lazy; he GOOFED OFF all day.

GOOFED UP

Made a mistake;
He GOOFED UP on his first repair job.

GOOSE EGG

Zero; failure;
He received a GOOSE EGG for his effort in the test.

GOT IT MADE

Assured of success; no need to worry;
If this meeting solves the problem, you've GOT IT MADE.

GO TO POT

Deteriorate; fall to pieces; become worthless;
Without good leadership, any unit will soon GO TO POT.

GO THROUGH THE MILL

Experience; to undergo hardship;
Soldiers have to GO THROUGH THE MILL to be successful.

GRAVEYARD SHIFT

From 2200-0600 hours; night work;
It's your turn next month as duty officer on the GRAVEYARD SHIFT.

GRAVY

Something extra; benefit beyond what is due or expected;
These extra rounds of ammunition are just GRAVY.

GREASE MONKEY

Mechanic;
It is easier for a GREASE MONKEY to repair the truck than for the supply sergeant to repair it.

GREAT DEAL

Many; much; lots of;
Have you seen a GREAT DEAL of Mary lately?  No, she has been on leave.

GRIPE, TO

Complain; voice objections to;
When morale is low, the soldiers are sure to GRIPE.

GROUNDED

Not permitted to fly;
All of our pre-planned observation missions were GROUNDED during the snowstorm.

GROUND FLOOR, TO GET IN ON THE

To be one of the first; have an opportunity to share in founding a promising enterprise;
He advanced quickly because he was able to GET IN ON THE GROUND FLOOR.

GROUND RULE

A normal procedure; a fixed rule;
We have a no GROUND RULE for such actions.  You must follow formal procedures.

GROUND WORK

Basic detail work;
The early GROUND WORK on the plan was done by the Assistant G3.

GUM UP

Spoil; do poorly;
I don't want to GUM UP this job; it's important to my future.

GUTS

Bravery; the will to fight;
The soldier with the rifle is the one who has the GUTS in battle.

HACKED OFF; BURNED UP

Angry;
I'm really HACKED OFF at that guy ‑ he ran into my car.

HAD IT, YOU'VE

You're finished; you have no other chance;
If you're under an atomic burst, brother, YOU'VE HAD IT.

HALF‑BAKED IDEA

An unrealistic, foolish idea;
Going on this trip in the summer was not well thought out; it was a HALF‑BAKED IDEA.

HAND‑IN‑GLOVE WITH

Closely related; close together;
The assistant G4 for transportation works HAND‑IN‑GLOVE WITH G3 on movement.

HANDLE

To do; accomplish; take charge of;
I think Sergeant Jones can HANDLE this situation; he is very sensible.

HANDS ARE TIED

Cannot act;
I cannot disobey my superior's orders; my HANDS ARE TIED.

HANG ON

Persevere; continue to resist;
We can HANG ON for eight hours.  Our relief is on the way.

HARD AND FAST RULE

Invariable; fixed;
There is no HARD AND FAST RULE in such an unusual situation.

HARD GO OF IT

Difficulty;
The troops in defense were having a HARD GO OF IT. They need more field training.

HASH IT OVER

Discuss the situation;
You'd better HASH IT OVER with the commanding officer.

HASSLE

A fight or argue;
G4 and the Ordnance Officer had a big HASSLE about maintenance.

HAVE A BALL

Have a good time;
We HAD A BALL at the party last night.

HAVE A CLUE

To have an idea of; understand;
I don't HAVE A CLUE about how we can solve this sensitive problem.

HAVE PROBLEM WHIPPED, LICKED, SOLVED

To be within sight of a successful solution;
After hours of discussion, I think we HAVE THIS PROBLEM SOLVED.

HAVE IT IN FOR _ _ _

To wait for the chance to do someone harm;
His wife HAS IT IN FOR HIM because he came home late.

HAVE TWO STRIKES AGAINST

To have many disadvantages at the beginning;
Smith already HAS TWO STRIKES AGAINST him; he is loud and stupid.

HAVE A GO AT IT, TO

Attempt; try;
It will be a difficult stream to bridge, but the engineers want to HAVE A GO AT IT anyway.

HAVE A HEYDAY

Have things one's own way;
During the pursuit, our Air Forces will HAVE A HEYDAY with the retreating columns.

HAVE AN EDGE

Have an advantage;
We HAVE AN EDGE over the enemy in firepower.

HAVE IT MADE

Be successful;
If we can cut off the enemy's retreat, we will HAVE IT MADE.

HAVE ON HAND

To have; own;
Each unit makes a daily report on how much gas they HAVE ON HAND.

HAVE one's HANDS FULL

Very busy or occupied;
Go to see my assistant because I HAVE my HANDS FULL right now.

HAZY ABOUT

Doubtful; uncertain;
I am still HAZY ABOUT when my unit will move.

HEADACHE

Trouble or difficulty;
Maintenance of vehicles during an attack is always a HEADACHE .

HEAD ON, MEET

Meet squarely or face to face;
If we commit our reserve here, our two forces will meet HEAD ON.

HEDGE, TO

To guess; assume; Don't try to HEDGE ON the date the replacements are due.  You've got to be more specific.

HELD UP

Delayed;
Our forces were HELD UP by heavy enemy fire.

HELTER‑SKELTER

Unorganized;
The enemy patrol ran HELTER‑SKELTER back to their own lines.

HEM IN

Surround; isolate;
By this turning movement, we can HEM IN the enemy unit.

HIGH AND DRY

Isolated; abandoned;
The cracked‑up plane was left HIGH AND DRY in No Man's Land.

HIGHLIGHT

The most important part;
The HIGHLIGHT of this operation will be the surprise element.

HIGHLIGHT, TO

Emphasize; stress;
The purpose of this booklet is to HIGHLIGHT the slang you will hear most often.

HIGH POWERED

Important;
He was made Corps Chief of Staff, which is a very HIGH POWERED job.

HIGHTAIL, TO

Leave hurriedly;
We want the enemy to HIGHTAIL to the rear without a real fight.

HIKE ON FOOT, TO

March;
There is no transportation, so the troops will have to HIKE ON FOOT.

HINGE

To depend on;
Success of the battle will HINGE on the good weather.

HIT OR MISS

Disorganized; poorly done;
This is sloppily done; it looks like a HIT OR MISS job to me.

HITS THE NAIL ON THE HEAD

Exactly correct;
Your perceptive solution HITS THE NAIL ON THE HEAD.

HIT THE ROAD

Begin; start;
Let's HIT THE ROAD.  We've still got three hours to drive to the command post.

HIT THE SACK

Go to sleep;
I'm tired so I think I'll HIT THE SACK.

HOLD AGAINST

To resent or bear ill will toward someone;
He is very impolite.  I will always HOLD THAT AGAINST him.

HOLD DOWN

Reduce to a minimum;
To preserve surprise, we will have to HOLD DOWN all noise.

HOLD OUT

Continue to resist;
You must HOLD OUT until relieved by the link‑up forces.

HOLD OUT (a unit)

Keep in reserve;
The 60th Infantry will HOLD OUT one battalion, subject to division orders.

HOLD UP one's END

Do one's share of the work;
Each staff member must HOLD UP their own END of the load, or we will never meet our deadline.

HOLDING THE BAG

Held responsible;
If the rations don't arrive, the mess officer will be left HOLDING THE BAG .

HOOAH

Referring to or meaning anything and everything except "no;" yes; great; understood; thank you;
Are you ready to do a marathon?  HOOAH!  Anytime, Drill Sergeant.

HOOK UP WITH, TO

To join; to link up
Our flank patrol is to HOOK UP WITH those of the adjacent division.

HORNS OF A DILEMMA, ON THE

In a difficult position;
What is your position?  I'm on the HORNS OF A DILEMMA.

HORSE AROUND

Engage in rough boisterous fun;
His chances for promotion are poor, for he HORSES AROUND instead of working.

HOT NEWS/POOP, THE

Latest important information;
What is the HOT NEWS/POOP from the front?

HOT POTATO

Difficult problem or situation;
That question is some HOT POTATO.  Have you any ideas on it?

HOT SKINNY

Information;
What's the HOT SKINNY on my TDY orders?

HOT SHOT

Very efficient; very important person;
This efficient regimental S3 is really a HOT SHOT on everything.

HOT UNDER THE COLLAR

Angry;
The colonel was HOT UNDER THE COLLAR about the mistake.

HOT WAR

Open military conflict; shooting war;
From April 1940 to May 1945, Europe was in a HOT WAR.

HOT WATER, IN

In trouble;
If that bridge goes out, we'll be in HOT WATER.

HOT WORK

Difficult;
Fighting hand to hand is always HOT WORK.

HUNKER DOWN

To crouch;
In order to avoid being a casualty, we HUNKERED DOWN in our positions during the artillery barrage.

I'LL BUY THAT

I agree or accept;
G4, your plan looks O.K. to me.  I'LL BUY THAT.

I'LL GO ALONG WITH THAT

I agree or accept;
Captain, your plans look OK to me.  I'LL GO ALONG WITH THAT.

I'LL GO FOR THAT

I like that; I'll accept that;
Would you like five days leave?  Sure,  I'LL GO FOR THAT.

I'LL SETTLE FOR THAT

I'll accept that;
I need forty trucks, but I have only twenty‑five.  I will not SETTLE FOR THAT .

I'M SOLD ON

I like; I support;
I'M SOLD ON the idea of small unit rotation because it enhances unit readiness.

IN A JAM

Difficult situation;
They got themselves IN A JAM when they disregarded his order.

IN A SWEAT

To be worried;
He was IN A SWEAT about the general's inspection.

IN A TIGHT OR TOUGH SPOT

To be in a difficult situation;
We are in a TIGHT SPOT because we are surrounded.

INDIAN

An ordinary worker;
Well, here are my orders; I'll just be an INDIAN in the Pentagon.

INFO

Shortened form of information;
The G2 will provide the INFO on intelligence matters.

IN THE BAG

Positive; certain;
After we take that last hill, their surrender is IN THE BAG.

IN THE MILL

Being processed;
All outstanding requisitions still IN THE MILL are canceled.

IN TUNE WITH

Agree; in accord with;
All division operations must be IN TUNE WITH the Commanding General's guidance.

IRONCLAD RULE

Invariable; without exception;
It is an IRONCLAD RULE that subordinates respect supervisors.

IRON OUT, TO

Settle; arrange the details of; coordinate;
You must see the Division Adjutant TO IRON OUT this rotation program.

IT'S ALL YOURS

It's your problem or assignment;
I need a recommendation on the issue before 1700 hours; IT'S ALL YOURS.

IT'S BEYOND ME

I don't understand this;
We have waited two days for a response.  I can't under-stand why Theresa has no news; IT'S BEYOND ME.

IT'S AT A PREMIUM

Badly needed; in high demand;
Gas is expensive because IT'S AT A PREMIUM right now.

IT'S IN YOUR HANDS/LAP

It's your problem or assignment;
What are we going to do about this?  IT'S IN YOUR HANDS/LAP .

IT STRIKES ME THAT

I think; I believe;
IT STRIKES ME THAT we need reinforcements just to be safe.

IT'S YOUR BABY

It's your problem or assignment;
What are we going to do about this?  IT'S YOUR BABY.

JACK‑OF‑ALL TRADES

A versatile person;
That boy is a JACK‑OF‑ALL TRADES in sports.  There is not a sport he cannot play.

JAM, IN A

In trouble;
That battalion is out of ammunition and gas.  They're in a JAM for sure.

JELLED

Resolved; come together;
Our plans were all JELLED before the Commanding Officer returned.

JIGSAW

A riddle (a type of puzzle); mixed up;
The G2 is the one who must solve the JIGSAW puzzle of enemy strategy.

JITTERY

Nervous; tense;
Our plans are well‑organized, so don't be JITTERY.

JIVE WITH, TO

Agree with;
This report appears to JIVE WITH what the observation team indicated.

JUMP AHEAD OF, ONE

Planned in advance;
I'm one JUMP AHEAD of you.   I've already arranged that.

JUMP OFF (of an attack)

Begin;
Our attack is to JUMP OFF tomorrow morning at 0430.

JUMP THE GUN

To do anything prematurely; to start too early;
Smith is nervous about the project, and he is likely to JUMP THE GUN.

JUMP TO CONCLUSIONS

Decide too quickly;
This issue is serious so don't JUMP TO CONCLUSIONS.

JUNK

Worthless material;
Our equipment is JUNK after three months on the front.

KEEP AN EYE ON OR OUT FOR

To watch or watch for;
KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR her.   She will be here soon.

KEEP CLEAR OF, TO

Avoid;
Warn your troops to KEEP CLEAR OF that mine field near you.

KEEP CLOSE TABS ON

Watch closely;
Because we are getting ready to attack, we will have to KEEP CLOSE TABS ON that enemy armored division.

KEEP HAMMERING AT

Continue to attack;
KEEP HAMMERING AT them in that area until we open their line.

KEEP one IN THE PICTURE, TO

Advise or inform;
G2, be sure to KEEP me IN THE PICTURE on any new enemy reinforcements.

KEEP IN MIND

Remember;
During the heat of battle, we must KEEP IN MIND our final objective and our mission.

KEEP THE ENEMY OFF YOUR BACK

Prevent the enemy from bothering you;
In a withdrawal, the purpose of the detachment being left engaged is to KEEP THE ENEMY OFF YOUR BACK.

KEEP YOUR FINGER ON

Control or keep in contact with;
You have to KEEP YOUR FINGER ON everyone involved at all times so that we are ready.

KEEP YOUR WITS ABOUT YOU

Be calm;
Don't get excited during the enemy attack, just KEEP YOUR WITS ABOUT YOU.

KEYSTONE

Something on which associated things depend; the principal point;
The KEYSTONE of the maintenance system is the user of equipment.

KICK AROUND, TO

Discuss;
We have two days to KICK the plan AROUND before deciding on a solution.

KICKOFF, AT THE

At the beginning;
The General went down to the 59th Infantry to watch the KICKOFF of the attack.

KICKOFF, TO

Begin;
The red flare was the signal to KICKOFF the attack.

KNOCK-DOWN‑DRAG‑OUT AFFAIR

A fight to the final conclusion;
The hotly contested air battle, like ours on the ground, turned into a KNOCK‑DOWN‑DRAG‑OUT AFFAIR.

KNOCK OFF/OUT, TO

Kill; take out of action;
We tried to KNOCK OFF/OUT the enemy artillery the first day.

KNOW‑HOW

The ability; the knowledge;
We mistakenly believed that the Sergeant had the KNOW‑HOW to be a good G3.

KNOW THE ROPES

Knowledgeable about procedures;
As a former successful G3, he appears to KNOW THE ROPES pretty well.

KNOW THE SCORE, TO

Knowledgeable about;
The Captain wrote the proposal and should KNOW THE SCORE about this project.

KNOW YOUR WAY AROUND, TO

To be (become) familiar with;
In each new job, it takes time to KNOW YOUR WAY AROUND .

LAST DITCH

Final resistance or effort;
When we blow up all bridges in the rear, the enemy had to make a LAST DITCH.

LAST INNING(S), IN THE

In the final phase;
We launched our exploiting forces in the LAST INNINGS of the campaign.

LAST LEGS

Just short of exhaustion; making one's final resistance;
Come on, they're on their LAST LEGS; we can force the enemy to surrender.

LAST RESORT, AS A

As a final means;
The service elements of the division are used in combat only as a LAST RESORT.

LAST STAND

Final resistance;
The Battle of the Bulge was really the German Army's LAST STAND.

LATE SHIFT

Late tour of duty;
I'm on duty from 2000--0600 hours; that's the LATE SHIFT.

LAY IT IN one's LAP

Give an assignment to;
It's not my responsibility, so don't LAY IT IN my LAP.

LAY ON

Pre-arrange; prepare;
G3 Air, LAY ON three air alert missions for tomorrow's attack.

LAYOUT

Physical arrangement;
The LAYOUT of the communication center must be efficient and convenient.

LAY THE CARDS ON THE TABLE, TO

Explain the details;
Before we commit the reserve company,  he will have to LAY THE CARDS ON THE TABLE to the old man.

LAY THE GROUNDWORK FOR, TO

Make first preparations;
Part of the staff is detached to LAY THE  GROUNDWORK FOR the next operation.

LEAN FORWARD IN THE FOXHOLE

Troops are ready and eager to begin the attack;
At H‑hr, all troops were LEANING FORWARD IN THEIR FOXHOLES.

LET'S GET GOING

Let's begin;
Since we are already late, LET’S GET GOING to the division rear.

LET'S TAKE A LOOK

Let's examine;
On the way, LET'S TAKE A LOOK AT/INTO the plan for tomorrow.

LETTER OF THE LAW

Each detail of the law;
We've done nothing wrong, so we've complied with the LETTER OF THE LAW .

LIVE OFF THE LAND

Use local resources;
Enemy policy is to LIVE OFF THE LAND as much as possible.

LOCK HORNS WITH

Argue; engage in a fight or discussion;
It we attack there, we'll only LOCK HORNS WITH their prepared position.

LOOK DOWN YOUR THROAT

Have dominant observation;
From that hill mass, the enemy can LOOK DOWN YOUR THROAT.

LOOK INTO

Examine;
Here is the report, Captain.  LOOK INTO it at once, please.

LOOK INTO THE CRYSTAL BALL

Make a guess;
A good G2 does not LOOK INTO THE CRYSTAL BALL for answers he looks for indications.

LOWER THE BOOM, TO

Strike a heavy blow;
Our air support should really be able to LOWER THE BOOM on them.

LUMP TOGETHER

Add or total;
LUMP TOGETHER all the data on this situation for me so that I can give the brigade commander an overview.

MADE A FINE PLAY

Did something very well;
The tank‑infantry team MADE A FINE PLAY through that hole punched into the enemy lines.

MAKE A STAB AT IT

Attempt, try, or guess;
I don't know the correct answer, but I'll MAKE A STAB AT IT.

MAKESHIFT

Improvised;
This was a MAKESHIFT plan pending a complete analysis of the situation.

MAKE GOOD, TO

Be successful; We expect division units to MAKE GOOD on their combat readiness test.

MAKEUP

Composition; arrangement;
The MAKEUP of that task force parallels that of a covering force.

MAN‑HOUR

Work of one individual for one hour;
Five MAN‑HOURS are needed to get that truck operating again.

MAULED

Damaged; hurt;
Because of the enemy's tenacity, the troops in the counterattack, though successful, were severely MAULED.

MEANS TO THE END

Method of accomplishing something;
Clarity in operation orders is only one MEANS TO THE END.   Now we must execute the orders.

MEAT OF THE MATTER

The important point;
The MEAT OF THE MATTER is contained in the second paragraph.

MESS UP

Ruin or spoil;
Now that you are in command, be careful not to MESS UP your chances for a promotion.

MISS THE BOAT &

Fail;
We will MISS THE BOAT if we over-estimate the enemy strategy.

MOP UP

Finish;
The 20th Infantry, following the 23rd Armored, will MOP UP the last enemy resistance.

MOVE OUT, TO

Begin movement; march;
The leading serials will have to MOVE OUT of their areas right on time.

MOVE UP A NOTCH

Advance, as in a promotion;
Next month I'll MOVE UP A NOTCH from Assistant G3 to G3.

MOW DOWN

Wound or kill many;
Our interlocking fire will MOW DOWN the enemy infantry.

MUDDLED UP

Confused;
This latest poop leaves me more MUDDLED UP than before.

MUFF YOUR CHANCE

Fail or miss;
Don't MUFF YOUR CHANCE to earn a promotion.

MULL OVER

Think about;
Wait a minute; I have to MULL OVER this news awhile before I make a decision.

NAIL DOWN

To make final, firm, or specific;
It was difficult to NAIL DOWN the enemy infantry.

NASTY BUSINESS

Dirty;
The Mobile Army Surgical Hospital will have a lot of NASTY BUSINESS after the attack.

NEEDLE

Annoy;
NEEDLE them with questions to make them talk; he won't offer information unless forced to do so.

NEVER SAY DIE

Never give up hope; don't surrender;
We still have a chance, you know -- NEVER SAY DIE.

NEVER MIND

Forget about it;
NEVER MIND, I will submit a new plan myself.

NEWBIE

New person in a unit;
The NEWBIE usually has to clean the latrines.

NIP AND TUCK

Very close, almost evenly matched;
The fighting on our first objective was NIP AND TUCK because both sides were equally matched.

NITPICK

Bother with minor questions;
Don't NITPICK the instructor during class; ask him afterwards.

NONCOM

Noncommissioned officer;
The First Sergeant is the senior NONCOM of our company.

NOSE, ON THE

Exactly; correctly;
The patrol hit the objective right ON THE NOSE.

NO SWEAT

Don't worry; that which can be performed easily;
NO SWEAT , I can get this stubborn engine operating.

NUTSHELL, IN A

Briefly;
In a NUTSHELL, General, we can support your plan.

ODDS AND ENDS

Remnants; small parts;
The entire room was filled with ODDS AND ENDS, left over from two world wars.

O‑DARK‑THIRTY

Before dawn;
If we want to arrive by sundown, we will have to leave the camp at O‑DARK‑THIRTY.

OFF BALANCE, TO CATCH

By attacking at 2300 hours, we should be able to catch the
enemy OFF BALANCE.

OFF BASE

Wrong; incorrect;
You are way OFF BASE on your time and space calculation -- redo them.

OFFHAND

At first glance;
OFFHAND , I estimate that we'll capture about two hundred Prisoners on D‑day.

OFF THE CUFF/RECORD

Not official; not to be quoted; impromptu comment;
Here are some factors to help you which I'll give you OFF THE CUFF/RECORD.

OFF THE TRACK

Away from; unaware;
This maneuver will keep the enemy OFF THE TRACK of our main effort.

O.K.

Acceptable; correct;
Your plan is O.K.

OLD MAN

Senior officer;
The OLD MAN doesn't always agree with the G3.

OLD STANDBY

Someone or something which has been proven reliable;
The Commanding General is permitted to select an OLD STANDBY as Chief of Staff.

OLD STUFF

Familiar to everyone;
That's OLD STUFF; it was in use at the outbreak of World War II.

ONE SHOT

Only once;
We can give it a ONE SHOT treatment.

ON THE BALL, TO BE

Alert; quick‑thinking;
That young officer is really ON THE BALL; he is ready to Command a company now.

ON THE CARPET

Reprimand;
The Old Man will definitely call you ON THE CARPET for Careless, thoughtless mistakes.

ON THE DRAWING BOARD

Being planned;
We have several new jet aircrafts ON THE DRAWING BOARD.

ON THE FENCE

Undecided;
Right now, the General is ON THE FENCE regarding the two courses of action.

ON THE HOOK

In a difficult position;
You've got me ON THE HOOK by assigning me that job! but I'll do the best I can.

ON THE LAST LAP

Near the end;
Here is the Command Post.  We're ON THE LAST LAP now.

ON THE ROPES

Almost defeated;
The enemy is ON THE ROPES, so let's keep hammering at them.

ON THE SPOT

In a position requiring a decision; normally under pressure;
Your question puts me ON THE SPOT, but here's my recommendation.

ON YOUR OWN

Independent; alone;
During an independent operation, the commander is pretty much ON HIS OWN.

OPEN AND SHUT

Sure; certain; positive;
There is so much evidence that it is an OPEN AND SHUT  case against the accused.

OUTFIT

Unit; organization;
Hospital returnees should be reassigned to their old OUTFIT.

OUT OF HAND

Out of control;
After the police used tear gas, the situation got OUT OF HAND.

OUT OF THE BLUE

Without warning; unexpected;
We had not seen him in years, and he dropped in the house OUT OF THE BLUE; what a pleasant surprise.

OUT OF THE QUESTION

Impossible; not considered;
That solution is completely OUT OF THE QUESTION; we do not have the manpower to support that solution.

OUT OF THE WOODS

Successful conclusion in sight;
In another day, we should be OUT OF THE WOODS, reinforcements are on their way.

OUT OF YOUR MIND

Speaking or acting foolishly;
Are you OUT OF YOUR MIND? You should speak more politely to a superior officer.

OUT ON A LIMB

Undecided; doubtful;
The colonel went OUT ON A LIMB with that decision, but the chance he took was worth it.

OUT TO GET

To wait for the chance to do someone harm;
Jack is really OUT TO GET Fred because Fred does not do his share of the work.

OVERALL PICTURE

Complete situation;
I realize your calendar is full, but I can brief you on the OVERALL PICTURE in ten minutes.

OVER one's HEAD, TO GO

Appeal to higher authority;
If the Lieutenant's request is refused by the authorities in your office, it may be necessary to go OVER their HEADS and ask the Captain.

OVER MY HEAD

Difficult to understand;
The Colonel's explanation is OVER MY HEAD; I don't understand it.

PACK A WALLOP, TO

To be powerful or strong;
Because of the thickness of the armor, the new missile will really have to PACK A WALLOP to be effective.

PAIN IN THE NECK

A boring person; a disturbing person;
Mr. Jones is a PAIN IN THE NECK; he is always complaining about something.

PAINT A ROSY PICTURE, TO

Describe in an ideal or optimistic manner;
He is sometimes too optimistic, he tends to PAINT A ROSY PICTURE.

PASS THE BUCK, TO

Avoid responsibility by giving it to another;
Don't try to PASS THE BUCK to me because that problem is yours.

PASS THE WORD DOWN THE LINE

Communicate; to convey the message;
PASS THE WORD DOWN THE LINE about possible use of gas masks.

PAT ANSWER

A sure, specific reply;
This question calls for a PAT ANSWER; it could affect this officer's chance for promotion.

PAT, HAVE DOWN

Memorize; to be very knowledgeable about;
The patrol will HAVE the area DOWN PAT after so many gunnery exercises.

PAY DEARLY

Be costly;
If we try to infiltrate, we will PAY DEARLY for it in lives.

PAYOFF, THE

The result; climax;
THE PAYOFF of proper fire support coordination is the enemy’s defeat.

PAY OFF, TO

Produce good results;
Good maintenance ought TO PAY OFF in a reduced number of deadlined vehicles.

PEAK LOAD

Greatest amount of work; The G3 has a PEAK LOAD from about 0900 to 1800 hours.

PEP TALK, A

A talk to raise morale;
You look disappointed; what's the matter.  You need a PEP TALK.

PICK AND SHOVEL WORK

Difficult assignment(s);
The new members on a staff do most of the PICK AND SHOVEL WORK.

PICK ONE OUT OF THIN AIR

Guess;
There are several possible solutions, so I'll PICK ONE OUT OF THIN AIR.

PIN DOWN THE ENEMY

Keep the enemy in control; immobilize by fire;
Our artillery will PIN DOWN THE ENEMY indefinitely.

PINPOINT

Locate accurately; identify;
You must PINPOINT your targets when requesting artillery support.

PIPELINE, IN THE

According to requisition;
Individually trained replacements arrive in the PIPELINE.

PLANT, A

A spy;
Some G1 men mingle with refugees as a PLANT to discover enemy agents.

PLASTER, TO

Destroy;
Ask for an air strike to PLASTER that target.

PLAY SAFE, TO

To be cautious;
On the defense, we requisition extra Class V supplies just to PLAY it SAFE.

PLOW THROUGH

Pass through quickly;
An armored division cannot PLOW THROUGH heavily fortified positions.

PLUG THE GAP

Stop a breakthrough;
The General committed the Engineer Battalion to PLUG THE GAP.

POINT, THERE IS NO

There is no reason; useless;
THERE IS NO POINT in asking for it since there are none in stock.

POINT UP

Emphasize; reveal;
The arrival of the enemy reinforcements would POINT UP a stiffening defense.

POLISH OFF

Defeat; complete;
The mission of this unit is to POLISH OFF remaining resistance.

POLL THE CLASS

Take a vote; ask for opinions;
I'll POLL THE CLASS on these three courses of action, then we will make our final recommendation.

POOP

Information;
According to the POOP, we'll occupy blocking positions.

POOPED OUT

Tired; exhausted;
In mountain operations, soldiers become POOPED OUT easily.

POOP SHEET

Information sheet;
Where is that movement POOP SHEET with the critical points on the route?

POOR; BAD; LOUSY; BUM DEAL

An unfavorable arrangement;
Going to school on Saturdays is a LOUSY DEAL.

POP UP

Occur; happen;
During a briefing, anything can POP UP, so be alert.

POUND TO PIECES

Strike or attack heavily;
Our artillery fire will POUND TO PIECES any defense they establish.

POUR OUT THE LEAD

Shoot a great deal of ammunition;
This new automatic rifle can really POUR OUT THE LEAD.

POWER PLAY

A strong movement;
A penetration is normally a POWER PLAY through the middle.

PRESSED FOR TIME

Have very little time;
I would like to stay longer, but I'm really PRESSED FOR TIME -- I have to hurry along.

PROS AND CONS

Advantages and disadvantages;
Let's discuss the PROS AND CONS of this course of action.

PROD, TO

Urge;
Someone ought to PROD the Old Man into taking action.

PULL OFF AN OPERATION

Execute a maneuver;
We can't PULL OFF this OPERATION without control of the approaches.

PULL THE PIN, TO

Depart; end;
I think that it's about time for us to PULL THE PIN on this operation.

PULLS OUT; PULL OUT

Withdraws;
When a unit PULLS OUT by order, it also pulls stakes.

PULL STAKES, TO

Depart; pull up tent pegs;
The enemy had to PULL STAKES in a hurry because we were penetrating their position.

PUNCH THROUGH

Penetrate;
If we can PUNCH THROUGH the enemy's defenses to Hill 201, we've got it made.

PUSH OFF, TO

Begin;
The pre‑dawn attack is scheduled to PUSH OFF at 0317 hours.

PUSH ON, TO

Advance;
In the pursuit, mobile forces are to PUSH ON to cut off the enemy retreat.

PUT A HANDLE ON

Give something a name; be specific;
Can you PUT A HANDLE ON that new gadget?  I have never heard of it.

PUT ALL YOUR EGGS IN ONE BASKET

Put all your resources into one effort;
A unit cannot fight a continuing battle if it PUTS ALL ITS EGGS IN ONE BASKET.

PUT ON THE SPOT

Place in a difficult position;
effort is.

PUT OFF

Postpone;
Let's PUT it OFF until later.  We have more important things to do.

PUT OUT AN ORDER

Publish an order; PUT OUT AN ORDER in compliance with the General's
guidance.

PUT OUT THE POOP

Publish information;
I'll PUT OUT THE POOP on the overall picture periodically to keep you up to date.

PUT YOUR FINGER ON IT

Be specific; explain;
Where's the gimmick in this?  Can you PUT YOUR FINGER ON IT ?

QUIBBLE

Argue over a small point;
Let's not QUIBBLE over the form, just complete it without delay.

RAT RACE

Seemingly senseless situation; hectic;
Working at headquarters was a real RAT RACE.  We were short of manpower and overloaded with taskings.

RECAP, TO

Summarize;
To RECAP briefly, our advance during the past twelve hours has encountered stiff resistance.

RECON

Reconnaissance; a search or inspection made for useful military information;
This is a typical RECON and fighter airfield of the tactical air force.

REHASH

Discuss again; review;
Let's REHASH the situation briefly.  First, bring out all significant new enemy activity.

RESUME

A summary;
A brief RESUME is the same as a recap, and it is efficient but effective.

RHIP

A brevity meaning:  Rank Has Its Privileges;
It doesn't seem fair that the colonels get the best parking spaces, but RHIP.

RIGAMAROLE

Puzzle; a complicated process;
The observation section can help the G2 solve the RIGAMAROLE of enemy tactics.

RIGHT DOWN one's ALLEY

Very familiar;
I'd like that job, Captain.  It's RIGHT DOWN my ALLEY because I have many months of training in desert warfare.

RIGHT DOWN THE LINE

According to standard procedure;
We've made many administrative moves, and all of them were RIGHT DOWN THE LINE.

RIGHT OFF THE BAT

At once; initially;
I've had a terrible morning.  Our instructor gave us a quiz RIGHT OFF THE BAT.

RIGHT ON THE NOSE

Did very well; direct hit on the target;
Because I studied, I really hit that examination RIGHT ON THE NOSE.

RIPE, THE SITUATION IS

Correct time to act;
The situation is RIPE for a counterattack, General.

ROACH COACH

Mobile snack bar;
Believe it or not, we ate hamburgers and fries from the ROACH COACH for two weeks straight!

ROAD, HIT THE

To travel; to move on again;
As soon as the graduation ceremony is over, I'm going to HIT THE ROAD.

ROGER

An "affirmative" response; yes; often used with "wilco;"
ROGER , I understand.

ROLL OUT THE RED CARPET

To welcome someone enthusiastically, elaborately;
We're going to ROLL OUT THE RED CARPET for the general.

ROOF FALLS IN, THE

Everything collapses;
When all enemy units are surrounded, THE ROOF FALLS IN.

ROPED IN

Given a job unwillingly;
The Assistant G3 was ROPED IN to help the inspection team today even though he was on leave.

ROUGH GOING, HAVE

Have difficulty;
Our patrols on the mountains have ROUGH GOING when communications fail.

ROUGH IDEA, A

A general conception;
A brief resume' gives you a ROUGH IDEA of past action.

ROUGH TIME

Difficult time;
With two of the staff absent, the chief was having a ROUGH TIME.

ROUND FIGURES, IN

Approximately;
Our losses to date in ROUND FIGURES amount to about 2100.

ROUND THE CLOCK

24 hours a day; a full day;
The staff worked ROUND THE CLOCK to finish on time.

RTP

Read the problem or paper;
The examination is easy if the students RTP and analyze the problem before writing a solution.

RUB

Difficulty;
The RUB is that we have no spare parts available.

RULE OF THUMB

Fixed rule;
There is no RULE OF THUMB to solve all your problems.

RUN, TO

Command;
Executive Officer will have to RUN the company during the Company Commander's leave.

RUNDOWN, GIVE A

A quick review or summary of information;
The G3 can give a RUNDOWN at any time of all units organic and attached to the division.

RUN INTO A STONE WALL

Unable to penetrate; impossible to find the answer; encounter an obstacle;
We'll RUN INTO A STONE WALL when we get to that fortified position.

RUN LOW, TO

To have only a little; to need;
We're about to RUN LOW on water.  Hurry and send for more.

RUN OF THE MILL

Average, normal;
The recent sporadic enemy air attacks only show RUN OF THE MILL air activity.

RUN OUT OF

Come to the end of the available supply;
After 8 hours of driving, we RAN OUT OF gas.

RUN, ON THE

Withdrawing or moving quickly; We've got them ON THE RUN.  Bring more ammunition ON THE RUN, soldier.

RUN THE SHOW, TO

To command; to be in charge;
Your job is to RUN THE SHOW at your assigned position.

S1

Battalion staff member responsible for personnel issues, i.e. assignments, morale, and discipline;
S1 has been working around the clock to get our replacements here.

S2

Battalion staff member responsible for gathering information about the enemy force;
The enemy is trying to envelop us, just as the S2 predicted.

S3

Battalion staff member responsible for operations and training;
The Corps S3 gave us a brief summary of Corps Operations.

S4

Battalion staff member responsible for logistical issues, i.e., maintenance, bookkeeping, and supply;
S4, are the plans for the forward movement finalized yet?

SACK OUT

To sleep; to go to bed;
I'm going to SACK OUT after dinner; I've had a hard day.

SADDLED WITH

Responsible for;
The Military Government Officer is SADDLED WITH the problems of the refugee.

SAVED BY THE BELL

Just barely escaped disaster; a narrow escape;
It looked awfully bad for us for a while, but we were SAVED BY THE BELL.  The ammo arrived just in time.

SAVVY

Intelligence; understanding;
That S3 has lots of SAVVY; no problem is too difficult for him.

SCALE DOWN, TO

Reduce;
We will have to SCALE DOWN our assault echelon because we don't have sufficient reserves.

SCAPEGOAT

A person who is made to bear blame for others;
The MP is usually the SCAPEGOAT if traffic becomes congested.

SCHEDULE, TIGHT

A closely packed schedule which affords little leeway;
Visiting four divisions in one day is a TIGHT SCHEDULE.

SCRAM

Depart;
Wow, there are three tanks coming!  Let's SCRAM into this gully.

SCRAP

A fight,
Our main effort was engaged in a hot SCRAP before noon.

SCRAPE TOGETHER

Gather or collect with difficulty;
It required four days for the S4 to SCRAPE TOGETHER enough rations for the forced march.

SCRATCH OFF

Eliminate;
SCRATCH OFF the two bulldozers on the requisition because they are not available.

SCREWED UP

Ruined through bungling;
That was a really SCREWED UP test; we were not given enough time.

SCRIMMAGING

Light action;
There was only light SCRIMMAGING all along the main line of resistance.

SECOND BEST, TO COME OUT

To lose; to fail;
I am afraid we are going to come out SECOND BEST because we had little time to prepare.

SEE THE LIGHT, TO

Understand;
Thank you for the explanation.  I am beginning to SEE THE LIGHT.

SELL A BILL OF GOODS, TO

Influence or convince;
They tried to SELL us A BILL OF GOOD, but we were not convinced.

SETTLE FOR

Agree on; to accept;
I will have to SETTLE FOR one truck, although I need two.

SET RULE

Answer; solution; regulation;
There is no SET RULE for each situation.  Use your imagination and initiative.

SET UP, TO

Prepare; establish;
At the evening briefing, we are going to SET UP plans for the next day's mission.

SETUP

Arrangement;
The SETUP of the G2‑G3 tent must not be dominated by the G3 section.

SEWN UP

Ready; engaged; busy;
G4, are all the plans for the forward movement SEWN UP?

SHAKE LOOSE

Release; free;
If we can SHAKE LOOSE that Armored Division, we've got it made.

SHAKE OFF, TO

Get rid of; to lose;
After an nuclear attack, you've got to SHAKE OFF fear and resume the attack.

SHAKE‑UP

Change;
Because of the last defeat, there will be a SHAKE‑UP in command.

SHARP

Intelligent; smart;
A good soldier is always SHARP; he gets that through proper training.

SHINE

Be superior; outstanding;
He has done well in the past; he should continue to SHINE.

SHIFT, MIDNIGHT

Tour of duty from 2400 to 0800;
Activities are usually quiet during the MIDNIGHT SHIFT.

SHOOT !   

Go ahead!;
If you have any questions, SHOOT!

SHOOT THE BREEZE

Talk informally;
The students get together during break periods and SHOOT THE BREEZE.

SHOOT THE WORKS

Use everything;
When you commit your reserve, you SHOOT THE WORKS.  There is nothing left but hope.

SHOOT THROUGH

Cut through quickly;
You should be able to SHOOT THROUGH the gap easily enough.

SHORT CUT

A quick way or method to save time;
After experience in any job, you get to know the SHORT CUT.

SHORT END OF THE STICK

Receiving unfair or unfavorable treatment;
I've been chosen as the “blue goose” again; I think I'm getting the SHORT END OF THE STICK.

SHORTHANDED

Lacking men;
Our recent losses have left us SHORTHANDED.

SHORT OF

Need; not all the way to;
I'm SHORT OF ammunition.  The patrol stopped SHORT OF the outpost about 200 yards.

SHOT

Ruined; worn out; used up;
If the bridge is destroyed, our plans will be all SHOT; we'll be unable to reach and destroy the enemy.

SHOT, TAKE A

Attempt; try;
It's your turn to TAKE A SHOT at it, Jim.  I can't seem to persuade him.

SHOT IN THE DARK

Guess;
The old man doesn't take a SHOT IN THE DARK; he acts on factual information.

SHOT UP

Wounded; disorganized;
My battalion was badly SHOT UP in this attack.

SHOVE OFF

Depart; leave;
I'm late.  I've got to SHOVE OFF to visit the 58th and 59th before the end of the duty day.

SHOWDOWN

Confrontation;
This afternoon there will be a SHOWDOWN between the various staff agencies.

SHOWDOWN INSPECTION

Detailed inspection;
The old man is going to have a SHOWDOWN INSPECTION tonight.

SIDELIGHT

An interesting aspect;
One SIDELIGHT on this captured materiel is the relative shortage of carbines.

SIDETRACK

Divert from main purpose;
Unverified information may SIDETRACK you in making your estimate of the situation.

SILVER LINING, THE

The happy part of a situation that seems difficult;
Don't get discouraged; always look for the SILVER LINING.

SILVER PLATTER, ON A

Without effort;
The enemy won't give you that dominant position on a SILVER PLATTER; you must advance and take it.

SIT TIGHT

Wait; do not move;
Just SIT TIGHT until his next move.

SHAKY ON

Weak or doubtful about;
I'm a little SHAKY ON my figures.  Will you check them?

SHAPE UP, TO

To take definite form; to meet requirements;
Now the picture begins to SHAPE UP after this latest poop. You've got to SHAPE UP or I will have to replace you.

SIXTY‑FOUR DOLLAR ($64) QUESTION

The most important question;
Where are their reserves?  That's the SIXTY‑FOUR DOLLAR QUESTION.

SIZE UP THE SITUATION

Estimate a situation;
The Colonel quickly SIZED UP THE SITUATION and then issued orders.

SKATE ON THIN ICE

Conduct oneself in a manner verging on questionable behavior or dangerous;
If you do not study the map carefully, you will be SKATING ON THIN ICE.

SKETCHY

Lacking in detail;
I couldn't act on such SKETCHY information; I need more facts.

SKIMPY ON, TO BE

Economize; use sparingly;
The ammunition is low, so we'll have to be SKIMPY ON it for a while.

SKIN A CAT

Accomplish a mission;
Our first attempt failed, but we continued because there is more than one way to SKIN A CAT.

SKIN OF YOUR TEETH, BY THE

Just barely succeed;
Your determination allowed you to take that hill by the SKIN OF YOUR TEETH.

SKIP OVER, TO

Avoid mention of; omit;
Some of this is irrelevant so allow me to SKIP OVER the next three items; now how about evacuation?

SKIRT, TO

Avoid;
We've got to SKIRT around that machine‑gun nest to get at the blockhouse.

SLAM INTO

Meet; engage violently;
We must SLAM INTO position with everything we have.

SLANG

Idioms which are commonly used;
If you don't know our SLANG, you won't understand some of our discussions.

SLANT

Idea;
Here's another SLANT; try another route.

SLANT, HAVE THE WRONG

Have an incorrect idea;
You have the WRONG SLANT on it.

SLEW OF

A great number of;
We found a SLEW of enemy troops concealed in a ravine.

SLIDE OVER

Explain briefly;
Don't SLIDE OVER the important matters.  They should be explained at length.

SLIP OUT OF THE BAG

Escape;
In spite of our mopping up, many enemies will SLIP OUT OF THE BAG.

SLIPSHOD

Careless;
A poor job is generally done in a SLIPSHOD manner.

SLIP UP, TO

Make a blunder; to err;
When you are tired and nervous, you are likely to SLIP UP on your job.

SLOT, IN THIS

In this job;
Do you have a capable officer to place IN THIS SLOT?

SLUG, A

A bullet;
SLUGS were flying thick and fast during the training exercise.

SLUG WITH WORK, TO

Assign a great deal of work;
I begged them not to SLUG me WITH WORK, but they snowed me under.

SLUGGING MATCH

An intense fight;
Capturing the final objective was a real SLUGGING MATCH.

SLUG IT OUT, TO

Fight very intensely;
We had to SLUG IT OUT for three hours before overcoming the enemy.

SMACK INTO, RUN

Meet face to face;
A patrol may run SMACK INTO enemy ambushes.

SMOOTH SAILING

Easy, without trouble;
The operation was SMOOTH SAILING over the outnumbered enemy.

SNAFU

Confused; in a turmoil;
Since there is another bottleneck at the bridge, our plans are SNAFU for sure.

SNAG INTO

Seize; hold;
SNAG INTO every inch of ground you can before you are relieved.

SNAP DECISION, MAKE A

Act hastily; decide quickly;
Don't make a SNAP DECISION, take some time to study the situation.

SNEAK AROUND THE END, TO

Make an envelopment;
One course of action is to SNEAK AROUND THE END tonight and confine the enemy.

SNOWBALL, TO

Increase;
Unresolved problems tend to SNOWBALL.

SNOW JOB

A pleasing but exaggerated speech;
It was amusing to listen to the guest's SNOW JOB.  He makes a gloomy situation look bright.

SNOW UNDER

Overwhelm;
We organize reliefs for our staff because we don't want to SNOW them UNDER with work.

SOFT SPOT, A

A weakness;
First, find the enemy's SOFT SPOT, and then reinforce the initial success.

SOP (pronounced ESS‑O‑PEE)

Standing Operating Procedure; written directive describing correct procedures;
If you run the comcenter according to the SOP, nothing will go wrong.

SORT OF

Somewhat; in a way;
Every new job is SORT OF strange at first.

SOUP UP, TO

Improve; increase;
We've got to SOUP UP the attack with all available artillery or we will fail.

SOUR, TO GO

Go wrong; to fail;
Keep on the lookout for obstacles so that your plans don't GO SOUR.

SPADE WORK

Initial work; difficult jobs;
The new people on the staff do the SPADE WORK in our office.

SPECS

Specifications; a detailed description of requirements;
Don't just ask for higher rank, Private; read the SPECS and work for it.

SPELL OUT

Be specific; explain step by step;
Please SPELL OUT just what you mean so that I can understand and then do what you are requesting.

SPOT, TO

Discover, see, or observe;
Visual air reconnaissance is used TO SPOT enemy movements.

SPOT CHECK

Random sampling or quick sample investigation;
Battalion Commanders SPOT CHECK equipment periodically during maintenance.

SPUR OF THE MOMENT, ON THE

Spontaneously; without hesitation;
Ideas which come on the SPUR OF THE MOMENT can be useful.

STACK UP, TO

Compare;
Their new weapons appear to STACK UP well with ours in quality.

STALE, TO GO

Become careless or indifferent;
After a long time on the same job, one tends to go STALE.

STALEMATE

An impasse; a fight without victory for either side;
After days of fruitless attacks, both sides decided it was a STALEMATE .

STALL, TO

Fail; to be delayed;
Your main effort is likely TO STALL for lack of fire support.

STALL OFF, TO

Delay a decision;
I think they are just trying to STALL OFF because he has not researched the problem.

STANDBY

Aid; help; assistance;
Your weapon is your best STANDBY in a difficult spot.

START FROM SCRATCH

Start from the very beginning;
What happened in my absence?  START FROM SCRATCH, please; I appreciate detail.

START THE BALL ROLLING

Begin;
Let's start the briefing; G1, you START THE BALL ROLLING.

STAY LOOSE; HANG LOOSE

Don't get excited;
STAY LOOSE.   Today we will be forced to make many changes in our training schedule.

STAYING POWER

Ability to resist; sustain;
With all those reinforcements, they will have lots of STAYING POWER against our attack..

STEEL POT

Helmet;
It is important to wear your STEEL POT in the combat zone.

STICK AROUND, TO

Remain in the vicinity;
Tell my aide to STICK AROUND here until I get back.

STICK CLOSE

Stay near;
During the foggy weather, all these planes have to STICK CLOSE to base.

STICK IT OUT

Endure;
Can you STICK IT OUT until reinforcements arrive?

STICK YOUR NECK OUT

Take a chance;
Don't STICK YOUR NECK OUT without thorough recon‑ naissance.

STICKY POINT

Difficult situation;
The question of exactly when to counterattack may sometimes be a STICKY POINT.

STOCK ANSWER

Easy or predetermined solution;
There's no STOCK ANSWER in such a contingency; use your best judgment.

STOP COLD

Halt immediately;
Our concealed minefield ought to STOP them COLD.

STRAIGHTEN OUT

Take corrective action;
Go down there and STRAIGHTEN OUT that outfit, Captain. You are responsible for B Company.

STRETCH YOUR IMAGINATION

Visualize with exaggeration;
Can't you STRETCH YOUR IMAGINATION to realize that this is possible?

STRIDE, TAKE IN

Deal with calmly; without effort;
Our main effort was so strong that we TOOK their counterattack IN STRIDE.

STRIKE OUT

Fail; I’ll bet I STRIKE OUT on that examination.

STUMPED

Perplexed;
That's got me STUMPED.  What's your recommendation?

SUNDAY PUNCH

Best effort;
Commitment of the reserve constitutes your SUNDAY PUNCH.

SUNK

Lost; defeated;
If we don't capture Hill 395, we're SUNK; we will fail to meet mission requirements.

SWAP, TO

Exchange;
During the night, the new unit is to SWAP places with the old one.

SWEAT IT OUT

Wait with uncertainty; endure until the end;>
We'll just have to SWEAT IT OUT until we know their nuclear capability.

SWING, TO

Arrange successfully;
Can you SWING a deal to swap weapons at once?

SWITCH

Change over to;
Radio operator, SWITCH over to channel B.

TACK ONTO

Add on;
He will TACK this job ONTO those already assigned to the unit.

TACKLE

Study; work on;
We'll TACKLE this now and have the plan ready by 1600.

TAILOR‑MADE

Appropriate for a particular task; correct;
This tank is TAILOR‑MADE for the job at hand.

TAKE A CHANCE

Endanger; place in jeopardy; risk;
Don't TAKE A CHANCE with that patrol.  The area is covered with mines.

TAKE A CRACK AT

Attempt, try;
Let me TAKE A CRACK AT IT with my outfit.  We've trained hard to overcome challenges like this one.

TAKE IT, CAN

Can endure difficult situations;
I admire their courage; they can TAKE IT.  He is an officer who can handle any situation.

TAKE IT EASY

Relax;
Don't let your problems upset you; instead, TAKE IT EASY.

TAKE A PEEK AT

Look at;
Now let us TAKE A PEEK at these air photos.

TAKEN CARE OF

All prepared;
Have you TAKEN CARE OF all the details for the unit party?

TAKE OFF, TO

To depart; departure;
Jet planes need a long runway to TAKE OFF because their TAKE OFF is not fast.

TAKE OFF

Begin; Start;
It is approaching zero hour; TAKE OFF now.

TAKE ON

To accept; agree to attempt;
I'll TAKE ON that job because I am familiar with the requirements.

TALK OUT OF TURN

Blab; talk without discretion;
He is famous for TALKING OUT OF TURN when he should keep quiet.

TAKE OVER

Take the place of; replace in command;
The colonel is to TAKE OVER the regiment today, and will run the outfit well.

TAKE YOUR PICK

Choose;
Here are two identical photos.  TAKE YOUR PICK and send me the other.

TALK INTO, TO

Influence; convince;
They wanted to TALK us INTO accepting their decision.

TANGLE WITH, TO

To engage; come into contact with;
A patrol is likely to TANGLE WITH several infiltrating groups.

TANGLED UP

Confused; incorrect;
Your first report has many details TANGLED UP, but you will learn.

TANK DOZER

Tank with a scraper blade;
Do you know if there is an auxiliary engine in the TANK DOZER ?

TDY (Pronounced TEE‑DEE‑WHY)

Temporary Duty;
This is not my home base; but I’ve been assigned here for three months for TDY.

TEAR ALONG, TO

Proceed rapidly;
Once we get on the paved road, we'll be able to TEAR ALONG.

THAT'S THE RUB

That's the difficulty;
We can't get hold of any more rations anywhere; THAT'S THE RUB.

THAT’S THE WAY THE BALL BOUNCES

That's fate;
Our football team lost again; THAT'S THE WAY THE BALL BOUNCES.

THAT'S YOUR BABY

That's your assignment; That's your problem;>
Don't give me this project, THAT'S YOUR BABY.

THAT WILL DO

That is enough; stop;
THAT WILL DO , young man; we do not tolerate insubordination.

THINK UP

Create;
How did you ever THINK that UP?

THRASH IT OUT, TO

Discuss the details;
We'll need a staff conference to THRASH IT OUT.

THROW IN THE TOWEL

To concede defeat; to surrender;
The enemy suffered many casualties and were ready to THROW IN THE TOWEL.

THROW ON

Dress quickly;
I THROW ON my clothes and rush outside when the fire alarm sounds.

THROW OUT THE WINDOW, TO

Eliminate; discard;
This new information means we have to THROW all earlier plans OUT THE WINDOW and prepare new plans.

THROW THE BOOK AT

Give a severe punishment;
The court will THROW THE BOOK AT anyone for desertion.

THUMBNAIL SKETCH

Very general and brief discussion;
I've got only five minutes, G2, give me a THUMBNAIL SKETCH .

TIE DOWN, TO

Limit; restrict;
The interrogation team tries to TIE DOWN prisoners on specific information which G2 wants.

TIE IN WITH, TO

Agree with; support; related to;
This information ought to TIE IN WITH what you found out.

TIED UP

Busy; detained;
You cannot see the officers in charge right now because they are TIED UP.

TIED TOGETHER

Related; coordinated; joined;
The work of the G2 and G3 is TIED TOGETHER.

TIGHT SQUEEZE

Difficult to manage;
Getting our column past that critical point on time will be a TIGHT SQUEEZE.

TIGHT SPOT

A situation from which it would be difficult to get out;
After flunking three examinations, Smith is in a TIGHT SPOT.

TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE

Time is very important;
Hurry and bring that ammo over the river.  TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE.

TIME'S RUNNING SHORT

Not much time remains;
Can you still do it before the deadline?  TIME'S RUNNING SHORT.

TIME SAVER, A

A quick method to save time;
During briefing sessions, charts, graphs, and experience tables are great TIME SAVERS.

TIP YOUR HAND

Give advance information;
Don't TIP YOUR HAND by moving your reserves too early.

TO PIECES

Ruined, collapsed;
Because of our air attacks, the enemy's capacity to engage in a ground war has fallen TO PIECES.

TOEHOLD, TO GET A

Penetrate; establish a position;
Once you are able to get a TOEHOLD, set up a Command Post.

TOOLS OF THE TRADE

Things which help one to accomplish a job;
The G3's thorough knowledge of division units is the TOOLS OF THE TRADE.

TOO MUCH

Beyond comprehension in either a good or bad sense;
That management course is TOO MUCH because there is a great deal of homework assigned.

TOOTH AND NAIL

With every means;
We were fighting TOOTH AND NAIL to capture the enemy trench system.

TOP MAN/WOMAN

The boss; the commander;
LTC Brown is the TOP MAN/WOMAN in this battalion.

TOPSIDE

At higher levels; in the air;
Column cover planes normally protect a movement TOPSIDE.

TOUCH AND GO

Hazardous or delicate state;
The situation on both sides was TOUCH AND GO until our reinforcements arrived.

TOUCH ON

Mention;
Now let's TOUCH ON supply; G4 will be responsible for all rations.

TOUGH NUT TO CRACK

Difficult problem or situation;
The aggressor fortified zone was a TOUGH NUT TO CRACK.

TOUGH TIME, TO HAVE A

Difficult to accomplish;
The Engineer Company is likely to have a TOUGH TIME putting in the bridge because of the strong river current.

TRADE IN, TO

Exchange;
My support staff is becoming very careless.  I think I'll have to TRADE them IN.

TRAFFIC JAM

Slowing down or stopping of vehicles;
Maximum flow and minimum necessary controls in a traffic plan will avoid a TRAFFIC JAM.

TRAFFIC IS OUT OF HAND

Traffic is out of control;
No one can get anywhere because TRAFFIC IS OUT OF HAND.

TRAIN THREE DEEP

Train three individuals for each job;
During the division training program, TRAIN THREE DEEP for all key jobs.

TRIGGER HAPPY

Overanxious; nervous;
Just prior to the assault landing, we lost three planes because of TRIGGER HAPPY gunners.

TURN INTO

Become;
Our attack could very easily TURN INTO a rout of our inexperienced enemy.

TURN LOOSE

Release;
Have your tanks ready so you can TURN them LOOSE at the right time.

TV

Television;
What are you going to watch on TV tonight?

TWO UP AND ONE BACK

Two regiments in front lines, and one regiment in division reserve;
In a normal defense position, we employ our infantry battalions TWO UP AND ONE BACK.

UMPTY‑UMPH

Something without a specific name or number;
Where are they from?  I think they're from the UMPTY‑UMPH battalion which just joined us.

UNCLE SAM

The United States;
I am a soldier in UNCLE SAM'S army.

UNDERSTUDY

One who trains for another person's position;
I have been reassigned and 1LT Smith is my UNDERSTUDY.

UNDER THE GUN

Dominated by enemy observation; time constrained/shortage of time;
Engineers putting up a bridge before the line is taken are working UNDER THE GUN.

UNDER WAY, TO GET

Begin; start;
The battle is about to get UNDER WAY we are ready to cross the line of departure.

UP A TREE

Undecided;
I am UP A TREE about whether or not to move my battalion. What do you think?

UP IN THE AIR

Undecided; uncertain;
All plans are UP IN THE AIR since the old man is about to leave.

UP (ONE'S ALLEY)

To be entirely within one's capabilities;
I enjoy tactics; therefore, this course is definitely UP MY ALLEY.

UPSET THE APPLECART

Ruin the plans;
The range fires certainly UPSET THE APPLECART by delaying our tank gunnery competition.

UPSTAIRS

In the air;
If we have superiority UPSTAIRS, we'll see many topside.

UP TO DATE

Latest or most recent information;
Bring me UP TO DATE on what has happened in the last four hours.

UP TO SNUFF

Satisfactory; up to a certain standard;
My battalion is UP TO SNUFF on supply economy, as far as I can see.

UP TO THE MINUTE

Current; most recent;
What's the latest UP TO THE MINUTE news?  Any changes?

UP TO YOU, IT'S

It depends on you; your decision; Captain, it's UP TO YOU and your counterattack.  Give them your Sunday punch!

USE YOUR HEAD

Think intelligently;
It is especially important to USE YOUR HEAD in crisis situations.

VIP (pronounced VEE‑EYE‑PEE)

Very Important Person;
The Corps Commanding General and another VIP came to present three awards to GIs in the battalion.

WAIT IT OUT

Relax; take no active part;
Don't do anything; WAIT IT OUT.

WALLOP

A strong blow;
The new 280 millimeter‑gun packs quite a WALLOP, even at that range.

WALLOP, TO

Hit strongly;
If we can manage to WALLOP them with a surprise artillery attack, we've got it made.

WAR OF NERVES

War without shooting;
The WAR OF NERVES during September 1939 to April 1940 was mostly a cold war.

WATCH YOUR MOUTH

Be careful of what you say;
When you talk to him, you must WATCH YOUR MOUTH because he repeats everything he hears.

WATER, IN HOT

In trouble, especially with those in authority;
I am IN HOT WATER with my instructor, because I did not finish the assignment.

WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE, IT'S

A past event;
You can't change a mistake, Captain, it's WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE.

WAY, IN A BIG

Enthusiastically; to a great extent;
Because it was a warm summer day, the children responded to the ice cream IN A BIG WAY.

WEAR TWO HATS

Hold two positions at once;
There are several officers on the Division Supply Staff who WEAR TWO HATS.

WEASEL OUT

To renege on a promise, usually for selfish reason;
Having no money, Smith tried to WEASEL OUT of paying his debt.

WEED OUT

To separate; to eliminate;
That examination really WEEDED OUT the poorer students.

WEIGHT, DEAD

Without value;
That clerk is just DEAD WEIGHT in the orderly room; he never does his share of the work.

WHAT'S HIS FACE

Anyone whose correct name you don't know;
The course was taught by WHAT'S HIS FACE; you know who I mean?

WHAT THE HELL?

An interjection indicating anger, surprise, disappointment, etc.;  Don't care attitude;
WHAT THE HELL?    Who gave him permission to use my car?

WHAT ARE YOU DRIVING AT

An interjection indicating anger, surprise, disappointment, etc.;  Questioning a point of view or opinion;
WHAT ARE YOU DRIVING AT by suggesting a change in leave quotas?   Should I deny some of my soldiers leave time?

WHAT GIVES; WHAT'S NEW; WHAT’S UP

A command greeting usually requiring no answer;
Instead of saying hello, Smith came up to our group and said, "WHAT GIVES?"

WHATCHAMACALLIT

Anything whose correct name you don't know;
Give me that WHATCHAMACALLIT, the one by your left hand.

WHIP, TO

Beat; defeat;
We must try to WHIP the enemy before winter sets it.

WHIP OUT AN ORDER, TO

Publish an order quickly;
The Chief of Staff told the G3 to WHIP OUT THE ORDER at once.

WHIPPED

Tired; defeated;
I'm WHIPPED.  I have worked 48 hours without relief.

WHOLE HOG

Completely; to the utmost;
He went WHOLE HOG in carrying the responsibility on his shoulders because no one volunteered to help him.

WILCO

Short for "will comply;"
Roger, WILCO.

WIND UP AN OPERATION

Finish;
This pursuit to the Rhine will WIND UP THE OPERATION.

WORKHORSE

Hard worker;
The WORKHORSES in the Pentagon are the new staff members.

WORK IT OUT, TO

Solve;
Here's the problem; try to WORK IT OUT.  And report to me your solution.

WORRY WART

Person who tends to worry habitually and needlessly;
Having no confidence, that WORRY WART will take too long to make a decision.

WORTH one's own WEIGHT IN GOLD

Very valuable;
Good classification officers are WORTH their WEIGHT IN GOLD when the division first receives its replacements.

WRAP IT UP

To finish it;
In another day I will be ready to WRAP IT UP, and I'll be home by Friday afternoon.

WRAPPED UP IN

To devote full time or attention to;
Robert is all WRAPPED UP IN his work because he wants to be top man in his class.

WRITE OFF AS LOST

Consider lost, damaged, or ruined;
We must WRITE OFF AS LOST twenty‑five percent of the tanks which took part in attack.

YANKEE

An American from Northern States;
He is a YANKEE from New York.

YARDSTICK, AS A

Standard of measurement or judgment;
Experience tables can be used as a YARDSTICK to figure your requirements.

YOU BET

Surely; certainly; an expression of affirmation;
Dave, would you like some dessert?  YOU BET!

YOU'VE GOT SOMETHING THERE

You have an important point there;
I had not thought of that, but YOU’VE GOT SOMETHING THERE.

YOURS TRULY

I; me; the speaker;
YOURS TRULY gave the welcoming speech.

YOU'VE HAD IT

Finished; no more chances;
If you are under an atomic burst, YOU'VE HAD IT.

ZERO HOUR

Critical time;
The ZERO HOUR for this attack will be 0130 hours.

ZERO IN, TO

Locate accurately;
The mission of this battery is to ZERO IN on enemy artillery positions.

ZILLION

An exceedingly large, indeterminate number; a larger number
than can be imagined; I've got a ZILLION things to do today.