Monday, December 8, 2014

Humor in Uniform - PULLING STRINGS


A Spoof

PULLING STRINGS A Spoof by Vikram Karve

In the civilian world, you “pull strings” to get a job.

In the military, you “pull strings” to quit your job.

As a good friend, a witty naval officer, once quipped:

“It is easier to get into the navy than get out of it.”

He had put in his papers a few months ago, and was patiently waiting for his papers to get through, as his papers bounced back-and-forth for various “queries” and “clarifications”.

Another brilliant navy friend was passed over for promotion – he was an ex-NDA officer who had excelled in the 20 years of his naval career – he had done the required “criteria” appointments and qualified the right courses.

In fact, he seemed to have bright career prospects in the navy, and we were quite surprised that he had been superseded for promotion.

However, he took his supersession gracefully in his stride.

He decided to quit the navy and try his hand at a second innings in the “civvy street”.

He had just completed the mandatory 20 years pensionable service, and thanks to his supersession, he thought his request for premature retirement would be easily approved.

His boss recommended and forwarded his papers through proper channel and told him that his papers would be through in around two months.

The officer applied for jobs in the industry and got a good job offer.

Asked when he could join his new job, the officer said he would join within 3 months, as he expected his papers to be cleared within 2 months.

Two months passed.

Nothing happened.

Reminders were sent to expedite his premature retirement application.

Suddenly, one day, a bombshell arrived from the “powers-that-be” – his papers were not accepted since he had not been “permanently superseded” for promotion.

“But I have been superseded,” the officer protested, “My course-mates are already wearing one more stripe than me.”

“Yes, but you have not been permanently superseded – you still have two more “looks” left – next year and the year after that – and if you don’t make it in both attempts, only then will you be permanently superseded after all your 3 “looks” are over – so put up your application for premature retirement at that time, after 2 years, and we will approve it.”

“Are you saying that I have a chance to get promoted in my 2nd or 3rd attempt?” the officer asked the concerned “powers-that-be”.

“No – I don’t think you will be promoted – one of your ACRs is so screwed up that you have no chance of promotion.”

“Then please let me go now – I have a good job offer – and they won’t wait for me for two years,” the officer pleaded.

“Well, I can’t help you – there is a shortage of officers – and there are already plenty of officers in the queue to get out – the only way you can get out of the navy now is if you know someone at the top who can “pull strings” at the highest level.”

Luckily for the officer, the Captain of one of his ex-ships was now a powerful Admiral – so the officer approached him, “strings were pulled” and the officer’s papers were through just in time for him to take up the job offer.

During my naval career, I met many such young officers who wanted to quit that navy, running from pillar to post, “pulling strings” to get their papers through.

Of course, there were some exceptions.

Like a Commodore whose papers were accepted in double quick time and he was out of the navy within a month of submitting his application for premature retirement.

When a young officer (who was waiting in the “queue” to get out) wondered how come the Commodore’s papers were accepted so fast, the “powers-that-be” told him: “There are too many Commodores and above in the Navy – and thanks to the generous pay, perks and benefits they get, hardly anyone wants to quit – so if any Senior Officer puts in his papers, they are accepted at top speed, lest he change his mind.

Copyright © Vikram Karve 
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1. This story is a spoof, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
2. All Stories in this Blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

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