Suck it Up

I was complaining recently on line about something, not really that important but annoying to deal with.  A former F4 jock suggested I Suck it Up.  Hadn’t heard that in many years and I replied to him, “Yeah no Puss Game.”   Generally a response to Suck it up.

In other words tough; live with it.    And — Yeah I know it.

This reminded me that most folks wouldn’t have a clue about fighter lingo.

Non flyers are “Groundpounders,”

A hostile aircraft — a “Bandit,”

Speed brakes — ” Boards; ”

Backseater (in two seat cockpits) a Guy in Back or GIB;”

“Bought the Farm” – plowing any aircraft into terra firma;

“Bus Driver” a pilot of  any non fighter — a tanker or bomber or cargo.

“Bag” a flight suit.  

“Carrier Landings” might suggest U.S. Navy and landing on a boat at sea. However, to an AF fighter jock, it would mean a bar game wherein less than sober pilots, GIB’s and others would leap unto a table or the bar and try to catch a rope and hook it with their feet, before they slid off on the floor.

“Dead Bug,” is a similar. When someone called “dead bug,” everyone fell on the ground and put their hands and feet in the air, imitating the look of a dead bug. The person who called “dead bug” remained standing to see who was last assuming the position. That person buys the next round. As I said, this was done when less than sober.

Then there is the “F” word. It is hard to discuss fighter jocks without acknowledging the use of the “F” word.

New guys were always called FNGs.

In the “Right Stuff ” an astronaut says “Don’t let me screw up,” only he didn’t say screw, it was the good old “F” word.

This word is seemingly everywhere today, but forty years ago only fighter pilots, or drunken sailors, could the claim a mastery of it that was beyond compare. It was used as a noun, verb, adverb, adjective, and in every conceivable combination that it could be applied to.

One of my favorites was the Square Root of F’ all.  Generally used when referring to another jock, as in he doesn’t know the Square Root of F’all.  In other words he was  F’ing dumb.

In closing —  if my discussion of the F word offends you, then I suggest you Suck it Up.

About jenorv

John E. Norvell is a retired Air Force Lt Colonel, decorated air combat veteran of the Vietnam War, and former Assistant Professor of American and Military History at the U.S. Air Force Academy. He has written freelance for the Washington Post, the Middle Tennessee Journal of Genealogy and History, and for several newspapers around the country.
This entry was posted in 13 TFS, 43 TFS, Air Force lingo, American History, F-4 Phantom II, Fighter Aircraft, Fighter pilot lingo and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Suck it Up

  1. Rick Gonzalez {Tactical Call Sign “Speedo” says:

    “He set his hair on fire and his fangs came out”

    “My fun meter is pegged”

    “He went Tits Up”


    “F—k an A”

    “Check your six”

  2. Capitano says:

    Flew west.

  3. Buddy Cox says:

    I’ll take a Judy.
    Said to the air controller: ‘I have the plane I’m rendezvousing with in sight. No need for further vectors.

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