Villain A to Z: Bold

At seventeen I enlisted in the Army with a waiver signed by my parents. My lifelong fascination with guns and all things combat oriented made it a logical choice.

By nineteen I was settled into my unit and gaining momentum quickly due to my hard work ethic and ability to get things done. I was a young fire team leader; in charge of five other men, the oldest of whom was ten years my senior. Despite being younger than all but one of my men, I was well respected and enjoyed a phenomenal relationship with my guys.

One day while killing time on a range where my platoon had been tasked with performing a demonstration for some of the higher-ranking brass, I managed to solidify that bond even more.

Bored from the long hours and tedious rehearsal of our “operation” my men and I were shooting the shit. The banter was typical of the day, mainly what girls JP was “courting” at the time and how drunk everyone had been the past weekend.

In an act of mock reprimand of one of my soldiers for committing some sort of “foul” I ripped his hat off, threw it to the ground, and kicked it around in the dirt before placing it back atop his head. The laughter that I thought would ensue never came, and instead I was met with silence and a group of men standing at parade rest (the position one assumes in the presence of a higher-ranking non-commissioned officer).

To my surprise the Brigade Sergeant Major was standing behind me, and had witnessed my entire “tantrum”.

Determined to teach me a lesson in leadership he asked me if I thought that my actions were that of a leader, and if that was anyway to treat my men.

I replied, “They love it Sergeant Major”, to which he simply said, “I doubt that” before removing my hat and giving it the dirt treatment.

He asked me how I liked it, a question which my young smart-assed mind was unable to answer in the moment. His next statement however I answered with no hesitation.

“I’d like to see you do that to me” he said.

After about two full seconds of deliberation I removed his starched hat, threw it to the ground, stomped on it, and placed it back on his head. His reaction I’ll never forget. He gave me a sort of smirk, turned towards his waiting vehicle and said

“Carry on men”.

My men laughed and cheered for hours as I spent the rest of the day in the front leaning rest position at the hands of my squad leader who informed me that I had royally fucked up this time.

The next morning I was called into my Platoon Sergeant’s office where the abuse continued. He said I had one hour until the Sergeant Major wanted me in his office, and that he was going to make my wait memorable. No stranger to punishment at this point, I took my lumps and when the time came, headed to face the music at the Brigade headquarters.

I was tense as I walked in his office, but I knew that whatever punishment I would receive for my insubordination was worth the respect that I had gained that day from my men. I knew that no matter if I lost my rank (again), or got the book thrown at me, that the memory I had created for them would last forever.

To my surprise the Sergeant Major’s first words were

“God Damn you, why are you all tattooed up like an asshole” I had been in long sleeves when he had seen me, and on this day my shirtsleeves were rolled up.

“I can’t have you as my driver looking like a God damn biker in Class B’s”.

“Your driver Sergeant Major?” I said.

“Yeah, my driver kid. I need to be around people with balls like yours. This man’s Army is getting softer than my wife’s ass. But you’ve fucked that all up by drawing all over yourself like some sort of crazy person. Get out of here kid, and tell Sergeant Jones I want to talk to him. You’re alright, this Army needs more men like you”.

As you can imagine I left out of there feeling like King Fucking Kong. I had listened to my gut and had acted from integrity in a manner that I knew would ultimately make for the best story, and would further ascend my image in the eyes of my men.

I learned that even in the most regimented of environments, rarely does having balls that clank result in anything bad.

Fortune favors the Bold.

The Villain acts decisively, without hesitation, in a bold manner on a regular basis.


Johnny Pain is the man behind as well as the East Coast’s notorious Greyskull Barbell Club and several other ventures. He is the author of several books on subjects pertaining to strength and conditioning. He can be found comically entertaining questions on his Q and A forum at or can be reached for consultations, training seminars, or speaking engagements at

Also, you can follow him on Twitter: @thejohnnypain



4 Responses

  1. Butch

    This is some good stuff, JP. Great story with a lesson for all real men in this age of empty sacks.

    September 12, 2012 at 11:12 am

  2. Dwayne "KONG" Wint

    Awesome story JP…very cool.

    September 14, 2012 at 9:25 am

  3. J.Wells

    When I got to the stomping of the SM’s hat, I thought the next sentence was going to be: “and then he stomped my guts out.”

    Thats some funny shit. Dirt treatment to the SM’s hat? Damn that’s some balls


    September 27, 2012 at 5:15 am

  4. Bowdozer

    It’s sad that in the military I know and in most chains of command I have suffered under this story would end with an njp. Great story nonetheless and makes me miss a time with fuller sacks and less tender assholes.

    November 11, 2012 at 11:56 pm

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