A US Air Force C-130 was scheduled to leave Thule Air Base, Greenland, at midnight during a winter month. During the pilot’s preflight check, he discovers that the latrine holding tank is still full from the last flight. So a message is sent to the base and an airman who was off duty is called out to take care of it.
The young man finally gets to the air base and makes his way to the aircraft only to find that the latrine pump-truck has been left outdoors and is frozen solid, so he must find another one in the hangar, which takes even more time. He returns to the aircraft and is less than enthusiastic about what he has to do. Nevertheless, he goes about the pumping job deliberately, carefully and slowly, so as not to risk criticism later. As he’s leaving the plane, the pilot stops him and says, “Son, your attitude and performance has caused this flight to be late and I’m going to personally see to it that you are not just reprimanded but punished.”
Shivering in the cold, his task finished, he takes a deep breath, stands tall and says, “Sir, with all due respect, I’m not your son. I’m an Airman in the United States Air Force. I’ve been in Thule, Greenland, for 11 months without any leave, and reindeer’s asses are beginning to look pretty good to me. I have one stripe; it’s 2:30 in the morning, the temperature is 40 degrees below zero, and my job here is to pump shit out of an aircraft. Just exactly what form of punishment did you have in mind?”