February 29, 1968
Adding a day to our year of duty was infuriating. Top Culverhouse explained it made no difference in the length of time we served, but no one believed his sermon on the issue. Some Marines made the ridiculous argument that our combat and hazardous duty pay should be increased for the extra day served.
Counting days in Vietnam was a big deal, and it was common to see someone’s “X’s” on their calendar marking off another day shorter to going home. The connection of Leap Year to the Presidential election year wasn’t noticed or discussed (most were too young to vote).
It seemed to me counting the passing days prolonged the process. Leap Year was simply something to grumble about and was just as confusing to me as crossing the International Date Line. It was an arbitrary thing defined by government, similar to the superficial concept of a “Free Fire Zone,” designating everyone in an area as the enemy. LOGIC is diminished by war . . . “Boundaries” were stretched.
Next Edition: Jenny’s February Update