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Not Allowed to “Reply to All”

January 15th, 2009 by Speed

When I was in the National Guard, I was in a ROC unit.  ROC means Rear Operations Center, and it was the rear command post for the XVIII Airborne Corps.  What that means is that while the regular army guys ran the battle in the main command post, our job was to make sure that all of the supplies and replacements got up to the battle.  Our secondary mission was to take over the battle if the main command post was taken out.

Every year we had to take part in a War Fighter exercise.  War Fighters are exercises that help to train officers and senior sergeants how to run the headquarters.  Most captains have to take a staff position to get their ticket punched and prove that they are worthy for promotion to major.  Sergeants have to move to staff positions since most units don’t need a lot of master sergeants or sergeant majors.

The common thread here is that this is where they got trained for the staff jobs they had to do instead of leading soldiers in combat.

By 2000 the War Fighter exercises were old hat to us guard guys as we had been doing them for almost ten years.  Unlike the regular army, our units had little turn over and the same gang had done these exercises for so long that we could do them very well and, upon completion of the exercise, would make the joke, “The exercise is over, now it’s medals for everyone.”  We would get our Achievement and Commendation medals, plus certificates suitable for framing.  My major would scarf up his Meritorious Service Medal oak leaf for subsequent award.

One night – I was always on night shift, heh – I received a message on the Outlook email account for our G-2 (Intel) section.  It was titled the “Top Ten Reasons You Are a Jedi Redneck.”  The last five were already filled in.  I was bored.

I don’t know if this had ever been done before or if there was a list somewhere, but I thought about it for a few minutes.  I quickly filled in the top five reasons, number one was “You sleep with Princess Leia because she IS your sister,” and clicked on “Reply to All.”

On the first day of the exercise I had had a five second course on using Outlook and did not realize that I had received a “global” email, that someone had sent it out to everyone in the address book.  I was later told that it was almost everyone in the entire army, but I don’t know if that’s true or just added for drama.

I was so intent on filling out the top five reasons I was oblivious to the uproar going on around me.  The brass were upset that someone had sent this out as a global email.  And I had just replied to “All.”

I got some very funny and interesting replies, mostly from colonels and a few generals.  Over all, they thought it was funny and most of them said that they were going to print it out and post in their office, etc.

In the morning, before I was relieved from my shift,  I got to meet with my major.  Privately.  I am not allowed to “Reply to All” on any email ever again.  Ever.

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25 Responses to “Not Allowed to “Reply to All””

  1. Catbunny Says:

    Well seeing as how something like that took down the State Department recently, I think it’s a good idea that nobody replies to all. Ever.

    reCaptcha: cities last
    but not email servers. :b


    Stickfodder reply on January 15th, 2009 11:14 pm:

    How did you make that one part bold?


    Pericles reply on January 16th, 2009 12:02 am:

    script jockey trick. it’s either less than symbol “b” greater than symbol “your message/words here” less than symbol “/b” greater than symbol
    less than symbol=
    the other uses brackets in place of greater than & less than symbols
    brackets = []

    example a and b
    a Murphy truck
    b [b]Murphy Truck[/b]

    whichever one is not shown is the one available for use on the site.


    Pericles reply on January 16th, 2009 12:08 am:

    If you want any more of those I can list about 3 from memory in addition to this. The rest were harder to remember.

    Until Next Time

    Minty reply on January 16th, 2009 11:58 am:

    They’re basic html tags, which you can look up here. Just keep in mind that everyone uses lowercase letters now, instead of uppercase.


    Stickfodder reply on January 16th, 2009 2:24 pm:

    OH it’s HTML here I stupidly tried using bb code at one point and it didn’t work so I just gave up and didn’t bother looking to see if anything else would work here.


    Speed reply on January 16th, 2009 5:41 am:

    Another favorite of mine was the “Armadillo” parody the Brits made over in Basra. It took down the military network over there, in Germany and in Britain.


  2. Sean Says:

    When do we get to see the entire Jedi Redneck list?


    Speed reply on January 16th, 2009 5:34 am:

    I’ll have to look for the page copy. I was an Outlook neophyte back then, plus we couldn’t make the digital copy of anything, thus the printed copy instead.


  3. CCO Says:

    Good one — a classic– as evidenced by this precedent:

    (Also worse than the time I let the supply truck run out of fuel, during an ARTEP.)

    In her book And So it Goes, Linda Ellerbee tells about the time (perhaps in the early ’70’–she was vague) she wrote a letter to a friend criticizing her boss and accidently sent it out to everyone on the AP or UPI system (teletype back then, I think.) I recall that she had to go find another job tout suite.

    Out here.


    Freiheit reply on January 16th, 2009 6:58 am:

    “(Also worse than the time I let the supply truck run out of fuel, during an ARTEP.)”

    So will that be an article on Tuesday then?


    CCO reply on January 16th, 2009 10:15 am:

    Naw, that was pretty straight forward. I made it inside the perimeter. It turns out that you can’t rely on the fuel gauge on those old trucks. I did make the after action review, according to my sergeant. Not good. The company also started filling up the vehicles on Friday afternoon; lessons learned.


  4. StoneWolf Says:

    Back when I was still in college I belonged to this group. That part doesn’t matter so much as we used a common email account list so that the club leaders could email the whole club at once. It was also the idiot FNG test. At least once a year, in responce to an official email, some whiny twit would “reply all” and we’d get to read his or her dirty laundry. The best one was Junior year when about three people got into an email fight and none of them figured out they were “reply all”ing. We had bets on how long before the figured it out. Took three months with about a half dozen emails a week.


  5. Tim Covington Says:

    You would be suprised how often this happens at Microsoft.


  6. Doc_G Says:

    Tried to find the top 10 reasons your a redneck jedi on the net. This is the best I could do

    You might be a redneck Jedi if…
    You ever heard the phrase, “May the force be with y’all.”
    Your Jedi robe is a camouflage color.
    You have ever used your light saber to open a bottle of Boone’s Farm Strawberry Hill.
    At least one wing of your X-Wings is primer colored.
    You have bantha horns on the front of your land speeder.
    You can easily describe the taste of an Ewok.
    You have ever had an X-wing up on blocks in your yard.
    You ever lost a hand during a light saber fight because you had to spit.
    The worst part of spending time on Dagobah is the dadgum skeeters.
    Wookies are offended by your B.O.
    You have ever used the force to get yourself another beer so you didn’t have to wait for a commercial.
    You have ever used the force in conjunction with fishing/bowling.
    Your father has ever said to you, “Shoot, son come on over to the dark side…it’ll be a hoot.”
    You have ever had your R-2 unit use its self-defense electro-shock thingy to get the barbecue grill to light.
    You have a confederate flag painted on the hood of your landspeeder.
    Although you had to kill him, you kinda thought that Jabba the Hutt had a pretty good handle on how to treat his women.
    You have ever accidentally referred to Darth Vader’s evil empire as “them damn Yankees.”
    You have a cousin who bears a strong resemblance to Chewbacca.
    You suggested that they outfit the Millennium Falcon with red wood deck.
    You were the only person drinking Jack Daniels on the rocks during the cantina scene.

    here’s to hoping the bold works.


    Maj Mac reply on January 16th, 2009 9:53 pm:

    I may have seen that “Reply All”. It sounds very familiar. It also sounds like something we would do in Iraq occassionally on a super secret network where we discussed current and ongoing intelligence issues. Using a secret intel chat room with links to folks all over the world, we would take turns writing the next line to a song like Steppenwolf’s Magic Carpet Ride. The Colonels monitoring the halls would usually let us continue blow off a little steam before they made us cool it down. There were times when they too would initiate rowdy topics of conversation but that too would soon be squashed. A little innocent fodder when nothing significant was on the table was usually ok. But as always, someone would approach the line and we would all have to back down.

    Good times. Good times.


  7. R Says:

    Something similar happened in my unit. A squadron all email was sent out, and a guy who was buddies with the sender accidentally replied to all instead of just his friend. His message was short and to the point –

    “you are gay”

    Not sure everyone appreciated his refined humor.


    Dave Van Domelen reply on January 16th, 2009 11:38 am:

    Don’t ask, don’t tell, don’t hit Reply All.


    TeratoMarty reply on January 18th, 2009 10:54 pm:

    As a man whose high school guidance counselor suggested Empire Beauty School rather than the military, I find this hilarious.


  8. SFC TC Says:

    While at Fort Eustis a few years ago (5 or so) there was an e-mail chain letter that someone decided to send to just about everyone on post. Seeing this my office, the Battalion Operations, knew someone was gonna get chewed out since the same thing had happened maybe one week prior. What we didn’t know was how many “helpful” people (see also officers) thought they should assist in correcting the persons error.

    The only problem was they kept hitting reply to all. Which then meant some of them started correcting each other, while still hitting reply to all.

    Regular users had no e-mail for 2 days as the servers kept crashing and finally were taken offline and all of the offending e-mails were found and deleted before someone else decided to send out a correction.

    Remember, this is the same installation where a company commander sent out an e-mail to an entire brigade remarking on the upcoming deployment,while it was still classified. Said commander kept a framed certificate on his wall thanking him for his participation in the “Army’s Experimental Drug Program”. Not terribly surprising.


  9. TheShadowCat Says:

    Dear goddess, I’ve seen that list and I remember that line.

    For anyone who hasn’t seen it, just type redneck Jedi in your search engine and you’ll find several lists.

    CAPTCHA: engineer’s sacks – make up your own naughty jokes for that one.


  10. David Says:

    This is the best I could pull together on short notice. Apologies in advance.

    Redneck Jedi song lyrics:

    Well I ain’t never
    Been the Dark Lord type
    I won’t shoot lightning from my fingers
    I’d rather be gentle and nice
    Unless I’m threatened
    On a battlefield
    Or some rundown tavern place
    I got posters on my wall
    Of Kenobi, Yoda and Mace

    Some people look down on me
    But I will shed no tears
    I’ll stand barefooted in my own front yard
    With cinnamon rolls over my ears

    ‘Cause I’m a redneck Jedi
    I ain’t no high-class knight
    I’m just a product of my training
    I fight for all that’s good and right
    And here’s to all my brethren
    Fighting against Sith treachery
    Let me get a big HELL YEAH
    From the redneck Jedi’s like me


    You might be a Redneck Jedi if…
    You “sing” the above lyrics instead of just reading.
    You got some of these Crazy Pranks and Gags fake bullet holes and fake lotto winning tickest, smashed windows and a whole heap more!
    That ‘Disturbance in the Force’ was just last night’s baked beans.
    You refer to Yoda as your Li’l green buddy.
    You have ever used a light saber to light the barbecue grill.
    Your Father’s name is Garth Vader.
    You’ve ever given someone a wedgie by using the Force.
    You’re beer belly puts Jabba’s to shame.
    Your idea of a practical joke is stickin a banana in Boba Fett’s tail pipe.
    You’ve ever fantasized about Princess Leah in a pair of tight Daisy Duke shorts.
    The cake at your wedding was sliced with a lightsabor.
    You asked to be buried with your LightSaber.
    You use your lightsabre as a bug zapper.
    You’re flying a ship which has no original parts.
    You got fuzzy dice hanging in the cockpit of your X-Wing.
    You say ‘these are not the beers you are looking for.’
    You have ever been investigated for “Grand Theft, X-Wing”
    You have ever dated a Jawa
    You work for a Jawa
    You changed your name to “Bubba Fett”
    You have ever used a plunger to get the dents out of your Y-Wing
    You drag race your Y-Wing
    You go in and out of hyperspace for kicks
    Your uncle uses his Jedi mind tricks to help him sell used cars
    Protocol droids can’t understand your speach
    You think that stormtroopers are just Klansmen with really good sheets
    You own a rancor
    Your Rancor tends to eat anyone (including your jedi trainers) that visits your house.
    You have a sand person in your family tree
    The Force is strong in your family: Your step-father/uncle/cousin has it, your mother/aunt/neice has it and your sister/ex-wife/sister-in-law has it
    Your relatives use their moisture condensers to make moonshine
    You play “chicken” with Star Destroyers
    You have a bionic toe because the real one was shot off in a blaster accident
    You put leftovers in carbon freeze
    On Friday nights, you pick up dates at Jabba’s palace
    Your uncle uses his Jedi mind tricks to help him as a used spacecraft salesman
    You use proton torpedoes from your Y-Wing to get the stumps out of your yard
    You have a tatoo of a rancor
    You ENJOY the smell of a Taun-Taun
    If womp rats are not just for target practice
    If you’ve made out with a Wampa
    If you try to get a tan on Hoth
    If you modeled for the Jabba the Hutt brand underwear commercials
    When you suddenly realize, while going through hyperspace, that you shouldn’t have eaten those beens last night.
    If you ever asked a Hutt for a date.
    If you have a lightsabre rack on the back window of your X-wing.
    If you ever picked your nose with a lightsabre
    You use your jedi leviting skill to pick up your room
    If you wonder why Luke and Leia gave up on marriage.
    blasters are used to kill deformed family members…..
    Ewok are not just close friend……
    The Force seem to arch with your family tree…..
    If you thought Darth Vader was just the leader of the KKK…….
    your house is mobile and you have…. 24 ships that arent…….
    Your considers ewoks cleanecompared to your family…….
    You try going swimming on Tatoonie
    if you have ever used a lightsaber as a hunting knife
    If you own a low rider B-Wing
    you can describe the taste of Ewok
    a group of Jawas regurely scavenge through your yard
    you have an inbred child that is causing ” a great desturbance in the force”
    your butt crack shows through your Jedi’s garb
    you dream of owning a dewback ranch one day
    you mourned the death of Greedo
    wookies find your smell intolerable
    you shave only so that you can be destinguished from a wookie
    you know all the stormtroopers by name and can tell them all apart (not to mention have picked one up for a date).
    you sent your niece/cousin one of those Aunt Beru action figures for her birthday.
    you refer to Vader as “ol’ buckethead”
    you think that Emperor Palpatine makes the lightning
    You go hunting with a double barrel lightsaber
    you use your lightsabre to shave your backhair.
    You use non-“name brand” batteries in your lightsabre instead of Duracell.
    the Energizer Bunny can wipe the floor with your face in a lightsabre fight.
    you have an cassette player in your X-wing
    You had windsheild-wipers in your A-wing
    You have an 8-Track in your landspeeder.
    You’ve ever brushed a Rancors teeth.
    You use your lightsaber to unclog the toilet.
    You go hunting with your blaster set on stun.
    You have ever asked out a droid
    If you have a cb radio on your landspeeder,
    If you chew gimer sticks to get your daily requirement of fiber,
    If you wear camoflage pants on Tatooine or Hoth,
    If you get rid of warts and zits with a lightsabre, (not a bad idea actually…..),
    If you applied for a job in the Imperial Navy wearing a Darth Vader mask,
    If you ever heard “I told you it was loaded” while looking at a hole in the Cantina,
    If you ever tried to jumpstart your X-Wing with your watch battery,
    If your TIE Fighter has more square footage than your house,
    If your lightsaber rack is bigger than your refrigerator,
    If you cut your hair with your lightsaber,
    If you trim your nose hairs with your lightsaber,
    If you don’t have any room on your Star Destroyer for just ONE more bumper sticker,
    If you’ve ever been to a Jawa family reunion and then called up the rest of your family –and said they were at the wrong place!
    At least one section of your X-Wing is Bondo colored
    A peaceful meditation is one without gas
    You can levitate yourself using a force from within, but not with the Force
    Your master ever says “hey, pull my finger…”
    You lost a hand in a sabre fight because you had to spit.
    The moonshine still that you made on Endor is so well hidden that even the Ewoks can’t find it.
    You have ever used the Force in conjunction with bowling or fishing.
    you think that the Rebel logo should be the “Stars and Bars”
    More than half of the droids you own don’t work.
    The numbers of blasters you own exceeds your IQ
    You use carbonite to freeze the 78 wompas you shot while on vacation on Hoth
    You don’t like wearing the jedi robe because it restricts access to the dip in your pocket
    Sandpeople back down from your mama
    You have ever used the Jedi Mind trick to get out of a ticket or DUI
    You built an outhouse over the Sarlacc
    You have ever argued with Jawas over salvage rights to a broken droid
    You don’t think of Ewoks as primitive
    You consider your light sabre the ultimate bug zapper
    The Rancor refuses to eat you
    You discover that your greatest enemy is in fact your father, who is also your brother
    Your callsign starts with “Bondo”
    If you’ve ever considered retiring on Dagobah
    If you don’t think that you’ll ever retire because your landspeeder uses repulsors.
    You put your beer in carbon freeze
    Your master ever said, “My finger you will pull..hmmm?”
    You’ve ever strangled someone with the force because they laughed at your accent
    You have ever wrecked a landspeeder while trying to light a cigarette with your lightsaber
    When your Jedi master tells a story he starts with “When I was a girl….”
    Your teacher is a droid
    You do Jedi Mind Tricks on Geraldo
    You have a pet Ewok
    You don’t have a teddy bear, you have a Teddy Ewok
    You use your lightsabre as a flashlight
    You have and use “Cruise Control” on your X-Wing
    You play Sabacc with your poker buddies
    You work as a lumberjack and use your lightsabre to chop down trees on Endor
    You use the handle of your lightsabre as a throwing weapon
    You golf using lightsabres
    You use a blaster while plunking
    You think Stormtroopers are just giant Pillsbury Doughboys
    you call your young apprentice, “Juner.(JR.)”
    you got your lightsaber by sending in 750 Skoal Lids.
    you count B.O. as a Jedi power.
    you have ever used a lightsaber to skin a deer.
    your master ever said “My finger you will pull..hmmm?”
    you have ever used baling wire and/or duct tape to make repairs on your landspeeder.
    you feel that duct tape is like the force: it has a light side and a dark side and it holds the universe together.
    you can levitate yourself using a force from within, but not THE FORCE.


    Speed reply on January 21st, 2009 9:05 am:

    I remembered a few from that old top 10 list:
    You’ve got old droids on your front porch next to the fridge.
    You’ve got a Confederate flag hanging in the back window of the Millenium Falcon.
    R2D2 doubles as a still.
    Your land speeder is up on blocks in the front yard.


  11. CCO Says:

    Thanks, Minty!

    BTW, Case Western is still doing HTML / XHTML tutorials online; see http://blog.case.edu/webdev/ and http://www.case.edu/help/Help_www2.html (for those who started HTML with Eric Meyer).


  12. CCO Says:

    Speaking of Eric Meyer & learning HTML, here’s a link to a discussion on his website about HTML 5.0.

    (What’s with the reCaptcha; the wavy line is too big tonight. Or it’s time to hit the hay; probably the latter muttered Captain Archer.)


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