Rats! Episode 26 – Military Ball

Gotta love Military Ball. This was an annual event for the VTCC, a formal affair where the cadets wore uniforms or ball gowns, depending on whether you were male or female or a practical joker. General Stanton Musser (I think that was his name) made it mandatory my junior year, and there was some howling over that. A lot of people were either not keen on dressing up in the monkey suits or weren’t happy about the prospects of finding a date. I can’t recall who I went with my junior year, the year this particular strip would have been drawn. I wouldn’t be surprised if I went with JP, my dyke (one of the terms for a freshman sponsered by a junior). I know JP was my date for Ring Dance, which was also another formal affair for cadets, though as I recall, the civilian student body also participated, just not to the extent that we did (presentation of the date by an escort, presentation of the ring, sabers, uniforms, etc.). I do remember my date for Mil Ball my freshman year, and of course my date for Mil Ball my senior year was my future husband, Michael. And I didn’t go my sophomore year. But for the life of me, who I went with the year it was made mandatory is beyond me. I may not have had a date at all and just gone stag with some of my buds.

General Musser was interesting. He was a great guy, retired Air Force if I recall correctly, and popular with the VTCC. He was also aparently a fan of the Rats! cartoons. I know because I got a note from his office saying so, and because I got called down to his office one day with a request from his secretaries to draw a cartoon about the General. “Draw something about General Musser! And make it funny!” Noooooo pressure there!

Anyway, I don’t know if Military Ball is still mandatory or not. If any cadets or recent graduates are reading this, leave a comment and let me know. I’m always curious about how things have changed in the last 20 or so years…

20 or so years?! Jeeze, I’m getting old.

About Cynical Woman

Cartoonist, Artist, Geek, Evil Crafter, Girl Scout Troop Leader and Writer. Also, a zombie. I haven't slept in I don't know how long.
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  1. Mil ball is still mandatory, and everyone has to wear paletot, which makes the female cadets extremely unhappy.

  2. CorpsChick,

    Paletot? Really? When I was in the VTCC, the female cadets were expected to wear formal or semi-formal gowns, though they had the option to wear the uniform. Huh, guess things change. I will say, when the Army ROTC department hosted a Dining-In, the females had to wear our uniforms then, but a dining-in isn’t a ball.

  3. Our rats have grown much more bold. We usually have a few every year now that will make a public announcement before a larger class (Like in Mcbryde 100) that they need a Mill Ball Date

    Really enjoying your comics. was only 3 years ago for me, but it all still applies.

    You aughta come back to visit some time. the football has gotten better at least.

  4. CadetTret,

    Thank you! I’m glad you enjoy the comics. My husband was also a Tech graduate, though not a cadet, and he follows the football games religiously. I’m certain one year soon we’ll make the trip to Virginia Tech to see a home game.

    Asking for dates in McBryde? Not sure I’d want to see the results of that one! Take care 😉

  5. I’m General Mussers 2nd oldest grandson. This sounds like the stuff he would enjoy haha hes a silly old dude!

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