Vietnam Veterans know what “short” means – but for those who are not vets, here is the jargon.


Short: a term used by everyone in Vietnam to tell all who would listen that his tour was almost over

Short-timer: soldier nearing the end of his tour in Vietnam

Short-timer’s stick: when a soldier had approximately two months remaining on his tour in Vietnam, he might take a long stick and notch it for each of his remaining days in-country. As each day passed he would cut the stick off another notch until on his rotation day he was left with only a small stub.

“I am so short I don’t have time for a long conversation.”

“I am so short, I can play handball against the curb.”

“I am so short I left yesterday.”

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