“Garrison-itis”: When back home, at a peaceful fort/post/base/port, a service member is considered to be in “garrison”. Since garrison is a stable, peaceful place under no threat, the only time you really need to be combat-ready and on your toes is during training events. Training events are carefully monitored for safety, and of course the rest of your garrison time is pretty much like a regular job, albeit one with crappy hours. You while away time with classes, book learning, and minor work chores, with your only worries being whether you want beer or whiskey for the weekend.
While we were “in the sandbox” (Iraq), command decided to make Camp Victory feel as much like a garrison environment as possible. And why not? After all, we had Pizza Hut, Starbucks, Burger King, and other creature comforts, the PX was like a little mall, and the threat of attack was low since the base was just so damn big: at least two full Divisions (30,000+ soldiers) plus numerous support Brigades, allied Divisions, contractors, Air Force, Marines, etc. All together, at any time, probably hovering around 100,000 people, although I don’t know if any “census” was actually taken. That meant a lot of Sergeants-Major and Lieutenant-Colonels and Majors with time on their hands… so they decided to spread “garrison-itis” like a disease.
Of course, the things we like about garrison can’t be replicated there. What makes garrison life appealing is afternoons and weekends off, pizza delivery, going into town to drink or chase girls/play with girlfriends or wives & family, or whatever. Not the work details, the sweeping and mowing and shoveling and PT tests. But guess which menu of garrison activities we got?