In Reply to: Cchevrons on my sleeve posted by David FG on January 31, 2010 at 09:18:
: : : : "I have no need for more chevrons on my sleeve". This is an expression I have heard and used, but is there a history to the thought?
: : : It simply refers to the rank badge of a non-commissioned officer. As long as there have been NCOs, some private soldiers have aspired to that rank and others couldn't give a damn for promotion.(VSD)
: : The phrase is sometimes used figuratively, by all kinds of people who don't feel the need for sings of rank or preferment. And if you've forgotten the list of non-commissioned officer ranks, try this:
: : [Words and Music by Hughes / Lake]
: : Bless them all, bless them all,
: : The long and the short and the tall;
: : Bless all the sergeants and W.O. Ones;
: : Bless all the corporals and their blinking sons
: : For we're saying good-bye to them all
: : As back to the barracks they crawl--
: : You'll get no promotion this side of the ocean,
: : So cheer up my lads, bless them all!
: : --------------------------------
: : I'm not sure how warrant officers rank, but I'm sure someone will tell me. The song may be familiar to you with slightly different words. Without the sheet music I can't tell.
: : SS
: Warrant Officers (Classes 1 and 2) occupy a position somewhere between the NCOs and Commissioned Officers. Typically Company and Regimental Sergeant Majors, Quartermaster Sergeants, Drum Majors, Regimental Corporal of Horse, and so on, they are addressed as 'sir' by lower ranks but are not saluted - that being reserved for those holding a Commission.
As a post script to the above, it seems that in Westpondia (that bit below Canada, anyway) Warrant Officers are slightly different: they are actually 'proper' officers who carry out specialized and technical functions, which is how they started out in Eastpondia, but because of the supposed lack of a formalized class structure (which I think is a bit of a myth, but no matter) in the US, there was no sense of a 'them' and 'us' or 'gentlemen' and 'players' that there was/is this side of the Atlantic, which made for the huge gulf which existed between 'officers' and 'men'.