– By Col Manoj Asthana(Retd.)
The Commanding Officer in an artillery unit is also very affectionately called the old man but it may not be a brilliant idea to extend this courtesy to his wife. It is fine to address her as a tigress but to address her as an old lady would probably be considered a professional hara-kiri.
In addition to this, it will not pay dividends to address Second-in-Command’s wife as Mrs. lamb or sheep as this could mark the beginning of long and arduous route marches since a 2IC is normally an in-charge of such events.
This convention of codes is also rampant in Indian Air Force too. As a young Captain during my Army Aviation training, I could never comprehend why left was called a port and right was known a starboard.
Further to make matter worse, my flying instructor insisted on saying zing for port and zang for starboard. Hence, he could say turn port whenever we had to turn left, but would say zing. We kept zinging and zanging on all take-offs and landings till I was mercifully sent to train for helicopters.