CUSTOMS & COURTIOUSY
Marine customs are simply desirable courses of action sanctioned by tradition and usage. In the Marine Corps, practically every custom has grown out of the manner in which Marines of the past conducted themselves. Many Marine customs have been incorporated into regulations in order to standardize conduct throughout the Corps, but some of them cannot be found in written directives. Knowing and observing these customs, both written and unwritten, is important to each Marine because it keeps him mindful of the heritage and traditions of his Corps, and of his duty to uphold them. In addition, it makes him feel that he is a part of the team and helps to create the strong bond of loyalty between him and all other…show more content… The celebration involves the reading of an excerpt from the Marine Corps Manual and a birthday message from the Commandant; the cutting of a birthday cake by the commanding officer; and the presentation of the first and second pieces of cake to the oldest and youngest Marines present. Recently, the ceremony for the observance of the Marine Corps Birthday by large posts and stations has been incorporated into written directives.
Nautical Terms. Many of the Marine Corps customs are derived from the many years of service afloat. Even ashore Marines customarily use nautical terms. Floors are "decks," walls are "bulkheads," ceilings, "overheads," corridors, "passageways." The order "Gangway!" is used to clear the way for an officer ashore, just as it is afloat. Among other terms in common usage are: "two-block" -to tighten or center (as a necktie); "square-away" - to correctly arrange articles or to take in hand and direct an individual;" "head" - a bathroom; "scuttle-but" -a drinking fountain, also an unconfirmed rumor.
In the Marine Corps, the nautical expression "Aye, Aye, Sir" is used when acknowledging a verbal order. "Yes, Sir" and "No, Sir" are used in answer to direct questions. "Aye, Aye, Sir" is not used in answer to questions as this expression is reserved solely for