The absurd and funny expression “Marines eat crayons” has widely spread on the Internet and appeared to be long-lasting. Even people who have never served may recognize it online. The joke is quite confusing for lots of people, and some may think that it is true. Why do they say Marines eat crayons? Let’s try to sort it out and explain the phenomenon that surrounds the U.S. Marine Corps.
What’s the Origin of the Saying “Marines Eat Crayons”?
Where did the phrase come from? The true origin of this saying is unknown, but I have found at least 3 reasons why this rumor has appeared and is now widely circulating on the Internet. So, let’s get to the bottom of this.
This saying is actually a joke that shows that the Marine Corps attracts stupid people with a low IQ level. The thing is that autistic or retarded children can occasionally eat these media while drawing with them. They think that crayons are food. The saying means that Marines have the same level of intelligence as kids. This stereotype may have been formed because the only reason why young men join the Marines is that they are not smart enough for college. People with a university degree will never join the Marines, while the army has a reputation for taking even low-qualified personnel. The recruits with drug charges and no job experience are easily accepted as service members. Partially, it is true; however, applicants with only high school diplomas can be enlisted as Marines.
Let’s move to the second source of origin. People who spent some time in uniform are familiar with a friendly inter-service rivalry between various military branches (Marine Corps, Navy, Army, and others). Some branches create stereotypes about the other ones. The crayon theme started as an inside joke between services. While the weak point of the Marines is education, the Airmen have a reputation of lazy people, the Navy is called soft people, and the Soldiers are considered fat.
The third reason stems from the fact that the Marines have extremely strict standards in clothing, both in uniform and out of it, and are uncompromising to the smallest regulations and orders. This relentless dedication to orders is a real point of pride, but it has contributed to their “dummy” reputation.
Do Marines Really Eat Crayons?
No, this is a mere joke. The Marines don’t eat the sticks of colored wax. And they are not stupid. To stay in good shape, they consume healthy food, meet multiple dietary restrictions, go through rigorous training, and undergo regular weight checks.
However, one Marine veteran has turned this running joke into a successful business and launched the production of edible crayons.
What Are Some Typical Marine Jokes and Memes That Include Crayons?
On the Internet, there are a lot of jokes and memes about Marines eating crayons and about the red media tasting best or something. These sayings just fuel the stereotype. Here are the examples of such-like jokes:
- my wife said she wanted to feel special this Valentine’s Day, so I bought her a helmet and some crayons;
- I have neither time nor crayons to explain this to you;
- if Marines eat crayons, what is their favorite flavor? Crayonberry!
Some of them are quite offensive. Do you know what is stupid? The joke itself! People who spread and say jokes that make Marines look dumb are just unable to create an intelligent insult.
These insinuations are groundless and not true in real life. There is no photo or video evidence that shows Marines munching crayons instead of their MREs. Alas, the derogatory term “crayon eater” is used by people who must be jealous of the prestige the Marines have. Indeed, the term is really hurtful. Fortunately, most service members understand this humor without being insulted and don’t get mad about it.