“Anyone want to trade for a lemon-lime beverage powder?”
“I got the veggie omelet, I’ll give you that.”
“Gag! You got unlucky on that one. But at least it comes with skittles.”
Trading components of an M.R.E (Meal Ready to Eat) is a time-honored tradition of excellence that emboldens the army values of respect and selfless service.
This was our second FTX (Field Training Excercise) in basic training and the Drill Sergeants were starting to ease up on us. I’d heard stories about this from my brother and was looking forward to trading away anything just to be a part of it.
“Does anyone want my Jalapeño Cheese Spread? Don’t need anything for it, just want to get rid of it.”
A loud resounding voice is heard
“WHAT DID I JUST HEAR PRIVATE?!?!”
A Drill Sergeant caught wind of the trading conversation
I hadn’t had a chance to make any contribution yet.
They were going to smoke us for sure, make us run up and down the hill or something.
“YOU WANT TO GIVE AWAY YOUR JALAPEÑO CHEESE SPREAD?!?”
That wasn’t the follow-up I was expecting.
There must be something to this cheese spread.
“Private. Out on the battlefield, it has been known that the opening of a Jalapeño Cheese Spread will lift the morale and espirit de corps of an entire battalion.”
“AN ENTIRE BATALLION!”
“And you’re just wanting to give that away?”
“Yes Drill Sergeant”
A sheepish reply from the interrogated Private.
I wish I could make up what happens next, but I don’t remember. It’s all a bit of a blur after that.
My mind was stuck on that phrase.
“The opening of a Jalapeño Cheese spread will lift the morale and espirit de corps of an entire battalion.”
That’s some pretty powerful stuff.
Masonry is well known for having a lot of symbolism.
Esoteric is defined as “(something) intended for or likely to be understood by only a small number of people with a specialized knowledge or interest.”
To the good men and women that served in the United States Military around the same time as me, the Jalapeño Cheese Spread is symbolic.
There is a big difference between just cheese spread and Jalapeño Cheese Spread.
It is the very nature of something Esoteric.
You don’t need any kind of security clearance to get Jalapeño Cheese Spread, and I don’t think I’ll get into any kind of trouble for talking about it publicly.
In all the youtube videos of Stolen Valor, I never once heard Jalapeño Cheese Spread mentioned.
And in fairness if you are trying to steal valor just talking about Jalapeño Cheese Spread wouldn’t be enough to convince me of your service.
- So why Jalapeño Cheese Spread?
- What does this have to do with FreeMasonry?
- It was Memorial Day last week and Memorial Day is a time for reflection. Jalapeño Cheese Spread brings joy to a lot of service members.
So let me expound on Jalapeno Cheese Spread and Masonry.
As a prior service member, it’s not enough to know that Jalapeño Cheese Spread exists, or that MRE components are traded.
You can know all those things. You can even acknowledge Jalapeño Cheese Spread as a symbol of comfort and relief.
Knowing those things doesn’t make it esoteric knowledge.
It goes beyond the academic and perhaps the practical.
Jalapeño Cheese Spread is so powerfully esoteric in the military because of individual connections with it and as a group.
One can study and find all the ‘secrets’ of being a Free Mason and know nothing.
Even those that have joined the order and participated in our ritual, may not find the knowledge they seek.
Esoteric knowledge takes time, and it takes a group of people.
What you may find and experience in one lodge may be different for another.
If getting more of that juicy esoteric knowledge is what you’re looking for then send us an email. Let us know who you are, where you hail (where you are from), and your interest in masonry.
What are some examples of Jalapeno Cheese Spread in your life (Something symbolic to you and a group of people, but not commonly known)?