In December of 2004, Navy played in the Emerald Bowl, a college football exhibition played at AT&T née SBC née Pac Bell Park. As the game approached, San Francisco began to fill up with sailors like it was Pride Weekend. The ballpark is not far from my office, so I got to see this firsthand.
My walk to work takes me past 4th & Market, where there is an Old Navy superstore. (Or a regular store. I might be trying to infuse my walk to work with a grandeur it does not truly possess.) On the day before Navy was set to face off against New Mexico, I rounded the corner to see four sailors, in full uniform, staring into the front windows of Old Navy. They seemed fascinated, but hesitant to enter.
They were interrupted by an older man in uniform, presumably a superior officer, who yelled at them to keep walking. I like to think he wanted to keep them from going AWOL or enlisting in the Old Navy. "You've got plenty of pockets already! Focus on the New Navy!"
That discipline helped. Navy eventually won the Emerald Bowl 34-19. Their opponent, the New Mexico Lobos, had a few crucial players make the same mistake the sailors nearly made. Unfortunately, there was no superior officer to keep them away from Old Mexico. And they paid the price.