Ah, the illustrious glow belt — perhaps the greatest contribution in recent decades. It’s a safety item and sartorial joke that has become as synonymous with the Global War on Terror as Rip Its, the chili-mac MRE, and, well, complaining about the last two decades of war.

This neon pants-holder-upper, which does not in fact prevent your trousers from slipping down to your ankles, is a military mandated accessory that prompts the question, “Did you even serve if you don’t love to hate the glow belt?”

However, as with the conflict in Afghanistan or your stint in the military, all things must come to an end. And yet, if you’re wise, your use of the glow belt will simply take a cue from the penny whistle interlude in James Cameron’s “Titanic” and go on and on.

Here are some everyday activities that would be enhanced infinitely by the use of the glow belt.


Is there a more perilous activity than running in public au naturel? I don’t think so. Protect your ass(ets) by donning a glow belt. Personally, I believe that Will Ferrell’s nude jaunt through the quad (and into the gymnasium) in “Old School” would have been much more epic if he was a blur of nude and neon instead of just pasty ol’ Will. This way, if you make it onto the main drag of any streets at night, passersby will know that you even though you’re committing a crime, you proudly served in the military.


After you Netflix and chill — or whatever the kids are doing these days — things may move to the bedroom. Set the mood just right by turning off the lights, disrobing, and whipping out your glow belt. Safety first! The SITREP advises that it can be dangerous to do the horizontal cha-cha without taking proper precautions.

Going to nightclubs

You paid $50 to get in the door, plus whatever exorbitant cost for every watered down rum and Coke. There’s no need to drop extra scratch and buy a glow stick filled with what I can only assume is radioactive sludge that may or may not give you superpowers if you fall into a vat of it. You’re a veteran! You’ve got your glow belt. Get out there and be the glow stick the world might not want, but needs.

Grocery shopping

There is nothing worse than people getting too close to you when you’re at the grocery story. Putting on your glow belt says to fellow customers, “I need a wide berth so you don’t bruise my bananas.” It’s either that or “Cleanup on Aisle 3,” depending on how much of mess you look when you decide to hit up the Walmart produce section.

Using a public bathroom

Are you tired of guys breaking the cardinal rule of public restrooms by failing to leave one urinal between yours and theirs? If you want to take a leak in peace, try the glow belt.

Observation Post is the Military Times one-stop shop for all things off-duty. Stories may reflect author observations.

Sarah Sicard is a Senior Editor with Military Times. She previously served as the Digital Editor of Military Times and the Army Times Editor. Other work can be found at National Defense Magazine, Task & Purpose, and Defense News.

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