- Reaction score
The priority of some tribes is to assert their distinctiveness over the others. The old officer service messes will be protected to reinforce a message that we are not one and that all are beholden to their parent “service.”
That distinctive tribalism may be partly responsible for the AOM appearing to be in better financial condition than the other two messes in Ottawa. They are, at least, still open; is that not so. Some of it may have to do with a larger number of green clad officers being posted to NDHQ. If I recall correctly, back in the 80s when I was posted there, I had no choice of mess to which I had to belong despite being a "purple suiter" at the time. This was when we had just been assigned (but not yet issued) which DEU we would take on; mine was army so I ended up being a member of the AOM. Other than the lunchtime draw of previously mentioned air force fish and chips or army curry, the Ottawa messes didn't particularly fit my routine (or interests) and it appeared to me that was the common perception. On the few times that I gathered with others in a mess for a few Friday wets it was at Uplands (NDMC pers, where several friends were posted, were affiliated to either Uplands or Rockcliffe), which was a more traditional base mess experience but still far from a large turn-out.