John Winger Quotes in Stripes (1981)


John Winger Quotes:

  • John Winger: Cut it out! Cut it out! Cut it out! The hell's the matter with you? Stupid! We're all very different people. We're not Watusi. We're not Spartans. We're Americans, with a capital 'A', huh? You know what that means? Do ya? That means that our forefathers were kicked out of every decent country in the world. We are the wretched refuse. We're the underdog. We're mutts! Here's proof: his nose is cold! But there's no animal that's more faithful, that's more loyal, more loveable than the mutt. Who saw "Old Yeller?" Who cried when Old Yeller got shot at the end?

    [raises his hand]

    John Winger: [Sarcastically] Nobody cried when Old Yeller got shot? I'm sure.

    [hands are reluctantly raised]

    John Winger: I cried my eyes out. So we're all dogfaces, we're all very, very different, but there is one thing that we all have in common: we were all stupid enough to enlist in the Army. We're mutants. There's something wrong with us, something very, very wrong with us. Something seriously wrong with us - we're soldiers. But we're American soldiers! We've been kicking ass for 200 years! We're ten and one! Now we don't have to worry about whether or not we practiced. We don't have to worry about whether Captain Stillman wants to have us hung. All we have to do is to be the great American fighting soldier that is inside each one of us. Now do what I do, and say what I say. And make me proud.

  • Recruiter: Have you ever been convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor? That's robbery, rape, car theft, that sort of thing.

    John Winger: Convicted? No.

    Russell Ziskey: Never convicted.

  • [Winger's girlfriend is leaving him]

    John Winger: You can't go! All the plants are gonna *die*!

  • John Winger: C'mon, it's Czechoslovakia. We zip in, we pick 'em up, we zip right out again. We're not going to Moscow. It's Czechoslovakia. It's like going into Wisconsin.

    Russell Ziskey: Well I got the shit kicked out of me in Wisconsin once. Forget it!

  • Sergeant Hulka: Okay, Mr. Push-ups, let's hear your story.

    John Winger: Chicks dig me, because I rarely wear underwear and when I do it's usually something unusual. But now I know why I have always lost women to guys like you. I mean, it's not just the uniform. It's the stories that you tell. So much fun and imagination.

    [points to the soldier next to him]

    John Winger: Lee Harvey, you are a madman. When you stole that cow, and your friend tried to make it with the cow. I want to party with you, cowboy. If the two of us together, forget it. I'm gonna go out on a limb here. I'm gonna volunteer my leadership to this platoon. An army without leaders is like a foot without a big toe. And Sergeant Hulka isn't always gonna be here to be that big toe for us. I think that we owe a big round of applause to our newest, bestest buddy, and big toe... Sergeant Hulka.

    [the soldiers start clapping]

    Sergeant Hulka: Well, okay, hotshot. We're gonna see what kind of soldier you are.

  • John Winger: And then depression set in.

  • Recruiter: Now, are either of you homosexuals?

    John Winger: [John and Russell look at each other] You mean, like, flaming, or...

    Recruiter: Well, it's a standard question we have to ask.

    Russell Ziskey: No, we're not homosexual, but we are *willing to learn*.

    John Winger: Yeah, would they send us someplace special?

    Recruiter: I guess that's "no" on both. Now if you could just give Uncle Sam your autograph...

  • John Winger: My philosophy: a hundred-dollar shine on a three-dollar pair of shoes.

  • John Winger: Tito Puente's gonna be dead, and you're gonna say, "Oh, I've been listening to him for years, and I think he's fabulous."

  • Russell Ziskey: You could join a monastery.

    John Winger: Did you ever see a monk get wildly fucked by some teenage girls?

    Russell Ziskey: Never.

    John Winger: So much for the monastery.

  • General Barnicke: Are you telling me that you men finished your training on your own?

    John Winger: That's the fact, Jack.

    Soldiers: That's the fact, Jack.

  • John Winger: Ma'am, I'm sure there are a lot of ways I've gone that you haven't.

  • Russell Ziskey: John, do you think I'm officer material?

    John Winger: God, I'm worried about you.

    Russell Ziskey: Come on! I'm in good shape, I'm walking tall, I'm looking good. First weekend in Europe.

    John Winger: Yeah. We're spending it in an airplane hangar... guarding a truck!

    Russell Ziskey: We've got each other.

  • General Barnicke: Where is your drill sergeant, men?

    John Winger: Blown up, sir!

    Soldiers: Blown up, sir!

  • John Winger: Why'd the chicken cross the road?

    Soldiers: To get from the left to the right

    John Winger: He stepped out of rank, got hit by a tank

    Soldiers: He ain't no chicken no more

  • Sergeant Hulka: Soldier, I've noticed that you're always last.

    John Winger: I'm pacing myself, Sergeant.

  • Sergeant Hulka: Men, welcome to the United States Army. I'm Sergeant Hulka. I'm your drill sergeant. Before we proceed any further, we gotta get something straight. Your mamas are not here to take care of you now. It's just you, me, and Uncle Sam. And before I leave you, you're gonna find out that me and Uncle Sam are one in the same.

    John Winger: Uncle Hulka?

  • John Winger: Come on. Let's take the truck.

    [John stares at Russell. Russell looks away from the manual to John, then up to the EM-50]

    Russell Ziskey: Nooo.

    John Winger: Oh yeah.

    Russell Ziskey: Nooo.

    John Winger: Oh-ho, yeah.

    Russell Ziskey: No, no.

    John Winger: Oh-oh...

    Russell Ziskey: No.

    John Winger: ...yeah, yeah...

    Russell Ziskey: No.

    John Winger: ...yeah, yeah...

    Russell Ziskey: No.

    John Winger: ...yeah, yeah.

    Russell Ziskey: No, John. No.

    John Winger: I'll drive.

    Russell Ziskey: Okay.

  • General Barnicke: Where have you been soldier?

    John Winger: Training, sir.

    Soldiers: Training, sir.

    General Barnicke: What kind of training?

    John Winger: Army training, sir.

    Soldiers: Army training, sir.

  • John Winger: Oh, it's not the speed really so much, I just wish I hadn't drunk all that cough syrup this morning.

  • [after a shoe shine]

    John Winger: I don't think I've ever been this happy.

  • Sergeant Hulka: We got a full day ahead of us. We're gonna start out with a five-mile run.

    [Soldiers groan]

    John Winger: I know that I'm speaking for the entire platoon when I say this run should be postponed until this platoon is better rested.

    Sergeant Hulka: Well, I'll tell you what, soldier. Let's make it ten miles.

  • Sergeant Hulka: You don't say "sir" to me, I'm a sergeant, I work for a living.

    Soldiers: Yes, sergeant!

    Sergeant Hulka: I didn't hear you!

    Soldiers: *Yes, sergeant*!

    Sergeant Hulka: *That's* what I wanna hear.

    John Winger: Do you think this guy's over-doing it a bit?

  • John Winger: [busting himself in the crotch with a suitcase] Oh, my balls! OH, MY BALLS!

  • John Winger: Don't order the Schnitzel, they're using Schnauzer.

  • John Winger: I've had an interesting morning. In the last two hours I've lost my job, my apartment, my car, and my girlfriend.

    Russell Ziskey: You still have your health.

  • John Winger: We're so damned lost. Where the hell is Innsbruck, Austria?

  • Sergeant Hulka: Now, since nobody else has got the guts...

    [turns to John]

    Sergeant Hulka: admit it, the rest of this platoon... will do the next two weekends on KP.

    [soldiers groan]

    Sergeant Hulka: How's that sound to you, mister?

    John Winger: I think it sucks.

  • John Winger: [Winger and Hansen are trapped by enemy fire] You know who would love this? Russell!

    John WingerStella Hansen: Russell! Russell! Help us!

    John Winger: [Russell fires the flamethrowers on the EM-50 driving the enemy back] Thaaaank yoooou!

  • Sergeant Hulka: I'm talking about something important, like discipline and duty and honor and courage. And you ain't got none of it!

    John Winger: Those words mean so much to a man who scrubs garbage cans. Look, if you don't want me in your Army, kick me out, but get off my back.

  • Russell Ziskey: [Russell has just accosted John, who is trying to sneak off the base in the middle of the night... Russell has John on the ground] Where do you think you're going? Are you going AWOL? Are you going AWOL?

    John Winger: No, I'm deserting.

    Russell Ziskey: You idiot! You desert now, it's a federal offense!

    John Winger: I'll take my chances with the feds!

    Russell Ziskey: You're not going anywhere!

    [pulls him up and throws him up against a tank]

    Russell Ziskey: You listen to me! You're gonna finish basic training! You're gonna keep your mouth shut, and you're gonna do everything he tells you! You know why?

    John Winger: [innocently] Why?

    Russell Ziskey: Because you talked me into this, you idiot! It was your idea!

    John Winger: I didn't talk you into this. You NEEDED this.

    Russell Ziskey: [drags John back to the ground] I'm gonna kill you, damn you! Where's the great pay? Where's the travel? Where's the Winnebago, Goddamnit!

    [MPs Stella and Louise pull up in their jeep]

  • Dewey Oxburger: It doesn't seem fair.

    John Winger: FAIR? Who cares about fair? The world isn't fair. Truth is fair. Is it fair that you were born like this? NO! They're not expecting somebody like you in there, Ox. They're expected one of these slugs. You're different. You're weird. You're a mutant. You're a killer. You're a trained killer. You're a LEAN... MEAN... FIGHTING... MACHINE!

    Dewey Oxburger: [after joining Murray for "FIGHTING... MACHINE!"] I'LL DO IT!

  • uncredited: Boxer or Jockey?

    John Winger: You got something in a low-rise bikini? Mesh, if possible.

  • Captain Hollister: I'm Captain Hollister, Special Operations Group. Who are you?

    John Winger: I'm Major Dodge

    John Winger: Captain DeSoto

    John Winger: Pleasure to meet you, Hollister. Heard a lot about you.

    Captain Hollister: Well, I never heard any of you. And you're not on my roster.

    John Winger: That's just the way we like to keep it, captain. It's double double top-secret.

    Captain Hollister: Intelligence?

    John Winger: Some

  • John Winger: [knocking on the door of the room the soldiers are being held prisoner in] Hello? Hello?

    Dewey Oxburger: Hello?

    John Winger: [in a falsetto voice] Hello.

    Dewey Oxburger: Who is it?

    John Winger: It's Idi Amin.

    Elmo: It's Winger!

  • Captain Hollister: Intelligence?

    John Winger: John Winger: Some

  • John Winger: [emerging with Stella from foot locker in general's bedroom] Well, that was interesting.

  • Russell Ziskey: [after Winger pulls a gun on border guards] Do the words "act of war" mean anything to you?

    John Winger: I have... a plan.

    Russell Ziskey: Great! Custer had a plan, too.

  • John Winger: [emerging with Stella from the trunk at the foot of Gen. Barnicke's bed] Well, that was interesting.

Browse more character quotes from Stripes (1981)