A Shipboard Life…

In honor of the idjit I was sitting next to on the airplane today who though shipboard life was, “Like cool, man; I guess there isn’t much to do when you’re not fighting and stuff, right?” AARRGGGHHHH!!!! whereinhelldothesepeoplecomefrom??? And why in hell do I get stuck next to them???

Do-it-Yourself Kit

~Navy fans who watched the movie “TOP GUN” twice or any one episode of “JAG.”
~Former sea service personnel suffering from “brain fade syndrome.”
~Recruits with illusions of liberty among the natives in Bora Bora.
~Sailors and Marines reporting to their first sea duty.
~Naive youth who has talked to a friendly smiling recruiter in the past week.

EXPERIENCE REAL SHIPBOARD LIFE.~Follow these easy instructions with the aid of your family and friends to recreate the untold joys of life aboard ship.

~Kit easily adapts to Coast Guard Cutters with the addition of white paint and racing stripes.

~Break into a chorus of “Anchors Aweigh” or hum a few lines of “Semper Paratus” and enter the real world of life at sea.

Module 1 : Living Aboard Ship
1. Buy a dumpster, chip the paint off down to bare metal, paint it gray, and live in it for six months. {Coast Guard simulations use white paint.}

2. Run all the piping and the wires inside your house on the outside of the walls.

3. Repaint your entire house once a month.

4. Place metal barriers on the lower 18″ of every door in your house and add eight handles to every door..

5. Pump ten inches of nasty half sewage water into your basement. Pump it out, clean up the mess and paint everything in the basement gray. Repeat frequently for added realism.

6. On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday turn your water temperature up to 200 degrees, on Tuesday and Thursday set the temperature at 10 degrees. On Saturday and Sunday inform your family that they used too much water during the week and as a result all showering is secured.

7. Stack all beds on top of one another in the closet. Raise your bed to within six inches of the ceiling. Stow all your clothing and possessions in a 36″ x 18″ x 12″ locker. If anyone is sick and throwing up put them in the top bunk.

8. Give the keys to your house to your next door neighbor. Instruct him enter your bedroom every morning at 0530 (5:30 am), and blow a whistle loud enough for Helen Keller to hear. Instruct the neighbor to shout in a amplified megaphone six inches from your ear, “Reveille, reveille, all hands heave out and trice up. The smoking lamp is lit in all authorized spaces.” “Now give the ship a clean sweep down fore and aft and empty all sh*t cans over the fantail”!

Thanks Ev 🙂

9. Have your mother-in-law write down everything she is going to do for the following day. With your family stand in the back yard at 0600 (6 am) while your mother-in-law reads her “Plan of the Day” (POD) to you. Repeat this everyday expect Sunday, unless you are simulating “at sea” in which case you may opt to do it seven days a week.

10. Eat the raunchiest Mexican food you can find for three days straight, then lock the bathroom door for 12 hours. Hang a sign on the door that reads, “Secured – Contact OA Div at X-3053.”

11. When you leave your house make sure to take the phone off the hook so it will be busy all day.

12. Observe the ship board multi telephone line rule. One line is always reserved for the use of your father-in-law, one line reserved for your mother-in-law, and the third line is reserved for official business. If you want to make a personal call, walk two blocks to a convenience store and wait in line at the pay phone.

13. Install a bell on the front porch. Whenever your father-in-law comes over ring the bell 4 times and announce his arrival/departure over a megaphone.

14. Every time you leave or enter the house salute the porch light and ask your dog for permission to leave or enter the dwelling.

15. ( Aircraft Carrier Simulation) At random intervals from 1000 to 2200 (10 A.M. to 10 P.M.), have a biker gang with sledgehammers pound on your roof to simulate the launching and recovery of aircraft. At night, after the family has gone to sleep, have the bikers drag chains and heavy equipment across the roof to simulate the ‘re-spotting’ of the aircraft for the next morning’s flight schedule.

16. Install flashlights (battle lanterns) at the precise height at which to bang your head in the dark. Point the flashlight and important items (such as the sofa, all doorways, stove, etc). Occasionally turn the electric power off at the mains and run around the house turning on all the flashlights.

17. Use an air-raid siren for an alarm clock.

18. Remove all wrist watches from the family. Use the dinner bell as a systematic time indicator. Ring it madly when every body is their hungriest and announce the “Chow-line is not open for an hour.” Do not drool when you hear bells.

19. ( Aircraft Carrier Simulation) Have house mover relocate your home ten feet under Runway 19 at Chicago O’Hare International Airport for 6 months.

20. Divide bathroom shower with three partitions. Remove shower nozzle and replace with kitchen sink dish sprayer hooked to the cold water line only. The “extra” two showers now represent actual percentage of operable showers.

21. Remove bathroom sink, mirror, and all shelves. Replace with water fountain for shaving and hygiene use.

22. Do Laundry using only the rinse cycle with paint thinner for detergent. Dry for 10 minutes and randomly redistribute.

23. Have an electrician certify as ‘safe’ and hang a tag on every electrical appliance you own, no matter if the appliance is brand new or if its own manufacturer claims it is up to safety standards.

24. Buy a two year calendar. Carefully mark your EAOS (End of Active Obligated Service) day two years out, and number the days back to the present date for a long count down. Mark each day off for two years, dreaming of the “get out day.” Then march down to personnel and ship over (sign for additional service). [Radioman]

25. Place fire extinguishers on the bulkheads (walls) of your home at elbow level next to the door openings to conveniently rip your shirt.

26. Stand in your living room with all the lights turned out, except for one red light by which you read a small print book.

And for those old sailors out there, I have a couple of more to follow…


A Shipboard Life… — 17 Comments

  1. Oh yeh.. thats sounds like just what I want. In fact, it almost sounds like school! Especially the random water feeds.

  2. Damn, as per #14, I’ve been doing it all wrong. I’ve been instructing the dog not to surf the web in search of animal porn when I should have been asking permission.

    Oh well, I’m too old to learn a new way of life.

    As to why you get stuck next to those kinda folks- it’s your animal attraction. 😉

  3. Love it love it love it……………….. You are dealing with generation X Y and Z….. The silver spoon fed trust fund honey’s that thinks life is a cake walk and daddy with pay their way out……

    Give em hell brother, and teach them what the fuck the real world is about. Someone has too!!!

    Carry on and peace!

  4. Oh, yeah! My dad was in the Navy and I never *really* understood a lot of the things he told me. I have a “Civilian Contractor” type job, and we go out to sea 5 or 6 times a year for 3 or 4 weeks each time.
    After my first trip, I understood perfectly what my Dad was trying to tell me!
    Some things I’ve learned:
    It’s not the ceiling, it’s the overhead.
    It’s not the floor, it’s the deck.
    They’re not walls, they’re bulkheads.
    You WILL rapidly learn to pick your feet UP as you walk, and pick them up EXTRA high when going through “doors”.
    Your girlfriend/wife will ask you why you’re walking “funny” the first few days tour back home.
    When you get up late at night to go to the bathroom on your first night home, you’ll wonder why the floor is moving.
    And a lot of others!

  5. 27. Have all your food cooked in the same grease for a week running. Cooks are allowed to filter out lumps greater than 1/4″ in size, but all smaller lumps remain in the grease to add flavor to the next meal. This is particularly recommended when oil last used to fry fish is used for the next morning’s bacon and eggs.

    28. Arrange frequent fire drills, including the actual discharge of a fire hose because some dumbass forgot that this was an exercise. Drying of clothes, mattress and other personal items may or may not be allowed, depending on other activities which may interfere with your intentions.

  6. Disassemble, inspect, clean, reassemble and test your lawnmower and kitchen stove every 28 days.

    You are allowed to adjust the Central Air Thermostat only after proving you’re PQS qualified… and having your adjustment signed off by a Collateral Duty Inspector.

  7. Hey Jim, on #8 you forgot to add “Now give the ship a clean sweep down fore and aft and empty all sh*t cans over the fantail”! Or do they not do that anymore? Loved the whole post, especially the biker gang part!Oh so true

  8. I understand that just bringing your lawnmower into the living room and running it constantly brings a lot of the salty sea experience to life vividly.

    I’ll be sure to do so if you come visit, I want you to feel at home after all. 🙂

  9. Carteach0- At least you get Sat/Sun off 🙂

    Grey- thanks!

    Snigs- something about old dogs… 🙂

    ADM/CPD- It’s either laugh or beat my head against the bulkhead…

    drjim- We need to talk… 🙂

    Peter- those are TRUE… especially at the end of an at sea period when the Chop was trying to save money…

    Rick- sounds like the voice of experience 🙂

    Ev- fixed it…

    Murph- 🙂

    Dock- I’m deaf now, so I can’t hear it anyway… 🙂

  10. Anon- Stupidity I guess… Or maybe because in some small way we can make a difference for the sailors coming in the future. Besides, I didn’t want to walk to work like the Army…