Submarine Simulator…

For your home…

From the mil e-mail net… NOT all that far from the truth, especially on the old diesel boats according to old shipmates!

• Sleep on the shelf in your closet. Replace the closet door with a curtain. Two to three hours after you fall asleep, have your spouse whip open the curtain, shine a $200 flashlight in your eyes, and mumble “Sorry, wrong rack”.
• Repeat back everything anyone says to you.
• Spend as much time as possible indoors and avoid sunlight. Only view the world through the peephole on your front door.
• Renovate your bathroom. Build a wall across the middle of your bathtub and move the showerhead down to chest level. Shower once a week. Use no more than two gallons of water per shower.
• Buy a trash compactor and use it once a week. Store garbage in the other side of your bathtub.
• Sit in your car for six hours a day with your hands on the wheel and the motor running, but don’t go anywhere. Install 200 extra oil temperature gauges. Take logs on all gauges and indicators every 30 minutes.
• Put lube oil in your humidifier instead of water and set it to “High”.
• Watch only unknown movies with no major stars on TV and only at night. Have your family vote on which movie to watch, and then watch a different one.
• Don’t do your wash at home. Pick the most crowded laundromat you can find.
• (Optional for Engineering Department): Leave a lawnmower running in your living room six hours a day for proper noise level.
•Have the paperboy give you a haircut.
•Take hourly readings on your electric and water meters.
•Invite guests, but don’t have enough food for them.
•Buy a broken exercise bicycle and strap it down to the floor in your kitchen.
•Eat only food that you get out of a can or have to add water to.
•Wake up every night at midnight and have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on stale bread. (Optional- cold beans and weenies, canned ravioli or soup).
•Make up your family menu a week ahead of time without looking in your food cabinets or refrigerator.
•Set your alarm clock to go off at random times during the night. When it goes off, jump out of bed and get dressed as fast as you can, then run to your kitchen with the garden hose while wearing a scuba mask.
•Once a month take every major appliance completely apart and then put them back together. Ensure you have parts left over.
•Use 18 scoops of coffee per pot and allow it to sit for 5 or 6 hours before drinking. Never wash any coffee cups.
•Store your eggs in your garage for two months and then scramble a dozen each morning.
•Have a fluorescent lamp installed on the bottom of your coffee table and lie under it to read books.
•Check your refrigerator compressor for “sound shorts”.
•Put a complicated lock on your basement door and wear the key on a lanyard around your neck.
•Lockwire the lugnuts on your car.
•When making cakes, prop up one side of the pan while it is baking. Then spread icing really thick on one side to level off the top.
•Every so often, yell “Emergency Deep!”, run into the kitchen, and sweep all pots/pans/dishes off of the counter onto the floor. Then, yell at your family for not having the place “stowed for sea”.
•Put on the headphones from your stereo (don’t plug them in). Go and stand in front of your stove. Say (to nobody in particular) “Stove manned and ready”. Stand there for 3 or 4 hours. Say (once again to nobody in particular) “Stove secured”. Roll up the headphone cord and put them away.
•Tag out the steering wheel, gas pedal, brake pedal, transmission and cigarette lighter when you change the oil in your car.
•Use Kool-aid on all your breakfast cereals for 2 months.
•Fill laundry baskets with oil. Lay in them, on your back, and change the washers on the water spigots.
•While doing laundry, replace liquid fabric softener with diesel fuel.
•Buy bunk beds (3 high type) and convert the narrowest hallway in your home into a bedroom.
•Knock a glass of water out of someone’s hand and yell ‘SPILL’. Shout at them the entire time they clean it up, tell them how worthless they are, then do it again. Once they have cleaned it up, make them read canister vacuum reviews out loud, this builds character.
•Request ‘permission to enter’ whenever you go into the kitchen.
•Buy all food in cases and line the floor with them.
•Replace all doorways with windows so that you have to step up AND duck to go through them.
•Whenever someone enters a room you’re cleaning, shout “up and over!” at them so they’ll go through the attic to get to the kitchen.
•Paint the windshield of your car black. Make a family member stand up through the sunroof shouting directions at you on where to drive.
•Start every story with “This is no-shit“.
•Install a Furnace and Air Conditioner that blows directly on you while you are sleeping. Have the controls so they will cycle to hot and cold in a matter of seconds.
•Go to the market and buy 100 quarts of milk. Pour them into a large white trash bag and secure. Put the bag into the refrigerator and rename it “The Cow”.
•Have week old fruit and vegetables delivered to your garage and wait two weeks before eating them.
•Prepare all meals blindfolded using all the spices you can grope for, or none at all. Remove the blindfold and eat everything in three minutes.
•Periodically, shut off all power at the main circuit breaker and run around shouting “fire, fire, fire” and then restore power.
•Remove all plants, pictures and decorations.
•Paint everything gray, white, or “sea foam” green.
•Buy 50 cases of toilet paper and lock up all but two rolls. Ensure one of these two rolls is wet at all times.
•Make sure every water valve in your home has two backups in line which must all be operated to obtain water.
•Repaint the interior of your home every month, whether it needs it or not.
•All communications with outside family and friends is limited to 40 characters or less. Unplug all radios and TVs to completely cut yourself off from the outside world.
•Run a tube from your car’s exhaust pipe into your living room, yell “prepare to snorkel”, and start the car. You must breathe the fumes for one hour.
•Mount as many sharp-cornered lockers as you can in all the most traveled halls of your house. Leave almost no room to squeeze by.

Thankfully, I only went for ‘short’ periods on Nukes… Sigh…


Submarine Simulator… — 24 Comments

  1. “Use 18 scoops of coffee per pot and allow it to sit for 5 or 6 hours before drinking. Never wash any coffee cups.”

    This is SOP throughout the navy. I have seen a chief dress down an airman for washing his coffee cup and ruining the “seasoning”.

    • I had coworker tell me that when he was on “boats” he’d talk new crew in to washing out the chief’s coffee mug, saying the chief would really appreciate it. The chief didn’t…

    • Boomers (SSBN) average 1 pot per sailor per day underway. For 3 months at a time.

  2. And a huge amount of those things also apply to the surface Navy.

  3. I had a college buddy that was in the north Atlantic. He said it was routine to wear every piece of clothing you owned at the same time to try and keep warm. If you didn’t like freezing showers, then you didn’t…. I can’t even imagine…. I guess that’s where the name pig boat came from!

    • We did a NorthPac run on the Omaha and had ice in the bilges of the engine room. Our favorite places were near the lube oil sump, feed water pipes, or between the main engines.. The plant was humming with 30 degrees in the condensers.

      8 months later we were in the Indian Ocean in 80F waters where the ships AC systems could barely keep up with the load.. Nuc subs have the spare power to make fresh water, O2, and cool the ship. Not as bad as a diesel boat but we spent ALL of our time underwater, instead of some of it..

  4. My dad was a WW II submariner. (SS HAKE) One comment I recall from him was that it took a week to get the diesel smell out of yourself when you returned to the shore.

  5. I’m in the same boat as you, Old NFO. As supercargo, my few trips on nukes wasn’t all that unpleasant given that we traveled 1000’s of feet under a perfectly good ocean, sleeping uncomfortably close to a nuclear reactor, etc. It wasn’t particularly cold inside, there was fresh water for a “navy shower”, the food was good, and through cramped, I expected same from traveling, trapped in the boat with the long suffering crew and the extra humanity (us).

  6. “Use 18 scoops of coffee per pot and allow it to sit for 5 or 6 hours before drinking. Never wash any coffee cups.”

    That explains a lot about my brother-in-law 🙂
    Although in all fairness, coffee doesn’t sit around long when he is around…

    • The four Army seasons are frozen, mud, dust, and mud.

      There are only four meals – beanie-weenie, spaghetti, chili mac, and chili & rice. Please note that the sauce for all these meals comes from the same can.

      The portable cot is designed to bite you and fail randomly, but always in the middle of the night.

      Biting flies are always just a bit smaller than the mosquito netting. And they can’t smell Deet.

      Dust gets into absolutely everything. Oddly enough, in small quantities, it slightly improves the universal sauce.

      Never forget that your clothes are made by the low bidder. So are the rounds for your weapons.

      The aroma of wet canvas is quite distinctive.

      It may be labeled “waterproof” and “shockproof”, but is it mud proof?

  7. So, how many of those things change for a P3 Simulator?
    Noise? Check
    Lockers with teeth everywhere? Check
    Smell of fuel? JP kero probably smells too
    Navy tagouts? Check

    Your angles and dangles are a lot more extreme than ours, but otherwise many things are the same..

  8. Hmm, perhaps a variation of the old saw “you don’t have to be crazy to be a submariner, but it doesn’t hurt” is appropriate. My corollary is that it certainly might help, or else you will probably be afterward.
    Full disclosure I’ve been on a fast attack boat – in port. And knowing quite a few ex bubbleheads – my observation is that if they weren’t ‘crazy’ before they were (at least) border line after.
    And of course NEVER forget that any boat/ship can be a submarine, once.

  9. The first class told a new guy to clean the coffee pot “so I can see my reflection”. He did inside and out…with Ajax….let it suffice to say the head was busy.

    • Well, one of the best pots of coffee I had in the Navy was after the division pot was scoured out but we did *thoroughly* rinse everything afterwords. First pot made with DI water made even nasty Navy coffee taste good.

      Once you have been at sea for a few weeks the ‘tap’ water on a nuke boat is pure distilled water, not many minerals left in the potable water tanks or lines.

      • The tap water on every single boat I was on tasted like ass, with a hint of chlorine.

  10. All- Seems I have a ‘lot’ of agreement… LOL

    Rick- There is that. sigh…

    Posted from my iPhone.

  11. When the Iowa first got to San Pedro, the smell of Marine Diesel permeated everything aboard her. Took about 6 months of ventilation to knock the smell down from “What’s THAT?” to “Ahhh….I’m on the Iowa”.

    My wife used to say I “smelled like SHIP!” when I got home….

  12. Didn’t have anything like that in the AF missile biz. Though there WAS a smell in the launch control centers.

    First thing I noticed at the Titan II missile museum site was the lack of that smell–all the doors were open.

  13. Our distilled water made for interesting coffee as the cup would have a JP5 oil slick on it. A new guy traced piping as a learning experience and discovered waste discharge was being partially piped in the intake.

  14. I’ve never been aboard a submarine. The book Up Periscope by Robb White (1965) gives a vivid description of a WWII submarine evading several destroyers after torpedoing a Japanese carrier. This cured me of ever wanting to serve aboard a submarine.