Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Sunday, February 03, 2008

The Great Qual Card Of Life

My first Engineer on USS Topeka (who went on to command USS Newport News) used to tell me that every challenge was just "another sig on the Great Qual Card Of Life". I really like that concept -- every new thing you do, whether it's good or bad, is another chance to demonstrate proficiency in the human condition. It made it easier to take when, for instance, I was reviewing admin for ORSE and discovered I'd done 12 of the boat's 24 reactor shutdowns that year -- I got another sig on my Qual Card for "getting boned".

Even out of the Navy, I like to apply the same concept. So what sigs am I still missing? Some of them (death of an immediate family member) I've avoided so far, and hope to keep avoiding for a long time. Some others - attend a Super Bowl, take a trip to Alaska (the last state I haven't visited yet) - are fairly long term. It's something I'll be working on 'til I get the Last Sig and, if my religious beliefs are right, head off to the Final Qual Board of the hereafter. Until then, I'll keep plugging away, trying to avoid going dink.

What interesting sigs to you really want to get signed off on your Great Qual Card Of Life?


Blogger Tablebread said...

- Make $100K a year

You know I think it's funny how after many years we still view life through our 'submarine glasses'. What is it about that time in our lives that keeps fresh in our minds? That moment that keeps coming back? Curious now that life is viewed as a qual card. I agree sometimes it feels like that.

very curious...

2/03/2008 6:59 AM

Anonymous MT1(SS) said...

To quote the great Austin Powers, "Twins, Basil... TWINS!"

Seriously, though, I think I have dozens (if not hundreds) of sigs left. I've gotten some pretty unique ones (fly in the GIB spot in an F-14, and ride on a foreign submarine), and some not-so-unique-but-cool ones (tour the Kennedy Space Center).

I tell you what, though, once I get through the Final Qual Board, I better not be hot-racking!

2/03/2008 7:04 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just want the "get out of debt" qual card signed off! One of these days...

2/03/2008 9:22 AM

Blogger reddog said...

Alaska is nice. A little warmer every year. I'm hoping I'm the first member of my immediate family to die.

anonymous- Haven't owed a nickel to anybody for 14 years. It's good, real good. I live pretty much like a church mouse to stay that way though.

My qual card's pretty much signed off but I'm a Coner, so nobody ever really asked me the hard questions.

2/03/2008 2:42 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Answering the question for quite a few ex-submariners by way of "Intentions = Results":

If you go to LinkedIn and search via the two words "nuclear" and "submarine," you'll find how nearly 500 ex-submariners are answering the question in terms of the work-lives they've chosen.

2/03/2008 3:51 PM

Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

I was sent up to a children’s mental hospital to perform an undercover investigation. I became a low paid children’s worker. I wiped more teenagers’ butts and changed more diapers than you can imagine. I was peripherally involved with a teenagers death...I began to worry about his medical condition, just on the edge of awaking consciousness for me...when he died in a preventable medical error. I knew this Down’s syndrome child well and I played with him often. It was an eye opening experience, when I met this kind of organization who had become so cold and uncaring....the good people.

Little do we realize how importance it is for the strong people to stand up for the weak and defenseless?

The submarine service began to teach me how to endure the impossible.

It was the most important sig in my life yet.

2/03/2008 5:32 PM

Blogger Oz said...

Wait a minute... if I go dink, does that mean I live longer?

2/03/2008 6:09 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oz, great question. The answer is YES (you will live longer) at forfeit of your liberty. - Old World Loose Woman

2/03/2008 7:10 PM

Anonymous Rich said...

- Own a Harley Davidson
- Rolex Submariner

Anyhow, you know what they say.... A completed qual card only leads to more qual cards.

I am certain that in the hereafter when I roll though the Pearly Gates St. Peter will hand me a stack of cards and say "Get hot nub, your dink"

2/03/2008 11:41 PM

Anonymous sonarman said...

rich, that was funny. and I like the Harley idea, but...

I want to die rich enough to fully fund a daily soup kitchen at my parish in New London. The one we have only operates one day a week, and that's with the volunteers buying the food, and they cook and serve it, too. I want it to have a fully paid staff - maybe some of the homeless themselves would work there.

With the way my 401K is going, I just might be able to at least start it.

2/04/2008 11:22 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its funny - my experiences taught me there is nothing I can't do. Its not so much the technical background, but learning how to learn/study combined with hardship makes the rest of your life seem pretty easy. In some ways, you're like a sighted man in the land of the blind, as people complain about how HARD things are. You just laugh and push on.

2/04/2008 4:41 PM

Blogger beebs said...

I'm a buddhist, so I try to live for the moment. I can't do anything about the past, so I try not to dwell on it. The future is unwritten, but the present indicates what the future might hold. I try to be the best "beebs" I can be, and I thank the moon and the stars that I left the Navy when I did.

I would like to stand one more midwatch as OOD, though. I'm still dink "command at sea."

beebs [ex-DCA. 637class]

2/04/2008 4:52 PM

Anonymous Nukebackaft said...

So if your DINK on this qual card does that mean you don't have a life? Or that you've spent too much time doing other things? I'm confused... Do I wanna be DINK on this one?

2/06/2008 11:58 AM

Anonymous ETNav2 said...

Shoot I've gotten the sig for helping to bring a new life into this world...However, I'm dink on a few quals...One is getting a promotion to management...

2/08/2008 4:14 PM

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