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.)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

"Sub Commandments"

There's a viral E-mail going around in submarine JO circles that's an .mp3 of a rap song called "Sub Commandments" that's pretty good. It lists the Ten Commandments for submarine junior officers. Number 1: "Never let XO know what contacts you hold, 'cause you know you press your luck to wake you up for reconstruction; won't leave 'til you know his course, bearing, and speed". Unfortunately, I don't seem to be able to post .mp3 files to Blogger, so I'll probably have to convert it to a movie and post it to YouTube for you guys to hear it. I'll see what I can do.

What are your Ten Commandments of Submarining?

Update 0945 21 Jan: A reader sent in a link to the .mp3 of the song.

55 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd figure "Thou shalt keep water out of the people tank" is up there, but what do I know?

-3383

12/15/2009 11:40 PM

 
Blogger Patty Wayne said...

Divide the number of surfaces by the number of dives. If there is a remainder, don't open the hatch.

PW

12/15/2009 11:56 PM

 
Blogger Patty Wayne said...

or something like that

PW

12/16/2009 12:02 AM

 
Blogger Chap said...

Email me and I'll upload it and give you the link. I'm on Skype if you're up and awake.

12/16/2009 3:09 AM

 
Blogger Lou said...

If there are bubbles in the shitter, don't open the ball valve.

12/16/2009 4:16 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's a good one: "If you kill it, then you fill it."

Damn JOs leaving 1/8th on an inch of coffee in the pot and letting it burn...stinks up the whole damn place.

12/16/2009 4:46 AM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

I had a set of "ANAV Rules" that have served me well over the years. I can't take exclusive credit for ALL of the rules, but here they are:

#1 Don't Run Aground (Not mine alone)
#2 Don't hit anything (Not mine alone)
#3 NEVER take your ship to a place your brain has not already been. (Mine)
#4 Don't dick yourself (Mine)
#5 BEFORE maneuvering for collision avoidance, picture in your mind what you are about to show the other ship. (Mine)
#6 Always make your tracks reversible. (Mine)
#7 Procedural Compliance is not a goal, it is a STANDARD (Not mine alone)
#8 The best way OUT of a crisis is not to get yourself INTO one (See rule #4)(Mine)
#9 The biggest challenge in Bridge to Bridge Comms is not making yourself (Hence your ship) sound like a dumbass. (Mine)
#10 "Situational Awareness" means knowing what everyone else is GOING TO DO, when, and why. (Mine).

One of my old CO's had his own rule that I've kind of adopted as a supplement:

"If I'm within 10 minutes of the end of my career, I want to be there for it".

12/16/2009 5:12 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ret ANAV,

Don't forget the ultimate golden ANAV rule that wraps up many of your rules into one:

Plot, Label, DR

This also tends to work for most things in life, on and off the boat and I still use it today.

Jim C. Another Retired ANAV

12/16/2009 7:07 AM

 
Anonymous ExMSPNavET said...

In addition to the above, I have these:

1. When in doubt, chicken switch out!
2. Avoid boat politics.
3. Parabolas on the sphere and towed array at the same time are bad.
4. The rack is good!
5. Never forget your flashlight and diggit.
5. Document everything!
6. Credit is negotiable, but Blame is not.

12/16/2009 7:56 AM

 
Blogger FTC(SS) ret. said...

Never stay up because there's a drill scheduled.

12/16/2009 8:12 AM

 
Anonymous TRF said...

Don't forget to attach your harness when you man the bridge in heavy seas.

I almost learnt that lesson the hard way off the coast of Florida in '94 on 763.

12/16/2009 9:30 AM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

Jim,

It was a conscious decision not to make the Cyclic Routine one of the "Rules" for the reason you state....it's embedded into others, specifically, Rule #7.

Off-Topic....Same Jim C. from CSG-9 '00-'03-ish? (I was at TTF then) Just curious, as I don't remember you from CTF-74...dealt mainly with Tom K. and Tony C.

12/16/2009 10:38 AM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

Da AEF said: 3. Parabolas on the sphere and towed array at the same time are bad.

I'll take this one step worse: Drawing Aft on the Sphere while drawing FORWARD on the TA.


Oh, and then there's Commodore Foggo's "You must be administratively prepared to run aground."

12/16/2009 10:41 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a former LELT, I always quoted my 2 rules to the division:
#1 Double check everything you do.
#2 Don't get me yelled at for stupid s*#t.

From my own experience I can add "In the RC, always check that the hatch latched open before you grab the handle" (owww!) and "Never eat the 'Pillows of Death' (or even smell them)"

I'll second the one about not staying up for drills.

12/16/2009 11:08 AM

 
Blogger fourfastboats said...

One of my boats had a plaque in the wardroom with 10 pretty good rules. These are the ones that I still remember. Funny thing was that the CO that posted this plaque never followed any of them...

Never wrestle with a pig. You both get dirty and the pig likes it.

Never argue with an idiot. People watching may not be able to tell who is who.

If you follow all the rules, you miss all the fun.

It is sometimes easier to obtain forgiveness than permission.

12/16/2009 11:20 AM

 
Blogger chief torpedoman said...

Never pass up a chance to eat, sleep, shower or take a leak. The next drill could be anytime and have you sucking rubber breaths for 3 or 4 hours.
Never tell an officer more than he asks for or needs to know.
Don’t dive the bilge when you can get someone else to do it.
Never let an inspector run the inspection. Be ready with what you want to show him, show it quick and professionally and escort him to the next area.
Never volunteer any information to an inspector.
Never run a trim party on a new diving officer at test depth.

Very good point on not staying up because a drill is scheduled FTC(SS)

12/16/2009 11:38 AM

 
Blogger 630-738 said...

Wow, 17 posts in and no one has yet posted this gem:

"You get what you inspect, not what you expect."

Always hated the quote, but it is sooo true.

12/16/2009 11:46 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"You must be 10% smarter than that which you are trying to operate"

12/16/2009 12:43 PM

 
Blogger Chap said...

Hey Ret ANAV,

I'll have you know that Rule #6 saved our bacon on 9/11 when we transited the Strait of Juan de Fuca surfaced several times as each previous order was countermanded by the next level in the chain of command. We erased *lightly*, we did...

12/16/2009 1:32 PM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

"I'll have you know that Rule #6 saved our bacon on 9/11 when we transited the Strait of Juan de Fuca surfaced ..."

I'm firmly convinced that Murphy should have his own signature block on all charts!!!

12/16/2009 1:57 PM

 
Anonymous ExMSPNavET said...

Almost forgot:

0Dby contacts are bad until proven otherwise.

First and last will save your ass!

12/16/2009 2:22 PM

 
Blogger Find 'Em, Chase 'Em, Sink 'Em said...

"Oh, and then there's Commodore Foggo's 'You must be administratively prepared to run aground.'"

WHAT!?! You gotta explain that one.

12/16/2009 3:16 PM

 
Blogger DDM said...

If you think you're caught up, it's only because you've forgotten something.

If you can't take a joke then don't be one.

If you can't be on time, then be early.

12/16/2009 3:26 PM

 
Anonymous laughter in manslaughter said...

1. If you don't know what to do, take your hands off the panel and look at your indications

2. Carry you qual cards at all times until qualified

3. Coffee pots must always be kept full

4. Don't lie

5. Don't offer up info

6. Don't take anything personally, it's all just a joke

7. It doesn't get better

12/16/2009 3:38 PM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

"Oh, and then there's Commodore Foggo's 'You must be administratively prepared to run aground.'"

WHAT!?! You gotta explain that one.

Easy...Your logs and records need to be 5.0 at all times.

How many incident reports have you read which said something like "Contrary to Para 3403 of the NODORM, sunrise was not logged in the deck log"? What did that have to do with anything? Probably nothing at all, but it is an INDICATOR. Commodore Foggo's point behind his comment is PAY ATTENTION TO PROCEDURAL REQUIREMENTS. See ANAV'S Rule #7.

12/16/2009 4:28 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Concur with that Ret Anav. Your admin has to be ready for a post grounding inspection. Good admin won't make the situation better but bad admin can definately make it harder.

Anyway. I was at CSG-9 2001-2004 and CSG-7 1994-1997.

Jim C.

12/16/2009 5:16 PM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

12/16/2009 5:47 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm from Squadron, I'm here to help

12/16/2009 5:52 PM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

Jim,

Thought so. Took a bit for the light bulb to come on, but remember you coming over to the SPAN to do boat evals while I was running the trainer.

WRT your CSG-7 time, I deployed 4 times '96-'00...Foal Eagle, among other things. First time I ever experienced Tom Kain's chronic grumpiness, but dealt primarily with Tony Cardell.

-PG

12/16/2009 5:56 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Oh, and then there's Commodore Foggo's 'You must be administratively prepared to run aground.'"

Perhaps he should have included: or run in to the pier.


This type of negative thinking always bothered me. Except in the area of chart updates and corrections none of our collisions or groundings were directly caused by admin that was not 100% correct.

Keep the main thing the main thing. Keep the ship off the rocks and don't run in to another vessel and nobody will care whether or not the i's are dotted or the t's are crossed.

Maybe it's just me, but I always felt that it was more important to positively and proactivily prevent bad things from happening than worrying about what a Jagman investigation would find in the aftermath of a mishap.

12/16/2009 7:22 PM

 
Blogger Find 'Em, Chase 'Em, Sink 'Em said...

Ret ANAV...

I guess I was just taken aback that a Commodore would even mention anything about grounding. I understand the logs have to be 5.0...I learned that playing the nuclear game.

I would have left it at: "Make sure you logs are IAW ______ reference. 5.0 all the time." Any reference to grounding, allisions, or collisions I would simply keep to myself. Can't be putting the idea in peoples' heads that you feel there is a chance they are going to bump something in the night.

12/16/2009 8:08 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Can't be putting the idea in peoples' heads that you feel there is a chance they are going to bump something in the night."

Maybe you haven't noticed but entire submarine careers are spent thinking the unthinkable.

People need to be thinking about what if's such as running aground, contact mangement, flooding the ER, setting the galley on fire.

The force continually trains on bad things happening, I wouldn't be too worried about putting ideas in people's heads.

I would be more worried about the guy who thinks nothing bad can't happen!

12/16/2009 8:26 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From a crusty old CO to a new OD on a heavy cruiser many, many years ago while changing station: "Son, you pass in front of mules, and behind aircraft carriers." I think of it every time I see the standard CHINFO picture of a task force all lined up in neat rows, all closely spaced, with a couple of surfaced boats steaming in front of the aircraft carriers. I suspect that there are some very nervous skippers counting down to the end of the photo op so they can put distance between them and the big boys.

12/16/2009 9:14 PM

 
Blogger RichG said...

- Always be careful opening anything.

I learned that one time when the COW was wrong and the boat's pressure wasn't equalized when I was opening the upper bridge hatch. And the latch didn't hold either (EB ended up doing a redesign on this) so I'm lucky at phone talker grabbed me or I would have hit the clamshell. Also applies to a shitter ball valve.

- Question any report with the word "they," with "They, who they?"

I had a CO with that on a plaque on his desk (727B).

- Sailboats near a channel are idiots and don't understand "vessel constrained by draft" (and are likely drunk to boot) (San Diego and Groton).

12/16/2009 9:32 PM

 
Blogger Port Tack Start said...

"Sailboats near a channel are idiots and don't understand "vessel constrained by draft" (and are likely drunk to boot) (San Diego and Groton)."

I hope that channels you're referring to are outside the line of demarcation. There is no such thing as 'constrained by draft' in inland waters. COLREGS mentions something about vessels who can only navigate inside channels have right of way (or you can possibly go the 'restricted in ability to maneuver' route).

Watch out! If and when I'm sailing on my boat and I hear someone try and claim rights using 'constrained by draft' in inland waters, I'll laugh, politely insult their intelligence, recommend they get a properly qualified watchstander to relieve them, and then close CPA so they can see me point to my copy of COLREGS and give 'em some kinda rude gesture. Then I will finish my beer and continue on my way. Training effective.

12/16/2009 10:54 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

written by a Navy Captain whose son (J.P. Ransom, III) gave them to me. I have great respect for both of them. Rather lengthy to copy so link provided. Lots of good wisdom

http://www.ensign101.com/

12/16/2009 11:13 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nowadays we have armed escorts to take care of clowns sailing in front of a warship!

12/16/2009 11:14 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Old CO: Don't be the senior man with a secret.

Old XO: Don't F@%! up!

I live by them every day.

12/16/2009 11:49 PM

 
Blogger RichG said...

OK, Stand On vessel. I haven't done this in quite a few years.

But a sailboat can't suddenly change course in front of another vessel. I used to be a Navy Sailing Instructor. Got the card somewhere. And I sailed before the Navy.

The Beer Can Regatta folks on Thursdays in San Diego were the annoyance I remember most.

12/17/2009 1:19 AM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

"Keep the main thing the main thing. Keep the ship off the rocks and don't run in to another vessel and nobody will care whether or not the i's are dotted or the t's are crossed."

Very true. With that said, your ability to keep the main thing the main thing is proportional to your ability to pay attention to the little things as well. "Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing" is NOT PERGRA to let the little things slide. I will again refer to ANAV Rule #7

12/17/2009 3:06 AM

 
Blogger SJV said...

"The guys who sweat the load usually drop the ball."

In my experience it was those guys who couldn't relax during the less demanding times who also choked when the fit hit the shan.

As far as logs go, the minimum expectation back aft (and what I taught as an instructor) was that they were done right. But...it wasn't a major hissy fit if they weren't perfect, it was a learning opportunity.

The guys who got bent out of shape over logs were the guys who couldn't handle the complicated stuff, so they kept with what they could actually do.

12/17/2009 5:47 AM

 
Blogger SJV said...

Not to cross threads, but I wonder whether the logs on Prevots boat were perfect, or less than expected?

12/17/2009 5:51 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do not under any circumstance get on the box with, "This is Buddy what is your favorite color." Lesson learned 22.

12/17/2009 7:43 AM

 
Blogger wtfdnucsailor said...

Two watch phrases from my days on the boats still hold true in CIVLANT- 1) Nothing hard is ever easy
2) It is better to fall on your own sword than have someone else impail you with it. You will miss the vital parts.

12/17/2009 10:05 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK, this is from deployment in 1993, and more in the spirit of the original blog post than the more recent comments.

The JO's Rules to Live By

1) Don't do anything that if you put off long enough your department head will do for you.

2) Oppose change, even if it is a change for the better.

3) ALWAYS kick a man while he's down.

4) If you don't want us to make fun of you, don't do anything stupid.

12/17/2009 10:50 AM

 
Blogger 630-738 said...

I guess I was just taken aback that a Commodore would even mention anything about grounding. I understand the logs have to be 5.0...I learned that playing the nuclear game.

This type of negative thinking always bothered me. Except in the area of chart updates and corrections none of our collisions or groundings were directly caused by admin that was not 100% correct.

I served with Commodore Foggo as XO Foggo. Never once in the time we served together, did I consider him a negative thinker. He was and I suspect still is, one of the most positive motivators I know. He was, however, a realist, and recognized that no matter how good you are, bad things happen to good people. He also recognized that paying attention to the minutae can pay big dividends when bad things happen. As it has been said here before, good admin may not make it better, but bad admin surely will make it worse.

12/17/2009 10:52 AM

 
Blogger Ret ANAV said...

Port Tack Start: There is no such thing as 'constrained by draft' in inland waters. COLREGS mentions something about vessels who can only navigate inside channels have right of way (or you can possibly go the 'restricted in ability to maneuver' route).

Gawd, this reminded me of a discussion I had with a fellow ANAV instructor when I was at TTF Bangor. He actually suggested that Trident's in Puget Sound, while in the Traffic Separation Scheme, are "Restricted in their Ability to Maneuver". For those unfamiliar, Puget Sound, for the most part, is several miles wide and several hundred feet deep...but, given that the entering arguement for R.A.M. isn't even close to being met, the point is moot. Yeah, he was an ANAV with a gold boomer pin and yes, Jim C., you know him!

12/18/2009 3:01 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"... and several hundred feet deep"

Then there was the day during torpedo tube trials that we transited from Dabob Bay to Bangor Wharf submerged with the BQQ-2 banging off the walls - the skipper wanted to make better time, did not want to be constrained by the "don't-leave-a-wake-that-would-disturb-the-shellfish" speed limit. (Time has dimmed what our actual speed was, believe in the 8 to 12 knot range.) I was on the scope when we went to PD - all I saw on the first look was gray - a cruiser was moored at the pier.

12/18/2009 8:58 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

1. No water in the people tank.
2. In case of fire, disregard rule number one.
3. Never wait up for drills.
4. If you find yourself doing nothing for more than seven minutes - go to the rack.
5. You kill it, you fill it.
6. The cranks are the most important people on the boat, period
7. Early is on time.
8. Lead, help or get the hell out of the way.
9. If you don't care about your career than I won't either.
10. Always take pride in your people, your space and yourself.

CS1/SS

12/20/2009 5:22 PM

 
Anonymous Ex ANAV/COB said...

I've got to add one more: "Fix it 'till it breaks"

12/21/2009 4:53 AM

 
Blogger STS#1 said...

Zero Bearing Rate Contacts are bad, mkay!

12/23/2009 8:38 PM

 
Anonymous RetCOB said...

1. Hope is not a strategy. ('Nuf said.)
2. Job's not over until the paperwork is done. (Hated that one!)
3. Never chamber a round if you don't intend to kill somebody.
4. Replace the chains. (Oh, the bruises.)
5. Lower the seats. (Had a CO remove 'em once.)
6. Don't slam the doors! (It's a silent service for cryin' out loud.)
7. Take your hat off in the Goat Locker. (You won't make that mistake twice!)
8. Never hit the rack before checking to see if the guy on-watch needs a PCR. (You'll never hear the end of it...)
9. Never send a new kid mess-cooking in the first two weeks he's aboard. (And, no, I'd rather not hear it from you guys who did; I did too.)
10. And, finally: Got to have a plan to deviate from!

12/28/2009 2:05 PM

 
Anonymous Navy Beaver said...

does anyone have a copy of the video?

12/28/2009 6:04 PM

 
Anonymous STS2 (SS) said...

From my old XO: Don't be "that guy"!

2/02/2010 7:10 PM

 
Anonymous Dulcie said...

This can't truly have success, I suppose so.

9/22/2012 12:28 PM

 

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