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.)

Monday, March 28, 2011

"Every Ship Can Be A Minesweeper -- Once"

I got one of those "Military Humor" E-mails at work today, and I saw a picture I hadn't seen before:

This got me thinking about my time as the Submarine Liaison Officer on the Carrier Group SEVEN staff during the John C. Stennis Battle Group "Millennium Deployment" in 2000. Other than spending 9 of the first 11 months of my post-DH "shore tour" at sea, I found that a Battle (now "Strike") Group job is one of the easier gigs for a submarine officer. Once I got qualified to stand TFCC Watch Officer, my underway routine usually consisted of being in the Tactical Flag Command Center during our attached submarine's scheduled PD trips, reading and writing messages for a couple of hours, and standing 4-6 hours of easy watch a day. Compared to what I was doing during my previous tour as Eng of Connecticut, I was operating at about 15% of capacity. This left me with a lot of free time. I read a lot, and got really good at Minesweeper; I could clear the large 100 mine fields in just over 100 seconds. (Side note: It seems to me that the new optical mice don't give you the quick response that the old trackball ones did for things like Minesweeper.) For those who enjoy Minesweeper, here's a funny video.

What's your favorite underway time waster?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe you asked that question! Standby for the hands-down (or hands-on) obvious answer.

3/28/2011 9:18 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tug and choke with sauce!

3/28/2011 9:34 PM

Blogger Vigilis said...

The simple answer, of course, is a weekend Fast Cruise. When it does not immediately preceed a deployment.

3/28/2011 11:04 PM

Anonymous Dardar the Submarian said...

On watch, or off watch?

On watch - boobie traps for the next watch section.

Off watch - Watch a flick until the tit scene, then go jerk the gurken.

3/29/2011 5:24 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

On watch - clean something. You never get relieved for cleaning...the worst someone will do is tell you to stop. I have seen Sailors relieved for playing games, writing e-mails, being loud, etc. But never for cleaning.

Off watch - choking the chicken.

3/29/2011 6:10 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

On watch: spit shining something
Off Watch: Spit shining my thing

3/29/2011 6:16 AM

Anonymous STS2 said...

Jerking off..on and off watch.

3/29/2011 6:22 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

On watch: studying for my dolphins
Off watch: flogging Da Phin

3/29/2011 6:29 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

On Watch: Jerking the CO off
Off Watch: Cleaning up the CO's Bunk
The XO
P.S. Can't wait for the Women to come on board, which will bring a new set of answers.
P.S.S Can't wait for the openess of D.A.D.T which will bring a new set of Answers... Ahhh ya Gotta Love progress. Hooo friggin Yaaaa

3/29/2011 7:19 AM

Anonymous Dardar the Submarian said...

I didn't have computers when I was first punchin' holes. (At least ones without vacuum tubes - which makes for a shitty video game)

Once in a blue moon, we would take crackers and soda back to the engine room and have a picnic. I know - food is not allowed in the engine room, but you would be surprised how much the engine room runs like a Mexican prison when bribes are involved.

3/29/2011 8:44 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Biggest time waster? Without a doubt, FIELD DAY!

3/29/2011 9:51 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't "underway time waster" redundant?

3/29/2011 10:04 AM

Anonymous analee said...

my answer is to have fun with pets.

3/29/2011 1:26 PM

Blogger KellyJ said...

Underway time waister?
ORSE workups. You spend a month with the coners cleaning back aft and moving all the UA gear into the Torpedo Room. The nukes come up front and study their butts off and take "practice exams" based on the last 3 ORSE exams that the ship mysteriously got a hold of.
In between are days of Vulcan Death Watch drill routines.
Then comes the ORSE Team. Post tour CO and Post tour Engs. It's not like they haven't done the same routine and know the drill.
So you finish the ORSE and get some sort of grade that, unless you really tube it or do something idiotic, has more to do with your CO/Eng being a fast tracker or not.
After the ORSE we spend 12-18 months letting everything get back to a "normal equilibrium" of true LoK, cleanliness, and readiness (you know...the truth); then we start the charade all over again.

3/29/2011 1:53 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoyed long walks around the propulsion train, listening to the reduction gears, and making the Bromide run at 130% of rated capacity.

3/29/2011 6:29 PM

Anonymous SSMC Biker said...

Interesting - personally, I never thought of "flogging the dolphin" as a time waster; in fact, it was some of the most productive time I ever spent underway.

3/29/2011 6:48 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking ORSE, one of our boats (won't name names but this ship is a real "Thoroughbred of the Fleet") recently got a BA. Apparently they attempted something during a drill that required ORSE Team to step in and take over.

Anyway, the best part of the story is that the CO got all the OFF/CPO's together and said he would step down if they didn't want him around anymore. Apparently a long, uncomfortable pause occured until a couple of first patrol ensigns stepped up and "we like you".

I heard this second hand through a LT. Anyone here from the blue crew that would like to give us the real scoop?

3/29/2011 7:06 PM

Blogger Bearpaw said...

On watch - shooting the breeze behind manuevering or with the ERLL watch at the ERUL to Shaft Alley hatches.

Off watch - spades or hearts or the dolphin flick.

3/30/2011 3:57 AM

Anonymous NHSparky said...

On watch...putting my autograph on the back of various switch covers, and playing, "Who would you do?" on midwatch. One of the mechanics on my last boat would bogart all the Tang and hide it from the Captain.

Off watch...building rack stalactites if sock not available.

3/30/2011 5:06 AM

Anonymous Dardar the Submarian said...

I do know there was much more time to be wasted in the "good ol' days"
Back in the early 80's we would drill twice a week - We would field day on Friday - Then we had the entire weekend to ourselves.
Soon enough, field day moved to Saturday and we drilled all week. Then we drilled Saturday morning to get us up and rarin' to go for field day.
Wasting time is certainly a relative term.

3/30/2011 6:15 AM

Anonymous STS2 said...

If we had one certain FTOW, our on-watch entertainment would be to get him into a massive raging fit. We also harvested our belly button lint in a piss sample jar for an entire westpac.

3/30/2011 8:31 AM

Anonymous EM2(SS) said...

Sleep. If I was done with quals, I hit the rack every chance I could get.

3/31/2011 11:23 AM

Blogger KellyJ said...

Isn't it amazing. While your a non-qual all you want to do is watch movies, play games, and read story books.
Once your qualified all you want to do is catch 3 or 4 hours of rack before the next drillset goes off.

3/31/2011 5:03 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

On-watch - yes yes, booby traps for the oncoming. Did you know that in a 6 hr watch you can scratch out enough pubic hair to fill the mouthpiece on the EO's 2JV phone handset? Don't forget to growl Maneuvering on your way forward after watch relief.

3/31/2011 9:15 PM

Blogger MT1(SS)WidgetHead said...

Blogger KellyJ said...
Isn't it amazing. While your a non-qual all you want to do is watch movies, play games, and read story books.
Once your qualified all you want to do is catch 3 or 4 hours of rack before the next drillset goes off.

3/31/2011 5:03 PM

Someone knows what he's talking about here. Same deal with me Kelly...After my Qual card was signed I was happy to fall asleep while watching a movie. You did it, You earned it...what the hell else could one ask for in life?

4/01/2011 1:41 AM

Anonymous Dardar the Submarian said...

Another fine booby-trap; switching the earpiece and mouth piece of the growler handset.

Also you can't forget the dit-dot bomb. I do not know why a string hanging down from the overhead is cause to automatically pull it - maybe it is the forced field day in all of us - but that is the best dit-dot bomb mechanism.

4/01/2011 5:20 AM

Anonymous NHSparky said...

Yeah, Prussian Blue in the JA mouthpiece and neolube on the scope eyepieces is kind of dated.

Then again, I always liked water bottle fights with silver nitrate solution right before the recipient went topside on the maneuvering watch.

4/01/2011 7:18 AM

Blogger KellyJ said...

I got posted in my rack once (thats when your sleeping in your bunk and several someones lift your bunkpan and lock the catch pin so your now trapped) by the on watch Sonar Sup. It took him an hour into my watch to realize i just rolled into the corner and went back to sleep. Finally he had the guys unpost me so I could take the watch...after brushing my teefs and all that time consuming pre-watch stuff you do.
Thanks for the extra rack time Daryl...LOL.

4/01/2011 4:32 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The jockey survives and "unbridled spirit" has been crushed.

Go team.

4/02/2011 5:48 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kelly, that sounds like a Chicago fun time.

Jim C.

4/03/2011 11:16 AM

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8/26/2012 10:57 PM


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