Page 2 started June
Letters, Random Memories
and Assorted Sea Stories (Cont.)
I sure met a lot of characters on the Pig and one-guy, in
particular, stands out vividly in my memory. He was known to
most as the candyman. (Others called him Don Foster.) He had
been on the Big E for many years and his reputation for cooking
up sweet deals for himself was enormous. The 'old salts' would
talk of the candyman as if he was some kind of evil genius. I
guess he truly was because when I first heard of him it was
when we were baking alive in the IO (on Westpac ’86) and the
candyman was back home in Alameda lounging around on light
duty. No one really seemed to envy this guy; they just couldn’t
believe that he was always getting away with his ridiculous
After nine long months at sea the Pig finally returned to
Alameda and prepared for a six-month dry-dock period at Hunter’s
Point. Rx Department was ordered to supply about 50 men to the
shipyard to scrape radioactive paint off the hull. (This
was the part of the hull that was downstream of the primary
discharges and "that paint" couldn’t be
sandblasted off like the rest due to the potential for
airborne contamination). It was a total "stab job"
and I was very upset when I found out that my name was
submitted along with a few other nubs in my division to
perform this dreadful task.
It was a very cold and bitter morning when us
"chosen" nubs mustered in the dry dock for the first
time and I remember how betrayed and miserable everyone felt.
The yardbird foreman called out the muster and each man answered
quietly when his name was called. Everyone’s eyes stared
straight ahead until the name "Foster" was called.
"Could this be that infamous candyman?" I
wondered. Others must thought the same thing because after
muster everyone gravitated toward this burly loathsome looking
character and asked him if he was the candyman. He was.
We were confused. How could it be that the great candyman—the
one who always got the sweet deals—was stabbed with such a
raw deal as scraping radioactive paint off the hull of an
The candyman told us: "Raw deal? This ain’t no raw
deal! You idiots don’t have a clue as to how sweet a deal
this is going to be!"
Sure enough! Never was a deal sweeter. Since we were
working for the shipyard and because of all the union shops
involved, we hardly did a thing! We would muster with our
shift, sit around for a few hours—play cards, shoot the
shit, etc.—and then most of us would get cut loose because
nothing could get done (because other union shops didn’t do
what they were supposed to do). The candyman was right—it
turned out to be the sweetest deal ever!
There were about fifteen to twenty squids assigned to each
paint-scraping crew. I was in Foster’s group. I remember
each night as we sat around waiting for work Foster would
ramble on about some far-fetched scam he had pulled off during
his many years as an Enterprise squid. Us lowly nubs were
mesmerized by his action stories. Never in my life had I
ever met another person more capable of plotting and planning
so profoundly just to avoid doing the slightest bit of work!
The most amazing fact of all was that Foster had been on the
Pig for almost four years by then and he had yet to go to sea!
As he explained it he had some super secret
method of pulling a back muscle (which he did prior to any at
sea period) and a trip to sickbay would
always result in a trip to the base hospital, where he’d be
ruled unfit for sea duty. The Pig would always sail without
him and he'd enjoy himself on "light duty" awaiting
the ship’s return. Foster had more scams than any
human being could imagine. In fact, just to ensure that he
never had to go actually down into the dry dock to scrape
paint (if for some reason they really needed him to), he
showed up each day with his leg in a brace.
Then, sadly, our job in the dry dock was finished. Much to
our dismay we were all sent back to the Pig to do real work.
When we returned Rx department had undergone many changes and
morale was at an all time low. Basically two horrible things
happened while we were gone: The Devil (MMCM)
and a new asshole XO
arrived. As a result of the low morale many fools
touched by the teachings of the candyman decided to try their
hand at this life of scam artistry. But these desperate
men couldn’t fool anyone and the weekly captain's mast
results read like a "who's who of idiots." Only one
person seemed to be getting away with anything and, as you
might have guessed, it was the candyman.
I remember the biggest challenge at that time was simply to
get off the ship before 4:00 p.m. The new XO did away with
early liberty and ordered the brow secured all day until
the end of the workday. Day after duty or not, no one
got off the Pig until the XO said it was okay—and that was
never before 4:00 p.m. We worked pretty hard at sea and
nothing was worse than having our liberty taken away when we
were home. The only thing you could be sure of in those days
was that Foster wasn't stuck on board—no way! You
could bet that come noon, as the rest of us were sitting
around down the plant doing nothing, he was teeing off at his
favorite golf course.
His schemes were simple and thereby very effective. If you
were to study his methodology and then try to duplicate him
you would only be caught and punished. He was a true genius.
However, this observed outcome did little to stop others from
trying. Don's earliest schemes involved nothing more
than bags of trash. Dressed in a dirty pair of dungarees
and carrying what appeared to be a huge bungle of trash he
would go to the brow and ask permission to leave the ship to
dump his over-sized bag of trash into the pier garbage
dumpster. The brow watches would allow him to pass and then it
would take them a full ten minutes to realize he wasn't coming
back (and by that time he was long gone). The next day, while
hundreds of would be scammers lined up to throw trash away
(only to be turned away), the candyman easily escaped to pick
up parts with some phony baloney requisition form.
Everyday the candyman added a new twist and everyday he
managed to fool the guys on watch at the brow. I remember even
seeing him carry a box marked "Radioactive Toxic Waste" to the brow and asking: "I'm not sure
if I'm supposed to leave this here with you guys or leave it
on the pier for the radioactive waste disposal people to pick
up. Is it okay to leave it with you guys or do you want me to
leave it on the pier?"
Like most legends that live on the edge, the candyman's
luck soon ran out. He was losing his touch and he
should have had the foresight to lay low for a while. But Don
had a reputation to uphold and so with an air of confidence he
plotted onward, bucking the odds, and taking his chances. His
first major set back occurred when he showed up to play a
friendly little game of softball with some M-Div pals at a
local park. It would seem harmless enough to most of you I
suppose but what Don didn’t know was that the team he and
his friends were playing that afternoon was from the base
hospital. Unfortunately for Don the doctor who had just
that morning issued him a light duty chit for a pulled
hamstring was on the other team. For the first time in his
life, the candyman was caught red handed! It was all down
hill from that day onward and slowly but surely the candyman
was at the end of his rope. The day before his court martial
he went UA and deserted! NIS did everything they could to bring that
fugitive to justice but they were never able to find him, even
though he never left the Bay Area and most of us still ran
into him from time to time. As the years went by he was still
quite a legend. I don't know what ever happened to the
candyman but I'm sure he's out there somewhere, pulling a fast
one on someone. Does anyone know what finally happened
Before every liberty port it was pretty much the same
thing: squids scrambling to get haircuts to avoid being
denied liberty by the lifer chief checking IDs on the brow. It was impossible to get your hair
the ship's barber before any port visit (unless you
wanted to wait in line for two hours) and so
enterprising nukes would often set up shop in the aft lounge
and charge $5 a pop for a haircut. I usually relied on
Gil Miltenberger on such occasions (since he was one of the
few guys that didn't totally destroy your hair when trimming
it up enough to look sat). My bud Dicko also cut hair
once in a while down in the office. One day a desperate
Brad Stephens came down and begged Dicko to cut his hair but
Dicko was too busy. I volunteered to do it (as a joke) and Brad
accepted. I then told Brad that I was kidding and had never cut hair
before in my life. He
didn't care. So I figured, what the hell. I had no
idea what I was doing and didn't know you were supposed to put a guard on the clippers and
shaved a bald patch right up the back of Brad's head.
Dicko saw what I did and quickly jumped in to finish the
haircut without telling Brad what happened. When Brad
left the office I took off as fast as I could. Sure
enough, Brad was back in minutes to kick my
Another Old Friend Has Found this
Believe it or not, after nearly 10 years I have found one
of my dearest friends: Andy Astleford! (I send special
thanks to Dave Fisher for letting Andy know about this site.)
Andy was the pride of RE03 and was one of the nicest people in
all of Rx Dept. Andy had a heart of gold and I only knew
him to get mad when people confused him with Bill Shout (since
they were nearly identical twins--only kidding). Andy was on the Pig
from 1986 to 1990. Andy is married and has twin boys
(age 8 ½). He is currently working at the University of
Minnesota doing Radiation Safety work.
A Modern Era Nuke Has Come Aboard!
I was on the Pig (1993 - 1998). During the '96 med cruise
they were selling this patch out of the aft RC
div lounge (see
below). The RMA went nutz and wanted heads to roll. He wanted all the patches turned back in but some
A Sad True Story:
Over the last dozen or so years I have met many ex-navy
nukes (college, work, etc.) and, like most old salts, we
swapped sea stories. Most of these fellows were on subs
or other, lesser-known, carriers and all of these guys
had one thing in common: none had sea adventures that could
even remotely compare to mine. In fact, most found my
Big E stories impossible to believe. Especially the one
that I am sending in now about how an entire department
(actually two) conspired to drive a man insane. I won’t
mention the afflicted person’s name (other than call him Lt.
R.) but every nuke on the Big E during the 1988 westpac knows
who this person was and would vouch for this story’s
authenticity. For those of you who never heard the
story, here it is:
Lt. R. was a refugee from 2 plant that somehow wound up in
4 plant at the beginning of the cruise. Lt. R. was impossible
to work for and was hated by just about everyone (officer and
enlisted, alike). Lt. R’s troubles really didn’t begin
until midway through the ’88 cruise, when people were
finally locked into his ORSE watch team. It was one thing to
occasionally have to deal with this guy on a random basis but
when people were forced to stand 4 and 12s with the guy they
began plotting his demise immediately.
The insanity campaign actually began serendipitously with a
simple phone call to 4 EOS. Lt. R. never allowed his LRPT to
answer the phone (as was the LRPT’s job) and always answered
the EOS desk phone himself (so that he could scream at whoever
dared to call the plant if the call wasn’t for official
business). Whoever phoned 4 EOS that day knew Lt. R. answered
and just didn’t want to deal with him and so hung up. Lt. R.
slammed the phone down and the two ROs turned around and
stared at him (and gave him their usual, "you’re such a
retard" look). Lt. R. then said something like,
"What? You didn’t hear the phone ring?" They both
said no (even though they had). Then Lt. R. asked the
throttleman if he heard the phone ring and the trottleman said
that he didn’t (even though he had). The LRPT also told the
watch officer that he didn’t hear the phone ring.
in EOS knew that Lt. R. was troubled since the phone really
did ring. An evil plan was then launched on the spot. One of
the ROs was on headphones with Control Equipment (he and the
CR operator were doing trip and cals) and the CR operator was
quietly instructed to call 4 EOS and hang up. Everyone in EOS
looked straight ahead until Lt. R actually picked up the phone
and then they all gave him a sad look, like they felt sorry
for him for thinking that the phone was actually ringing. The
phone rang again a few minutes later and the same thing
happened. This continued until the end of the watch. Then it
began all over again the very next watch. And then again the
next. Lt. R. was convinced that his phone was ringing (because
it was) and placed dozens of trouble calls to the aft IC shack
to look into the matter. At least once during each watch an IC
guy would be forced to come down to 4 EOS and checkout the
phone circuit. (And every time the phone was found to be
The boys in 4 plant just couldn’t be
satisfied with ringing the EOS phone after a while. They soon
got really creative and began synchronizing phones, alarms,
buzzers, growlers and just about anything else that could make
a noise in EOS. Pretty soon the EOS sounded like a clock shop
at noon (Ring-bzzzt-grrrrr-wrrrr-ding-weeeet, etc.). While all this commotion was going on the ROs,
throttleman and LRPT just sat there straight faced while Lt.
R. ran around EOS trying to answer all the things that were
buzzing, growling and ringing. The saddest part of the story
really was that pretty soon everyone in Rx Dept knew that this
was going on and everyone, including other watch officers,
wanted to be in on it. So towards the end (before Lt. R.
actually went insane) just about everyone felt the need to
call 4 EOS or R's stateroom and hang up on him.
But it wasn’t the "rings in poor Lt. R.’s
head" that ended his naval career—no, it was actually
something else. I was down the plant the day it happened (in
fact, I was pretty much the last person to talk to him before
he was relieved for the last time and sent to the ship’s
sickbay to spend "quiet time" until he could be
flown off). But I won’t say anymore about it here. I’ll
let someone else finish the story if they want to. I have
always felt really bad about what happened and that I was
somehow involved in that "final blow." Never in a
million years did I actually think that we 4 planters would
actually drive him insane but we did.
A 3-Plant M-Div-er Finds the
I think EM23 means 3 plant Engineering Mechanical.
I was a Machinist Mate in the Main Engineering Room of 3 plant.
It has been just long enough to begin to forget the horrors of it all.
EM23 1989 to 1993
Welcome To Another 70s Big E Nuke!
Great Idea. I am glad someone finally thought to do this!!
You (your site) made me search and search until I finally
found "YE OLDE DOPEY BOOK" from my Reactor Plant
Three days, circa 1971-1975. This book has not seen the light
of day in many a year. Man, you talk about shaking some
cobwebs loose. El Dopey jolted loose memories that have been
locked away for a quarter century. 3 WESTPACS to
"NAM," Tonkin Gulf Yacht Club, and a 60 day line
cruise I thought I would never forget. I hope some of the
other 3 Plant "MISFITS" from '71 to '75 show up (I
see one already listed). Thanks for a great site and I wish
you and yours the best!!!
RM / 3 Plant 1971 - 1975
USS ENTERPRISE CVN - 65
|KP note: Please
send in scans of your dopey book! I can only imagine how
"brutal" things were back in the old days.
Attention 3 Plant Survivors of the
'72 to '75 Era, An Important Part of Your History Has
Just Been Discovered!
HOO RAH!! I think that is Grunt talk for pretty cool. I do
have a scanner, and I will try to figure out the tech aspect
as far as uploading some of this anyway. Man, the more I
look at this book, it amazes me just what kind of egotistical,
back stabbing, smart ass bastard, slobbering drunk, Olongapo
loving nukie pukes we were. There are a lot of people in here
that will never admit they stood in the glorious and often
crowded "clap" line at sick bay. The best I can
remember, and can tell from reading these hallowed pages, it
covers two westpacs from '72 to '75. It is a BIG book and the
13 1/2 " pages will be hard to scan and keep any
continuity. (got any ideas?). I thought about taking it to
work and try reducing it on a copier. But I am not sure I have
that many years left. I may be exaggerating a little, which I
know is unusual for any EX- NUC. But it does happen. I will
try to work this out. When this particular book was started I
was known as "Hutton," but before long, since I was
dating a little Mexican senorita that I had met in a bar (who
wouda thunk) in Jack London Square in Oakland, CA., my feeble
dim witted remarks in Ye Olde Dopey was being signed by
"Taco," which all my fellow Nucites insisted on
calling me. Some entries were signed by me as "The
Tequila Kid" (this was after three of us got in a Tequila
drinking, showing off for the Puss contest, and then got
mildly chastised (ha) as all three of us were crammed on a 500
Suzuki motorcycle and tried entering the base at Alameda NAS,
da Grunts at de gate no very happy don cha no) the Tequila
part of my life is just a tad bit fuzzy. At any rate I will
attempt to do my duty and try to find the time and know how to
exhibit this hallowed and glorified piece of sh.. I mean
literature. Sorry if I have rambled on, but it has been sooo
long ago, but the memories keep acummin. In fact, one just
popped up about a week’s leave I took in PO town, but that
is another story. I hope some of 3 plant Misfits (we actually
had some patches made up, wish I could find mine) find this
sight. We might, could, maybe, come up with a story or two.
Any tech advice on getting this stuff posted on your sight, do
not hesitate to try to pound it into this ex-nukie's hard
head. You have to try to remember, in my era on the
"E" Hewlett Packard had just come out with the
first hand held calculator. ARRGH all this goes to show you
this 50 year old EX-Nuc may never grow up. Do you think it has
anything to do with the radiation????
More from Jim Sutton
Hopefully, some of the old Three Planters alias "The
Romper Room Raiders" alias "Misfits and Losers"
will read all I pass on, and then they can add to, take away,
or offer corrections. I would like to hear from any of them. I
will attempt to list some participants in Ole Dopey. Maybe it
will jar some ex-nuc memories. There was Okie, my ole pard and
steaming buddy, whom we swore an oath to each other that we
would never, never, never lose touch with each other (which of
course we both broke 26 years ago). Rambling again oh hum.
Anyway, I will try this again: OKIE, HUTTON/TACO (me), BJ/BUCK,
THE GRIT/SMITTY, HIG/KD, BURGER, BUFORD, "O", THE
BLIND KID/BLIND BABY/BB, OZZIE, FUZZY, BANZAI, FUBAR, 750CC,
FLEAS JR., BVD, TTPOD, 360, SWEET TONY, THE INNOCENT ONE,
NICKNAMELESS, GREEN HORNET, JG, THE ROCK, EL "C",
CC, WHORELET, CHINK......I'm sure I have missed some, and
there are a bunch of cameo appearances. Maybe I can add some
more at a later time. Hopefully these names may help stir up
those comatose brain cells that we so diligently tried to
destroy. Hello Hello, is Anybody Out There!! WHERE ARE YOU
GUYS!!!! Okay, dun ram'lin. I would only like to add my thanks
to you for the opportunity to share the past with all who care
to read it, and let all the Nucs (Ex-Nucs, Now-Nucs, Future
Nucs) that followed or will follow in our footsteps, I'm damn
proud of you for carrying on the grand traditions of Misfits
and Losers and for not ruining our lousy reputation. Thanks to
Every time we went to O-Town I always promised myself that
I'd behave but I never did. Usually it only took about
pitcher of Mojo and a few San Miguels and I was out of control. Most of the
time we'd skip O-Town altogether and go out to Subic City or
the Barrio because the bar fines were much cheaper (50 Pesos
vs. 300 Pesos). Also, out there you didn't have to
bother renting a motel room since all the bars had little
rooms in the back. I was always really uncomfortable in
those little rooms because they always had pictures of Jesus
and the Virgin Mary hanging on the wall. Nothing could take the
thrill out of bonking your hook faster than looking up and seeing one of
those pictures staring at you.
Anonymous--for good reason.
What Bored People Do to Pass The
Time at Sea:
While digging through some old navy stuff I found a piece
paper and had no idea what it was (see below). But,
since I had kept it it must have had some significance.
After a few minutes of staring at the old memo--obviously a fake--it all came back to me.
was another one of those "lethal" forgeries I was so
famous for writing to serve as the initiator of another one of
my heartless practical jokes. Luckily this one
didn’t backfire on me. In fact, it worked out better than I had
This episode took place during the ’90 World
Cruise when I was working in the RE office. At that time there
was a power struggle going on between two 1-plant REs over who
would become the next LPO of RE01 (These guys were EM2 Brown and EM2
RJ Martin). Both these guys were constantly coming down the
office to badmouth the other ("So-and-so did this"
and "So-and-so did that"). I finally got fed
up and decided to have some fun at these guy’s
expense so I typed up this phony memo, not quite sure how I
was going to employ it. (Note the authentic-looking "CHUD"
sticky for a little extra realism.) My officemates watched me put together this fake memo and strongly advised that I destroy it
immediately—for obvious reasons. I was just about to tear it
up when RJ Martin entered the office and wanted to know what
was going on. He saw me try to hide the memo and became suspicious.
I couldn't have planned it better! RJ kept pestering me to show him the memo and so I finally
did. He read it and couldn’t contain his joy!
He didn’t seem to care that EM2 Laing, a nub, was being put in
charge of RE01—just seeing that Brown was being "sent away"
was enough to make him happy. He then wanted to know where we
were sending Brown and I told him that I couldn’t tell him.
RJ then asked if poor EM2 Brown was being sent to the
coop. I told RJ that it was none of his business and warned
him to keep his big mouth shut. He promised me that he would
then ran as fast as he could back to berthing with a grin a
mile wide. Within minutes Brown was down the office to
see what RJ was so giddy about (all RJ told him was that there
was a big surprise waiting for him the next time he went down
the office). Brown took one look at the phony memo and saw it
for the joke that it was. He then returned to berthing and
told RJ that he had his facts all wrong and that RJ was the
one actually being sent to the coop. The next thing I knew RJ
was down the office (his face red as a beet) demanding to know
if it was
true that he was being sent to the coop. By then we were all
laughing so hard that RJ stormed out of the office (unsure of
anything). For days he wouldn’t speak to me.
A 4-Plant M-Div-er Finds the
Your web site is really cool. Please add me to your list
of ex-Big E Nukes. My name is Daniel Donahoe, I worked in 1 AMR (EM-31) for two years and then two
years in 4 MMR (EM-14). I was stationed on the Enterprise from 9/83 to 9/87.
I'll have to tell my ex-Big E Nuke friends about your web site.
A Peek Back In Time
Below are scans of the April 19, 1988 and April 22, 1989 Shuttles.
I found these old 4-page newspapers in my box of "navy
crap" that somehow survived nearly a half dozen moves
since I left the service. I kept the April 19, 1988
issue because it covered the most exciting thing to happen
while I was on the Pig (Operation Praying Mantis).
I kept the April 22, 1989 issue because it marked the literary
debut of my pal Dicko. Dicko penned the article on page
2 entitled, "Reactor Department's Answer to 'Wog
Diary.'" This article was written as a protest to a
series of articles that the Shuttle was publishing at
the time by some gung-ho airdale (called The Wog Diaries).
The airdale's stories were stupid and filled with
hyper-graphic imagery about life on the flight deck.
Dicko had no intention of publishing his short article (he
wrote it only as a joke, using the same type of over-graphic
imagery). I took it up to the
printing office and submitted it using a fake name. The
Shuttle editor thought it was a great story and didn't
realize it was meant to be a parody (or maybe he did). I
figured those of you who sailed on the Pig during the '88 and
'89 at sea periods might enjoy a peek back at how you viewed the
"outside world" on those two particular days.
A Question Posed to You All:
Does anyone know when the Enterprise began naming reactor
and engineering work centers using the two digit convention to
denote both the group and the plant (e.g., RM22,
RC14, EM23, RM11)? A few of the '70s era nukes have
asked me about this since this was not done back in the old
days. I'm not sure what they did back then. Are
they still using that naming convention today?
The Greatest Hoax of Them All!
Since no one else is sending in stories I guess I'll add
another. In that box of "navy crap" I
mentioned above I also found a copy of the bogus trivia sheet that my bud
Dicko and I typed up in the wee hours of the night during the
'89 - '90 cruise. We were inspired to do this while thumbing through a Tiger Cruise information
pamphlet that contained real Enterprise trivia with similar outlandish
comparisons. Some of the trivia on our sheet was genuine so that people would recognize
it from other sources.
(And, most-likely, some of the bogus stuff might have actually
been true anyway.) After we typed up the phony trivia
sheet we snuck into the Rx admin office and made a few dozen
copies and then left these sheets sitting around on tables
in the aft mess decks. When daylight arrived squids
eating breakfast collected these
fact sheets along with their daily Shuttle. Within hours these fake Enterprise trivia sheets
were being quoted and posted everywhere. No one with any
common sense seemed to question these ridiculous
chief (Randy Shackett) even heard one squad of airdales being
read the phony trivia sheet by their DO while mustered on the hanger
bay that morning.
But I have to give Rx dept. its due. When this sheet was
posted in Rx berthing most found one or two of the items hard to believe. I fondly remember "Reactor
Phil" Skinner commenting to one of his RC brothers that
he seriously doubted that "the Enterprise had ever sailed
north of the Arctic Circle."
What whining & crying about ORSE. Hell, the reactor
control equipment floor was always cleaner than the trays on
the mess decks. Our ORSE was always held off the PI prior to
our sorties out in the Tonkin Gulf. You electricians &
machinists went into ORSE boards 3 at a time. Us RC types were
always one at a time. It prepared me for work in the real
world. I learned to tell a rear admiral he sucked in elegant
language. You get bosses in private industry that think
they're god, it is very easy to handle these assholes after
the USN's assholes. I'll forward a story about a sleeping WO
during an ORI.
My Pal Dicko Has Sent In His First
Story! I Have to Warn You Though, It's ..... Well, Let's
Just Say It Isn't Clean.
Love the site. I spent the last hour laughing my ass off!
We really did try to be evil didn't we? I guess it was the
boredom that drove us to it.
One story came to mind when I was looking at the pictures:
During the '88 Westpac when we were in Pusan, Korea, KP and
I were sitting in this really seedy basement brothel/bar on
Texas Street. I remember KP was looking a little ill and
needed to relieve himself of some gastric distress. Much as he
didn't want to, he realized this was as good a place as he was
going to find so he went upstairs and found the bar’s
poor excuse for a toilet. I just kicked back, had a beer and
watched the fun. I remember there was this woman with
butterflies tattooed on her eyelids (that had to hurt). She
made a somewhat indecent suggestion that I found more
terrifying than titillating. Suddenly KP came running down the
stairs shouting, "Let's get out of here! Let's go, let's
go." I pointed out that we still had beer remaining but KP was
already moving toward the door. Realizing that this was urgent
I hightailed out after him. It wasn't until we were far away
that I could get him to stop and fill me in. He had gone
upstairs and entered the bathroom. It was nasty and apparently
had items stored inside such as women's clothing. Not in a
position to be picky, KP immediately took care of business.
His relief turned to horror when he looked around afterwards
and saw that there was no toilet paper. I often wonder about
the unfortunate woman who left her white dress hanging innocently in
that stall. Of course KP had done the unthinkable with the
dress and prepared to vacate the scene undetected. As he opened the door,
however, an old Korean woman was standing there and offered
him a handful of toilet paper. KP simply mumbled "no
thanks" and ran off. He said that the old woman had a
confused look on her face and entered the bathroom to
investigate. This prompted KP to rapidly begin his escape and
collect me on his way out.
Something I haven't Thought About
In A Long Time
I know most of you probably thought that Dicko and I were
pretty squared away but that wasn't always the case.
Back during those pathetic 1987 workups we
were still pretty junior and always getting bagged with the
2nd and 4th watch on every duty day. Except, of course,
on those duty days that fell the day before any at sea
period. Then we were bagged with the 1st and 3rd watch
(so that the unethical senior members of the duty section could
sneak off until the 4th watch, when most of the Webster Street
bars closed). We sort of had a tradition on such
nights. As soon as we got relieved at 1:30 a.m. we would
hightail it back to berthing, change, sneak off
the Pig and then drive as fast as we could to the liquor store
next to Johnny B. Goode's (it closed at 2:00 a.m.
sharp). Once we had secured a case of beer we would then
drive as fast as we could to the Taco Bell on Webster Street
(which closed at 2:30 a.m. sharp). After that we would
return to the parking
lot adjacent Pier 4 and park in some dark secluded spot.
There we would celebrate our last few hours of "liberty"
drinking and eating tacos until the sun came up.
Throughout those wee hours of morning many a recognizable face
would come stumbling by and we would always invite that person into
the car for a beer or two. (E-Div's Scotty Crowe comes to
mind as a frequent visitor.) I remember the parking lot
was filled with drunks on such nights, most of whom had
no idea where they were headed (they were just following the
other drunks back toward the Pig ). When the beer and
tacos were gone we, too, joined the others and stumbled back to the ship.
We usually timed it so that we could come across the brow only
minutes before it was secured for good (~5:00 a.m.). We
usually heard "C" note from our pits and prayed
that no one would wake us up for at least a few
During the first month I qualified we had an in port period
of 3 days in Subic before returning to Yankee Station. So with
one duty day and 48 hrs off, it was party hardy, between the
PO club at Cubi Pt. and the bars in O-town. All 13 members of
my watch team returned for S/U with at least a 0.8% blood
alcohol level. An unnamed 3A RO kept falling out of the chair.
The WO summoned me to 3 EOS (I was RCEO) and asked me to
please do something about "Willy" and then the WO
promptly fell down. I used rags to tie him to the chair. I was
next summoned to the CTG flats and helped the CTG watch, the
CRAO, & the Chief open the MSS on the 3A Rx. It was quite
a show, every one falling down in the process. I wish
camcorders were available then. Every one on the S/U threw up
at least once that shift. Fortunately, those Rxs were well
designed. Everything came up fine. That was a long 6 hours and
seemed like forever. The CPOs back then were a different
crowd. Most were caught in the Cuban Crises and were extended,
so they made a career out of it. They certainly were nicer
than the CPOs of the 80's & 90's I've read about here.
Hey, I Finally Got Hold of
This is the best f__king thing I have read in a long
time. I am sitting here in my office with the door shut crying
because I am laughing so hard. Absolutely the best. Those
pictures from the Dopey Books are priceless!
Note: As most of you know
"Q" (aka, Myron Gyolai) was one of my dearest friends back on
the Pig. He and I served for years together in
4-plant and then in the RE office during our last
cruise (89-90). After we got out of the navy we
were roommates in college. Q is now a
respectable family man living in Danville, CA.
Believe It Or Not There Actually
Was a Righteous One Among Us!
About a year or two ago I was standing in line at a deli
when I noticed a familiar looking fellow standing in front of
me. I knew that I knew this person from somewhere because
he was also staring at me trying to figure out who I was. After a few minutes of idle chit-chat we realized
that we had served together on the Enterprise. In fact,
we were both 4-planters and had stood many a watch
together. This fellow was none other than John Sackett
of RM14. I asked him what brought him to rural Harford
County, MD (where I live) and he told me that he was the pastor of a local
church. "No kidding!" I said. Yep, ol'
John was really a minister. He went to the seminary
right after he got out of the navy. We met for lunch a
few times after that to share a few old memories. Once in a
while I'd even stop by his church to visit. I hadn't
seen John in a while so I stopped by to visit him yesterday
and learned that he had been transferred on to a higher calling:
he's now a chaplain in the air force! Good Luck
Admit it. You all have somewhere in your possession
one of those big wooden San Miguel mugs. You know, that
thing you bought at one of those shops on Magsaysay on your way back to the base
when you were drunk and had a few extra Pesos in your
pocket. (You probably bought one of those stupid San
Miguel velvet ball caps there too--and had your
nickname stitched on the back.)
One night "Q"
and I passed one of those woodcraft stores and were feeling generous
so we commissioned a giant wooden
"Lifer" desk plaque for our pal Dicko. It cost
us nearly $30 but we figured it was money well spent since we
knew it would totally offend Dicko. After we bought it
we brought it back to the ship and placed it prominently
on Dicko's desk. Pretty much the whole division saw it
before Dicko came down and discovered it. He had quite a
hard time convincing everyone that he wasn't a
lifer and that he would never buy such a thing for himself.
I snapped a picture (see below) of the plaque before Dicko chucked
it off sponson 7.
(click to enlarge)
Another Old Friend!
Andy Astleford sent me your page. Wow it's great. Don't
know if you remember me (Tim Boyd). Everyone called me doc. I
was a 4 plant RE from Sept 89 to Mar 92. Sign me up on
the page as an alumnus. I have contact with Randy Shackett,
Mike Bowman, Kenny Monson, John Archer, John Rensch and TJ
Laing. I’ll forward the page to them and see if I can get
them on the list. I think I might even have some old pics and
such from those days. I’ll dig around for them. Talk to you later.
Note: Hey Doc! I
remember you pretty well because you and I were in the
same nuke school class (8502). You arrived on the Pig
just as I was leaving so you must have
transferred from another ship. I would love to
hear from the others as well! Send
My nuke school class. We were infamous (and I won't
say anymore than that).
Welcome To Another Old Fwd Group
Dude, just found this page, funny as shit. If you would,
please toss me on alumni list.
Matt Parli, MMC RM11 & RM14 1993-1996
Olongapo Then and Now:
Today's 7th Fleet squid probably has no idea where Olongapo
is. I don't think an American warship has sailed into
Subic Bay since the base closed in 1992. Some of the stuff I've
seen on this site is about a place and time that many of us old
remember well. (Too well.) Check out these two sites for
a look at a place and its people that many of us will never
Stories? Go to Page Three
of The Unofficial Reactor and Engineering Department Web Site
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Ballad of Subic Sam
The Nov. 5, 1999 Mooj Weekly Standard
Walkin' the streets of
Pesos in his pocket gonna buy him some
Mojo in his gut, gonna make him feel
Kids playing Frogger—really quite a
Sierra Club rock band playing really
Peso show, Shark's Cove, drawing up a
Mag-sai-sai, mamison, bar fine dis-allowed
Sh_t River, noxious fumes, rise up in a
Imitation snakeskin boots coverin' up his
Chewing on some lumpia as he walks on down the
Jeepney, Barrio bound, grabs himself a
Exits at the White Rock Hotel, rents himself a
Haze gray, under weigh, next week it'll be
Every time he urinates the pain will not
He'll wait in the clap line with other bad
Subic Sam, The Peso man, he never had a