Friday, April 25, 2008

WWII Sub'"Happy Ending"

[Crossposted from Unconsidered Trifles] They've been having a discussion/debate about pornography in the military over at NRO's The Corner. And while my view is that it should probably not be sold in the NEX, NRO's Andrew Stuttaford (who often leans libertarian on many issues) offers this intriguing submarine "sea story" from the WWII era as a counterpoint. Apparently, sub skippers were given advanced copies of the Daily Mirror's racy comic strip "Jane" so that their crews didn't miss out on any developments...
But who was Jane? ..She was the woman who kept British soldiers smiling through their gloomiest hours, and one story comes to mind that best illustrates her effect on those in the armed services. A British submarine had been attacked, and was crippled and powerless on the bottom of the ocean. Sea currents swirled round the vessel and there was always the chance the enemy would swoop in for the kill. The crew inside fully expected the vessel to become their tomb, but knew how they wanted to spend their last moments. A request was put in to the captain. The submariners wanted to live out what time remained gazing at pictures, currently in his safe, of a stunningly beautiful woman from Eastleigh, Hampshire. Their commanding officer obliged and the images of the supremely sexy Christabel Leighton-Porter, aka "Jane," were distributed... Christabel was, quite simply, Britain's first bona fide sex bomb... As the inspiration for Jane, photographs of Christabel were everywhere, slapped on the walls of mess halls and bars all over the country. Her image was painted on aeroplanes and daubed on jeeps...
More on the history of "Jane" here. So what was the fate of that "doomed" crew? Well, the story survived, and so they must have as well--and did, thankfully.

I guess you might say they received an, er..."happy ending"? Yikes!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Some borrowed stuff....

Hey Mates, Cookie here....Last week, I was visitin my good buddy Myron over at his blog, Myrons Random Thoughts, and he had posted some pretty good stuff regardin Sub's, the proud day he received his Dolphins, and other related subjects, so, I thought I'd some of it and post it over here fer Y'all t'see....

Now Sir....this be a SMOKER!


For I am a Submariner...

By John Chaffey
SSN639, SSN687, SSBN619

I served on the Holland over a century ago.

I still serve to this day on the Trident, Los Angeles & Seawolf class boats

and look forward to shipping on the Virginia, Texas and Hawaii.

Places like Fremantle, Rota, LaMadd, Chinhae, Pattaya, Sasebo and Subic stir my soul.

For I am a Submariner.

I rest in peace beneath many seas across this earth.

I was on the Barbel off Palawan, the Scorpion off the Azores and the Bonefish in the Sea of Japan.

We gave them hell in the harbors at Wewak and Namkwan.

I am a Shellback, a Bluenose, a Plank Owner, a MCPO of the Navy, a CNO and a President.

For I am a Submariner.

I heard Howard Gilmore’s final order, “Take Her Down.”

I heard the word passed, “Underway on Nuclear Power.”

I have done every job asked of me, from Messcook to Torpedoman to Motormac to COB to Skipper.

I know “Snorkel Patty” and Admiral Rickover.

For I am a Submariner.

I have twin Dolphins tattooed on my chest and twin screws tattooed on my ass.

I know the difference between a Lady and a Hooker but treat both with equal respect.

I know Georgia Street and Magsaysay drive.

And although the Horse & Cow keeps moving I will always find her.

I know the meaning of “Hot, Straight and Normal.”

For I am a Submariner.

I have stood tall and received the Medal of Honor and been thrown in the Brig for being Drunk and Disorderly.

I know the reverent tone of “Diesel Boats Forever” and the Gudgeon’s “Find em, Chase em, Sink em.”

I was on the Spearfish evacuating nurses from Corregidor and the Skate when she surfaced at the North Pole.

I have spent time in the Royal Hawaiian.

For I am a Submariner.

I have gone by names like Spritz, Cromwell, O’Kane, Ramage, Breault, “Mush” and Lockwood.

I have served on boats like the Nautilus, Thresher, Parche, Squalus, Wahoo and Halibut.

On December 7th I was onboard the Tautog at Pearl Harbor.

I was also on the Tusk in 49 and sacrificed myself for my shipmates on the Cochino.

For I am a Submariner.

I have stood watches in the cold of Holy Loch and the heat of the South Pacific.

I know what the “41 For Freedom” accomplished.

I was on the Sealion at Cavite in 41 and the Archerfish in Tokyo Bay in 45.

I have endured depth charges and POW camps.

I was on the Seafox when we lost 5 sailors to a Japanese ambush on Guam.

For I am a Submariner.

I tip beers over sea-stories with my shipmates at yearly conventions.

We toll the bell and shed a tear for our buddies who are on eternal patrol.

Many pilots have been glad to see me, including a future president.

I have completed numerous highly classified missions during the Cold War.

Because “Freedom Is Not Free,” be assured that I am out there at this very moment.

For I am a Submariner.

Dr. Joyce Brothers Wrote The Following About Submariners
April 10, 2008 in Submarines

Shortly after the loss of THRESHER Dr. Brothers wrote the following.


The tragic loss of the submarine Thresher and 129 men had a special kind of impact on the nation…..a special kind of sadness, mixed with universal admiration for the men who chose this kind of work.

One could not mention the Thresher without observing, in the same breath how utterly final and alone the end is when a ship dies at the bottom of the sea…..and what a remarkable specimen of man it must be who accepts such a risk.

Most of us might be moved to conclude, too, that a tragedy of this kind would have a damaging effect on the moral of the other men in the submarine service and tend to discourage future enlistments. Actually, there is no evidence that this is so.

What is it, then, that lures men to careers in which they spend so much of their time in cramped quarters, under great psychological stress, with danger lurking all about them?

Bond Among Them

Togetherness is an overworked term, but in no other branch of our military service is it given such full meaning as in the so-called “silent service.”

In an under sea craft, each man is totally dependent upon the skill of every other man in the crew, not only for top performance but for actual survival. Each knows that his very life depends on the others and because this is so, there is a bond among them that both challenges and comforts them.

All of this gives the submariner a special feeling of pride, because he is indeed a member of an elite corps. The risks, then, are an inspiration, rather than a deterrent.

The challenge of masculinity is another factor, which attracts men to serve on submarines. It certainly is a test of man’s prowess and power to know he can qualify for this highly selective service. However, it should be emphasized that this desire to prove masculinity is not pathological, as it might be in certain daredevil pursuits, such as driving a motorcycle through a flaming hoop.

Emotionally Healthy

There is nothing daredevelish about the motivations of the man who decides to dedicate his life to the submarine service. He does, indeed, take pride in demonstrating that he is quite a man, but he does not do so to practice a form of foolhardy brinkmanship, to see how close he can get to failure and still snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. On the contrary, the aim in the submarine service is to battle the danger, to minimize the risk, to take every measure to make certain that safety rather than danger, is maintained at all times.

Are the men in submarines braver than those in other pursuits where the possibility of sudden tragedy is not constant? The glib answer would be that they are. It is much more accurate, from a psychological point of view, to say they are not necessarily braver, but that they have a little more insight into themselves and their capabilities.

They know themselves a little better than the next man. This has to be so with men who have a healthy reason to volunteer for a risk. They are generally a cut healthier emotionally than others of similar age and background because of their willingness to push themselves a little bit farther and not settle for an easier kind of existence.

We all have tremendous capabilities but are rarely straining at the upper level of what we can do; these men are.

The country can be proud and grateful that so many of its sound, young, eager men care enough about their own status in life–and the welfare of their country–to pool their skills and match them collectively against the power of the sea.

Posted by Cookie....

Thursday, April 03, 2008

4/4/08 bubblehead bloggers roundup posted

here's the latest in an ongoing roundup of submariner blogger's posts over the last week or so. Link