Old Sailors' Almanac


Week 19, 2015

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The first American in space on May 5, 1961

The first American in space on May 5, 1961

The first American in space: From Cape Canaveral, Florida, Navy Commander Alan Bartlett Shepard Jr. is launched into space aboard the Freedom 7 space capsule, becoming the first American astronaut to travel into space. The suborbital flight, which lasted 15 minutes and reached a height of 116 miles into the atmosphere, was a major triumph for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

NASA was established in 1958 to keep U.S. space efforts abreast of recent Soviet achievements, such as the launching of the world’s first artificial satellite–Sputnik 1–in 1957. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, the two superpowers raced to become the first country to put a man in space and return him to Earth. On April 12, 1961, the Soviet space program won the race when cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin was launched into space, put in orbit around the planet, and safely returned to Earth. One month later, Shepard’s suborbital flight restored faith in the U.S. space program.

NASA continued to trail the Soviets closely until the late 1960s and the successes of the Apollo lunar program. In July 1969, the Americans took a giant leap forward with Apollo 11, a three-stage spacecraft that took U.S. astronauts to the surface of the moon and returned them to Earth. On February 5, 1971, Alan Shepard, the first American in space, became the fifth astronaut to walk on the moon as part of the Apollo 14 lunar landing mission.

History Channel / NASA / National Geographic / Smithsonian Magazine / Space.com / Wikipedia

Wikipedia  Image: The first seven astronauts pose for an official NASA portrait. / Astronaut Alan Shepard, Jr., America s first man in space, poses in the Mercury space craft in 1961. (Associated Press)/

U.S. Navy photo by PH2 (NAC) David C. Mercil

The Old Salt’s Corner

Battlegroup Commanders

The overall battlegroup commander is the Composite Warfare Commander (CWC) who acts as the central command authority for the entire battlegroup. The CWC designates subordinate warfare commanders are assigned to the CWC for air warfare (AWC), surface warfare (SUWC) undersea warfare (USWC), strike (STWC) and space and electronic warfare commander (C2W). Supporting the CWC and his warfare commanders are coordinators who manage force sensors and assets within the battlegroup.

The CWC must remain cognizant of the tactical picture in all warfare areas and must be able to correlate information from external sources that develop locally. Generally, three prerequisites are necessary to adequately maintain the tactical picture: communications to disseminate information; displays to retain it; and a watch staff to understand and interpret it.

“I’m Just Sayin’”

“I’m Just Sayin’”

Do people in Australia call the rest of the world “up over”?

“Thought for the Day”

“Thought for the Day”

“Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow. thought.”

~ Helen Keller

“What I Have Learned”

“What I Have Learned”

“If you dig a hole for someone else, you'll fall into it.”

~ Proverbs 26:27

Bizarre News (we couldn’t make up stuff this good – real news story)

Bizarre News (we couldn’t make up stuff this good – real news story)

Rites of passages - the Yanomami (National Geographic)

News of the Weird (Sexual Superman)

Superman: While thousands of Japanese women accept commercial pornographic movie roles, only a dwindling number of males (by one estimate, only 30 industrywide) are available to pair with them (“stallions on call,” according to one producer).

That makes the undisputed king of Japanese porn “Shimiken”, 35, in such demand that he works as many as six movies a day with few days off. His oeuvre, according to an double-entendre-laden March profile in Details magazine, includes 7,000 films, with at least 7,500 “co-stars”, including, once, 72-year-old twins. To maintain his vigor, he hits the gym fanatically and downs mineral supplements and complex amino acids--but no Viagra. “I haven’t had to use it”, he said (adding, after a pause, “yet”). Valley Morning Star (4-16-2015)

Can Your Tonsils Grow Back?

Mr. Answer Man Please Tell Us: Can Your Tonsils Grow Back?

It turns out, even after you’ve had your tonsils surgically removed, they can grow back.

Your tonsils are spheres of lymphoid tissue that meet with the base of your tongue in the back of your throat. In toddlers, tonsils serve as a useful part of the immune system’s ability to fight infections by reacting to the germs little kids naturally take in. As you age, your tonsils play an insignificant role in your immune system, and in most adults they’ve shriveled up and disappeared. Your body can fight off pathogens by the time you reach adulthood, and more important parts of the immune system take over the heavy lifting from your tonsils.

There are two reasons why your tonsils might make a triumphant comeback. The first is that your surgeon accidentally left some of the tissue behind. The second is that your surgeon intentionally left some of the tissue behind.

If you’re getting a full tonsillectomy that’s done correctly, all your tonsil tissue should be removed, and the chance of the tissue returning is small. But there’s a challenge in removing them that can cause the rare cases of second-time-around tonsils.

“Your tonsils blend in with the back of your tongue at the very bottom part, and there’s not always a sharp distinction of where the tonsil ends,” says Dr. Richard Rosenfeld, chairman of otolaryngology at SUNY Medical Center, “So you could leave a little tissue there.”

For the past century, the process of removing tonsils has been pretty standard—just cutting them out. It used to be a popular procedure for kids who had frequent throat infections like strep, but in the past few decades, that practice has waned. Today, tonsillectomies are usually reserved for patients with tonsils big enough to interfere with their breathing.

In the early 2000s, the practice changed in some parts of the US as a partial tonsillectomy procedure became popular. Some surgeons now just trim tonsil tissue instead of attempting to completely remove it. It’s suggested that this technique could ease the recovery process, though there’s no consensus among throat doctors on this point. The downside of the procedure is that purposefully leaving behind part of the tonsils makes it easier for the leftover tissue to regenerate into your trusty old tonsils.

Before you worry too much about your tonsils making a comeback, know that it’s relatively uncommon, and it might be more likely to happen when tonsils are removed in children whose lymphoid tissues are still growing. Out of the thousands of tonsillectomies he’s done, Rosenfeld says only one patient has returned with a new set of tonsils.On the other hand, adenoids, the lymphatic tissues between your nose and the back of the throat, are often removed at the same time as tonsils. They can also grow back through regenerating tissue, and they do so more frequently than tonsils. Adenoids are spread out across your nasal cavity, and surgeons can’t remove them all, so they can grow and spread from the tissues left behind.

For the past century, the process of removing tonsils has been pretty standard—just cutting them out. It used to be a popular procedure for kids who had frequent throat infections like strep, but in the past few decades, that practice has waned. Today, tonsillectomies are usually reserved for patients with tonsils big enough to interfere with their breathing.

However small the chance, know that just because your tonsils are out doesn’t mean they’re gone forever. If you’re curious whether yours have returned, just open your mouth and look in the mirror—you should be able to see them if they’ve grown back close to their original size.

Mental FlossKids Health.orgEntnet.orgWeb MDWikipedia

NAVSPEAK aka U.S. Navy Slang - U.S. Navy America's Navy - A Global Force For Good

NAVSPEAK aka U.S. Navy Slang

Brown Trout: Part of what comes out when there's a sewage spill. As the ship heaves to and fro, brown trout can actually “swim” on the deck.

Golden Shellback: A sailor who has crossed the equator at the 180th Meridian twice or has gone through the ritual twice.

Mother: Aircraft Carrier.

Shitter: Toilet (or “Head”,). Shipboard space where “shit” is both a verb AND a noun. Self-explanatory, really.

Just for MARINES - U.S. Marines Marines - The Few. The Proud.

Just for you MARINE

Doggies: A pejorative term for soldiers.

Dogs: Feet.

Dope: Sight adjustments made to a Marine's rifle to make its firing more accurate. Usually in reference to marksmanship training or qualification. Also, any adjustment made to improve the outcome of any event.

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

VFA-41 - Strike Fighter Squadron 41: “Black Aces”
NAS Lemoore, California

Aircraft Nicknames

Aircraft Nicknames

A-3D Skywarrior: Whale, All Three Dead (it had no ejection seats!)

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

Frankly they're evil, says leading biologist

Frankly they're evil, says leading biologist

Having seen the evidence, I don't touch fizzy drinks any more: You may have heard the one about the starlet who was discovered while sipping on a soft drink at a soda fountain—that was Lana Turner. The actress once dubbed the “Sweater Girl” matched Elizabeth Taylor for turns at the altar, but her claim to scandal fame centers on an underworld lover.

Johnny Stompanato—a small-time, Los Angeles hood associated with gangster Mickey Cohen—became Turner’s lover in 1957. The reportedly torrid affair reached white heat on April 4, 1958. As testified in court, Turner’s 14-year-old daughter listened to the lovers quarreling big time at their Bel Air home. When Stompanato threatened to disfigure Turner, Cheryl grabbed an eight-inch carving knife and went to her mother’s defense. The teen fatally wounded the gangster in the gut, a justifiable homicide according to the coroner’s inquest. Within one week of the slaying, personal letters made their way into the press. One Stompanato love letter carried an ironic phrase: “You know, baby, I’m so lonesome for the touch of you, I could die.”

The court sent Cheryl to live with her maternal grandmother while Turner went on to score a box office smash with 1959′s Imitation of Life. Stompanato’s son, John II, brought a $750,000 damage suit against mother and daughter, charging that his father had been slain without cause. Lana and Cheryl settled out of court in the amount of $20,000. Daily Mail UK


“Hungry Like The Wolf” - Duran Duran 1982

“Hungry Like The Wolf” - Duran Duran
Album: Rio
Released 1982 video

This was the band's breakthrough hit in the U.S. It's success originated from MTV, which had only just come on air, showing their video of the band in the Sri Lanka jungle (they also shot the clips for “Lonely in Your Nightmarevideo and “Save a Prayervideo on this trip). It was an early sensation. In a pre-MTV world where Duran Duran could be heard but not seen, it is unlikely that they would have broken through in America.

Duran Duran were asked in an interview with Q magazine (February 2008) for their memories of the video. Drummer Roger Taylor recalled: “We'd go to Alabama or Texas and the girls would be screaming and the guys in cowboy hats would be looking at us with clenched fists. I don't suppose they'd seen so many guys in make-up pouting before.” Singer Simon Le Bon added: “It worked for us though. Video made it possible to create a cult of personality across the globe. You arrive on a tour bus and they'd already seen us on a yacht in a video.”

In 1982, new synthesizers and sequencers were coming on the market that changed the landscape of Pop music, as groups like The Eurythmics and The Human League coaxed new sounds out of them. Duran Duran guitarist Andy Taylor was able to take advantage of the technology on this song, creating the distinctive track by linking a Roland 808 drum machine with a sequencer and a Roland Jupiter 8 keyboard. In an interview with Blender magazine, guitarist Taylor explained that the track “came from fiddling with the new technology that was starting to come in”.

According to the band's Blender interview, lead singer Simon Le Bon's lyrics were inspired by the fairy tale Little Red Riding Hood, which features the Big Bad Wolf.

The first Grammy Award for Best Short Form Video was given at the 1984 ceremony, and it was given to Duran Duran as a joint award for “Hungry Like The Wolf” together with “Girls On Film”.

The video was loosely based on the movie Apocalypse Now, with the rest of the band searching for Simon Le Bon in an exotic locale. It was shot in the Sri Lanka city of Galle, with scenes of Simon running through a market. The night before the shoot, Le Bon went to a stylist to get blond highlights in his hair, but she botched the job and his hair turned orange. That's why he's wearing a hat in the video.

The band's girlfriends contributed makeup that helped shape their look, and keyboard player Nick Rhodes' girlfriend appeared on this song, providing the laugh at the beginning and the moaning at the end, possibly the sounds of the wolf sating his hunger.

Speaking with the A.V.Club in a 2012 interview, John Taylor said the song was “written very quickly”. He recalled: “It was a Saturday afternoon, we were in EMI's demo studio, a studio they had up in Manchester Square HQ, and I think Nick [Rhodes] and Andy [Taylor] were kind of messing around. Andy had the riff, Nick developed this sequence, Simon had a thing, Roger [Taylor] came in and played 'cause he'd just bought some Simmons drums, so that was where he got those big fills from. I came in, and they'd been working for maybe two hours, and I just knew exactly what to play. The song was probably written by cocktail hour.”

Rolling Stone magazine (Top 25 Teen Idol Breakout Moments) / Duran Duran official site / Not In The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame / Biography / All Music / Billboard / Song Facts / Wikipedia

Image: “Rio (album)” by Duran Duran



● 60% of all U.S. potato products originate in Idaho.

● 1 pound of lemons contains more sugar than 1 pound of strawberries.

● The “you are here” arrow on maps is called an ideo locator.

Joke of the Day

Joke of the Day

An English professor wrote the words:

“A woman without her man is nothing”

On the chalkboard he asked the students to punctuate it correctly.

All of the males in the class wrote:

“A woman, without her man, is nothing.”

All of the females in the class wrote:

“A woman: without her, man is nothing.”