Old Sailors' Almanac


Week 22, 2016

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News of death camp killings becomes public for first time on June 01, 1942

News of death camp killings becomes public for first time on June 01, 1942

News of death camp killings becomes public for first time: On this day in 1942, a Warsaw underground newspaper, the Liberty Brigade, makes public the news of the gassing of tens of thousands of Jews at Chelmno, a Nazi-operated death camp in Poland—almost seven months after extermination of prisoners began.

A year earlier, the means of effecting what would become the “Final Solution”, the mass extermination of European Jewry, was devised: 700 Jews were murdered by channeling gas fumes back into a van used to transport them to the village of Chelmno, in Poland. This “gas van” would become the death chamber for a total of 360,000 Jews from more than 200 communities in Poland. The advantage of this form of extermination was that it was silent and invisible.

One month before the infamous Wannsee Conference of January 1942, during which Nazi officials decided to address formally the “Jewish question”, the gas vans in Chelmno were used to kill up to 1,000 Jews a day. The vans provided the “Final Solution” for Adolf Eichmann and other Wannsee attendees. The mass gassings were the most orderly and systematic means of eliminating European Jewry. Eventually, more such vans were employed in other parts of Poland. There was no thought of selecting out the “fit” from the “unfit” for slave labor, as in Auschwitz. There was only one goal: utter extermination.

On June 1, 1942, the story of a young Jew, Emanuel Ringelblum, (who escaped from the Chelmno death camp after being forced to bury bodies as they were thrown out of the gas vans), was published in the underground Polish Socialist newspaper Liberty Brigade. The West now knew the “bloodcurdling news… about the slaughter of Jews”, and it had a name—Chelmno. History Channel / Wikipedia / Encyclopedia Britannica / United States Holocaust Museum / The Atlantic

Photo: World War II, The Holocaust. Sources: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum USHMM, History 1900s, Internet Masters of Education Technology IMET, Techno Friends, Veterans Today, Concern.

Understanding Military Terminology

Understanding Military Terminology - Military deception

(DOD) Actions executed to deliberately mislead adversary military, paramilitary, or violent extremist organization decision makers, thereby causing the adversary to take specific actions (or inactions) that will contribute to the accomplishment of the friendly mission. Also called MILDEC. Joint Publications 3-13.4 (Operations, Series - Information Operations)

“Mariner's 23rd Psalm” - “Unknown”

The Old Salt’s Corner

“Mariner's 23rd Psalm”

The Lord is my pilot, I shall not go adrift;

He lighteth my passage across dark channels;

He steereth me through the deep waters,

He keepeth my log.

He guideth me by the evening star for my safety's sake.

Yes, though I sail mid the thunders and tempests of life,

I fear no peril, for Thou art with me,

Thy stars and heavens, they comfort me.

The vastness of the sea upholds me.

Surely fair winds and safe harbors shall be found

All the days of my life;

And I shall dock, secure forever.

~ Unknown

“I’m Just Sayin’”

“I’m Just Sayin”

If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.

~ Murphy Laws

“Thought for the Day”

“Thought for the Day”

“Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.”

~ Albert Einstein

“What I Have Learned”

“What I Have Learned”

“When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad.”

~ Abraham Lincoln

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)

This Guy Who Raps About His Cats Is Totally Purrrfect

This Guy Who Raps About His Cats Is Totally Purrrfect

Cat people of the world, meet your new favorite rapper.

Our purrrrsonal favorite of his songs is “Cat Worldvideo, which includes the lyrics, “I’m chilling in a cat world, I got cats in my house man, cats on the floor.”

In an interview published by Portland alt weekly Willamette Week, Moshow explained that he wasn’t always creating music about his kitty friends. Instead, he started out rapping about more traditional topics. video

Huffington Post (03/10/2016)

How Does Caffeine Work?

Mr. Answer Man Please Tell Us: How Does Caffeine Work?

Caffeine isn’t the kickstarting jitter-drug you think it is. If anything, it’s a sneaky imposter.

First, a little biology. As your neurons fire throughout the day, a neurochemical called adenosine builds up in your body. The nervous system uses special receptors to monitor your body’s adenosine levels. As the day wears on, more and more adenosine passes through those receptors—and it makes you sleepy. It’s one of the reasons you get tired at night.

Caffeine, however, is a stealthy impersonator. It’s the same size and shape as adenosine, and when you sip your morning joe, your adenosine receptors can’t tell the difference. Specifically, caffeine attaches to the A1 receptor. With caffeine docked at the receptor, a lot of your body’s adenosine molecules can’t enter. It creates a traffic jam of sorts. With all that adenosine blocked, the caffeine keeps you from getting tired.

But that’s not where coffee’s kick comes from. With the adenosine receptor clogged, neurotransmitters like dopamine and glutamate can get a head start. Your dopamine levels swell, giving you a mild jolt of energy. In a way, caffeine is like a bouncer. It blocks the door, keeping the tired molecules out while the more stimulating molecules party on.

But the party can last for only so long. Caffeine may give you that much-needed morning boost, but it can also make you crash—hard. It takes about four cups of coffee to block half of the brain’s A1 receptors. With that many receptors clogged, the adenosine mounting in your body has nowhere to go.

So when the caffeine wears off, all that extra adenosine rushes through your receptors. It takes a long time for your body to process the huge flow of new metabolites. And guess what? It leaves you feeling even groggier than you felt before.

Business InsiderCaffeine InformerMayo Clinic.orgMental FlossWikipedia

Where Did That Saying Come From? “Bee Line”

Where Did That Saying Come From?

Bee Line:

In the past people believed that bees flew in a straight line to their hive. So if you made a bee line for something you went straight for it. Phrases.org UK

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

NAVSPEAK aka U.S. Navy Slang

Junior Chief: Pejorative term to describe junior enlisted person who is kissing ass for a promotion or on a power trip, or both.

Junk on the Bunks: A type of inspection wherein a Marine places all of his/her issued clothing and 782 gear on a bunk (bed) so that an inspector can verify they have a full complement of uniform items (a full seabag).

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

Just for you MARINE

LBV: Load Bearing Vest, personal equipment used to keep the most commonly used items within easy reach utilizing the PALS, usually a component of MOLLE or ILBE.

LCPLIC: Lance Corporal in Charge. A salty Lance Corporal.

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

HSC-14 - Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron FOURTEEN: “Chargers”
Naval Air Station North Island - San Diego, California

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

Newsreader's fashion fail leaves viewers cringing as blouse creates unfortunate optical illusion

Newsreader's fashion fail leaves viewers cringing as blouse creates unfortunate optical illusion

Ros put on a nice blouse to go to work, but clearly didn't notice the unfortunate look it created before she went on screen: Australians catching a bit of lunchtime news today might have spat out their sandwiches after a newsreader's blouse created a rather unfortunate optical illusion.

Ros Childs was presenting a bulletin live on ABC News 24, wearing a lovely blouse with small, trimmed pockets complete with buttons.

But whoever picked out the garment for her to wear was probably left a little red-faced after viewers pointed out it looked like Ros had cartoon breasts, completely distracting from the serious news she was reporting on.

The Courier Mail video newspaper in Australia pointed out the gaff, saying: “Okay look, maybe the wardrobe manager didn’t notice.” video Mirror (03/14/2016)

© CEASAR CHOPPY by cartoonist Marty Gavin - archives Ceasar Choppy's Navy! “© CEASAR CHOPPY” by Marty Gavin


“Sing, Sing, Sing” - Benny Goodman

“Sing, Sing, Sing” - Benny Goodman
Album: Sing, Sing, Sing (With_a_Swing)
Released 1936 video

On the evening of January 16, 1938, Benny Goodman took to the stage at Carnegie Hall along with his trio, his quartet, and his big band. It was the first time ever that a swing band played Carnegie. Historians now look to this night as the moment when jazz gained validity from the music establishment.

The Goodman orchestra was well known in America from club appearances from New York to Chicago and from the radio. But Swing had its detractors, too. Even so, the Carnegie Hall concert marked the moment when the music itself was afforded a sign of respect.

The last number on the program was “Sing, Sing, Sing” — what Goodman called a “killer diller”, a number intended to get a crowd on its feet, jitterbugging. Drummer Gene Krupa sets the groove with his tom-toms, and members of the orchestra take their turns soloing, including a mournful one from Benny himself. But Jess Stacy steals the show with his piano. We'll hear the entire performance of “Sing, Sing, Sing” in addition to remarks from Goodman biographer Ross Firestone, audience member Turk van Lake, and Benny Goodman.

Benny Goodman official site / NPR / Songwriters Hall of Fame / Billboard / All Music / Biography / Wikipedia

Image: “Sing, Sing, Sing (With a Swing) (album)” by Benny Goodman

“El Condor Pasa (If I Could)” - Simon & Garfunkel 1970

“El Condor Pasa (If I Could)” - Simon & Garfunkel
Album: Bridge Over Troubled Water
Released 1970 video

This song started out as an Andean folk melody that Paul Simon came across in 1969 when he played a week-long engagement at a theater in Paris along with the South American group Los Incas, who played an instrumental version of the song called “Paso Del Condor.” Said Simon: “I used to hang around every night to hear them play that. I loved it and I would play it all the time, and then I thought, Let's put words to it.”

The Peruvian songwriter Daniel Robles recorded this song in 1913, and copyrighted it in the United States in 1933 during his travels in America. When Simon recorded it with his added lyrics, he thought it was a traditional song, as that's what Los Incas told him. When Robles' son filed a lawsuit, Simon had to give Robles a composer credit on the song, with his estate getting those royalties.

In discussing the song, Simon always talks about it as being based on a traditional Peruvian song, and we've never heard him mention Robles. This wasn't the first time Simon got tangled over songwriting credits on traditional melodies: Simon & Garfunkel's Scarborough Fair / Canticle was based on a folk song, but his arrangement came from a singer named Martin Carthy. Simon was always clear on his influences, but legal misunderstandings were a problem in these cases.

Los Incas, who were the group that introduced Simon to the song, provided the instrumentation when they recorded it in Paris with Simon. Their leader, Jorge Milchberg, played a charango, which is an Andean string instrument made from the shell of an armadillo. Simon played acoustic guitar, and other members of Los Incas played flutes and percussion. When Simon brought the track to America, he added his lyrics. This was one of the easier songs to record for the Bridge Over Troubled Water album, since the backing track was already mixed together - it was just a matter of adding the vocals.

The title translates to English as “The Condor Passes”. The lyrics Robles wrote to the song in 1913 are about returning home to his native Peru.

Los Incas leader Jorge Milchberg got a composer credit on this song along with Simon and Robles. Milchberg later became the head of the group Urubamba and remained friends with Simon, who toured with them and produced their first American album.

The Wainwright Sisters covered this for their 2015 Songs in the Dark album. Lucy Wainwright Roche explained to The Sun: “I chose 'El Condor Pasa' because it was one of the first songs I ever learned to play on it guitar and it has a childlike quality to it, but it also has a darkness and sadness that fit in well with the album.”

Simon & Garfunkel official site / Rock & Roll Hall of Fame / Rolling Stone / Billboard / Song Facts / Wikipedia

Image: “Bridge Over Troubled Water (album)” by Simon & Garfunkel

“Fuel” - Metallica

“Fuel” - Metallica
Album: ReLoad
Released 1997 video

This is about how people sometimes like to drive their cars, or even their lives, too fast. It was written by James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, and Kirk Hammett.

Metallica played this on their S&M album with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. It's a fixture at their live shows.

Avril Lavigne performed this on Metallica's MTV Icon special in May 2003.

This track was used as the official theme song for NASCAR on NBC and TNT from the mid-2001 to the 2003 seasons.

Metallica official site‎ / Rock & Roll Hall of Fame / Rolling Stone / Billboard / Song Facts / Wikipedia

Image: “Reload (album)” by Metallica