Old Sailors' Almanac


Week 45, 2016

Previous Week   November 07, 2016 - November 13, 2016  Next Week

Birth of the U.S. Marine Corps on November 10, 1775

Birth of the U.S. Marine Corps on November 10, 1775

Birth of the U.S. Marine Corps: During the American Revolution, the Continental Congress passes a resolution stating that “two Battalions of Marines be raised” for service as landing forces for the recently formed Continental Navy. The resolution, drafted by future U.S. president John Adams and adopted in Philadelphia, created the Continental Marines and is now observed as the birth date of the United States Marine Corps.

Serving on land and at sea, the original U.S. Marines distinguished themselves in a number of important operations during the Revolutionary War. The first Marine landing on a hostile shore occurred when a force of Marines under Captain Samuel Nicholas captured New Province Island in the Bahamas from the British in March 1776. Nicholas was the first commissioned officer in the Continental Marines and is celebrated as the first Marine commandant. After American independence was achieved in 1783, the Continental Navy was demobilized and its Marines disbanded.

In the next decade, however, increasing conflict at sea with Revolutionary France led the U.S. Congress to establish formally the U.S. Navy in May 1798. Two months later, on July 11, President John Adams signed the bill establishing the U.S. Marine Corps as a permanent military force under the jurisdiction of the Department of Navy. U.S. Marines saw action in the so-called Quasi-War with France and then fought against the Barbary pirates of North Africa during the first years of the 19th century. Since then, Marines have participated in all the wars of the United States and in most cases were the first soldiers to fight. In all, Marines have executed more than 300 landings on foreign shores.

Today, there are more than 200,000 active-duty and reserve Marines, divided into three divisions stationed at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina; Camp Pendleton, California; and Okinawa, Japan. Each division has one or more expeditionary units, ready to launch major operations anywhere in the world on two weeks’ notice. Marines expeditionary units are self-sufficient, with their own tanks, artillery, and air forces. The motto of the service is Semper Fidelis, meaning “Always Faithful” in Latin. History Channel / Wikipedia / Encyclopedia Britannica / Marines.mil / USMC Museum / National Museum of the Marine Corps Virtual Experience / National Museum of the Marine Corps Museum

“Lonely Lighthouse - The Sentinel”

The Old Salt’s Corner

“Lonely Lighthouse - The Sentinel”

I’m a lonely lighthouse battered by the sea

Standing all alone steadfast and strong

Keeping guard for souls in difficulty

Maintaining my watch all day long

Waves exploding but I’m standing firm

Salty spray splashes over me

A soldier of the sea I confirm

I ‘m committed to my duty

Storm or tempest I will never fear

Tsunami or swirling hurricane

Shining my light so you know I’m here

For sailors, I will always remain

~ Jan Allison

“I’m Just Sayin’”

“I’m Just Sayin”

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”

~ Mark Twain

“Thought for the Day”

“Thought for the Day”

“All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence, and then success is sure.”

~ Mark Twain

“What I Have Learned”

“What I Have Learned”

“Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company.”

~ Mark Twain

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)

Florida woman allegedly torched car she thought was ex-boyfriend's

Florida woman allegedly torched car she thought was ex-boyfriend's

CLEARWATER, Florida - Police in Florida said they arrested a woman who was caught on camera setting fire to a car she mistakenly thought belonged to her ex-boyfriend.

The Clearwater Police Department said Carmen Chamblee, 19, was identified by members of the public from a surveillance video showing the woman fanning the flames she allegedly sparked in the trunk of a white car before fleeing.

Investigators said Chamblee admitted to torching the vehicle and told police she thought the car belonged to her ex-boyfriend. Police said Chamblee was mistaken about the identity of the vehicle's owner.

Chamblee was arrested on a charge of second degree arson.

UPI (09/06/2016) / Tampa Bay Times (09/06/2016)

Why Do Clocks Run Clockwise?

Mr. Answer Man Please Tell Us: Why Do Clocks Run Clockwise?

It’s a total cop-out to say that clocks run clockwise because that’s how clocks run...but it’s also kind of true. The modern convention is no arbitrary design choice, but rather a direct adaptation of the original timepiece: the sundial.

Way back when, a sundial told time by casting a shadow with its gnomon around a circular platform. In the northern hemisphere, that meant the shadow moved (to use a compass analogy) from north to east to south to west as the sun traveled, and when mechanical clocks started appearing, they were designed to operate in a similar fashion.

Which begs the question, would clocks run the opposite direction if we’d based them on sundials in the Southern Hemisphere? Yes! Sundials work counterclockwise below the equator, and we’d be reading our watches totally differently if modern clock-makers had used them as an example.

Mental FlossRedditThe Telegraph UKWikipedia

Where Did That Saying Come From? “A sea change”

Where Did That Saying Come From?

A sea change:”  Meaning: A radical change or transformation.

Origin: From Shakespeare's The Tempest, 1610:

ARIEL (sings):

Full fathom five thy father lies;

Of his bones are coral made;

Those are pearls that were his eyes:

Nothing of him that doth fade

But doth suffer a sea-change

Into something rich and strange.

Sea-nymphs hourly ring his knell

Shakespeare's usage incorporates the current meaning, that is, a radical change. He also made the expression richer by alluding to the literal meaning of “a change that is brought about by the sea”.


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

NAVSPEAK aka U.S. Navy Slang

Marine: A Sailor who failed to evolve.

MARINE: Acronym for Marines Always Ride in Navy Equipment...or Muscles are Required Intelligence Not Essential... or My Ass Really Is Navy Equipment..or My Ass Rides In Navy Equipment...or Muscles are Required Intelligence Not Expected.

Marine Dinner Tray: Derogatory description (to the "eldest service branch") of an enlisted sailor's 13 button flap on the front of his dress blue uniform trousers.

Marine Mattress: A female who likes to “socialize” with the Marines.

Marine Shower: No soap and water, just deodorant and cologne.

Marine Table Cloth: See Marine Dinner Tray.

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

Just for you MARINE

Molly Marine: Nickname associated with World War II era female Marines. Also the name of the award given to the top ranking female Marine in her recruit platoon.

Monkey Suit: Slang for the MARPAT uniform, otherwise known as digital cammies.

Moonbeam: Flashlight.

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

HSM-75 - Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron: “Wolfpack”
Naval Air Station North Island, San Diego, California / Coronado, California

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

10 Amazing Modern Societies You Won't Believe Are Real

10 Amazing Modern Societies You Won't Believe Are Real

Any time you get more than a few people living together, you've got a society. For many of us, that may mean the familiar milieu of family units, local municipalities and national governments.

But there are many ways to organize a group, as the following societies show. Because of circumstance, tradition or other factors, some of these groups have self-organized in ways that might seem alien to those in the mainstream — cannibalism, underground mansions and wild tree-house dwellings are just some of the more notable features of these societies. Others have formed strikingly familiar community arrangements in extraordinary circumstances. Live Science (09/08/2016) video

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


ldquo;Some Other Guy” - The Beatles 1962

“Some Other Guy” - The Beatles
Album: Live at the BBC
Released 1962 video

“Some Other Guy” is a rhythm and blues song, written by Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller and Richie Barrett. First released as a single in 1962 by Barrett himself, it featured an electric piano, then an unusual sound in pop music. Covered shortly afterwards by Liverpool's the Big Three, the song was a standard in the Merseybeat scene.

The song was part of the Beatles' early repertoire, and film footage of The Beatles performing it live is the only known film with synchronized sound showing the group at the Cavern Club. The grainy footage features John Lennon and Paul McCartney singing the song's melody in 1962. It is also the first film of Ringo Starr as the Beatles drummer, Pete Best having been sacked the week before. At the end of the song, someone in the audience can be heard shouting “We want Pete!” after which Lennon simply says “Yes”. This audio recording was released on the album Live at the BBC in 1994.

McCartney stated: “It is a great song...It really got us started because that's one of the earliest bits of film of The Beatles. It was the song we sang when Granada Television came to the Cavern. It was also a bit of a muso song...” The Beatles play it in the key of D, with a slow A-C-D intro and second interval I-VII-I on every tonic (and the equivalent for IV and V). The “muso song” reference may relate to it being early example of a rock & roll song topped and tailed by a VII-I cadence.

Pete Best released a cover on his 1965 album, “Best of The Beatlesvideo. Unsurprisingly, Best's version and The Beatles's version sound similar.

The Beatles.com official site / Rolling Stone magazine / Rock & Roll Hall of Fame / Billboard / All Music / Song Facts / Wikipedia

Image: “Live at the BBC (Beatles_album)” by The Beatles



● C major can be played on a piano entirely on the white keys, needing no sharps or flats - A Minor can be played using the same all-white keys, with no sharps or flats.

● “In God We Trust” first appeared on the 1864 U.S. two-cent coin.

● Barack Obama had to be sworn in a 2nd time after the word “Faithfully” was misplaced in his oath of office - instead of “... I will faithfully execute the office of president...,” he said “I will execute the office of president of the United States faithfully.”

Joke of the Day

Joke of the Day

Little Johnny... Mortgage

Little Johnny asks his father for a $200 bicycle for his birthday.

Johnny's father says, “We have an $80,000 mortgage on the house, and I just got laid off! There won't be a $200 bike this year.”

Two days later, Little Johnny walks out of the house with all his belongings in a suitcase. His father asks him why he's leaving.

Johnny says, “Early this morning, I was walking past your room, and I heard you tell Mommy that you were pulling out, and Mommy said that you should wait because she was coming too, and I'll be damned if I'll get stuck with an $80,000 mortgage!”

Pun of the Day

An undertaker can be one of your best friends, he is always the last one to let you down.