Old Sailors' Almanac


Week 34, 2015

Previous Week   August 17, 2015 - August 23, 2015   Next Week

Woman suffrage amendment ratified on August 18, 1920

Woman suffrage amendment ratified on August 18, 1920

Woman suffrage amendment ratified: The 19th Amendment to the Constitution, guaranteeing women the right to vote, is ratified by Tennessee, giving it the two-thirds majority of state ratification necessary to make it the law of the land. The amendment was the culmination of more than 70 years of struggle by woman suffragists. Its two sections read simply: “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex” and “Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.”

America’s woman suffrage movement was founded in the mid 19th century by women who had become politically active through their work in the abolitionist and temperance movements. In July 1848, 200 woman suffragists, organized by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott, met in Seneca Falls, New York, to discuss women’s rights. After approving measures asserting the right of women to educational and employment opportunities, they passed a resolution that declared “it is the duty of the women of this country to secure to themselves their sacred right to the elective franchise.” For proclaiming a woman’s right to vote, the Seneca Falls Convention was subjected to public ridicule, and some backers of women’s rights withdrew their support. However, the resolution marked the beginning of the woman suffrage movement in America.

The first national women’s rights convention was held in 1850 and then repeated annually, providing an important focus for the growing woman suffrage movement. In the Reconstruction era, the 15th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was adopted, granting African American men the right to vote, but Congress declined to expand enfranchisement into the sphere of gender. In 1869, the National Woman Suffrage Association was founded by Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton to push for a woman suffrage amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Another organization, the American Woman Suffrage Association, led by Lucy Stone, was formed in the same year to work through the state legislatures. In 1890, these two groups were united as the National American Woman Suffrage Association. That year, Wyoming became the first state to grant women the right to vote.

By the beginning of the 20th century, the role of women in American society was changing drastically: Women were working more, receiving a better education, bearing fewer children, and three more states (Colorado, Utah, and Idaho) had yielded to the demand for female enfranchisement. In 1916, the National Woman’s Party (formed in 1913 at the Congressional Union for Woman Suffrage) decided to adopt a more radical approach to woman suffrage. Instead of questionnaires and lobbying, its members picketed the White House, marched, and staged acts of civil disobedience.

In 1917, America entered World War I, and women aided the war effort in various capacities, which helped to break down most of the remaining opposition to woman suffrage. By 1918, women had acquired equal suffrage with men in 15 states, and both the Democratic and Republican parties openly endorsed female enfranchisement.

In January 1918, the woman suffrage amendment passed the House of Representatives with the necessary two-thirds majority vote. In June 1919, it was approved by the Senate sent to the states for ratification. Campaigns were waged by suffragists around the country to secure ratification, and on August 18, 1920, Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify the amendment. On August 26, it was formally adopted into the Constitution by proclamation of Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby. History Channel / Wikipedia (Women's suffrage in the United States) / Encyclopedia Britannica / Library of Congress / National Archives / The Atlantic

Images: 100 Years Ago, The 1913 Women's Suffrage Parade

Understanding Military Terminology

Understanding Military Terminology - Laser seeker

(DOD) A device based on a direction sensitive receiver which detects the energy reflected from a laser designated target and defines the direction of the target relative to the receiver. See also laser guided weapon. Joint Publications 3-09 (Joint Fire Support‎)

U.S. Navy Aircraft Carrier USS Washington (U.S.Navy.mil)

The Old Salt’s Corner

Main Photography Lab

This is the other photo lab found on board a carrier. As already mentioned, it handles more carrier-oriented photography duties such as administrative and publicity duties. It nevertheless can support intelligence related efforts should extra processing be needed (e.g., in support of a major exercise). FAS.org / Module 6 — Intelligence WORK CENTERS

“I’m Just Sayin’”

“I’m Just Sayin’”

Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else.

“Thought for the Day”

“Thought for the Day”

“Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.

~ George Bernard Shaw

“What I Have Learned”

“What I Have Learned”

“Be there when people need you.”

~ Anonymous

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)

Skinny jeans send Australian woman to hospital with nerve damage

Skinny jeans send Australian woman to hospital with nerve damage

ADELAIDE, Australia - An Australian doctor has warned against the dangers of so-called “skinny jeans”, citing a patient who collapsed after a day of strenuous activity while wearing tight pants.

Neurologist Thomas Kimber, of the Royal Adelaide Hospital, told the Australian Broadcasting Corp. on Tuesday that a 35-year-old woman from Adelaide was recently hospitalized after wearing skinny jeans.

Kimber said the woman was helping a relative move and spent the day squatting to help them clean.

“She noticed that her legs were becoming increasingly uncomfortable as the day went on [but] didn't really think much of it”, Kimber said.

The woman didn't notice anything was wrong until she fell on the sidewalk and couldn't get up again.

“By this time it was dark and quite late at night, and she was unable to stand up again, and really was there for some time before she could crawl to the side of the road, hail a cab and bring herself to the Royal Adelaide Hospital”, Kimber said.

The woman's legs were so swollen that hospital staff had to cut her jeans off of her body. She suffered severe muscle swelling and nerve compression and had to be treated with intravenous fluids.

According to a Kimber's report of the incident, which was published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, the patient suffered compartment syndrome - when increased pressure to body parts, particularly the leg or forearm, leads to muscle or nerve damage.

“We believe it was the combination of the squatting and tight jeans that caused the problem”, Kimber said in the report.

The woman was unable to walk for several days but eventually made a full recovery.

“The take home message I would like to leave people is if they are going to doing a lot of squatting ... wear something looser, with more elasticity perhaps”, he added.

United Press International (06/23/2015)

Why Did Yankee Doodle Call a Feather “Macaroni”?

Mr. Answer Man Please Tell Us: Why Did Yankee Doodle Call a Feather “Macaroni”?

Yankee Doodle went to town...Mm-hm, yeah.

Riding on a pony...Ok.

Stuck a feather in his cap and called it macaroni...Wait. What?

What’s going on here? Why would Yankee Doodle do something like that? What’s macaroni got to do with anything?

The first bit of context you need in order to understand the sense of this line is that the song “Yankee Doodle” was not always the proud, patriotic ditty we know today. It was originally sung by British soldiers in mockery of the rough, unsophisticated, American colonials they had to fight alongside during the French and Indian War. The thrust of it was “look at these ridiculous yokels!”

The second bit of context has to do with what was going on back in England at the time. It had become a rite of passage in the 18th century for young British men of means to spend some time on the European continent doing the Grand Tour, absorbing art, history, and language and becoming all-around cultured and sophisticated. When they returned, they brought back outlandish high-fashion clothes and mannerisms, and a taste for exotic Italian dishes like macaroni. As a group they were numerous and noticeable enough to get their own nickname. They were “macaroni”.

Yankee Doodle, bumbling bumpkin that he was, tried his best to imitate the latest style, but only embarrassed himself in the attempt. Thinking himself a fashionable dandy, he stuck a feather in his cap and somehow thought that was macaroni. That was so something a doodle (meaning fool or simpleton) dandy would do.

It turned out the rustic, ragtag Americans weren’t much insulted by this and started singing the song themselves. It had a catchy tune, and they were never out to win any best-dressed awards anyway.

Not only did “Yankee Doodle” end up a staple of the American patriotic songbook, it gave us one of our most useful words, dude, which originally meant dandy and was formed off of doodle. So like, yeah, feather, macaroni, call it what you want, dude. Yankee Doodle's cool with it.

Library of CongressMental FlossNPRWikipedia

Where Did That Saying Come From? “Sleep tight”

Where Did That Saying Come From?

“Sleep tight”

Sleep tight‎:” Early beds were made with a wooden frame. Ropes were tied across the frame in a criss-cross pattern. A straw mattress was then put on top of the ropes.

Over time the ropes stretched, causing the bed to sag. The owner would then tighten the ropes to get a better night's sleep. Phrases.org UK / Word Detective

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

NAVSPEAK aka U.S. Navy Slang

DCA: Damage Control Assistant, usually is a junior officer.

Hoover: Slang for the S-3B Viking, mostly due to its unique engine noises.

Oly: USS Olympia (SSN-717).

Retention Prevention Team: (pronounced “civic”) Carrier Intelligence Center - centrally located space on an aircraft carrier occupied by intelligence officers and IS's. Flight crews often go there to debrief after a flight. The most useful thing in CVIC is usually the high speed industrial strength paper shredder.

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

Just for you MARINE

Garrison Cover: A uniform cover invented in the 20th Century it consists of a Garrison cover cap running fore and aft on the head displaying on the front left the eagle globe and anchor and on the right the rank insignia of commissioned and warrant officers. No rank is worn on the cap by enlisted personnel. Also called Pisscutter.

Gas Chamber: A building used for the training of recruits and Marines in the actions to be taken during a Nuclear, Biological or Chemical attack. Various gasses are used in training and all of them are noxious but none are deadly.

Gear: Things. Personal things such as clothing and equipment or unit things such as 782 gear. Essentially all things.

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

VP-30 - Patrol Squadron 30: “Pro’s Nest”
NAS Jacksonville, Florida

Aircraft Nicknames

Aircraft Nicknames

F-4 Phantom nicknamed “Lead Sled, Double Ugly, Rhino, Flying Footlocker” The McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II[N 1] is a tandem two-seat, twin-engine, all-weather, long-range supersonic jet interceptor aircraft/fighter-bomber originally developed for the United States Navy by McDonnell Aircraft.

During the Vietnam War, the F-4 was used extensively; it served as the principal air superiority fighter for both the Navy and Air Force, and became important in the ground-attack and aerial reconnaissance roles late in the war.

The F-4 Phantom II remained in use by the U.S. in the reconnaissance and Wild Weasel ( Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses) roles in the 1991 Gulf War, finally leaving service in 1996. Boeing / F-4 Phantom II Society / Wikipedia

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

Ever Inventive Egyptians

Ever Inventive Egyptians

Crocodile Dung: Reptile droppings. Documents dating back to 1850BC refer to amorous Ancient Egyptian women used crocodile pooh pessaries.

Honey: 1550BC, records are referring to contraceptive tampons made from linen flax and soaked in a mix of honey and date paste.

Early condoms: The first condoms - again, thanks to the ever-inventive Egyptians - were made of animal intestines.

The legendary lover Casanova placed his faith in linen condoms and by the nineteenth century Japanese men were sporting “kabutogata”, hard sheaths made of tortoiseshell or leather. Presumably this led to some nasty chafing. Daily Mail

© CEASAR CHOPPY by cartoonist Marty Gavin - archives No Wind - No Sun - No Fuel! “© CEASAR CHOPPY” by Marty Gavin


“My Way” - Frank Sinatra 1969

“My Way” - Frank Sinatra
Album: My Way
Released 1969 video

This originated as the French song called “Comme D'Habitude” (translation: “As Usual”) video, written by the composers Jacques Revaux and Gilles Thibault. They took it to the French pop star Claude Francois, who tweaked it a bit (earning a co-writer credit) and recorded the song in 1967, where it was a hit in parts of Europe. The French version tells the story of a man, living out the end of his marriage, love killed by the boredom of everyday life.

Paul Anka discovered this song while visiting France and re-wrote the lyrics as “My Way” when he returned to New York. Anka says it was 3 a.m. on a rainy night when the words came to him. Anka, who was a very popular singer, pitched the song to Frank Sinatra, who recorded it on December 30, 1968. Anka's lyrics changed the meaning to be about a man looking back fondly on a life he lived on his own terms, and Sinatra's version became one of his signature songs.

This became Frank Sinatra's signature song, but he couldn't stand it, saying he “loathed” the song. In his later years, he described the song as “a Paul Anka pop hit which became a kind of national anthem”. In a 2000 interview with the BBC show Hardtalk, Sinatra's daughter Tina said, “He always thought that song was self-serving and self-indulgent. He didn't like it. That song stuck and he couldn't get it off his shoe.”

A song of individuality and aspiration, there is a scientific explanation for why it has triggered such a strong emotional reaction despite the rather pedestrian lyrics and silly rhymes (losing/amusing, curtain/certain). The song starts with a rising 6th progression, which indicates striving. It builds in intensity and powers to a big finish, which Sinatra could really sell with his declaration, “I did it my way.”

In America, this was merely a modest hit on the charts, as it didn't jibe with the spirit of 1969. In the UK, however, it was a runaway hit, re-entering the charts six times between 1970-1971. It holds the record for the longest stay on the chart.

After dominating the American popular music charts in the '40s and early '50, Sinatra had some down years in the rock era, but still managed a few huge hits, with “Learnin' The Bluesvideo (1955) and “Strangers in the Nightvideo (1966) each going to #1 on the Hot 100.

“My Way” became one of his more popular songs, but it had a very pedestrian placing on this chart, making just #27, which was lower than his previous Top 40 single, “Cyclesvideo (#23 in 1968). “My Way”, however, had tremendous staying power and became a concert showstopper. It was also Sinatra's last Top 40 hit in the U.S. until 1980, when he returned with “New York, New Yorkvideo.

Sinatra probably did not have in mind the red velvet drapes of a crematorium when he sang about facing his final curtain. However, in 2005 a survey by Co-Operative Funeralcare put this tune at the top of songs most requested at funerals in the UK. Spokesman Phil Edwards said: “It has that timeless appeal – the words sum up what so many people feel about their lives and how they would like their loved ones to remember them.”

Toward the end of his career, Elvis added this to his concert repertoire. After his death in 1977, a live version was released as a single, going to #22 in the US and #9 in the UK.

The Sex Pistols recorded a Punk version in 1979 with their bass player Sid Vicious on lead vocals (lead singer Johnny Rotten had left the band). Their version went to #6 in the UK and was used over the closing credits of the movie Goodfellas. The song appeared on the Sex Pistols' album The Great Rock 'N' Roll Swindle video. Sid Vicious died before the album was released.

According to Paul Anka, he wrote the English version of this song after having dinner with Frank Sinatra, who told his dinner companions that he was quitting the business (Anka was playing many of the same nightclubs, which is how he ended up in Sinatra's circle). In an effort to write Sinatra a hit, he composed this song specifically for Frank, writing a lyric with lines filled with things he figured the singer would say, playing up his tough guy image with phrases like “I ate it up and spit it out” and “I'll state my case, of which I'm certain.”

Before Paul Anka wrote the English lyrics, a young David Bowie took a shot at writing them but couldn't come up with anything he was happy with.

“My Way” is licensed sparingly, especially the Sinatra version. It was used in the 2006 episode of The Sopranos titled “Moe n' Joe”, and also in a 2014 episode of Mad Men called “The Strategy”. The Mad Men episode takes place around the time the song was released and plays a specific role in the plot, with Don Draper hearing the song, which is playing on the radio, as some kind of sign to Peggy Olsen.

Because this song is so strongly associated with Sinatra, many people assume the singer wrote it. In a Songfacts interview, Frank Sinatra Enterprises Vice President Charles Pignone chalks this up to his artistry. “A lot of people, because Frank was so convincing in what he sang, thought he had his hand in writing a lot of these songs”, he says.

On Sinatra's distaste for the song, Pigone adds: “I don't think he hated it as much as he disliked it - I don't think he hated any of these songs. I just think he probably may have gotten tired of people yelling for it and singing of it. It's a fan favorite, but I wouldn't say it was a Sinatra favorite.”

Frank Sinatra official site / Rolling Stone / Biography / All Music / Billboard / Song Facts / Wikipedia

Image: “My Way (album)” by Frank Sinatra



● If you combine the electoral college results of the '80 and '84 elections, Reagan won 1014-62.

● The sailfish (the fastest swimming fish, clocked at 68 mph) is faster than the cheetah (the fastest land animal, clocked at 62 mph).

● In 1981, Deborah Ann Fountain (Miss New York) became the first Miss America pageant participant disqualified for “illegal use of padding” during the swimsuit competition..