Old Sailors' Almanac


Week 02, 2016

Previous Week   January 11, 2016 - January 17, 2016   Next Week

First colonial constitution on January 14, 1639

First colonial constitution on January 14, 1639

The first colonial constitution: In Hartford, Connecticut, the first constitution in the American colonies, the “Fundamental Orders”, is adopted by representatives of Wethersfield, Windsor, and Hartford.

The Dutch discovered the Connecticut River in 1614, but English Puritans from Massachusetts largely accomplished European settlement of the region. During the 1630s, they flocked to the Connecticut valley from the Massachusetts Bay Colony, and in 1638 representatives from the three major Puritan settlements in Connecticut met to set up a unified government for the new colony.

Roger Ludlow, a lawyer, wrote much of the Fundamental Orders, and presented a binding and compact frame of government that put the welfare of the community above that of individuals. It was also the first written constitution in the world to declare the modern idea that “the foundation of authority is in the free consent of the people”.

In 1662, the Charter of Connecticut superseded the Fundamental Orders; though the majority of the original document’s laws and statutes remained in force until 1818.

History Channel / Fundamental Orders of Connecticut - Wikipedia / Encyclopedia Britannica / Yale.edu / The Sociaety of Colonial Wars.org (1639 - Fundamental Orders)

“A Toast to a Veteran”

The Old Salt’s Corner

“A Toast to a Veteran”

Crystal is the goblet, clear, like the vision of our mission.

Red is the wine, dark, to remind us of those who have gone before us.

Strong is the hand that holds it, yet tender, when the time is nigh.

Tall is the Warrior, whatever stature they may be.

We stand together brothers, comrades, and mates.

We pause to respect the departed, and reflect, on the life we choose to follow.

We lift these glasses high in honor, tribute and glory to all who may be called.

~ American Armed Forces Veteran

“I’m Just Sayin’”

“I’m Just Sayin”

“Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.”

“Thought for the Day”

“Thought for the Day”

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”

~ Oscar Wilde

“What I Have Learned”

“What I Have Learned”

“Work hard, use your common sense and don't be afraid to trust your instincts.”

~ Fred L. Turne

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)

Man Who Gave Psychics $718,000 “Just Got Sucked In”

Man Who Gave Psychics $718,000 “Just Got Sucked In”

Inexplicable: He was a “well-traveled professional with close to seven figures in the bank”, according to a November New York Times profile, who had recently, gradually given $718,000 to two Manhattan psychics who had vowed to help reunite him with a former love (even though she is dead and, said one, reachable only if he built an 80-mile bridge of gold past her “reincarnation portal”).

Though the psychics have been identified, a private investigator said the very personality problems that made the man a victim will also make him a “terrible witness” in court. video

New York Times (11/15/2015)

What's the Difference Between Jam, Jelly, and Preserves?

Mr. Answer Man Please Tell Us: What's the Difference Between Jam, Jelly, and Preserves?

When reaching for a jar of old fruit and sugar, you have a few options. You have jelly, which is great for sandwiches, jam for muffins, and preserves for eating with a spoon when no one is looking.

Anyone with eyes bigger than their stomach at a farmer's market can tell you that fruit doesn't last very long. To keep the sweet stuff around longer, many people in the 19th century resorted to jarring their fruit with sugar to ensure fruity goodness even in the colder months. Today, these jarred fruits are enjoyed alongside fresh fruit that's available all year round. All of these concoctions are similar but have important distinctions. What it really comes down to is cooking method and consistency.

Preserves is a term often used to describe all fruit spreads, but can also refer to a specific type. It's made up of large chunks or whole fruits that are cooked in sugar until they are soft and then put into a firm jelly or less-gelled syrupy base.

Jam is made out of mashed fruits, sugar, and a little bit of pectin, a substance that makes everything gel and stick together. Jam also contains fruit juice, giving the sweet goo an almost opaque appearance. While not chunky like preserves, jam is typically more solid and substantial than jelly. According to the FDA, for a jar to be labeled as jam, it needs to have a “soluble-solids content” of 65 percent or greater.

Jelly is the most translucent of the bunch and more likely to be found in a child's lunchbox. It uses more pectin than jam in order to obtain its gel-like quality. Generally, the fruits are cooked much longer when making jelly. The essence of the flavor is captured as a result of longer cooking times. There are no bits of fruit in jelly - the cooked fruit juice is filtered through a muslin stockinette or jelly bag to give it that see-through appearance.

Mental FlossMrs. WagesThe KitchnWikipedia

Where Did That Saying Come From? “Wide berth”

Where Did That Saying Come From?

Wide berth:

A berth is the place where a ship is tied up or anchored. When the anchor was lowered a ship would tend to move about on the anchor cable so it was important to give it a wide berth to avoid collisions.

Today to give someone wide berth is to steer clear of them. 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

Nooner: Unlike the civilian term, this is when sailors report to their rack or undisclosed location to get an hour of sleep during mealtime.

NORS: Not Operationally Ready Supply.

Nuc: (Submarine Service and CVNs) NavSea designation for Engineering Department crewmembers responsible for the safe and proper operation of a ship's nuclear reactor and its support systems. Generally refers to anyone who is/was a candidate for Naval Nuclear Power Training Command. Slang for nerd.

Nuke: In the strictest sense it is a nuclear weapon more generally it refers to ordnance with large payloads or with payloads that for security reasons are neither confirmed nor denied, require special handling and may or may not be handled by designated personnel only. Slang term for nuclear trained members of a ships Engineering Department and nerds. (See “Nuc”, above.)

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

Just for you MARINE

Heat Tab: Fuel for a C-Ration Stove. A tablet of blue Trioxin, which caused fumes which irritated the eyes and respiratory tract if ventilation holes weren't large enough. In that case, a whole heat tab had to be used. With a properly vented stove, only half a Trioxin heat tab was needed to heat the meal and then the other half could be used to heat water for coffee or cocoa. A small chunk of C-4 explosive could also be substituted for the Trioxin tablet for faster heating. It would burn hotter and was much better for heating water.

Helo: Helicopter.

Henderson Hall: A building in Arlington Va. close to the Pentagon used to house enlisted Marines assigned to HQMC at the Pentagon and other administrative functions. The building was named for Brevet Brigadier General, Colonel Commandant Archibald Henderson, the Grand Old Man of the Corps.

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

VFA-2 - Strike Fighter Squadron 2: “Bounty Hunters”
NAS Lemoore, California

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

Robot hotel: inside Japan's Henn na Hotel

Robot hotel: inside Japan's Henn na Hotel

The Henn na Hotel (which translates to Weird Hotel) located at the Huis Ten Bosch theme park in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture near Nagasaki, is the first hotel to be staffed entirely by robots.

The front check-in desk features a realistic looking humaniod robot women along with a hilarious velociraptor robot sporting a bow-tie that perfectly speak both English and Japanese. There is also an adorable tulip-shaped tiny robot concierge in every room named Tuly that controls not only the lighting in the room but can give you information about the time and the weather as well.

There is also a robot porter that automatically carts luggage to visitors rooms and each room incorporates facial recognition software to grant entrance. The hotel currently has over sixty guest rooms available and hopes to offer up at least 1,000 by 2016. Given the initial success of The Henn na Hotel, the company also plans to expand and create more hotels similar to this one across other areas of Japan.

Because of the lack of a paid staff the hotel can also offer up great rates on rooms with the average cost being about $75 per night. The Telegraph UK

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


“The Dock Of The Bay” - Otis Redding 1968

“The Dock Of The Bay” - Otis Redding
Album: The Dock Of The Bay
Released 1968 video (Farewell Concert - Extended Edition)

Otis Redding died in a plane crash on December 10, 1967, a month before this song was released (January 8, 1968) and three days after he recorded it. It was by far his biggest hit and was also the first ever posthumous #1 single in the US. Redding was a rising star moving toward mainstream success at the time of his death. There is a good chance he would have recorded many more hits if he had lived.


Otis Redding site / Rock & Roll Hall of Fame / Rolling Stone / Billboard / Song Facts / Wikipedia

Image: “The Dock Of The Bay (album)” by Otis Redding



● The moon moves about two inches away from the Earth each year.

● Strawberries are the only fruits whose seeds grow on the outside.

● Avocados have the highest calories of any fruit at 167 calories per hundred grams.

People Who Know Everything

A Test for People Who Know Everything

Through the first half of the 20th century, only one winner of the Oscar for Best Picture was filmed in color. What film was it?

Answer for People Who Do Not Know Everything, or Want to Verify Their Answer Filmsite.org

Answer to Last Week's Test

Why do the original pressings of the Paul McCartney & Wings album Red Rose Speedway included the words “We love you, baby” embossed in Braille?

Answer: As a tribute to sight-impaired musician Stevie Wonder. Paul McCartney

Joke of the Day

Joke of the Day

An engineer was crossing a road one day, when a frog called out to him and said, “If you kiss me, I'll turn into a beautiful princess.” He bent over, picked up the frog, and put it in his pocket.

The frog spoke up again and said, “If you kiss me, I'll turn back into a beautiful princess and stay with you for one week.”

The engineer took the frog out of his pocket, smiled at it and returned it to the pocket.

The frog then cried out, “If you kiss me and turn me back into a princess, I'll stay with you for one week and do anything you want.”

Again, the engineer took the frog out, smiled at it and put it back into his pocket.

Finally, the frog asked, “What is the matter? I've told you I'm a beautiful princess and that I'll stay with you for one week and do anything you want. Why won't you kiss me?”

The engineer said, “Look, I'm an engineer. I don't have time for a girlfriend, but a talking frog - now that's cool.”

Pun of the Day

Two antennas met on a roof, fell in love and got married. The ceremony wasn't much, but the reception was excellent.