Rating Traits II
By Garland Davis
Hospital Corpsman (HM): Doc’s must possess the ability to gaze (some probably desire to) upon male genitalia. They have the ridiculous idea that you can cure everything but the clap with something called an APC (All Purpose Capsule). Actually, it means Aspirin, Phenacetin, and Caffeine. As if a sailor needed more caffeine. They drink so much coffee that they are “eat up” with the shit as it is. Most of the Doc’s I met were good guys. Go over and get drunk with you and invite you to suck oxygen the next morning to help allay the hangover. It is a comfort to a sailor to know that there is someone aboard who can “fix your dick” when needed.
Shipfitter Pipes (SFP): This is a rate that no longer exists. These guys installed and fixed piping. If you have ever been anywhere on a ship you see fucking pipes everywhere. But their primary duty was plumbing and turd chasing. They were slightly more evolved and upright than BT’s, but their knuckles would sometimes come in contact with the deck. They shuffled around with their badge of office, a plunger over their shoulder. The lowly turd chaser you looked down on active duty is now the Roto-Rooter franchisee who charged your wife $400 plus tax to root that humongous turd you dropped which caused the toilet to back up and overflow this morning.
Interior Communication Electrician (IC): ICFA means “I can’t fix anything” and ICFN “I can’t fix nothing.” They manage the vast sound powered phone system throughout the ship. Or I guess I should say mismanage. They conscientiously “tag out” sound-powered phone circuits before working on them.
Sonar Technician (ST): These guys spend their time listening at nothing hoping to hear something or else, they are staring at a screen full of green lines looking for a “waterfall.” They become addicted to porn from spending so much time listening to whales, sea otters. and dolphins fucking.
Radarmen (RD) now Operation’s Specialists (OS). The primary requirement for old time Radarmen was dyslexia. The ability to read and write backward. And if not standing behind a piece of plexiglass they are sitting at a weird TV watching a line going round and round and getting all excited about pieces of potato chip he sneezed onto the TV. They were slobs at sea. The lights were never turned on in CIC and the place accumulates trash and dirt. It usually takes an entire inport period to shovel all the shit out of there.
Radioman (RM): Sometimes referred to as radio girls because they were so delicate. This came from the sub-zero air conditioning in their spaces. They claimed it was because the equipment was delicate, but those of us sweating our ass off in engineering spaces and in the galley knew it was because they were a bunch of pussies.