Wednesday, January 7, 2009

DAY 167 - 31 JANUARY 1991 - Cumshaw and Pancakes

DAY 167 - 31 JANUARY 1991
I only found about 15 gripes on 10 tonight when I did the 28 Day corrosion inspection. So either things are looking better, or I need a new set of batteries in my flash light!

Rush has been working on the corrosion gripe I mentioned in yesterday's post, we're just going to work it a little bit at a time, and probably going to take a few days to finish it.

Molly and Curtis cleaned up the Ramp and Doppler bilges, they look a lot better this time. I'm starting to think our preventive measures are helping a bit.

Ernie, the ships baker, has been letting us have access to the kitchen middle of the night so we can eat. Meals have been a challenge for us at night, every time we make arrangements for a lunch or left overs or even sandwiches, something happens and we have no food. Its just weird. So now we've been bribing Ernie with stuff, and he's been making us pancakes and eggs. Tonight the bribe was we gave him an extra pair of camoflag pants we had left over. Friend for life.

If there's one thing that stands out from my time in the Navy, its how we get things done at the simplest, person to person level. Its amazing how far you can get when you have something to trade. Cumshaw, which was apparently a word picked up from Chinese ports by sailors in the 1800s... eventually it was transformed into the "art form" of some individuals being able to find anything, anywhere, to get the job done. Everytime we pack for a deployment, we would load up on as many things as we could fit into our cruise boxes, and then we'd scavage extra parts that we took with the specific thought of using them to barter with, to other detachments in the area. Cumshaw is what keeps these helos flying some days! Or, in tonights case, it got us pancakes!

If you remember the Oliver North trial, and really paid attention to the details, you'd have seen high level Cumshaw in action. Things were sold or traded, by people who didn't actually own what they were selling, with proceeds being misdirected to other "worthy" causes. It happens every day, at every level. Its... tradition!

Cumshaw Defined by Webster

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