Denims that have been tied to lines and streamed in the ship's wake for a couple of days to get that "salty" look.
- Scrambled Eggs
The gold on the bill of an officers hat starting at the commander level, and
since the captain of a destroyer was always a commander then it was also
synonymous with "the Captain."
A sailor who is messy in all ways, especially shower and clothing whereby the feeling is to get him squared away fast.
A sailor who doesn't keep himself clean. Any civilian.
Where all the trays and cutlery are cleaned on the mess decks.
Rumors. The accuracy of scuttlebutt is inversely
proportional to the length of time prior to reaching port.
Scuttlebutt was what a drinking fountain was called. Probably as that is
where rumors were passed (or vice versa.)
- Sea Bag
Canvas bag which held all a sailor's wordly (navy) goods. Carried over the shoulder by a strap.
- Sea Daddy
An older sailor that takes a younger one "under his wing" to keep him out
- Sea Legs
To "get your sea-legs", gain experience aboard ship, especially "underway".
- Sea Locker
An aluminum locker under the bunks for storage of personal gear.
- Second Class
Best rate in the US Navy. Too low to be responsible for screw-ups (that was for the first classes and chiefs to worry about), but high enough to get out of grunt work, and was normally the most technically qualified of all the rates and worked on the equipment. Known by characteristic crook of two first fingers due to constant carrying of coffee cup.
- Sewer Pipe Sailor
Any crewmember of a diesel-driven "target".
The thing used on your butt when you became a shellback.
A sailor who has crossed the equator, went through the initiation, and got the shellback certificate. Now he can dish it out.
- Shipping Over
What some poor fools did when their enlistment expired, usually after soft-soaping from the gang's officer and sweetened by a thousand dollar bonus. What they usually regretted a week later.
To get everything in order or squared away.
A number of sailors used at the quarterdeck to render honors to visiting
senior officials/local dignitaries. The number of side-boys used depended
upon the rank of the visiting dignitaries.
- Single Up
Taking a single half hitch over the bollard and keeping the line tight to
stop the ship's forward or reverse motion so it doesn't slam into the pier
or the next ship in line, when the junior officer in charge is trying to
dock the ship.
- Sink Test
To throw overboard.
What you called it when you were sleeping instead of working in a place
no one would find you.
Term used by
bubbleheads who ride in those targets (submarines) to describe any sailor
who sails on any vessel on top of the water.
A sailor's underwear.
- Skivvy Boy
A sailor on "liberty", who is almost always seen only in his skivvies.
- Skivvy Club
Where the USO held dances for the swabbies and other, even
lower forms of life (like marines), to meet women.
- Skivvy Waver
Signalmen. Skivvy Wavers live in a little hut on top of
the bridge where they figure no one on the bridge can ever
see what they do.This, of course, is a great place for
others to go screw off, especially if there is something
interesting to look at through the big binoculars.
A little, as in time or quantity.
An as yet unidentified surface radar contact (to be tracked
for course and speed, identification, radio contact etc.)
in the ships Combat Information Center (CIC).
- Smoking Lamp
If "on," smoking is permitted. It's a condition, not an
"Situation Normal, All F---ed Up". Adopted from the Brits.
- Snap to
To come to attention.
- Snatch Block
A block which has a hinged side plate that can be opened
to facilitate reaving one or more lines.
Engineers. Snipes live down below and can occasionally be
see emerging from small hatches in the main deck.
Sonarman rate, changed to STG in mid sixties.
Not "Save Our Ship". It stands for "Shit On a Shingle"
(creamed chipped beef on toast). A common breakfast
lukewarm food (minced beef on toast) or any chow that's
Shore Patrol. Your buddies with an armband and a night
- Spit Kit
A World War II term for any minesweeper.
- Spit Shine
A shoe shine to get the shiniest job, using spit or water.
- Spud Coxswain
The "mess cook" assigned to peeling "spuds" ('taters,
y'all!). He also prepared salads and condiments for the
crew's "mess." It was considered a "promotion" and a sign
of acceptance into the "galley."
Hull mounted sonar. All FRAM destroyers were fitted with
this sonar set.
A modern term for a "swab".
To standby for further orders or to get a standby for your
watch or duty by swapping or you owed it to the other
- Standing Orders
"Keep then out of the trees." Actual orders to yours
truly when on SP in Gitmo Naval base, Cuba.
In the beginnings of sail-craft the rudder was nothing more
than a "board" that the cox'n could "steer" with. It was
the "steer-board" and was always placed on the right side
(facing forward) so that the strongest arm (apologies to
all right-challenged persons) could be brought to bear. The
other side of the boat became to be called "port" because
when the boat was tied up the "steer-board" side would
always be placed away from possible damage.
- Stow it
1) To put something in it's place and 2) an order to shut
A seaman that is trying to attain a rating. Such as an
ET or sonarman, or radioman rating.
Damaging government property.
A sailor. A mop.
What you did for extra duty.