NAVAL SLANG and idiom of the day

There are other Naval terms in the main "Glossary."

BLACK GAND: a ship's fire room complement, so named for the coal, and later the bunker c fuel oil, used before U.S. Naval ships were converted to distillate fuel after 1973.

BT: boiler tender or "bilge turd." Crewman responsible for operation of the ship's boilers; insignia was Hero's steam engine, also called the "flying ass hole."

CALL THE BALL: when the bird is lined up with the deck on the bird farm, and you can land.

DEAD CAT: unsuccessful catapult launch of a carrier aircraft, usually fatal to aircrew, as the ship would run over the aircraft.

FOUR-OH AND SQUARED AWAY: as ready as can be for anything, esp. inspections; having one's shit together.

GHOST BOATS: The L.S.M.R.'s White River-536 (Benjo Maru), a.k.a. The Rat, St.Francis River, (Franny Maru) Clarion River, Carronade. Those boats each had the firepower of 7 destroyers and kicked butt in NAm. The Rat K.I.Aed over 40,000 N.V.A.

MONKEY MATES: Machinest Mates or MMs; responsible for the ship's propulsion engines.

NAVY F.T.s: The Fire-control Technicians, who launched the rockets and ammo and directed the guns ... Marine's best friend.

RELATIVE BEARING GREASE; BUCKER OF STEAM: physically impossible to obtain items, used to send the new guy on a useless pursuit of same.

SNIPES: collective address for below-decks hands, engineers like; BT, MM, EN, HT, etc.

UNREP: underway replenishment, taking on fuel, mail, personnel and stores by means of a high-line transfer. Also, GunFire Control Technician. Has nothing to do with putting out fires, has everything to do with starting them. It's an Ordnance rate; we put the projectile on the money.

Compiled By Hank Metz, All Rights Reserved; and other viewers.