Friday, August 31, 2007

Libo, Booze, and a Hasty Field Day

Navy ships can be awesome weapons, capable of projecting massive amounts of firepower incredible distances to basically lay waste and sow huge amounts of pain and hate. And then there was the PoS that I was on. Built in the early 70s, I believe that it has now finally been de-commissioned. In one of its last cruises before being put out of its misery, it got assigned to carry a bunch of Marines around the coast of South America. I am only half-way joking here when I say that quite a few of the engine bunnies actually had a poll going on when (not if) the engines would die on us. By a couple of countries into the float, so did we.

The berthing room that housed the mortars platoon was a comfy little nook, positioned directly above the engine room and next to the heads. After the a/c broke down about 2 weeks into the float, we were hard pressed to decide what was worse, the heat and fumes from the engines, or the reeking shitters next door. I spent a lot of time at the gym, in the library, the smoker's deck, hell, anywhere but in that room of man-reek of epic proportions. Liberty was a godsend, and another opportunity to see what kind of mischief we could get into. Said mischief was not limited to the time that were actually fuschnukered and out on the town...

One night just as liberty expired, in stumbled the last of my wayward Marines. My guys were a great group, we were just one way or the other getting into some sort of trouble. They worked hard, and partied harder. Perhaps a little too hard. Back to the story, the last Marine in was our platoon mascot of sorts ('Mascot' of course, his name for the purposes of this little blog), being not too bright, pretty short, very stocky with an abnormally amount of junk in his trunk, and usually spotted with a cig in one corner, the largest dip of cope you have ever seen in the whole other cheek, and if at all possible the cheapest and largest beer can in one of his paws. He kind of resembled that axe-wielding troll guy from the Lord of the Rings movie.

Anyways, he stumbled in, reeking of cheap hookers, dried beer and cigar smoke, and crawled into the rack. Not the freshest smelling of fellows on a normal day, we started to make noises in his general direction re taking a shower. After a good 20 minutes of laying in his rack and drunkenly slurring to us to "Shut up, bishes, 'fore I stick my c@ck in yer...", and in an un-precedented display of speed and coordination for a definitely un-coordinated guy, he leaped out of the rack. Not to obey our request, no. He was puking like it was going out of style.

Ever see in the movies how you have to go ass-hole to belly button to pass someone in the passage way? That's how it was in our quarters. Picture if you can, 30 Marines crammed into a small room, some still in their garish Hawaiian shirt-style libo attire, others drunkenly attempting to display their prowess on the x-box, and a few actually attempting to prep their gear for the next training evolution.

Into this picture place a short, stubby, puking Marine. Despite moving with all haste, he threw up about 5 times before he made it to the shitters. He spewed on Marines, laptops, down the ladder-well to the engine compartment, field gear, other Marines, himself, at least two racks, and for good measure, a sailor that was passing through (poor lil' guy). His awesome display of projection was the trigger for two others to display what fine-dining establishment they had attended that night.

The room was stunned silent. There was puke dripping from cots, Marines, and the walls. Heck, I think there was some on the ceiling. A sailor came up the ladder well from the engine room to inquire WTF?!! and if it was safe to pass.

Mascot returned from the head. As he entered the room, we could see that he had managed to puke all down his front side, back side, and general everywhere. With a 1000 beer stare, he trudged through the room, around Marines, and crawled into his rack.

The room was still stunned silent. There was still puke dripping from the cots, Marines, and the walls. There was definitely puke on the ceiling. A gathering of sailors and Marines grouped, not inside our berthing, but at the hatch that wasn't covered in tossed cookies. Mascot laid down, sighed, and prepared to rack out.

It was almost mutiny. We were hard pressed (the Corporals) from keeping everyone else from slaughtering the guy. Kind of like family, we would have stood up for him to anybody else, for just about anything, just because of the platoon thing, but here, in our berthing, like this?

Oh. Hell. No.

Drunk or no, he was going to clean up himself and his impromptu interior decor. After enough threats we got Mascot up and out of the rack, got him hosed down, and made sure that he had ample opportunity to clean up the room. He looked so miserable, still 3 sheets to the wind and swabbing the deck with the broken off, bottom-half of an old, old mop that despite the carnage and the smell, I just had to chuckle.

Ahh, the end of another successful liberty pass...


Old NFO said...

Musta been a UNITAS :-)
Been there, done that, had to pull Shore Patrol WAY too many times for the DD's and Gator Freighters. I thought airdales were bad about getting AFU in 12 hours, but you guys definitely had it down to an art! :-)

Shane said...

Sounds like the USS Anchorage (LSD class). Damn thing was blowing boilers left and right. The snipes I knew were trying to figure out where they were going to get enough duct tape and solder to hold it together.

As for puking, you Marines have got to learn to hold your liquor. I had one young grunt from my ship do something like that to me in Pearl at a McDonalds. Hosed down my sandwich & fries. When I got back from cleaning the hurlings from my shirt, the bastards buddies had made off with my drink.

Murphy said...

Old NFO: I gotta tell the story of restricted libbo, dog n' pony shows, and obtaining about a weeks worth of beer... on ship.

Shane: Ahaha! Gear adrift, my friend, gear adrift (is a gift).