09 January 2010
The Bosun Mate's Coffee
This is the latest addition to my Bosun's Mate's series. When looking at the source photo for this sketch, you see an UNREP being conducted with three ships. This is a very complicated maneuver in which mistakes can cost people their lives or seriously damage the ships. The Deck Division guys in the photo seem very alert, maybe even tense- but totally focused on the ship next to them. As I was looking at the photo, my eye wandered and picked up an incongruous shape on the gun mount. It was barely noticeable at first, but when I saw it I couldn't help but laugh. It was probably one of the most important weapon components on a naval vessel...a stainless steel coffee travel mug. Recently I was reading Robert Kaplan's "Hog Pilots and Blue Water Grunts" in which he interviewed a Chief on a destroyer who said something to the effect of, "In the Age of Sail the Navy used to give sailors free rum. Now it's free coffee.". Well. if our Navy runs on coffee, I suppose it's best that they keep it on hand everywhere.