Thursday, May 9, 2013

'Mail Call'

Every single rapscallion and scalawag alike who ever sailed the seven seas can hark back to times a blaring over the 1MC…

“Mail Call… all Mail Petty Officers to the Ship’s Post Office… now Mail Call!”

… As it was, on long cruises crashing through the waves, mail call was probably the most anticipated event underway!! Perfumed letters with lipstick sealed envelopes & crotch-cutouts from young Suzy’s panties… these were the kind’a things that kept us going on our long journeys to faraway places!!!

Yep… I absolutely loved them handwritten letters! Nothing was better than a letter from home… sometimes with glossy photos of scantily clad girlfriends and all…

 "What in God’s Green Earth would a pretty young thing like that see in an ugly son-of-a-bitch like you?"

We’d see unclaimed parcels in the mail bag like Victoria Secret & Fredericks of Hollywood catalog's…  Cherry Blossoms Mail Order Bride Magazines…  Swiss Penis Pumps…  'How To' Books on finding a woman's 'G' Spot… Blow up Dolls with vibrating vaginas… Blow up Sheep with vibrating… WHAT the HELL!! Just when you thought you’d seen it all there was always something!!!
Naturally… everyone looked forward to the ol’ mail call! As soon as it arrived on deck it went straight to the Post Office to be distributed likewise boosting morale with a roar heard throughout the decks…

“Okay… front and center when your name is called!”

“Seaman Jones… You got a letter here from Texas… You from Texas?”

“Yeah… what of it?”

“You know what they say, only steers and queers come from Texas!”

 “Hey this one’s for Reed… Hey Reed, I didn’t know you was from Tennessee… What does a thirteen year old girl from Tennessee say after sex? …Git offa me, cuzzin Jed, you're a crush’n my cigarettes!”

“Hey Santelli… why you laugh’n?!?  If Jesus were born today he couldn’t be born in New York!”

“Why’s that?”

“Cause there’s no way to find three wise men…  or a virgin in your whole gauddamn state… Yoooow!”


“Yo… damn Johnson! What’s up with the odiferous perfume panty incense in this letter… address says she lives on ‘Fanny Lane’… man, get that shit outta here?”

“Hey man… my girl just broke up with me!”

“Well look at it this way… Having guys buy her drinks at the EM Club won’t make her feel guilty any longer!”


“Hey man don’t feel bad… the last letter I got from my wife was addressed from Divorce Court!... That's all she wrote!"

“Looks like Goff got twenty more mail order letters from the PI… how many wedding proposals does that make… twenty… thirty?!?”

And so it was 'til the final parcel was emptied from that ratty ol’ canvas bag and everyone got the welcoming scoop from back home that pegged their morale meters until the next mail call! Mail was the tether that kept us connected to the real world back home while living in a surreal vacuum of underway insanity!!!

And to those Navy Ships the mail was always addressed to the Fleet Post Office (FPO) address USS Umpty Squat with the service member’s social security number right on the front of the envelope! But somewhere along the line the ol’ Department of Defense realized what a ‘Kabuki Goat Fuck’ that turned out to be with the introduction of identity theft and canceled that part of the program!!

Some of the addressees were pretty gauddamned hilarious…

IC2 Balls
Ops Dept / OI Div
FPO/AP 96698-2031

  or …

Ensign Moe Lester
Weps Dept / OF Div
FPO/AP 96698-2031

 … or …

 Seaman Stain
Deck Dept / 1st Div
FPO/AP 96698-2031

Barry McCockiner …  Mike Okhurtz… Jack Mehoff…   Justin Syder… etc… etc…

You get the picture!!!

And then there were the care packages! When you’re feeling isolated and the monotony is gett’n rather challenging… sometimes a good ol’ gift wrapped care package just for you is the secret combination to the world that was left behind!!

Kind of like the package I’d gotten on Westpac from dear ol’ Dad! It was postmarked Auburndale, Florida and had very nice packaging!! Dad, please let me know what them cookies were made of and their history because they belonged in a museum!! Can't help wondering if they were mistaken for the USS Constitution on its maiden voyage… somehow me Pappy dug’m up from somewhere in the backyard!! Whatever the case may be… THANK YOU for the thought anyway…  rest assured we could use them as anchors dumping trash over the side late at night!!!

But like always… the futures gotta put a wrench in the gears… a kink in the hose if you would! Some knucklehead came up with the idea of the twidgety widget of a computer thingamajig and voila… born was the instant e’mail!! Now this generation is into Xbox… I-umpty squats… & expounding endlessly on some mindless crap every fifteen minutes on the damned computer from ten thousand miles away like he’d never left home!!

That brings up a question… and the question is before the all mighty e-mail took away our mail call what kept us from snail mail’n classified information to our loved ones… comsec type of stuff?!? Well we used to have certain Chiefs & Officers who randomly went through our letters before we sent them out to prevent that kind’a thing… Sometimes we’d purposely delay sending out mail just to deny the enemy!! Now the computer looks for certain phrases or words… hell who knows maybe Comsec is being broken all the gauddamned time and we’re just to stupid to know better!!!

AAAH Hell… much of what we held dear is now all gone… along with our waistlines… hair… virility… just a few brain cells keep’n us going and reminding us of the things the younger generation could give two shits about!! But I’ll take my snail mail anyday!! It meant so much more… no matter how much you push the envelope, it’ll still be stationary!!!

Yep… mail was what kept us going… That’s my story and I’m stick’n to it!!!


  1. Totally agree...I remember the days in the Med when I got mail..totally made my day. When I didn't, dang near destroyed me! I used to subscribe to several magazines just to make sure I got mail most of the time! LOL. The worst day of boot camp I got an 11 page perfumed letter from my girlfriend and really made up for the crappy day!

  2. Oh yes the wonderful packages on westpac, the stale gum and dried out fruit and cans of potted meat or sausage! Oh the guy who used to sit in his underwear and bounce around on the floor, man I can't think of this name right now. I think he had a list of people who he wanted to harm. We were a peculiar bunch in that OPS Berthing.

  3. Mail call.. even though I'm a total tech head, I remember mail call so fondly. Amazing how a whole crew of destroymen can be at each others throats when you've gone 41 days without mail.. then to see that helo coming in with a single orange bag.. and an old BM1 standing on the 02 deck above the drop point wearing nothing but a bath towel, shower shoes, and a steel helmet while yelling at a scared shitless BM3 of what'll happen to him if he drops the damn mail in the water... oh yeah.. those where definitely the days :)

  4. I was a PC3 on the U.S.S. Samuel Gompers (AD-37) -aptly nicknamed "The Love Boat" because of the fairer sex aboard, myself included- during Desert Storm. All my shipmates made sure me and the other postal clerks stayed happy. They wanted to make sure their letters and packages didn't get "lost". lol. I had an affinity for Hershey's chocolate bars for a period of time, and this grizzled old Senior Chief would bring me one to the post office every day. He wanted to get his mail separate from the rest of his division, so he'd get it faster. Thanks for the great memories. I sure loved working the post office on ole Fat Sam.