Wednesday, July 2, 2014

'Filipino Monkey'

Anyone remember the long nights standing midwatch while steaming in some imaginary ‘OP’ box in the middle of nowhere…  turning circles on station until 0700 in the morning only to resume another plan of the day?!? The radar operator occasionally checking his repeater scope for contacts looking for bad guys, mines, bonka boats, floating VW bugs… or signs of Noah’s Ark?!?

It seemed nobody really gave a rat’s ass about anything but course and speed at 0100 hours in the middle of nowhere! The Watch Officer did everything in his power to stay awake while a few FCs & EWs are causing mayhem over in the corner… about that time the TAO tells them to knock the shit off!! Other times we’d listen in on the bullshit jamboree going on over the sound powered phones between the lookouts and the bridge… let me tell you, that got quite interesting when the ladies came aboard!!!

Yes, if nothing else, the midwatch was boring enough to spawn a full laundry list of accrued indiscretions stupid exploits and unscrupulous deeds! On nights when we couldn’t figure out how to occupy our simple minds the Watch Sup would say…

“Just do your best and let the rough end drag…”

Well, we were all look’n pretty gauddamned rough at zero dark thirty in the morning… the midwatch can nibble at a crackerjack’s soul making you feel like the walking dead over a period of weeks or months!! If we weren’t writing in Bitch Logs or taping ‘Kick Me In the Jimmie’ across some sorry sap’s back while passed out drooling over their console then we weren’t upholding our duty as United States Servicemen… and Women!! I once heard it put so eloquently…

“It’s the law of nature, water is wet, what goes up must come down, and sailors hate the midwatch!”

… If you’d been there and done that, you’d know exactly what I’m talk’n about!!!

That sort’a bullshit made those long boring nights a bit more palpable! Sounds stupid now, but at the time it was a riot!! It provided us young’ns at the lower end of the food chain a break from the monotonous gyrations of the radar repeaters and the blue lights that regulated the watch cycles!! Being on the forward position of the world’s troubles was usually dull as hell… not a whole lot of difference from watch’n paint dry!! But on occasion an amazing thing would happen… while on the bridge to bridge radio broadcast… ever so often in a Borat like voice…

“Filipino Monkey! Filipino Monkey… HeHeHe…!!”

… Yes, original Monkey Business hijack’n the airwaves!!!

It happens all over the globe but I’d only heard it in the Fifth Fleet area! It’s Hilarity on the High Seas!! I know, I know… somewhat unprofessional, but it’s not one of our guys… that’s for gauddamned sure!! And to just sit and listen to this fella go on can really spice up the moment if you know what I mean!!!

This fella’s like a cross between the Jerky Boys and A Shock Jock on New York Radio… offensive but funny as hell!!!

I’d heard a story about a fella in the Med who overheard two Pakistani Merchant Ships conversing on ‘16’ when outta nowhere…

“This is Filipino Monkey… Filipino Monkey… Indian I can’t see you but I can smell you!”

… to which the response was…

“You bastard… I’m not Indian… I’m Pakistani… I kill You!”

Yes, the mêlée can be hilarious with more in store…

“Filipino Monkey… Filipino Monkey… Go Fuck a Goat Ass!!!”

… or …

“This is Filipino Monkey… I like sex… you like sex? I like sexy porno…!”

… and when he hears a female OOD on the air…

“Hey American Girl… You make Sexy Time with Filipino Monkey…?”

Yes he was full of fun and games on the radio for standard late night entertainment underway! Who knows who the ‘Filipino Monkey’ really is?!? He could be a myriad of individuals from around the world… probably just a mutual call sign between pranksters from Sea to shining Sea!! One thing’s for gauddamn sure… he’s been up to his shenanigans for thirty some odd years or more!!!

Yes, this mystery ranks right up there with the likes of the all so elusive ‘Sea Bat’, the ‘Phantom Shitter’ or the ‘Lost City of Atlantis’ for that matter…!!  I guess we’ll never really know!! Maybe if we just leave it up to those meddling kids… the ones running the boat these days with their XBOXs and I’phones, hell they got gadgets with superman like vision these days that can see through walls … it sure beats the hell outta me?!!!? 


  1. Collect all your stories and put them into a book and publish it on

  2. That was always my intention with my blog, Stories of the Cold War, to tap other peoples stories, get enough, then publish. But so far, I only arraigned to purchased one from someone else.

  3. Holy crap I just had flashbacks Comiskey Guard in 02... We had a female JO do interrogation of the dhows there. The moment she started speaking on the bridge to bridge... The filipino monkeys came out of the woodworks. I'm sure we had three or four different ships start talking to us.

  4. We had the Filipino Monkey strike in the night from the STROG eastward

  5. Alright, It's obvious none of you know where the term Filipino Monkey comes from. Here is the real story.
    I was stationed on a Guided missile Cruiser that left San Diego to go on a WestPack cruise in 1973, the USS Horne, DLG30. I was assigned to the Aft Engine room. There were a lot of new shipmates on their first cruise. Young kids from everywhere in the country, but most from some rural area.
    As we crossed the Pacific, the Old Salts would talk about how they couldn't wait to get to Subic Bay and go Monkey Hunting. Naturally, the young bucks would join in and tell about how they grew up hunting and beg to be taken on the hunt. One Chief was assigned to co-ordinate this adventure, and every payday would collect $10 from the rookies for the big hunt.
    All the way across the Pacific, we heard tales about the past hunts and asked questions. What kind of weapon, .22? Shotgun? Well, you got yer choice, but evidently the veterans used Blow Guns. Wow! We couldn't wait!
    Finally, we pulled into Subic Bay and scheduled the hunt for the first day in port, as most everybody had Liberty after the long journey. We all left the ship, walked out the Main gate and got into a Jeepney taxi. As exited as we were to get on with the hunt, the Old Salts insisted we stop for a drink in this exotic bustling town.
    We all walked into the bar. The Chief laid out all the money, grabbed you by the shoulder and handed your ass over to a Filapina Bar Girl Hostess and said "Here's your Monkey kid".
    Best hunt ever!

  6. The Hunt:

  7. Love the "Filipino Monkey". First heard it while on OOD watch during Desert Shield/Storm. Even did it myself a few times, when the Skipper was not on the bridge, for the fun of it. I've done it a couple of times around the Chesapeake while fishing.....just to fuck with the USCG.