Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Farewell Party Gift

Submarine wardrooms periodically have "hail and farewell" parties to welcome new officers reporting aboard and to say goodbye to officers who are transferring to shore duty. Traditionally, the officer who is leaving gets gag gifts for the other members of the wardroom, and all the members of the wardroom get gag gifts and tell stories and "roast" the outgoing guy.

Well... we're in decom.

On Thursday, we will haul down the national ensign for the last time, and the USS MINNEAPOLIS SAINT PAUL will become the EX-MINNEAPOLIS SAINT PAUL. EVERYBODY is leaving all at once, so we had to have one last Mighty MSP wardroom farewell party and shared gag gifts all around.

I had to share with you the gift that the CO got for me. Why? (a) Because it's really funny, and (b) because it's directly related to my blog. He created a book. Well, he took a book and made up a new dust jacket for it to make it look like a different book.

On the front page is the title:

The Worst Kept Secret On the Net

First he asked the assembled audience of officers and wives, "Show of hands - who reads the Blunoz blog?" All the hands went up. That actually kinda surprised me. I by no means have tried to hide my blog, and I've pointed a couple of blog posts out to people looking for information about specific hikes or touristy activities around the island. I just didn't think EVERYONE found my ramblings interesting enough to read on a regular basis.

Wait... maybe they don't (find my ramblings interesting enough to read on a regular basis). Maybe they just didn't want to hurt my feelings by NOT raising their hand or saying they DON'T read my blog.

This brings up the topic of why I started this blog in the first place.

Again, the MSP has been in an unusual circumstance due to our change of homeport from Norfolk to Pearl Harbor. Normally, a new guy would report aboard, and he could get all the local gouge on things to do from the guys who have already been on board a while.

When the boat, the crew, and all the families all move to Hawaii at the same time, we're all new to the island and none of us know what there is to do or see.

I started off writing emails to all the guys in the wardroom to tell them about each cool new place we went on the island. In case you hadn't noticed though, I tend to be a wee bit long winded with my computer keyboard. At one point, I said to myself, "Self, suppose the rest of the wardroom doesn't want to read all your gibberish about hiking, geocaching, snorkeling, restaurants, and stuff around the island?"

So I thought of the blog as a way I could write about our adventures around Hawaii, keep our family and friends across the country and around the world up to date on what we've been up to, post some photos for the grandparents, and if people wanted to read it to get ideas for fun things to do in Hawaii, then they were welcome to read it. If they didn't care, then I wasn't clogging up their email inbox.

Next, the CO shared with everyone that he gets regular phone calls and emails from people outside the command asking, "Did you know Kevin writes a blog?" Yeeesss, I know, I know.

Then he read the back cover of the book dust jacket for us. Here it is for your amusement.
Who is Blunoz?

Blunoz is a source of information unrivaled in cyberspace. Indeed, it is easier to list what not to ask him than to catalog the numerous topics on which he is a self-proclaimed expert. Topics not to ask Blunoz about include:
  • Food other than Mexican
  • How to survive with a MSG allergy
  • Negotiating with a bank
  • Movies that do not include time travel
  • How to best time your arrival - like community pools, ocean restaurants, and Diamond Head
  • How to prepare a house so that the packers do not take the things you do not want packed
  • Explaining to police what exactly is geocaching
  • How to ask someone else to take a photo of yourself
  • Dealing with mothers ahead of you in line
  • Dealing with detailers "Yyyyyeah, hi, about that job in Hawaii I was going to sent you to? Yyyyeah, not so much..."
  • Credit advice
I think he wrote a pretty good summary of my blog so far. My personal favorite was the "How to ask someone else to take a photo of yourself."

Traditional Blunoz Self Portrait
Lisbon, Portugal
March 2007

Thanks for the laugh, Captain. :-)


C said...

Hate to say it, but that must have been one wicked long H&F. Great gift, though.

Caffienated Cowgirl said...

I am still laughing at this post :)