Being a sailor at sea and tells many hours of boredom. You have to do something to keep yourself entertained. This chapter will examine some of the diversions that sailors used to pass the time.
My ship had a weight room. I dabbled in weightlifting but I never got very good at it and I didn’t persist with it. However some people got a lot of good I had a visiting the weight room. I would like to hear from those people.
One time my stress level became such that I experienced a break out of the skin on my face and neck. These small bumps or boils, I’m not exactly sure what you would call them, but they appeared a lot of it dude due to stress. I’ve visited medical and they gave me permission to grow a beard. That was the only time in my life where I actually went without shaving for several weeks. Until just recently.
Or one of the things that I did to cope with the stress was ride the exercise bicycle. There were times when I could not sleep. So I would get on the exercise bike that was near by to my building area and ride the bike until I got so tired I could sleep.
Occasionally I still have experienced times like that when I have a lot of things on my mind and it’s difficult to sleep. And sometimes even today I will get up and go outside and go for a bike ride or take a walk in the middle of the night. I’ve been known to walk around our town at 3 AM all by myself not another soul in sight. And it was the same way abort mission riding the bicycle. No one else was even aware that I was on that thing riding peddling just about every night. But for certain exercise helped.
Another thing that was popular on my ship was we have a computer lab for Macintosh computers. Someone donated them to the crew of our ship. I taught myself how to use graphic software to draw digitally. It was on those computers that I learned to use the ships electronic mail system. Yes we had email in 1991. It was an internal system that didn’t leave the ship that we could message from one department to another with ease. We used software called Quik Mail.
are use the computers and their fancy laser printer to write letters home to my little sister. I thought I was a big shot using a laser printer. I remember seeing that for the first time and I could not believe the nice quality that the printer gave us.another thing I did with the computer, at the time there was a thing called hyper card that came with every Macintosh. HyperCard was in early version of hyper text. Later the World Wide Web also used hypertext. But in HyperCard you could develop an application with graphics and buttons and clickable text that would help you navigate from page to page. It was a very early Proto type of right later became the World Wide Web. Some of my hyper cart cart projects were so big that they could not be saved to a floppy disk. So I had to leave on the hard drives of the computers. But I had recorded sound effects from various videos that I shot a board ship and build a nice simulation of our ship. I basically taught myself a little bit about coding and user interface is.
Of course there are a number of games that we played. The two I remember most of playing it on the computer were strategic con quest, which was a simple work game and a game called net track. A Star Trek game and have battles with spaceships. And it was fine because you could play against someone in another office somewhere and have multiple people playing. I have no way of knowing for sure, but I believe the USS Missouri had one of the very first local area network’s aboard ship.
Our ship had a basketball court. I only played that once. Usually if there was a game going on it was dominated by the African American sailors. The one time that I played I think they let me play as a joke. But I wasn’t very and I didn’t come back.
We had a library on the ship the chapel on the ship. There were two chaplains a Protestant and Catholic chaplain. We had regular religious service. We had a barbershop a laundry ship store.
Every building compartment had a television with close circuit television. They would broadcast pre-recorded programs The television system was called site TV. A lot of places that had televisions also had VCRs where we could play our own games. Not games our own movies. If you were really fancy, you might have a laser disk player but those were not very popular. Mostly we watched VHS tapes.
Personal computers were extremely rare. Mostly the computers were assigned to various administrative offices. If you were lucky enough to work in one, you might have had one or two games that you could play on that computer during the office hours. But we did have a small computer lab with a dozen or so machines it was called the computer learning center. And the IT office was called Monet after the French artist, a pun on the Missouri network.
I don’t remember a lot of people playing board games although they may have played chess or checkers. Occasionally there were card games. Many times we just like to sit around and bullshit. A favorite past time we had was to play a game we called trivia. This was before no I take that back at the time trivial pursuit was popular but we didn’t have that game. So we just made up our own trivia questions trying to stump each other. It was a lot of fun playing this game before Google. We had no way of knowingwe had no way of knowing if he could tell us the truth or not. If we were stumped, we had to take his word for it. But sometimes we remembered after he told us the answer
We wrote lots of letters to the writers of the any sailor letters. I spent a lot of time writing letters. I just think if I had access to more of the digital tools that we have now, I probably would’ve spent a great deal of time