USS Sierra Veterans Association

Nautical Humor

Sent in by Capt Weill: 

A cargo ship full of red paint was out on the ocean, sailing east. Another cargo ship, this one full of blue paint, was sailing west. The two ships collided head-on. Everyone survived, but both crews are still marooned.

The Mechanic

A gynecologist was getting sick of his job and decided that he needed a career change. He’d always enjoyed tinkering with engines so thought he’d become a marine diesel mechanic.

So he went along to marine mechanics school and the final test was to strip the diesel engine completely and reassemble it – obviously back into perfect working order. So our gynecologist friend did the test and anxiously awaited the result.

The day he received the results he got quite a surprise, he got 150%! He quickly phoned the instructor and queried the mark.

The instructor said, “No no that’s right. First I gave you 50% for stripping down the engine-a very thorough job. Next I gave you 50% for reassembling it – a fantastic job really. Then I gave you a 50% bonus for doing it all through the exhaust port.”

The Pirate Way

A sailor meets a pirate in a bar, and they take turns recounting their adventures at sea. Noting the pirate’s peg-leg, hook, and eye patch The sailor asks “So, how did you end up with the peg-leg?”

The pirate replies “We was caught in a monster storm off the cape and a giant wave swept me overboard. Just as they were pullin’ me out, a school of sharks appeared and one of ’em bit me leg off”.

“Blimey!” said the sailor. “What about the hook”?

“Ahhhh…”, mused the pirate, “We were boardin’ a trader ship, pistols blastin’ and swords swingin’ this way and that. In the fracas me hand got chopped off.”

“Zounds!” remarked the sailor. “And how came ye by the eye patch”?

“A seagull droppin’ fell into me eye”, answered the pirate.

“You lost your eye to a seagull dropping?” the sailor asked incredulously.

“Well…” said the pirate, “ was me first day with the hook.”

Singing Sailors

Q: Why do opera singers make good sailors?

A: Because they can handle high seas. (high C’s)

From: Guy Grafius

Gordon Died

Gordon died. So Susan went to the local paper to put a notice in the obituaries. The gentleman at the counter, after offering his condolences, asked Susan what she would like to say about Gordon.

Susan replied, “You just put, ‘Gordon died.'”

The gentleman, somewhat perplexed, said, “That’s it? Just ‘Gordon died?’

Surely, there must be something more you’d like to say about Gordon. If it’s money you’re concerned about, the first five words are free. We really should say something more.”

So Susan pondered for a few minutes and finally said, “O.K., then. You put ‘Gordon died. Sailboat for sale.'”

The Islander

The purpose of work…..???

The American businessman was at the pier of a small South Pacific Island village when a small proa with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small proa was a dorrado several large grouper. The American complimented the Islander on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.

The Islander replied, “Only a little while.”

The American then asked why didn’t he stay out longer and catch more fish?

The Islander said he had enough to support his family’s immediate needs.

The American then asked, “But what do you do with the rest of your time?”

The fisherman said, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a late afternoon nap with my wife, Helia, stroll into the village each evening where I sip rum and play guitar with my friends, I have a full and busy life.”

The American scoffed, “I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat with the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small fishing village and move to Australia, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise.”

The South Seas fisherman asked, “But, how long will this all take?”

To which the American replied, “15-20 years.”

“But what then?”

The American laughed and said that’s the best part. “When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions.”

“Millions, really? Then what?”

The American said, “Then you would retire. Move to a small fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a late afternoon nap with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings here you could sip rum and play your guitar with your friends.”


The Admiral

A Navy Admiral (*which Navy will go unspecified) was being court-martialed for an incident where he was found to be chasing a young lady through the hallways of the hotel in which they were both staying.

Neither of them were wearing anything. One of the charges was that of “being out of uniform.”

The Admiral’s lawyer argued that the officer was not out of uniform, as the regulations read: “A Naval officer must be at all times be appropriately attired for the activity in which he is engaged.”

The Admiral was acquitted.

A sailor ashore after 9 month at sea.

A sailor who smelled like a distillery flopped on a subway seat next to a priest. The sailor’s tie was stained, his face was plastered with red lipstick, and a half empty bottle of gin was sticking out of his torn coat pocket. He opened his newspaper and began reading. After a few minutes, the sailor turned to the priest and asked,

 “Say, Father, what causes arthritis?”

“Mister, it’s caused by loose living, being with cheap, wicked women, too much alcohol and a contempt for your fellow man.”

“Well, I’ll be damned,” the sailor muttered, returning to his paper.

The priest, thinking about what he had said, nudged the seaman and apologized. “I’m very sorry. I didn’t mean to come on so strong. How long have you had arthritis?”

“I don’t have it, Father. I was just reading here that the pope does.”

Captain Bravo.

Long ago there lived a brave seafarer named Captain Bravo. He was a courageous man who showed no fear in facing his enemies. One day, while sailing the seven seas, a look-out spotted a pirate ship, and the crew became frantic. Captain Bravo bellowed, “Bring me my red shirt.” The First Mate quickly retrieved the captain’s red shirt, and, after donning the shirt, the captain led his crew into battle and defeated the pirates.

 Later on, the look-out spotted not one, but two pirate ships. The captain again howled for his red shirt and once again vanquished the pirates. That evening, all the men sat around on the deck recounting the day’s triumphs, and one of them asked the captain: “Sir, why did you call for your red shirt before each battle?” The captain replied: “If I am wounded in the attack, my crew won’t notice my bleeding and will continue to fight, unafraid.” All of the men sat in silence and marveled at the courage of their captain.

As dawn came the next morning, the look-out spotted not one, not two, but TEN pirate ships approaching. The rank and file all stared at the captain and waited for his usual request. Captain Bravo almly shouted: “Bring me my brown pants!”

God’s help.

A guy is in a sailboat on the ocean when a storm comes up. A powerboat pulls up to him and offers to tow him to safety. He says “I am a devout man, I know that God will save me – you go ahead into shore.”

The storm gets a worse. A coast guard patrol boat pull up to him and offers to tow him to safety. He says again “I am a devout man, I know that God will save me – you go ahead into shore.”

The storm is getting terrible now – waves splash over his little boat. A helicopter comes out hovering over the boat and drops a ladder down to the man. He waves them off, saying again “I am a devout man, I know that God will save me”

The storm rages out of control, the man is swept off the boat and drowns. Being a devout man, he goes up to heaven – where he meets God. He asks of God: “I have worshipped you all my life, yet you did not save me from the storm, why?” God replies: “Dumbass. I sent a powerboat to get you, I sent the Coast Guard to get you, I sent helicopters out to save you….”

Jumper Cables.

A guy brings his boat up to a restaurant dock to eat lunch. The dock hand says “I’m sorry, sir, but I can’t let you dine here today. This establishment has a neck tie policy, and you are not wearing one.

The guy says “Of course I don’t have a tie on, I’m on a boat!” “Well, go down below and put one on” “I don’t HAVE one!” The dock hand, not wanting to turn away a customer, says “Well, why don’t you just find something that approximates a tie. That should be O.K.”

After some time, the boater comes out with a pair of jumper cables. “This is all I could find”

Sighing, the deck hand says “OK, I’ll let you in with those, but just don’t start anything”

The Thirsty Sailor.

A thirsty sailor runs from his boat to the nearest bar and shouts to the bartender, “Give me twenty shots of your best scotch, quick!”
The bartender pours out the shots, and the sailor drinks them as fast as he can.
The bartender is very impressed and exclaims, “Wow. I never saw anybody drink that fast.”
The sailor replies, “Well, you’d drink that fast too, if you had what I have.”
The bartender says, “Oh my God! What is it? What do you have ?”
“Fifty cents !”

The Scuba Diver.

One day, a scuba diver was enjoying the aquatic world 20 feet below sea level. Looking around, he saw a guy at the same depth without any scuba gear on, so, he decided to go down another 20 feet.

He took another look around, and low and behold, there was the same guy. I can’t believe it, thought the scuba diver, I bet he can’t go down another 25 feet.

So the diver goes down another 25 feet and, again, there is the guy! Totally amazed, the scuba diver pulls out a chalkboard and writes, “How the heck are you able to go so deep and stay under so long without any equipment?”

The guy grabs the chalkboard and writes, “I’m drowning you moron!”

Reflecting on the Past.

An old sea captain was sitting on a bench near the wharf when a young man walked up and sat down. The young man had spiked hair and each spike was a different color…. green, red, orange, blue, and yellow.
After a while the young man noticed that the captain was staring at him.

“What’s the matter old timer, never done anything wild in your life?

The old captain replied, “Got drunk once and married a parrot. I was just wondering if you were my son!”

The Sand Bar.

A sailor, after running aground on a sand bar, paid a passing fisherman fifty dollars to pull him off with his boat.

After he was off the bar, he said to the fisherman, “At those prices, I should think you could make a real living pulling people off night and day.”

“Can’t,” replied the fisherman. “At night I haul sand for the bar.”



A young woman was very depressed and decided to end it all by throwing herself into the ocean. Just as she was about to do so though, a young handsome sailor ran down to the shore and talked her out of it. “Look, you are young. There is so much you could do with you life.” said the sailor. “In fact, my ship is sailing for Europe in the morning. I’ll smuggle you on board and make sure you have plenty of food. If you’ll just help me pass the lonely evening hours, I will get you over to Europe where you can start a new life.”

That sounded great to the young women and took up living secretly in a room on board ship. Every evening the sailor would bring her some food and the two would spend the night together.

After about a week of this though, the ship’s captain discovered the woman hiding in the sailor’s cabin. “What are you doing in here?” asked the captain. “Well, I have a deal with one of your sailors. He is smuggling me over to Europe, and he’s screwing me.”

“I’ll say!” replied the captain. “This is the Staten Island Ferry.”


A Sailor’s Parrot

This fella has a dock mate going out of town for Thanksgiving and accepts the job of watching his parrot over the holiday. Problem is, this parrot swears like a sailor, and this guy’s a quiet, conservative type and before long the bird’s foul mouth is driving him crazy. It’s now the day before Thanksgiving, and he’s having guests over! The guy snaps and grabs the bird, shakes him and yells, “QUIT IT!!!” This, of course, just makes the bird mad and he swears more than ever. Then the guy gets mad and says, “OK for you!” and locks the bird in a kitchen cabinet. This really aggravates the bird and he claws and scratches, and when the guy finally lets him out, the bird cuts loose with a stream of vulgarities that would make a veteran sailor blush!

At that point, the guy is so mad that he throws the bird into the freezer. For the first few seconds there is a terrible din. The bird kicks and claws and thrashes. Then it suddenly gets very quiet. At first the guy just waits, but then he starts to think that the bird may be hurt. After a couple of minutes of silence, he’s so worried that he opens up the freezer door. The bird calmly climbs onto the man’s outstretched arm and says, “Awfully sorry about the trouble I gave you old chap. I will do my best to improve my vocabulary from now on.”

The man is astounded. He can’t understand the transformation that has come over the parrot. “So, by the way,” the parrot says, looking nervously back towards the freezer, “what did the turkey do?”


There was this male engineer, on a cruise ship in the Caribbean for the first time. It was wonderful, the experience of his life. He was being waited on hand an foot. But, it did not last. A Hurricane came up unexpectedly. The ship went down almost instantly.

The man found himself, he knew not how, swept up on the shore of an island. There was nothing else anywhere to be seen. No person, no supplies, nothing. The man looked around. There were some bananas and coconuts, but that was it. He was desperate, and forlorn, but decided to make the best of it. So for the next four months he ate bananas, drank coconut juice and mostly looked to the sea mightily for a ship to come to his rescue.

One day, as he was lying on the beech stroking his beard and looking for a ship, he spotted movement out of the corner of his eye. Could it be true, was it a ship? No, from around the corner of the island came this rowboat. In it was the most gorgeous woman he had ever seen, or at least seen in 4 months. She was tall, tanned, and her blond hair flowing in the sea breeze gave her an almost ethereal quality. She spotted him also as he was waving and yelling and screaming to get her attention. She rowed her boat towards him.

In disbelief, he asked, “Where did you come from? How did you get here”?

She said, “I rowed from the other side of the island. I landed on this island when my cruise ship sank”

“Amazing,” he said, “I didn’t know anyone else had survived. How many of you are there? Where, did you get the rowboat? You must have been really lucky to have a rowboat wash-up with you?”

“It is only me,”she said, “and the rowboat didn’t wash up, nothing else did.”

“Well then,” said the man, “how did you get the rowboat?”

“I made the rowboat out of raw material that I found on the island,” replied the woman. “The oars were whittled from Gum tree branches, I wove the bottom from Palm branches, and the sides and stern came from a Eucalyptus tree”.

“But, but,” asked the man, “what about tools and hardware, how did you do that?”

“Oh, no problem,” replied the woman, “on the south side of the island there is a very unusual strata of alluvial rock exposed. I found that If I fired it to a certain temperature in my kiln, it melted into forgeable ductile iron. I used that for tools, and used the tools to make the hardware. But, enough of that,” she said. “Where do you live?”

At last the man was forced to confess that he had been sleeping on the beach.

“Well, let’s row over to my place,” she said. So they both got into the rowboat and left for her side of island.

The woman easily rowed them around to a wharf that led to the approach to her place. She tied up the rowboat with a beautifully woven hemp rope. They walked up a stone walk and around a Palm tree, there stood an exquisite bungalow painted in blue and white.

“It’s not much,” she said, “but I call it home. Sit down please, would you like to have a drink?”

“No,” said the man, “one more coconut juice and I will puke.”

“It won’t be coconut juice,” the woman replied, “I have a still, how about a Pina Colada?” Trying to hide his continued amazement, the man accepted, and they sat down on her couch to talk.

After a while, and they had exchanged their stories, the woman asked, “Tell me, have you always had a beard?”

“No,” the man replied, “I was clean shaven all of my life, and even on the cruise ship”.

“Well if you would like to shave, there is a man’s razor upstairs in the cabinet in the bathroom.” So, the man, no longer questioning anything, went upstairs to the bath room. There in the cabinet was a razor made from a bone handle, two shells honed to a hollow ground edge were fastened on to its end inside of a swivel mechanism. The man shaved, showered and went back down stairs..

“You look great,” said the woman, “I think I will go up and slip into something more comfortable.” So she did.

And, the man continued to sip his Pina Colada. After a short time, the woman returned wearing fig leafs strategically positioned and smelling faintly of gardenia.

“Tell me,” she asked, “we have both been out here for a very long time with no companionship. You know what I mean. Have you been lonely, is there anything that you really miss? Something that all men and woman need.
Something that it would be really nice to have right now.”

“Yes there is,” the man replied, as he moved closer to the woman while fixing a winsome gaze upon her. “Tell me … Do you happen to have an Internet connection?”


While sports fishing off the Florida coast, a tourist capsized his boat. He could swim, but his fear of alligators kept him clinging to the overturned craft. Spotting an old beachcomber standing on the shore, the tourist shouted, “Are there any gators around here?”

“Naw,” the man hollered back, “they ain’t been around for years!”

Feeling safe, the tourist started swimming leisurely toward the shore. About halfway there he asked the guy, “How’d you get rid of the gators?”

“We didn’t do nothin’,” the beachcomber said.

“Really?” said the tourist.

The beachcomber added, “The sharks got ’em.”


This is the transcript of an ACTUAL radio conversation of a US naval ship with Canadian authorities off the coast of Newfoundland in January, 1998. 

**** Radio conversation released by the Chief of Naval Operations 30-1-98**** 

Americans: Please divert your course 15 degrees to the North to avoid a collision. 

Canadians: Recommend you divert YOUR course 15 degrees to the South to avoid a collision. 

Americans: This is the Captain of a US Navy ship. I say again, divert YOUR course. 

Canadians: No. I say again, you divert YOUR course. 


Canadians: This is the lighthouse. Your call.