Most of the men who go down to the sea in ships at one time or another cross the line. The line means a whole lot to these men; there is a venerable air and a patriarchal feeling that permeates the breast of an old shellback as he nears the 30th parallel.
For the landlubber aboard, and that will be YOU, there is a sense of fear and bewilderment. Once it is known that the course will cross the line there is definite evidence of preparedness for the inquisition to come. Annapolis and Reserve alike either receive or dish it out.
Each Shellback must prove his right too sit on that side. Many a genuine Shellback has been refused by his comrades simply because he could not produce his certificate or because the certificate was discredited by the high court of Shellbacks.
Once Davy Jones has appeared aboard and it is known that Neptunus Rex and his staff will board the ship the next day, the great event is under way. For approximately 24 hours the landlubbers go through h--
Court Convenes on Carrier
On a carrier with its huge flight deck the Shellbacks really go to town. As you know, each pretending Shellback and each landlubber must appear before the high court. During your stay at the school, you have been warned that it would be a good thing for you to know what Knibbling Plus were. You were told that you had not reached the proper age.
Oldster Eligible to Know all
For the Seniors and more appropriately for the Quickies the time has come. On your cap device there are two hands on the torch the sea Hous are bowed, and the dolphin has finished his dive. Neptunus Rex will soon become a reality.
Your summons before the high court will probably concern you more than an Awaiting Reporting S&A 1021. Two of our most eminent and revered masters, Shellbacks in high standing, offer the following letter from the Executive Officer's files for your education. Memorize its contents if you, too, wish to join the Navy's most honored fraternity, the Shellbacks.
From: Executive Officer
To: Ensign John TEETS
SUBJECT: Knibbling Pin. definition of
1. Your record on file in this office indicates that you have now become of age, and are therefore entitled to know the definition of Knibbling Pin.
2. The following is quoted for your information:
Symbol Number: X2
Stock Number: 1/4-K-000.9
Description: Propaedeutical, exanimate exemplification containing no ruthenium and although referred to in the halakah, not to be confused with bdellium.*
Unit: 1 Glumph
Unit Price: No Charge
Code Word: ERAHUMMMM
Note: Any activity issuing or receiving the above item will immediately burn prime accounting paper in order to prevent aid or comfort to the enemy. Storage precaution: Disintegrates and evaporates instantly when handled.
Occasional Usage: An aid to Knibbling the Knabs which you Knibble for a Knickle.
*Refer to Webster. F. W. Hesse