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September 1988

Ham on Wry

JONES, THE SHIP'S FIRST MATE got so drunk on shore-leave that he was totally out of it for the first day when the ship resumed its cruise. The next day while he was standing watch he glanced at the ship's log and was horrified to read: ". . .unfortunately, First Mate Jones was drunk all day." Jones sought out the Captain. "Captain, in all my years of sailing, this is the first time I have ever been too drunk to serve--do you suppose you could remove the notation from the log?"

The Captain replied, "You know the log cannot be changed." The First Mate said, "But with that on my record, I may have trouble ever getting a Captain's berth of my own."

"I can't help that," said the Captain remorselessly. "The statement is perfectly true, and that is the only thing we should be concerned with."

Whereupon, the First Mate returned to his duties and entered a notation of his own in the log: "Fortunately, Captain Simson was sober all day."

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