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9 Naval Aviation Slang Terms You Never Knew You Needed
Slang is much a part of the military as MREs, physical fitness tests, and shitty base housing. Each branch and unit has its own verbal shorthand, and Navy aviators are no exception — even though much of the colorful language deployed by pilots is a shorthand for expletives you can use over radio transmissions without getting slammed for misconduct.
Task & Purpose scoured the web to find these nine fantastic naval aviation slang words that you might consider adding to your lexicon in a pinch.
Alpha mike foxtrot
“Goodbye” is such a dull way to part with someone. That’s where Alpha Mike Foxtrot — “Adios, motherfucker” — comes in. So the next time you peel out of formation or just want to bid your pals adieu, feel free to drop this clever little word bomb.
The term was originally coined to describe a phantom or a ghost in 16th century English. For Navy pilots, however, a bogey is an unidentified aircraft spotted in the sky. The word is typically used to describe an indistinguishable unfriendly plane. Though this is unsubstantiated, we’d also like to think of any enemy aircraft as a proverbial booger that needs to be picked and flicked by the Navy.
Do you like ice cream? So do naval aviators. We don’t know if you’ve ever seen someone operate a soft-serve ice cream machine, but it looks like, well, a pile of… dog shit? You see where this is going: According to Jalopnik, “Pilots always know if there is a good batch of dog.”
In the spaghetti
One of our favorites, “in the spaghetti” is what you are when you catch one of the four arresting wires on the flight deck. You want to land in the spaghetti. This is one instance wherein you don’t want to lay off the sauce. Pun [obviously] intended.
If you’re picturing rats scampering around in the middle of the night looking for cheese, you’re not far off from guessing what this slang term means. Short for “midnight rations,” it’s the long-traditional late-night galley hop that a pilot takes before heading out on a nighttime flight. Sorry, Taco Bell: The Navy invented fourthmeal.
The ship that bore your aircraft has a fitting radio name: Mother. She’s home. Be good to your mom and she’ll make sure you get back to the states in one piece. We, however, prefer to imagine an aircraft carrier as more of a mothership, ferrying UFOs from place to place.
You know when you get nervous, and your whole body tenses up from top to, well… bottom? If you end up in a hairy in-flight situation, the pucker factor increases exponentially, hence this useful term for when things go sour.
No, it’s not a place where you keep your potatoes while you work out at the gym. The spud locker is the part of an aircraft carrier deck where you don’t want to land. If you hit it, you’ve flown in way too low while trying to bring down your aircraft.
When shit hits the fan, an operation can go “tits up.” But we all know it’s not exactly kosher to shout that over the radio. “Tango uniform” is a much safer bet. If you want, you can imagine Navy pilots dancing around in their quarters in their flight suits. But that’d be a very different kind of tango uniform.
ANKARA (Reuters) - President Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday Turkey would press on with its offensive into northeastern Syria and "crush the heads of terrorists" if a deal with Washington on the withdrawal of Kurdish fighters from the area were not fully implemented.
Erdogan agreed on Thursday in talks with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence a five-day pause in the offensive to allow time for the Kurdish fighters to withdraw from a "safe zone" Turkey aims to establish in northeast Syria near the Turkish border.
President Trump stoked confusion Friday by declaring the U.S. has "secured the Oil" in the Middle East amid continued fallout from the Turkish invasion of northern Syria that he enabled by pulling American troops out of the region.
It wasn't immediately clear what the president was talking about, as there were no publicly known developments in Syria or elsewhere in the Middle East relating to oil. White House aides did not return requests for comment.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. State Department investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while she was secretary of state has found no evidence of deliberate mishandling of classified information by department employees.
The investigation, the results of which were released on Friday by Republican U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley's office, centered on whether Clinton, who served as the top U.S. diplomat from 2009 to 2013, jeopardized classified information by using a private email server rather than a government one.
BYESVILLE — A Meadowbrook High School student removed from class last Friday for being intoxicated is now facing a felony charge after allegedly threatening to shoot people if the previous incident harmed his chances to join a branch of the United States military.
Gabriel D. Blackledge, 18, of Cambridge, is facing one count of making terrorist threats, a third-degree felony, filed by the Guernsey County Sheriff's Office on Thursday. Blackledge remained incarcerated in the county jail on a $250,000 bond with no 10 percent allowed, according to the sheriff's office's website.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said on Friday that no U.S. troops will take part in enforcing the so-called safe zone in northern Syria and the United States "is continuing our deliberate withdrawal from northeastern Syria."
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan earlier on Friday said Turkey will set up a dozen observation posts across northeast Syria, insisting that a planned "safe zone" will extend much further than U.S. officials said was covered under a fragile ceasefire deal.