So, its almost the end of the first week of class. Not much has happened, been learning about IC systems, Control systems and the like. Not bad, not THAT much information yet really. I have been holding my own as class leader, no real errors on my part, save for having left a stack of papers on a table over night.
I had to have a chat with one of my classmates. We all make fun of him a lot, because he is what we call a shitbag. I know that just sounds mean, but thats really all there is to it. There are some people who have no credibility, integrity or real pride in what we do. These people are given the name "shitbag" This particular sailor, (whom i shall just refer to as ETSA Stooge) smuggled classified information out of out schoolhouse at our last base. Not with malicious intent - he wanted to study at home. This is of course still a security violation, so he got caught, lied about how he got it, blamed it on his room mate. The command was nice enough to let him go with writing as essay about espionage and how it has effected the united states. Stooge, being the genius that he is, decided it was a good idea to copy and paste - directly- a wikipedia page on the subject. Senior Chief immediately noticed it and Stooge was a hairs breadth from being kicked out of the navy. For some reason they decided to keep him.
That's a rather long explanation as to why we all give him a hard time - also understand that we as a class got in a lot of trouble for that as well. "One crew, one screw" mentality. Anyways, Stooge has other problems to include random interjections of complete nonsense into conversations that are totally out of his element, SUPREME brown-nosing, and top it all off with zero integrity.
Stooge, this week finally had enough of us making fun of him and flipped out. I pulled him aside, calmed him down and then had a meeting with him last night to talk about why this happens. Long story short, i made a deal with him. I explained that we continue to make fun of him because he always draws negative attention to himself and cannot admit it when he is wrong.
I gave him two simple instructions:
1) Talk less, listen more. I have discovered this makes people like you a lot more.
2) Own-up! Its okay to be wrong, but trying to cover it up makes you look far worse than just being wrong.
Reluctantly, and rather dismissively he agreed to try it for a day. Not to my surprise - it worked. Stooge kept quiet for the most part. I think one comment was said to him all day. At lunch i asked him how it was working for him.
"My idea worked." He said.
.................. this is where i sucked it up and let him think that it was his idea... i guess i don't really care, as long as he gets along. This however tells you a little about his character. *sigh*
Anyways, I explained the situation to my instructor the first time that Stooge flipped out, and let him know that i would handle it so he and/or the chain of command didnt have to. Once I updated him on our meeting and the progress today he said that i was a very good class-leader and that i am setting the bar very high.
--- that felt about as good as master chief complimenting me on my "Darth Vader" shiny boots.
The sucky part is that he informed me i might be replaced as class leader, not for poor performance - but because we have a 3rd class petty officer (ET3) in our class. He will have to assume leadership roles on the boat before I do, since he is one rank higher than myself, So they want to give him the practice. But ET1 assured me that i had been performing very well in my role.
Also! I bumped in to the navigator for my crew today, that's the officer directly in charge of my division on the boat. surprised me, but he remembered my name. I guess i made an impression trying to meet my division early.
Last night i purchased a clip-board, one that opens up and stores stuff. I also bought a white, dry-erase board and super-glued the poo out of it to the back of the clipboard. Now i have a clipboard, in which i store my notebook and it has the board on the back. The whiteboard was recommended to me by the ET class LCPO at Groton. The reason being that in order to earn our dophins -the (ss) designator- we have to learn a lot of schematics and blue-prints, the board lets us practice. Thus far i am the only one i have seen to actually do it. Then again, i cant even start to earn my dolphins until i report to my boat.
I was informed by our class commander (ET1) that i am "that guy". I had to inquire what he had meant by that because to me, "that guy" would be the dude at a party who gets to drunk and pukes on the hot girls in the swimming pool. He informed me that i was a "go-getter, minus the dick-sucking." I guess thats a compliment... setting the bar. I assume he means I'm doing my best without trying to suck up.
"I dont like suck-ups and i can't abide kiss-asses." ~Gene Hackman, Crimson Tide.
I agree with the above statement. I have met a few more people from my boat this week. Including the leave coordinator, a YNSA. That is an excellent person to get in good with. He can choose to forget you went on leave, resulting in you having more leave days saved up for next time. Also met an MT who is apparently a shitbag. Self-proclaimed. He has been on the boat a year and a half, hasnt been out on a deployment (because the boat was getting refueled, it takes several months) and is still a non-qual. I think the only reason he is still on the crew is because they have been in refit - so its harder, but its still possible. A few guys in my division got qualified after their last sea-trial a few months ago. I also met a CS2 on my crew who was very nice, had a decent attitude which is always good.
Anyways! I have been slacking on my duty-section qualifications. I will have to get on those this weekend, probably some late night UIs (under-instruction, where you learn how to stand a watch).
Got to play around in a Ships Control Center today. Simulator wasn't working until my group was done, but it was kinda cool. All real equipment. Im so excited to get out there and kick some ass.