The Hunt for Red (Label) Marlboros
Troy D. Davidson, YN2(SS), USS Omaha SSN-692
Now, THIS is a Hong Kong, no $hitt@r!

I basked in the glow of the Hawaiian sun, as I stood Topside Watch, as the crew of the USS OMAHA (SSN-692),saluted and crossed the brow, stowing their belongings for WESTPAC.

Petty Officer "K" (let's call him), with illuminant, crimson hair, which made the sun look pale in comparison, stumbled, from the weight of a full sea bag, his way down the pier. He stopped at my watchstation to gladly announce, "Instead of sexy photos, my wife made a video for this deployment!" He even went as far as to show me his newest toy, a hand-held video recorder/camera. "I don't think I'm supposed to show any of this to anyone though."

"Duhhhhh," I thought.

Petty Officer K, was very fond of his new bride. In fact, he would offer to show his temptress in lingerie photos to anyone who would or would not ask about her. Not good or bad...that's just the way it was.

I promised Petty Officer K, that if ever I found this camera, I was going to watch it on the mess decks, then give it to goat locker, and finally to ward room. He laughed and continued across the brow.

Westpac had gone well and we were three days on station, during SPECOPS (would tell you more, but I would probably have to shoot you.) I, had been relieved from my Helmsman, eaten, and performing after-watch clean-up when .... I found IT. She lay there still and quietly, holding within her see-through shutters a video entitled, "Take Me Deep."

Yup, you guessed it, THE video camera, behind the door to the TDU room. I didn't want to touch it, or make too much noise, since we were rigged for "Shhhhhhhhh." However, I did go to the control room to boast and brag to Petty Officer K and all else I could legally distract, that I had found the video and shown it (in it's full kink) to my entire off-watch duty section, Officer of the Deck included.

Petty Officer K: No you didn't!

Davidson: Yes, I did.

Petty Officer K: Where was it, then?

Davidson: Behind the door of the TDU room.

The red hair stood on its edge as his pale face, changed to match. He shouted, "I should kick your @$#, you son-of-@-&%$^#! He rushed down the ladder to take back his property, and what he thought was left of his respect. By the time he got to the TDU room, an off-duty cook, let's call him Petty Officer "P", was peeping from the pantry, through red-gelled glass of the wardroom, that doubled as the information control room, where mission reports were "created" and periscope videos were shown.

Petty Officer K: "P" did you see the video, too?!!!

Petty Officer P: Yes, I did!

Petty Officer K: I ought to beat the sh*$ out of you,

Davidson! Who else saw it, "P"?!!!

Petty Officer P: Everybody in there! I saw it (now bragging) with my own eyes, right through here.

Petty Officer K: F*$%! What part did you watch?!!!

Petty Officer P: Go get me a cigarette, and I'll tell EVERYTHING!

I was speechless, as I almost burst with laughter, awaiting the rest of this genuinely non-scripted drama to unfold. Petty Officer K, pushed past me, ran up the ladder, underneath the chain, back to his station, grabbed a cigarette and practically jumped back down the ladder, "Here! Now, tell me what you saw!"

Petty Officer P: Mostly lots of lights and water, because the periscope kept going under. Davidson, you can't keep depth worth "sh#t!"

Petty Officer K: What are you talking about?!!!

Petty Officer P: The video, it was mostly water and small lights, because this NUB was on the helm.

I had witnessed, through no prior planning or premeditation my country being bought and sold for a cigarette, by two of the biggest shipwrecks in the entire fleet. By the time this story made its third time around the boat, we had forgotten about the contents of both of the videos.

Troy D. Davidson, CSAC, CADC II

Formerly YN2(SS) Davidson, USS OMAHA (SSN 692)

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