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Slang Terms for April Fool's Day Fun

Apr 1, 2022 8:30:00 AM


The Navy is notorious (in a good way) for its colorful language, from the days when sailors spent many a month out at sea, navigating the waters. As they worked together in the rough conditions, a whole new language emerged, and it has continued to grow to this day.

The Academy also has its share of Navy slang that has evolved over the years. In my time here as a midshipgoat, I’ve run into quite a few interesting terms. Come along as we explore some of the most interesting Navy slang terms in honor of April Fool's Day! While these are not hoaxes or pranks, they have the spirit of Navy fun.

Terms of Endearment (and Not)

  • Aqua Rock: a non-swimmer; one in training for submarine duty but lacking the submarine. Used in a sentence, “I lapped that aqua rock three times in PE.”
  • Ratey: Acting in a manner beyond the allowances of one’s class; having a mouth larger than one’s stripes. “Look! That plebe just sat on a bench. Such a ratey move.”
  • Sea Lawyer: One who tries to get out of a sticky situation through trivial technicalities, whose favorite expression is “But I thought…” when they didn’t. “O’Connor, don’t be a sea lawyer! Stop making excuses for why you’re late.”
  • Striper: Member of the first class of command. “Midshipman Commander Smith is a striper from our Company.”
  • Two Percenter: A rare breed of midshipman who manages to maintain their high school sweetheart until he/she graduates. A member of the two-percent club. “She may be a two percenter. She talks about her high school boyfriend all. the. time.”

Academic Terms

  • Civilian: A day with no classes, as in, “Today’s civilian; we’re heading to the Army-Navy game up at West Point.”
  • Double-E: Electrical Engineering, known for its difficulty. “I survived Double-E.”
  • Forty-Year Swim: The second class swimming marathon, lasting forty continuous minutes (now shortened to thirty minutes). Also, “I survived the forty-year swim.”
  • Seven-in: The chemistry major’s secret - an extra period added to the end of the academic day. An excuse to miss parades. “I’ve got a seven-in on my schedule next semester.”

Annapolis, Places on the Yard, and More!

  • Bilge: To make another look bad for one’s one personal gain. To cut the ground out from under another’s feet. “Don’t give me that bilge, Jones. You’re all on the same team.”
  • Chit: Protection from on high to take privileges not rated. “He didn’t run this morning because he has a chit.”
  • Chop: To doubletime. Outdated plebe mass transit system. “Anytime you’re running through the halls of Bancroft as a plebe, you must chop.”
  • DTA: Downtown Annapolis. “We’re meeting her and her friends in DTA for ice cream.”
  • Fried: Written up for conduct offense. “John got fried for staying out past curfew and now he’s serving extra duty.”
  • Happiness Factor: The number of days of leave divided by the number of days until leave. “What’s the happiness factor, Jackson?”
  • fg
  • Mother B: Home of the Brigade, Bancroft Hall. “It’s been a long day. I’m heading back to Mother B for the night.”
  • Rack: Bed; the ultimate goal of most midshipmen. “Time to hit the racks.”
  • YPs: Yard Patrol Craft; Corvette of the Fleet. “Master Sergeant Johnson is teaching on a YP this afternoon.”

Now you can speak some of the language of the Naval Academy too! The midshipmen (and goats) work hard, and we can play hard too. With Navy slang words, we can blow off some steam (and I’m not talking about Thermodynamics here). Hope you have a good laugh, and Happy April Fool’s Day to all!

Is there a slang word we missed? Share it in the comments below!

Bill the Goat
Written by Bill the Goat

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