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Help: What is a 'forebitter'?

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Wincing Devil 22 Dec 99 - 10:01 PM
kendall 22 Dec 99 - 10:38 PM
DonMeixner 22 Dec 99 - 10:56 PM
SeanM 23 Dec 99 - 01:06 AM
DonMeixner 23 Dec 99 - 08:22 AM
Marc 23 Dec 99 - 08:47 AM
AndyG 23 Dec 99 - 08:47 AM
kendall 23 Dec 99 - 09:11 AM
Micca 23 Dec 99 - 02:03 PM
kendall 23 Dec 99 - 03:53 PM
bbelle 23 Dec 99 - 04:26 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 23 Dec 99 - 05:13 PM
katlaughing 23 Dec 99 - 05:15 PM
McGrath of Harlow 23 Dec 99 - 06:14 PM
Margo 23 Dec 99 - 06:43 PM
Jon Freeman 23 Dec 99 - 07:43 PM
kendall 23 Dec 99 - 07:58 PM
Barry Finn 23 Dec 99 - 08:19 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 23 Dec 99 - 09:14 PM
bbelle 23 Dec 99 - 09:14 PM
Lyle 23 Dec 99 - 09:17 PM
kendall 23 Dec 99 - 09:27 PM
Barry Finn 23 Dec 99 - 09:39 PM
Margo 23 Dec 99 - 09:43 PM
Barry Finn 23 Dec 99 - 09:44 PM
katlaughing 23 Dec 99 - 11:29 PM
Margo 24 Dec 99 - 01:03 AM
bbelle 24 Dec 99 - 07:53 AM
kendall 24 Dec 99 - 08:06 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 24 Dec 99 - 08:14 AM
Marc 24 Dec 99 - 08:42 AM
katlaughing 24 Dec 99 - 09:03 AM
Margo 24 Dec 99 - 11:18 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 24 Dec 99 - 11:38 AM
Margo 24 Dec 99 - 11:47 AM
kendall 24 Dec 99 - 12:37 PM
DonMeixner 24 Dec 99 - 03:24 PM
SeanM 24 Dec 99 - 03:41 PM
katlaughing 24 Dec 99 - 04:11 PM
SeanM 24 Dec 99 - 04:24 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 24 Dec 99 - 05:16 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 24 Dec 99 - 06:36 PM
SeanM 24 Dec 99 - 07:11 PM
Dave ( the ancient mariner ) 24 Dec 99 - 08:00 PM
DonMeixner 24 Dec 99 - 08:20 PM
SeanM 24 Dec 99 - 11:25 PM
Micca 25 Dec 99 - 04:24 AM
Caseless 25 Dec 99 - 04:26 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 25 Dec 99 - 07:37 AM
Wincing Devil 03 Oct 09 - 01:29 PM
Don Firth 03 Oct 09 - 02:18 PM
Tug the Cox 03 Oct 09 - 03:57 PM
Gurney 03 Oct 09 - 05:54 PM
Dave Hanson 04 Oct 09 - 03:39 AM
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Subject: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Wincing Devil
Date: 22 Dec 99 - 10:01 PM

I understand that it is a type of sea shantey. "Rolling Down to Old Maui" is a forebitter. What distinguishes a forbitter from, say a heaving or capstan chanty? (Hmm... 2 spellings of shantie in 1 message, make that 3!)


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: kendall
Date: 22 Dec 99 - 10:38 PM

a shanty or chantey is a work song with a word or two which is shouted out. This is what keeps the men hauling together. to me way hey ... HUH! we'll pay Paddy Doyle for his boots.
a forebitter or a foc'sle (forecastle) song is entertainment. Songs like Rolling Home are Homeward Bound songs.
There were no engines in the old days to do the heavy lifting, just "Norwiegen Steam" (muscle power) and, without a rythym they would all be hauling to their own beat.


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: DonMeixner
Date: 22 Dec 99 - 10:56 PM

Kendall,

Then this has nothing to do with circumcision as prefromed by a ferret or a small badger?

Don


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: SeanM
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 01:06 AM

Don, I think you're confusing with the "footbiter". But to the actual thread... Kendall does have it right. The varying shanties were often known by the task that they were originated (or at least most often used) for... Thus, there are capstan, windlass, hauling, reefing, and a million other varieties of shanties out there. The Forebitters were mostly entertainment, but most of the "Authorities" agree that there was a fair amount of crossover... worksongs would be embellished for recreation, and some of the more popular recreational songs would find their ways to the lines.

Anyway, if'n you're in the mood for some real info from a real shantyman, look up just about anything by Stan Hugill. It's a real education. I'm sure some of the other seaCats out there will chime in with their favorites as well.

Hope this helps...

M


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: DonMeixner
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 08:22 AM

Sean,

My actual understanding of the term Forebitter is the same as what is called a Fo'csle Shanty (Forecastle for shippy guys like Kendall) on the western side of the Atlantic. Forebitter seems by the accounts that I've read to be a British term for the entertainment tunes sung for the fun of it in the off watch.

Does that fit with the general concensus here?

Don


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Marc
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 08:47 AM

Just to be a pain guys. Your all basicly right. However a forebitter is not a fo'csle chantey, it's a song. A chantey is a work song as soon as it is removed from work, it ceases to be a chantey, it's a fo'csle song.


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: AndyG
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 08:47 AM

As I understand the term;

Bitt:
A sturdy post mounted on the bow or stern to which anchor or mooring lines may be attached.

Fo'csle:
The fore-deck, the forward part of a vessel. Also, importantly, that area of the ship holding the crew accomodation in the sailing ships. (Changed with the introduction of motor power).

Off-watch crew might gather on the fo'csle, above their quarters, around and perhaps seated upon the fore-bitts. Hence a forebitter, a song sung in the "leisure time" available to sailors. Not a work song (shanty).

AndyG


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: kendall
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 09:11 AM

I'm glad to see that we will have some real sailors aboard.(Or, at least, some singers of sailors songs). Now, if we can just weed out the puling poltroons and tosspots... have we decided who is to be Captain? Dick G. seems to be qualified..


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Micca
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 02:03 PM

Kendall cf another thread (I can't remember which now) and consult McKnees, the spelling is shantey or shanty. the spelling Chantey is Glaswegian slang for a Piss-pot!!!! and isn't forebitter from the marrige service " Do you take this woman forebitter or worse----"**BG** ducking and diving Micca


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: kendall
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 03:53 PM

it's my (shakey) belief that the word shantey, is a contraction of chant.. which makes more sense to me than shantey as applied to sea work songs. The lumberjacks had a tradition of songs, and the men were called shantey boys, probably because of the rude living quarters they lived in. pardon the preposition.. opinions anyone? Sandy?


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: bbelle
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 04:26 PM

This thread looks like it's more of a "guy" thing but when I saw the title "What is a forebitter"? the first thought that came to mind was "Forebitter or worse." moonchild


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 05:13 PM

Kendall, Chantey, or Shanty both are generally acceptable. The French Chant or English Shant, they were very poor spellurs in them thar days. You are probably right about it being a derived form of French song or singer... after all we use "Matelot" to describe a Royal Navy Seaman.

In south Australia I was born, Heave away, haul away, In south Australia round Cape Horn we're bound for south Australia, Haul away you rolling king, heave away haul away, Haul away, oh hear me sing, we're bound for south Australia

Cordially. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 05:15 PM

And I thought it was all about the cost of something, as in "shave and a haircut - two bits!"


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 06:14 PM

One of the possible reasons put up for calling work songs at sea shanties is that it's the same root as the shanties you can live in - and that it comes from work songs in the West Indies used when people were dragging small buildings around.

I think Stan Hugill sticks this in as one of the possible roots of the word.

As for the word shanty for a building, I think that has been variously suggested as coming from some comes from some West African language, or from Gaelic.

My guess would be that the work song shanty comes from chant, or chantez.


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Margo
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 06:43 PM

Where do you think the expression "Bitter end" came from??? They invented it because they knew that the likes of you and me would argue to it (the bitter end) about the origins of the word shantey... I subscribe to the thoery that it is from the men who lived in shanteys and called out the work songs aboard ships.... Margo :o)


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 07:43 PM

Kendall, my dictionary (Chamber's 20th Centure English) says that shanty, chanty, chantie and chantey are said to be from the French chantez - sing.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: kendall
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 07:58 PM

be we sailors or be we debaters? - Oh, the Captain's daughter Mabel, was young and fresh and able to fornicate with the second mate upon the chartroom table..


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Barry Finn
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 08:19 PM

Hi Margo, remember to always tie off the bitter end of the anchor line to the bits for else you lose the anchor.
In Boston two bits is a quater (of a dollar) & four bits = fifty cents, (off topic) a saw buck is a ten dollar bill & a double saw buck, yup.
Now I hate to steal thunder from the French but by the time the word chantey/chanty/shanty/ came about(depending on who you listen to but around 1840's-1870's) the French's contruibition to shanties was slight. Whall & Hugill both lean towards the English word "chant" as a good possiblity. Whall states the earliest he found in print was 1875 (since, Doerflinger has found it in print earlier) though he states it was used during the 40's & he shipped with those from the old OLD school, those that shipped in Man O War's prior to 1815. They also lean a little towards Afro-American origins, I'd lean heavy that way. The hayday of black shanties had already past prior to the Civil War while shanties in general still had some time to go before peaking. If they then where the major influence before the Civil War (my opinion) as much as they weren't after the war I'd have to say that then they may well have been the orgins of the word too. My belief for seeing them as the major influence before the Civil War is expressed in song, log books, reports from the Commissioner of Fish & Fisheries & in a few books most notably "Black Jacks-Afrrican American Seaman in the Age of Sail" by Bolster. Some shanties of the Georgia Sea Islands go back to slavery. There's the shanty "Reily" that Lomax collected & says Reily could've been anyone & probably desended from one of the British Reily's of song, yet Frankie Quimby says Reily was a nickname (code) for a slave driver who was a pretty fair man towards them, hence, "Reily's gone & I'll go to", so maybe British Reily's from Afro Reily. Anyway food for thought or thought this was chum food. Barry


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 09:14 PM

Too much book larning is showing here boys and girls, get out of yer books and on the Foc'sle deck, turn to, bear a hand and Heave away haul away cause we're bound for south Australia. Does it matter? Chanty or Shanty its all the same to Auntie... enjoy the music and songs; next year the Tall Ships are coming to Halifax, ask some of the crews on them and you will just get the same story.

So come all you ladies gay who delight in sailors joy,
Come listen while I sing you a song.
When Jack Tar he comes on shore,
With his gold and silver in store,
There's no one can get rid of it so soon.

The first thing Jack requires is a fiddler to his hand,
And likewise the best liquor of every kind,
And a pretty girl likewise,
With two dark and rolling eyes,
And Jack Tar is suited to his mind.

Yours Aye, Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: bbelle
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 09:14 PM

Well, Kat ... the men are ignoring us! Reckon it's a "man" thing ... moonchild


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Lyle
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 09:17 PM

It is part of a marriage vow - you know, "Forbitter or for worse."


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: kendall
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 09:27 PM

ok, enough of the logic and reason stuff. Now, where do you all want to go? I vote for St. Martin...Barbados, Jamaica then around the horn to Micronesia


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Barry Finn
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 09:39 PM

Hi Dave, if it was good enough for the likes of Colcord, Whall, Doerflinger, Abrahams, Shay, Hugill, Terry, Bone, Bullen, Harlow, Nordhoff, & others (as well as those here) to discuss this topic & more it's fine enough for the likes of little ol me. And it's not all book larnin either some of it comes from under the belt & being under sail not to mention being under the gun. Sing & sail away but hell talk it up too. Barry


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Margo
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 09:43 PM

Thank you, Barry! I enjoy reading your book larnin' details. Interesting to me, and yes, food for thought! Kendall, how about South Austrailia? Margo


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Barry Finn
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 09:44 PM

Ah, Kendall, Micronesia, I lost a friend to there, he went sailing off to go pearl diving there over 20 years ago haven't heard of him since, it sounded dreamy ( much like the rest of the South Pacific. If you can promise to round the horn in 3 days rather than 3 weeks I'm on. Barry


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Dec 99 - 11:29 PM

Yea, Moonchild, I noticed!:-) Wonder if they want those dark and rolling eyes to roll in the same direction. Ya reckon?

katlaughing


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Margo
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 01:03 AM

Yeah Kat! Can you imagine a wall-eyed flash girl??!! Hahahahahahaha

Margo


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: bbelle
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 07:53 AM

Kat/Margo ... shouldn't it be Flash Woman. Is that any kin to Flash Gordon? ... moonchild


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: kendall
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 08:06 AM

thats a good one Kat.. I'm trying to get off the technical stuff so you women can get in on this... so, Moonchild, Kat Bonnie, are you aboard or no? I should warn you that there are parts of Micronesia where the women go bare breasted as God intended, and, men agree with..


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Subject: Lyr Add: CAROLINE AND HER YOUNG SAILOR BOLD
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 08:14 AM

Ladies please. I never would ignore you, if thou thinkest so forgive me, I beg thee... Having spent a goodly part of my life without female company, and being a humble male who is blessed to worship at the altar of your loveliness, I would never ignore you for long. Perish the thought, ladies, and join us in a song?

Sarah Makem sang this one:

CAROLINE AND HER YOUNG SAILOR BOLD

Oh, it's of a rich nobleman's daughter.
Caroline is her name I am told.
It was out her drawing room window
She admired a young sailor bold.

Oh, she says, "I'm a rich nobleman's daughter
And possessed of great riches and gold.
I'll forsake both my father and mother
And marry a young sailor bold."

Oh, he says, "My wee girl, do not mind me.
It's your parents you are bound to mind,
For in sailors there's no great dependence,
For they leave their true lovers behind."

Oh, she says, "There's no-one can prevent me.
Just one moment would alter my mind,
And I'll ship and be off with my true love,
For he will never leave me behind."

Three years and a half on the ocean,
And she always proved loyal and true,
And her duty she did like a sailor
Dressed up in her jacket of blue.

And when they arrived back in England,
Straight way to her father she went.

"Oh, father, dear father, forgive me,
And deprive me of riches and gold,
But it's grant me one favour I ask of:
It's to marry a young sailor bold."

For the father he looked upon William,
In love and in sweet unity,
And says, "If I be spared till tomorrow,
It's married this couple will be."

Cordially. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Marc
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 08:42 AM

Great thread. Do we agree that a Forebitter is not a shanty though


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: katlaughing
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 09:03 AM

Aw, Dave, that's a fine one and Kendall, don't go getting too non-technical, we've got brains, too!**BG** Oh, and Kendall? Bare-breasted sounds like HEAVEN! My rose and bluebell tattoo NEVER gets enough sunlight in our repressed, Puritanical, uptight society! I say, "Equality for women's breasts, now!"

katlaughing


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Margo
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 11:18 AM

Dave, "Caroline and her Young Sailor Bold is on my list of songs to record. I was puzzled at the one verse that seemed incomplete, so I wrote more words to finish the meter. I hear it with mandolin, concertina, and possible a sweet fiddle line.

Bare breasted? Well who says that you have do like the Romans while in Rome? I don't think it would be a good idea for me. I sunburn easily, being milky white. But keep me abreast of the developments....

Margo, ducking for cover in the shade!


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 11:38 AM

Marc, Caroline and her sailor bold is a Forebitter song. Margo, Sarah Makem sang this without music, and in her unique traditional manner the melody sounded fine to me. You can change and modify all sea songs, there are many versions of them; and it would take a thread a million miles long to record the variations. The instruments you describe would sound lovely; I wish I could hear the recording when you are done. ( hope there's not much shade and I have some really good Suntan oil for ye ) Cordially, Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Margo
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 11:47 AM

Yes, Dave, I have that recording. It took me a while to learn that in the great tradition of folk music, songs are changed right and left! Now that I understand that, I am delighted as I get more and more ideas for songs that I want to record. As for hearing the song, don't worry. I'm sure that if I come out with a CD I will be crassly commercial and toot my own horn here at the Mudcat. I am going to be getting my own recording equipment and setting up in an extra room in the house so I'll be able to do it here at home!!! As to suntan oil, you make me blush! Margo 8>)


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: kendall
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 12:37 PM

we do agree..a forebitter is not a shanty.. IMHO the human female breast is the most beautiful thing in all of nature. Why do you think the old masters never painted MENs breasts? or monkeys, chimps orangutans, aardvaarks....possums.


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: DonMeixner
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 03:24 PM

Kendall and I agree totally here. But then I iusually agree with Ken anyway. A forebitter isn't a shanty except in the broad term that it may be song onboard a boat and there by be guilty of shantyism because of proximity. An the great masters never painted minkey breasts.

Don


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: SeanM
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 03:41 PM

Here here!

Hearty agreement on all the above points... forebitters are not technically "shanties" (or however you wanna spell it), and we like breasts. Here here! Though, as I said earlier, saying that just 'cause something was a fo'c'sle song doesn't mean it wasn't used for a shantey every now and then.

But while we're adrift in the Horse Latitudes...

How many real shellbacks we got out here?

Across the line,
The Gulf Stream
Who would share the sailor's fate?

M one term before the mast, er... before the flight deck?

Westpac '92, (LHA-5, USS Peleliu)


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: katlaughing
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 04:11 PM

Yea, Margo, there's gotta be lots of shade, else I'd be a miserable shade of very tender red, thanks to my Nova Scotian grandmother! But, a gyrl's gotta dream, ya know?

katlaughing, aye (I love the way you sign off, DavetheAM!)


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: SeanM
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 04:24 PM

Ah, Kat, for you we'd rig the yards for nothing more than your shade. Rare is a gem such as you at sea...

;^)

M


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 05:16 PM

Aye SeanM for Kat I'd struggle up the mainmast and be her button boy on the truck. large shadow I spread too. Arrr Me rugrats want me for Christmas, got to go for now. Yours, Aye. Cordially. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 06:36 PM

SeanM sorry; you asked how many real shellbacks are on here, count me as one, as Mate/Nav.Officer,Merchant Service 15 years, Canadian Coastguard 15 years (13 ashore though) I am SAR/RCC Controller so I sail a desk, (much to my own disgust at times) SAR is what I do best. ARRR! traded in my pistols and cutlass for computers and telephones. I spend more time in helicopters and aircraft than boats. But at heart; I am on deck marlin spike in hand singing a shanty like the Tars of old. Merry Christmas, Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: SeanM
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 07:11 PM

LOL... Sounds good, Dave... I, unfortunately, am (was) a lowly USN Sparky (Radioman)... So where'd you cross for the first time at? I went over just west of Singapore, in the vicinity of the Marianas trench...

M


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Dave ( the ancient mariner )
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 08:00 PM

Under the surface or on it mate? No such thing as a lowly, Sparky; you get the buzz before the cook. My first was on the other side of Yankee land to you. North Atlantic to South Atlantic, most of my sailing was North Atlantic. Crossed the Arctic one too! But never round the horn yet. Yours, Aye. Dave

Irreverent sailor song for ya, Sparky. Don't know if it's a Forebitter or a Shanty from the RN (real navy) Ladies excuse the mild profanity some sailors use worse.

A matelot and a bootneck were walking one day,
Said the bootneck to the matelot, lets kneel down and pray,
And if we have one prayer may we also have ten.
Lets have a bloody litany said the matelot, amen.

The first thing we'll pray for we'll pray for our tot,
Glorious tot makes us sh*t hot,
And if we have one tot may we also have ten,
May we have a bloody distillery said the matelot, amen.

And the next thing we'll pray for, we'll pray for some beer,
Glorious beer brings us good cheer,
And if we have one pint may we also have ten,
May we have a bloody brewery said the matelot, amen.

And the next thing we'll pray for, we'll pray for some money,
Glorious money buys us more honey,
And if we have one pound may we also have ten,
Lets have the Bank of England said the matelot, amen.

And the next thing we'll pray for, we'll pray for our wives,
Glorious wives pride of our lives,
And if we have one wife may we also have ten,
Lets have a bloody harem said the sailor, amen.

And the next thing we'll pray for, we'll pray for some boys,
Glorious boys brings our heart joys,
And if we have one boy may we also have ten,
Lets fill a bloody school full said the sailor, amen.

And the last thing we'll pray for, we'll pray for our Queen,
Glorious Queen, long may she reign,
And if she has one heir may she also have ten,
May she have a bloody regiment said the sailor, amen.


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: DonMeixner
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 08:20 PM

My time was spent building them boats. 38 to 110 feet of mainly steel construction but a few glass and wood and concrete. Mostly fishing boats but a couple yachts and a barge. What ever the contract called for. It is both a sad thing and a wonderful thing that most people don't catch , or understand, the magic of boating. If more people did then it might not be so special.

I am continually reminded by photographs that probably there are men and women at sea right now in boats I built over the years at Baldwinsville Shipbuilding. The fact that they come home from work everynight means I did my job right everyday I went to work. There is mention of the boat "Seneca" in "The Perfect Storm". Is it the same "Seneca" I built 20 years ago? I wonder.

I'd love to build another. Its a job I never wanted to leave and its a desire that never leaves me.

"Take me back on the bay boys,

Clear away in the morning,

I don't want to go ashore boys,

Oh Bring her round.

Don


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: SeanM
Date: 24 Dec 99 - 11:25 PM

ROFLMAO!!!! LOVE the song, DaveTAM! 'specially as it's a variant on "The Soldier and the Sailor", one of my all time favorite songs...
On the surface, to answer your question. At just a shade under 6'5" the submariners were a bit out of the question. I served out my term on board one of the USN's premier (snort) gator freighters.

Anyway...

Heel yo ho, boys
Let her go boys
Bring her head 'round
Into the weather

M


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Micca
Date: 25 Dec 99 - 04:24 AM

Merchant Navy, certificated AB, 3 years on tankers and cargo boats, Everywhere from Archangel to Punta Arenas so I have not been round the Horn but I have been within a cough and a spit, and to Callao and Valparaiso but by way of Panama, and Andres, I've been to Buenas Aires !!! all along time ago. I am the Ancient marinade.


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Caseless
Date: 25 Dec 99 - 04:26 AM

Wow lots of learned out there. for my money a forebitter is a misspelling ;) of fourbit'er pre-inflation prostitution.


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 25 Dec 99 - 07:37 AM

Don Meixner, blessed of all men, a shipbuilder you say. Neptune has a special place in his heart for all those who make his toys. Could you build one for me? My car payment ends in July, and I've been looking at the used ones; so I can get away from my desk once in a while. (Doctor says I need the recreation; smart woman she is) Ah but mate, I have champagne tastes with a draft beer income, so she'll have to be a small one. (seaworthy though, cause knowing my luck I'll be tasked by RCC everytime I put out) Maybe Santa will sail one in next year..... Cordially Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Wincing Devil
Date: 03 Oct 09 - 01:29 PM

I'm sitting at the FSGW Forebitter/Sea Ballad workshop, John Roberts just defined a Forebitter as a recreational song, sung by sailors in their off hours. They'd have a song circle and sing around. If someone had a request they would toss 50 cents into a hat in the center of the circle. 50 cents = four bits. He had the room going for a while, but he eventually broke into a chuckle. It sounds plausible!


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Don Firth
Date: 03 Oct 09 - 02:18 PM

An aside:

Minted as early as the 1400s, the Spanish coins called "pieces of eight" (worth eight reals) was scored, like a piece of pie, into eight "bits." It could be broken, and one could make change by breaking the coin along the score lines. If one broke the coin into quarters, one had "two bits." Half would be "four bits," and so on. Hence our modern practice of referring to a quarter of a dollar as "two bits," fifty cents as "four bits," seventy-five cents as "six bits."

Bit of trivia, but interesting, I thought.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Tug the Cox
Date: 03 Oct 09 - 03:57 PM

Margot may have been joking 10 yearts ago, but the phrase 'bitter end' actually is first noted as a nautical term ( see Michael Quinion's Worrld Wide Words.
No mention of Scuttlebutt here, see the Chantey Cabin website.


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Gurney
Date: 03 Oct 09 - 05:54 PM

I've waited long enough for someone to pick Kendal up!
Look, matey, what have you got against us tosspots? If it wasn't for us, all the pubs and bars would have gone out of business by the time you matelots got back ashore, and you'd have to buy from a bottle-shop and drink it in an alley.
More power to the tosspots' elbows, that's what I say.

And Shane probably agrees!


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Subject: RE: Help: What is a 'forebitter'?
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 04 Oct 09 - 03:39 AM

Dave, I've always known that song as ' The Soldiers Prayer ' ending with the verse-

What last shall we pray for lets pray for the king,
And a right lousy bastard to us he has been,
And if he gets one dose may he also get ten,
May he have a bloody clinic full said the sailor amen.

Dave H


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