The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #22581 Message #245352
Posted By: Bat Goddess
21-Jun-00 - 07:43 AM
Thread Name: Help: Meaning of 'Chicken on a Raft'
Subject: RE: Help: Meaning of 'Chicken on a Raft'
Nope, those aren't typos. "Chicken on a Raft" was written by Cyril Tawney, Brit sub-mariner and British Navy seamusic scholar and collector (see his book _Grey Funnel Lines_).
"Dabtoes" and "dustmen" are Navy colloquialisms for various clean-up jobs. (And unfortunately, I'm not really awake yet so I can't give you the exact job titles.) The dabtoes, I think, are swabbing the deck and the dustmen throwing trash off the aft.
Chicken on a raft is poached eggs on toast.
Go to the source. Most of Tawney's songs are full of Brit Navy (the real "Grey Funnel Line") jargon.