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"blued, screwed, and tattooed"

Posted by Marcus on January 07, 2001

In Reply to: "Blued, screwed, and tattooed" posted by R. Berg on January 07, 2001

: : I have heard this phrase on the quarterdeck in reference to returning sailors after a night on the town, but did it originate in arms manufacturing?

: Eric Partridge, "A Dictionary of Catch Phrases, American and British . . . ," gives these variants: "stewed, screwed and tattooed" and "screwed, stewed and tattooed." He says nothing about the origin. My husband, who spent 20 years in the U.S. Navy, says he doesn't suspect a connection with arms manufacturing. Not much help, huh?

: Thanks anyway. I suspect your husband is right. Does he remember the gales of laughter bestowed upon the returning sailors the next day as they nursed their hangovers, inspected the new tatoos and waited for antibiotics at sick call?