Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Tuna's Tuesday Trivia (Feb 3 Edition)

Source: Flipquiz.net

If we were playing Jeopardy, Sarge would have fired me a month ago for being a lousy Alex Trebek, or the show would have been canceled for weak ratings.  Fortunately for us though, Sarge doesn't do re-runs and you get a new show almost every day.  If today's trivia was a Jeopardy episode, the category would be "Potpourri" as it's a bunch of leftover questions that didn't fit into other posts.  I already used "What's In A Name" last week, but "Potent Potables" does seem like a tasty concept for a future post!  

Unlike Jeopardy, no cash will will be awarded, although a hearty pat on the back will be provided next time I see you.  Think of it like that little trophy that every kid gets nowadays for just participating or showing up.  Good job everyone!  I know you did your best!  There, your self-esteem remains intact.

Could I have Weapons for $500 Alex?

Mankind has been using weapons since Cain and Abel (a spear if you believe in such.)  As early as 400,000 BC, there's evidence of pre-historic man using spears, although there's a population of primates in Senegal using spears to hunt, which may suggest that our most primitive ancestors used the weapon.  If I was to ask you what was the first weapon, you'd probably answer with either the club, or spear, or even a rock.  However, we'll go a little more modern for the first question.

1.  What are the oldest weapons still in use in the U.S. Military?


Could it be the 1911 .45 Pistol?  While the caption inside the picture shows it as dating from 1924 to today, it actually went out of general service use in 1985.

B-52 Stratofortress (Wikipedia)
Nope, not the Buff.  That is definitely an old aircraft, and actually the oldest still in inventory (design, that is, not airframe.  The B-52 is an old weapon, but you're off by about 100 years.

Does that give you a hint?

While the Bayonet dates back to the mid-to-late 1600s with many European Armies, and there were some used during the Civil War, the first regular issued use by U.S. Army Infantry units was in 1870.  The bayonet wouldn't have been correct anyway, because the design of the bayonet has changed many times.  They US Army no longer conducts bayonet training by the way, phasing it out in 2010.  The Marines still train to it, but bayonets aren't regularly issued.  For the USMC, they've been in use since the 1700s, but again, not unchanged.  

Other potential guesses might include the Gatling gun as the predecessor to the modern machine gun, or the Browning .50cal HB machine gun, but that's wrong as well.  I'm looking for the same weapon since inception.

The honor of having the oldest weapon in the U.S. inventory goes to the longest standing armed service- the Marines.  The USMC NCO Sword is the oldest weapon still in service from 1859 to the present.

Military History for $500 Alex.

2.  I know your brains are exploding with that one- not the sword answer, but the allegation that the Marines have been around the longest.  I'll get to that in a minute.

What is the longest standing service- the USN or USMC?

Well, you probably all know that both were established in the same year- 1775, but only a month apart.  The Navy can be traced back October 13th when the
...Continental Congress authorized the procurement, fitting out, manning, and dispatch of two armed vessels to cruise in search of munitions ships supplying the British Army in America. 
A month later, on Nov 10th,  

That two battalions of Marines be raised consisting of one Colonel, two lieutenant-colonels, two majors and other officers as usual in other regiments; that they...be able to serve for and during the present war with Great Britain and the Colonies...that they be distinguished by the names of the First and Second Battalions of Marines.
And while the Navy pre-dates the Marine Corps, the Continental Navy was disbanded after the war.  The last Frigate, the Alliance, had allies in Congress, but the new nation could not afford her.  However, after a series of uncountered piracy attacks, the Naval Act of 1794 authorized the building of Six Frigates with which the U.S. could defend itself.

The last remaining ship of that lot buy?

And while the Army actually predates the US itself, established by the Continental Congress on June 14th, 1775, it too was essentially disbanded after the war as a result of the Treaty of Paris, and no funds were authorized under the Articles of Confederation.  The First and Second Regiments remained, but the troops were released and forts were placed under the command of the states militias. The two regiments later became the Legion of the United States in 1792, which formed the basis of the US Army in 1796.

Therefore, if you consider the time when the Navy was disbanded as giving the Marines an edge in which is older, we should offer the same criteria for the Corps over the Army, which was actually out of service from 1783 to 1796.  And in that case, it was disbanded even longer than the Navy, so the oldest services are in order-

The US Marine Corps, The US Navy, The US Army, The US Coast Guard (1790)*, and our baby sister, the US Air Force, (1947.)

Yeah, I'm gonna be in a heap of trouble for that one.

Could I have Government Agencies for $700 Alex?

3.  I've already mentioned that the USAF came about in 1947.  Any idea what Government Agency was shares a birthday with the junior service?

Well, sort of.  The ANG did officially come into existence on September 18th 1947, the same day as the Air Force, I consider it a component of the USAF, and it's not really an agency.

How about this?

That too shares a birthday, sort of like fraternal twins, but it's not really a separate government agency.  

Instead of thinking Swords and Shields, try Cloaks and Daggers...

"The National Security Act of 1947 completely reorganized the national security apparatus of the United States. It separated the Army Air Forces from the Army, and made it an equal branch of the military—the U.S. Air Force. The bill also created the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the National Security Council, and the

And a bonus piece of trivia- Truman signed the act on a plane that would later be the first aircraft designated as Air Force One.

Alex, I'll take Star Trek for $800.


4.  If you've ever watched Star Trek, it has obvious Naval influences- Navy ranks, shipboard sounds like the Bos'n's Pipe, nautical references, and the like.  

What position, rank or rate did Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry hold in the military?

Was he a Quartermaster- helping navigate Navy ships?  Maybe a Boatswains Mate (Bos'n), responsible for ship maintenance, line-handling, and announcements over the 1-MC?  Or was he an Officer, conning a ship and leading a division of men?

B-17E Flying Fortress (Wikipedia)

None of the above.  He flew the B-17 on combat missions in the Pacific during World War II, completing eighty-nine missions and earning the DFC and Air Medal.  He also outranked Airman DeForest Kelley, who served in the Air Force before later joining Starfleet.

I'll get my arse kicked for $900 Alex.

5.  This young man joined the Air Force in 1958, serving in Korea as an Air Policeman.  He took up martial arts and was given a nickname similar to his first name Carlos.

His full name?  Carlos Ray Norris.

Chuck Norris didn't join the Air Force, the Air Force joined Chuck Norris.

American Presidents for $1000

6.  What service boasts the most Presidents among its Veterans?

The most frequent military experience is Army/Army Reserve with 15 presidents, followed by State Militias at 9, Navy/Naval Reserve at 6 and the Continental Army with 2 presidents serving.

Sorry, no Marines, Airmen, or Coasties...yet.  Check out the list here.

Final Jeopardy- Medals of Honor

7.  Who was the only U.S President to receive the Medal of Honor?

Old Big Stick himself:

That would be Teddy Roosevelt who was awarded it posthumously in 2001 for his service during the Spanish-American War.

I would have accepted "Someone who has never been in my kitchen" as well.

*I'm giving credit to the Army over the Coasties for prior broken service.


  1. Most excellent post Tuna!

    You'll note that I pulled my post and rescheduled it for tomorrow. Once again I jumped the gun. I keep forgetting that 2200 in Little Rhody is only 1900 in Sandy Eggo, plenty of time for you to write a post.

    Sigh, oh me of little faith.

    1. I had actually started it in scribbled notes, then in a word doc on Saturday, but didn't get it online until after chow last night. 'Preciate the backup though.

  2. Harrumph. Since the USMC is, and has ever been, part of the Department of the Navy, you have a chicken and egg argument over whether USMC or Navy is the senior service. Yeah yeah, Tun Tavern, and all that. We love our Marine brethren; but forget not that "Marine" is an acronym for "My Ass Rides In Navy Equipment".;-)

    1. Ruh-roh. "Why did the Marine cross the road?"

      I see dark days ahead....

    2. Do tell. Dark days as in an end to the Corps?

    3. Maybe not so dark. I just saw this: http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/story/military/2015/02/02/marine-corps-budget-increases/22774269/

    4. No, as in a pending plethora of Marine jokes. Chicken and egg leads to "why did the Marine cross the road" leads to "if the army calls it a chopper, the air force a copter, the Coast Guard a whirly bird, and the navy a helo, what do the Marines call it?"


    5. Ah yes, the Marine Corps is a part of the Navy Department, THE MEN'S DEPARTMENT.

  3. Entertaining and educational, Tuna. Thanks! The existence of the sword kind of answers the chicken and egg question, but as with most such questions there's still room for bloody debate.

    I noticed on the credit roll at the end that Jeopardy uses wikipedia (or Wikimedia Foundation) to vet "some" answers. That can't be a good sign.

    1. Yeah, I use it a lot myself, but I know it can be wrong. In fact, I pulled a question because wiki, and the picture from it that I was going to use, didn't match what other sources said.

  4. Just a couple of things...

    a) Chuck Norris was Air Force, mess with the Air Force, you mess with Chuck Norris. Just sayin'...

    b) The Royal Marines (Bootnecks, Bullocks, you pick the epithet) were originally established to provide a means for the officers on His Majesty's warships to "control" the sailors. Mutiny due to the horrid conditions on most ships in the age of sail was an ever present problem, especially as the majority of naval officers were sprigs of the nobility and the common sailor was way down on society's totem pole. So without a Navy there ain't much use for Marines. Back in the day. I would argue (with apologies to my Marine cousins) that when the Navy was disestablished the Marines became simply a different type of land animal. That is, not really Marines.

    c) Chuck Norris. (A reminder in case any of my Marine friends take umbrage with (b) above.)

    d) You are not in trouble with me Tuna vis-à-vis that "our baby sister, the US Air Force" crack. Just remember though... Chuck Norris.

    That is all...

  5. The reason we keep the Marines around is because they look so pretty in their cute little uniforms. There's actually a bit of truth to that. Sure, one could argue that the Army is capable of doing what the Marines do, with or without the cult following, but I had a Marine Colonel, AV-8B Aviator and CO of Cherry Point tell me that it's the image of the spit-n-polish squared away Marine in front of an American Embassy or the White House that justifies their existence. Kind of like the Royals in England- we like the idea of them - so we're willing to shell out the cash. That's good stuff about the Royal Marines keeping the sailors in line.

    1. I understand that we are going to return to having Marine detachments in Navy ships (as opposed to only in Amphibs). That portends the return of the Marine sentry in front of the Captain's door. Back to the future indeed!

  6. Anybody get the joke in the last line of the post? Maybe it was too obscure or too old, or I just think I'm funnier than I really am.

    1. I didn't get it at first, though it did ring a small bell way inside my memory banks.

      You are funny Tuna. (Now it's just a question of "funny ha ha" or "funny strange." Goodfellas references are also solicited.)

    2. I feel like I should be getting it but I'm not.

    3. PA,
      Evidently I'm not in the cool kids clique either. Had to google it. It's a Cliff Claven Jeopardy thing.

  7. If I'm semi-quoting a show that was on 30 years ago, I can't really consider myself "cool" though!

  8. Does the MEU(SOC) use of the M45A1 CQBP count for the 1911 as still in use?

  9. Good questions! Sad to say the only one I got right was Chuck Norris. For oldest weapon I would have guessed the 1911 .45 as I'll bet a few special forces use it - but who wouldda thunk the NCO Marine Corps sword?

  10. In defense of the "manliness" of my Zoomie friends . . .
    an excerpt from my blog:
    "By the way ... the entomologist, named Bobby, had been with a team trapped on a Central Highland hilltop; fogged in, they spent a week repelling the VC trying to overrun them. He saw more actual combat than many a grunt ... and he was just a Zoomie bug killer. Prime BEEF Teams were engineer units that were dropped into the jungle to clear and construct rough-terrain airfields or landing zones. Bobby didn't tell me of his combat experience until months later. We were sitting on his back deck, drinking beer, after having had dinner. His wife was putting his kids to bed and we were just smoking and shooting the bull. When he spoke of his little "adventure," he wasn't bragging, he was just speaking of something that occurred way back when ... in a land far away."


Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)
Can't be nice, go somewhere else...

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