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Ditman Olansen, the crank-eyed Norwegian, went Berserker last night in the second dog-watch and pretty well cleaned out his half of the forecastle.
In the second dog-watch some careless soul started a song, and by eight bells the whole crew was singing.
We have the phonograph in the second dog-watch every other evening in this fine weather.
In the second dog-watch the sailors come on deck, stripped, and heave buckets of water upon one another from overside.
He had nothing to say whatever, although Margaret and I were jubilant and dared duets through all of the second dog-watch.
Shortly after the close of the second dog-watch last evening I went for'ard to the chickens on the 'midship-house on an errand for Margaret.
I've half-a-dozen of her records, and I've got the second dog-watch below.
Suppose 'm you no fetch' m beer close up, I knock 'm eight bells' n 'a dog-watch onta you.
It was in the second dog-watch that evening, a dark night, and the watch was pulling away on the main deck.
Sail was shortened early in the afternoon, to avoid running past in the night; and in the second dog-watch the crew manifested its regained cheerfulness.
chained_bear commented on the word dog-watch
"'"So the dog-watches are shorter than the rest," says the parson, "very well. But why dog, if you please?" As you may imagine, we looked pretty blank: and then in the silence the Doctor pipes up. "Why sir," says he, "do you not perceive that it is because they are cur-tailed?"'
"Infinite mirth, far greater than on the first occasion long ago, when it had to be explained..."
--Patrick O'Brian, The Ionian Mission, 123
February 13, 2008