Sunday, June 26, 2011

straight from the scuttlebutt: it's the end of an era

I miscalculated - I actually only had one more Willie the Whaler ad! This is it.

I saved this one for last because it represents the fulfillment of all Willie's desires - that is, to kick back in his hammock, boots off, holding a tall cool drink aloft, gazing upon it with the reverence normally reserved for a relic of one's patron saint.

Word origins of "scuttlebutt" courtesy of The Word Detective:
As a synonym for "the word going around" or "gossip," "scuttlebutt" dates back to the days of sailing ships, when men were men and ships lacked plumbing. If a sailor wanted a drink of fresh water to quench his thirst between floggings, he made his way to the "scuttlebutt," the tall ships' equivalent of today's water cooler. The "scuttlebutt" was actually nothing but a small wooden keg with a hold cut in its side, used to hold the crew's daily ration of drinking water. The name "scuttlebutt" is a logical combination of "scuttle," meaning to cut a hole something, and "butt," meaning a small cask or keg (from the Latin "butta," cask or wine-skin). Incidentally, casks were not the only things "scuttled" at sea. To "scuttle" a ship means to deliberately sink her, usually by cutting a hole in the side below the water line.

And another related item - there is a newsletter about sailing appropriately called The Scuttlebutt.

So I've posted about 45 Willie the Whaler ads and unless I find any new ones in the 1961-65 issues of the New Yorker this is it. I will see about an animated gif - or maybe even a little movie with a sailor's hornpipe playing.