It’s that time of year again … that time when every spouse on base thinks that he or she knows EXACTLY when the boat will pull-out, when the airwing will fly on, and if any port calls will be affected. My phone is ringing off the hook and texts are blowing up my phone. Between last night and this morning. I’ve received 5 telephone calls and at 16 texts from friends “telling” me when my husband will come home from Iwo and walk abroad the carrier. Hilarious. If any of them are correct, it’s purely luck, not because they have actual insider information.
Here’s the skinny on exactly who knows boat movement information: the highest ranking officers on the aircraft carrier inform CAG & DCAG first (see the abbreviations section if you aren’t sure who these people are). The Ops O (Operations Officer) on CAG Staff finds out from CAG and DCAG, and then he tells my husband because he is responsible for planning the airwing fly-on this year. Other people find out before my husband, too, and the squadron JOs and junior enlisted are the last to find out solid information. 9 times out of 10, I hear rumors from the JO and junior enlisted wives. Since my husband is a JO, I’m calling-out my own community!
You would assume that I would know solid information shortly after my husband hears, right? Wrong. My husband is still gone, so I don’t know anything. If my husband is home, he doesn’t tell me anything until he knows for sure that something is going to happen … just like every other husband should do. I think some husbands think that they’re being heroes by telling their wives everything that the rumor mill is churning out, but I think those husbands are doing a GREAT disservice to EVERYONE. Plus, information changes sometimes hour-by-hour. By the time the husband tells his wife, it’s already old news. By the time the information passes from her lips to the ears of her 10 closest friends, the information has probably changed and she’s now giving wrong information.
I wonder if spreading rumors helps people deal with the stress of deployment. It feels good when you hear that your husband might be leaving a few days later then planned or when you bring someone exciting news. The rumors continue after deployment begins because port calls can be changed or cancelled. Given the amount of money that we spend on port calls, having solid information puts you at a great advantage.
Despite the “feel good” aspects of spreading rumors, I don’t think anyone should do it. If your husband gives you information about the boat’s movement or airwing schedules, keep it to yourself. You can inwardly gloat all you want because you have “the right” information, but please allow others to hear information from their spouses first.