This is the transcript of an supposedly actual radio conversation of a US naval ship with Canadian authorities off the coast of Newfoundland in October, 1995.

Americans: Please divert your course 15 degrees to the North to avoid a collision.

Canadians: Recommend you divert YOUR course 15 degrees to the South to avoid a collision.

Americans: This is the Captain of a US Navy ship. I say again, divert YOUR course.

Canadians: No. I say again, you divert YOUR course.

Americans: This is the aircraft carrier USS Lincoln, the second largest ship in the united states' atlantic fleet. We are accompanied by three destroyers, three cruisers and numerous support vessels. I demand that you change your course 15 degrees north, that's one five degrees north, or counter-measures will be undertaken to ensure the safety of this ship.

Canadians: We are a lighthouse. Your call.
I'll be the first one to admit that Aircraft Carriers are notoriously screwed up. Small boys turn and run at the sight of them unless they are forced to remain in their presence as plane guards or escorts--they run not because they fear the might and power of said CV or CVN, but because they fear their unpredictability.

A cruiser or destroyer is manned by professional surface warriors. Commanded by mariners, these professionals spent the last twenty years on ships at sea. The actual watchstanders get lots of hands-on training from these CO's (not all of it pleasant), and are thoroughly tested before allowed to have the 'deck'.

Carriers are commanded by Naval Aviators. They are intelligent, good leaders, and know things about relative motion. But they are not mariners, and for most, this is their third tour as a member of the ship's crew. They and a few token Surface Warfare Officers (most of whom would be in charge of a small boy if they were any good) train supply officers, medical officers, and folks who flunked out of Flight School to drive the Aircraft Carrier.

In short, Aircraft Carrier watch teams don't know shit compared to their Cruiser/Destroyer counterparts.

So although I think this particular incident is probably more legend than fact, I wouldn't be surprised by anything these guys did.

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