26 Oct, 2011 in Drink / History tagged Ancient and also Honorable Order of Turtles / Ancient Order of Turtles / Are you a turtle / Captain Hugh McGowan / Denis McGowan / drinking club / Hugh McGowan / Hugh P. McGowan / irish lad / lady friend / RUA Turtle / turtle / turtle club / wifey / YBYSAIA by derekwadsworth.com

A couple months ago, I was in a meeting at work-related to check out some upcoming TV pilots. One of the network-related sales woguys shelp something (I’m still not sure what it was) and caused our media manager to automatically rotate to her and demand “Are you a TURTLE??

Uh… no…?” the woguy stammered back, plainly perplexed by this sudden query.

You are watching: Turtle club riddles

Oh. Never mind. It’s a drinking thing,” responded the media manager, which naturally resulted in MY ears to perk up and put the booze-sodden brain on alert mode.Later that day, I popped right into the media manager’s office to ask her what that totality turtle/ drinking point was around. This is the womale that keeps magnum-sized bottles of vodka in her office, got as gifts from assorted clients. She’s horribly sarcastic and exceptionally amutilizing, particularly in drab meetings, and also appears to understand a lot of people worth understanding in Boston. She said the turtle question was component of a drinking club from back in the day, and also dug with her purse till she uncovered a battered and also folded index card. “Would you like to be a turtle?

Sure,” I responded.

Ok then,” and she proceeded to review the speech published on the card:

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We assume all prospective Turtles own a Jack Ass. This assumption is the reason for the password.

This password have to be offered if you are ever before asked by a fellow member, “Are you a Turtle?” You MUST then reply “You bet your sweet ass I am.” If you do not provide the password in full bereason of embarrassment or some other factor, you forfeit a beverage of his alternative. So always remember the password.

As all members are of clean mind to come to be an official Turtle the perkid must deal with the adhering to riddles through clean-minded correct answers :

1. What is it a male can execute standing up, a womale sitting down, and also a dog on 3 legs?

2. What is it that a cow has four of and also woguy has just two of?

3. What is a four letter word finishing in ‘k’ that suggests the very same as intercourse?

4. What is it on a male that is round, difficult, and sticks so far out of his pajamas that you deserve to hang a hat on it?After some prompting, I controlled to come up through the four answers, and she prodeclared me a member of The Order of the Turtles. Now that I was officially in the club, I was even more intrigued. An old institution drinking club? AWESOME. Was this a local point, or well-known? When did it start? As close to as I have the right to piece together from miscellaneous interweb sources, the story begins ago in WWII, when Captain Hugh P. McGowan of the U.S. Army Air Corps 8th Air Force was a bomber pilot stationed in England. In his words:


“We were flying daytime battle missions over Hitler’s Third Reich. We simply wanted a little fun.We had actually seen a authorize mirroring that the ‘Old Order of Foresters’ and the ‘Royal Antedeluvian Order of Buffalos’ would certainly meet in the neighborhood pub, and also so I asked the governor of the pub what was that all about? The pub’s governor told us that the clubs’ local branches would certainly accomplish in the pub’s earlier room, and that he would certainly give them decreased prices for their pints and also drinks for holding their meetings at his pub.I asked him if our club can meet tright here, and he agreed, and asked for the name of our club.I told him that we were the ‘Ancient and also Honorable Order of Turtles,’ and also it stuck.

I devised the name ‘Old and also Honorable Order of Turtles’ for the fun of it. It soon spread throughout the bomber pilots, then the fighter pilots, and quickly to other bombing groups and squadrons, and also to other air bases. We even initiated members of the other Services, and soon,also Allied pilots were being initiated as Turtles in the backrooms of pubs across England also.The Order was not expected to be serious, as it had no constitution or by-legislations, no formal applications for membership, no dues or fees, and a straightforward initiation routine. It was a relief from the horrors and also dangers we witnessed every day on our goals. It spreview after the War with the VFW and Amerihave the right to Legion articles, and inevitably, to colleges and also also to the high institutions of the U.S.A.
Now you’re talking my language. They were in a pub, and noticed that groups and also clubs gained discounted drinks, so they comprised their very own. When they acquired residence, it spread throughout the nation, and was apparently fairly well known in the 1950s and 60s. Tbelow were “Turtle Parties” to recruit new members, finish via rituals, membership cards and also bit turtle lapel pins. Anyone else feel favor drinking was a lot more fun back then? There’s even a Turtle Creed which states:


Turtles are bappropriate eyed, bushy tailed, fearmuch less and also unafrhelp folk with a fighter pilot attitude.They think clean, have fun a lot, and identify the truth thatyou never gain any location worthwhile in life unless you stick your neck out.

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When I said it was fairly famed in the ’60s, I wasn’t joking. Freaking astronauts were doing it. I guess that renders feeling, given that the majority of them began off as armed forces pilots. From Wikipedia:


“Throughout the Mercury-Atlas 8 mission (part of the USA space program), astronaut Wally Schirra was asked by a ground controller whether he was a turtle. Not wanting to use vulgar language while his communications were being broadcast global, he temporarily stopped transmitting while he provided the required response.”

Brvarious other Schirra gained even with Brvarious other Slayton throughout Apollo 7’s flight, as soon as he created “Deke Slayton, are you a Turtle?” on a large object in front of the cameras for the NASA Public Affairs Officer, Brvarious other Paul P. Haney, the “Voice of Mission Control,” and also Brother Slayton to reply.

See more: How Many Feet In A 1/4 Mile ? How Many Feet Are In 1/4 Of A Mile

Brother Deke Slayton’s Turtle membership card and pin were auctioned off for $290.00 on April 22, 2006.”>

Dude, even the President was in on the joke. Aget, from Wiki:


“President Kennedy was allegedly asked if he was a Turtle at a push conference, to which he replied, ‘I’ll buy you your drink later on."”

Ball-busting with JFK. Awesome.

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So, how does this work? Well, as soon as you become a member, you ask other members “Are you a turtle?” If they don’t respond with the correct password, they have to buy you a drink. That’s fifty percent the fun… you ask someone if they’re a turtle at a time as soon as they’re captured off guard (the media manager does this all the moment with her husband, and then requirements champagne for her cost-free drinks. I like her style) or once they can’t really reply with the appropriate password due to the word “ass.” Like an astronaut broadspreading worldwide from space, or a President at a press conference.

Yeah, now I’m betting you desire to recognize how to become a turtle. Well, from other sites I’ve read, the initiation process have the right to be exceptionally simple or very complex, depending upon the neighborhood chapter rules. Some make a game of it and also place 4 drinks in front of the candidate before they answer the questions. Any vulgar or incorrect answer means the candiday takes a drink. A correct answer suggests everyone existing takes a drink (including the candidate). Some chapters have different inquiries, but with the very same basic theme: the evident answer is vulgar, but the correct one is perfectly innocuous, though leading in the direction of innuenexecute. Most of the indevelopment I uncovered was on horrible Geocities, Tripod, and also other free, terribly antique web servers. This renders feeling provided the proceeding age of the majority of original Turtles. However before, I think it’s hilarious, and have actually jumped in and recruited a number of friends including the Lady Friend and Wifey, though I don’t think the Irish Lad has actually taken the plunge.If anyone else has actually better expertise of the Turtles, I’d love to hear about it. I am presently the self-proclaimed President of the Portland Maine chapter, till someone can prove otherwise. If you’d prefer to be initiated right into the Ancient and Honorable Order of Turtles, feel complimentary to comment and also I’ll “officially” induct you. I’d really like to check out if this point is still going out tbelow, or if we have the right to lug it ago, though I doubt we’ll acquire Obama into it; I don’t think he drinks as much as JFK did.Also, this post was updated in a number of locations after receiving a very informative email from Denis McGowan, the boy of founder Cpt. Hugh McGowan. He presently holds the rank of Supreme Imperial Turtle, a title hosted by the successor to the founder. He extremely helpcompletely offered me a ton of “official” details on the Order, and I’ve tried to incorporate it in the original article wright here feasible.Some various other advantageous links around the Order:– A pretty detailed history– The Wiki entry– Anvarious other beneficial turtle site– Possibly the “official” website, given that they very own the domajor name– Anvarious other “official” and also comprehensive page, via a fictionalized background of the Order


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