I always like to be in a saucy position as a subordinate, in a subordinate post. Very saucy, impudent. Actually it takes people aback. It’s about the only way you can occupy it. I don’t think very many people know how to occupy a subordinate post actually, if the org officer’s subordinate to the product officer, it’s an art. It’s an actual art. And one time I thought I was; I’ve told you this story before. But one time I thought, ”What is this. Every place I go and everything I do, I always wind up in command of it. I’m appointed the command of it. Is there something wrong with me? Can it be…” this was decades ago, you see, and I was saying was there something wrong with me?
I mean is there something peculiar, that I have to be in charge of everything, that I have to be the boss? I guess I’d been reading Freudian literature or something. And, ”There must be something wrong with me,” and so on. And I would think, ”Well, I don’t know. I don’t remember really, I have occasionally made a bid for that sort of thing, but there must be something wrong.”
And I was very, very happy one time, because I was physically bunged up and wasn’t supposed to be around at all, to be put in a subordinate capacity. And I was a third in command.
I found it was a breeze. I was never so happy in my life as to discover I was just an excellent subordinate. It was just a piece of cake. I didn’t have to be in command of things at all, and so forth. And in that subordinate capacity I was in command of a ship. Didn’t want it, didn’t want anything to do with it. Actually that was the mock-up.
But inevitably, and so forth, people come around and ask me if they were supposed to do what the captain said, and so on. I said, ”No, man. Cool it off. Don’t bother me,” and so on. I found out the popular valence at that time was a goldbrick, and I’ve had chief petty officers and that sort of thing say to me, ”Mr. Hubbard, you are just about the greatest goldbrick1 I have ever seen in the entire navy.”
Pride, you know? Admiration. And that was because I’ve, apparently, didn’t ever work, and was able to get my job done on the time when somebody else was eating sandwiches, see?2