Flynn looked at the senior staff assembled in the ward room. This was the first meeting of them on Atlas. The XO had just gone through the usual business according to the agenda she and Flynn had discussed, previously. A lot of this was standard procedure, bordering on naval tradition. The usual round of questions came from the department heads, which the XO fielded with Flynn’s expectations. Finally, all the business was done, and it was time for Flynn’s speech.
He stood, giving a gesture to have the staff remain seated.
“The Navy has traditions that we’re all part of. Atlas has its own part in naval traditions, as well as her own story. In mythology, Atlas holds up the sky. We bear the weight of the universe on our shoulders. I’m honored to be part of Atlas’s story. It’s a weight and an honor.”
Flynn gave a nod to the XO. “Years ago, when I was still vacuum-behind-the-ears as an ensign, a chief gave me some good advice. ‘Sir, everyone always thinks about the load on their shoulders, but that weight goes all the way down to their feet. You make your feet comfortable, and your shoulders won’t mind so much.’”
The XO began passing parcels to all the senior staff. “So with those wise words, I propose a new tradition on Atlas to make our feet comfortable. Go ahead and open them.
Each officer opened their bag to reveal pairs of socks personalized with their name and rank as well as “Atlas,” and the words “Broad Shoulders, Comfy Feet.”
“Sir,” Lt. Commander Benton, from engineering spoke.
Flynn nodded for him to go ahead.
“This is the finest tradition I’ve ever seen started on a ship. Our sister ships are going to be so jealous.”
“As they should be,” Flynn said to smiles and chuckles throughout the wardroom.