first things first

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First Things First

A young ensign had nearly completed his first overseas tour of duty when he was given the opportunity to prepare his ship to "set sail." With a stream of crisp commands, he had the decks buzzing with sailors and soon the ship churned slowly out of the channel.

The ensign's efficiency was remarkable. In fact, the talk was that he had set a new record for getting the ship underway.

But his captain was not as pleased. A message delivered to the young officer read, "My personal congratulations upon completing your


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