Mudcat Café message #178207 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #18166   Message #178207
Posted By: Amos
14-Feb-00 - 03:25 PM
Thread Name: Mudcat Island Folk Festival
Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Island Folk Festival
Wow! A talking figurehead! That is waaaaay cool!

I believe the expression comes from the custom of using midshipmites to pipe (by playing tunes on the bos'n' whistle) high officers on and off ships of the British navy.

Sailor Dave would have the definitive word on that.

(If you want a reference to the talking figurehead, see the full lyrics to the Mudcat Schooner song in the Songbook.)