Rubin: Saluting local sailors — and Girl Scout cookies

Neal Rubin
The Detroit News

For those of us who don’t speak U.S. Navy Lingo, Seaman Erika Arnold’s job sounds like a party.

Navy Seaman Erika Arnold of Harrison Township works with a unit that sounds like a party — but isn’t.

Arnold, a 2015 graduate of L’Anse Creuse High School in Harrison Township, is based these days in Virginia Beach, Virginia, with Naval Beach Group Two.

Specifically, she serves with Beach Master Unit Two, which provides Naval Beach Party Teams. Since when does the Navy provide spring break?

It doesn’t, of course, and Arnold is doing serious work. That’s why the Navy dropped a note to tell me about her.

The Navy and I are in frequent contact, actually, though fortunately for the security of our great nation, it’s not asking me to sign up.

Seaman James Creighton, left, of Detroit, fights a simulated fire.

It just wants to make me aware of sailors and officers from Metro Detroit, in hopes I will salute them in print and remind other young men and women that a sign hanging outside the Pentagon says, “Help Wanted.”

There are too many sailors to mention, which means I tend not to mention any. But Arnold jumped out at me, so she’s aboard today as a representative of so many others who often aren’t old enough to enjoy Daytona Beach but are entrusted with millions of dollars’ worth of equipment and one another’s lives.

‘Preciate it, Seaman Arnold. Thanks, Logistics Specialist Seaman James Creighton of Detroit, serving aboard the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan.

Well done, Lt. Dan O’Brien of Grosse Pointe Woods and Petty Officer 1st Class JaDaniel Washington of Detroit, who won sailor of the quarter for Navy Recruiting District Michigan.

Washington’s prize was a 72-hour liberty. He probably didn’t go on spring break any more than Seaman Arnold does.

What Arnold really, truly deals with, less than a year out of high school, is logistics. She makes sure all the teams from Naval Beach Group Two have the equipment they need.

With that equipment, they might evacuate U.S. citizens from a trouble spot, deliver food and medical supplies after a natural disaster, or do anything else that involves moving from offshore to on.

Pretty darned impressive, Naval Beach Group Two.

Party on.

Support the Girl Scouts

The easiest thing I do for charity every year is help judge the annual Girl Scout Cookie Gala.

Come Wednesday, alas, the gala will become the leading 2016 contender for most painful thing I have to miss. But while I need to be elsewhere, you can be at the DTE Energy Headquarters in Detroit from 6-9 p.m., sampling desserts crafted from Girl Scout cookies by chefs who are extremely good at it.

The Macomb Culinary Institute crafted this entry using Trefoils for a previous Girl Scout Cookie Gala.

The deadline for buying tickets is Tuesday; drop by, call Kenya James at (313) 870-2562, or email

They’re $100 apiece or $170 for two. What you receive in exchange is the joy of knowing you’re helping young girls become leaders.

OK, that’s part of it. And there’s regular old food, too, along with awards and an auction and such.

What will buckle your knees, though, are the desserts from places like Crispelli’s Bakery and Pizzeria, the Hill Seafood & Chop House and Fifty-One-O-One, the student-run restaurant of the culinary education department at Henry Ford Community College.

Fifty-One-O-One has the enviable assignment of working with the exalted Tagalong, whose peanut butter and chocolate construction prompted the team to consider the standard school lunch: peanut butter and jelly sandwich, chips, milk, fruit.

Executive chef Kristin Jablonski says that led to what they’re calling a Detroit layered lunchbox — a chocolate brownie with raspberry jam, topped with a peanut butter mousse.

“It will incorporate the Tagalong, of course,” he says, and because there’s no such thing as excess at the Cookie Gala, there will be chocolate covered potato chips on the side.

If you go, please tell ‘em I sent you ... and save me one of those lunchboxes.

Or maybe two.