“Now and then we had a hope that if we lived and were good, God would permit us to be Pirates.” – Mark Twain
“The average man will bristle if you say his father was dishonest, but he will brag a little if he discovers that his great-grandfather was a pirate.” — Bern Williams, National Enquirer
Once more it’s time to preen the parrot, police the poop deck and press the pantaloons–“Talk Like a Pirate Day” has arrived. And with each passing year since (Cap’n Slappy and Ol’ Chumbucket) set sail on their maiden voyage in the summer of 95, the day has become much more than just another excuse to pillage, plunder and over imbibe. The day now ranks close to St. Patrick’s Day as far as noteworthy yearly observances.
Like that grand day in March, it requires minimal preparation–although my own compulsive leanings do tend to find me spending an inordinate amount of time perfecting the pleats on my pantaloons, and achieving that impeccable edge on my cutlass. But for most, the day requires nothing more than uttering a few rather robust aaarrrs, and raising a number of generous cups. Another much appreciated aspect of this seaboard celebration is the fact that it does not have attached to it that mandatory inclusion of relatives or family. On this cruise one gets to choose their own crew!
But before embarking on your own bit of cavalier frivolity, please take the time to remember that there is a serious side to “Talk Like a Pirate Day.” Today is another testament to the fact that the only thing in life that is truly black and white is an unfurled skull and crossbones against that ever elusive horizon, and that most of our humble existence operates within those arbitrary shades of gray–a place where there is little difference between sinners and saints–and it is only the sanctioning by those higher authorities that separates the pirates from the privateers.
So as we make our way once more toward safe harbor, let’s raise our tankards high and join in that familiar chorus as we wish our fellow shipmates and scallywags the fairest of winds and a following sea!
Posted by: Chris Poh