Lately, I’ve said three things I thought I’d never have to say
during my lifetime. I said,

Stow that jaw waggin yer gob.

Then I said,

Refill the stinking bilgewater!

And then I said,

Shut yer scuppers and get out o’me way!

Lately, I’ve said three things I thought I’d never have to say during my lifetime. I said, “Stow that jaw waggin yer gob.” Then I said, “Refill the stinking bilgewater!” And then I said, “Shut yer scuppers and get out o’me way!”

No, I haven’t gone crazy or gone off my prescription medication. I’ve been saying these things because, you see, Sept. 19 was National Talk Like a Pirate Day, and I’ve been practicing for it and planning on participating with almost as much gusto as I reserve for the big holidays like Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Now, for those of you landlocked lubbers who don’t know what this means, it’s a relatively newly invented holiday that has caught on (seriously) in some quarters of the country, where, as the name implies, you’re supposed to talk like a pirate. Sure, I know what you’re thinking. Some of you more conservative types are thinking, “Why devote a day to emulating a blood-thirsty and murderous people when we could be emulating, say, ex-Presidents?” (Oh, be still. Of course, I’m kidding) While other, more adventurous, types are thinking, “Blast ye, I missed it!”

But before I go any further, let me just stop right here and say we all know pirates are bad people. They are a lousy example of human character and their lives shouldn’t be emulated and all that. So what’s the point of the holiday, you ask? Well, there is none. Much like home perms and Tupperware parties Talk Like a Pirate Day is something we do just because.

Plus, we all know that kids live for this kind of stuff.

For instance, let’s take a look at the difference in some common phrases.

Kid Talk: Hello.

Pirate Talk: Avast ye, scurvy dogs!

Kids: Hey, Mom, what’s for lunch?

Pirates: Ahoy, what be that in the chum bucket, Lassie?

Kids: You’re a boogernose.

Pirates: I be not a buggernose.

Kids: Arrrrr.

Pirates: Arrrrrrr

So you can see how fun and whimsical talking like a pirate is. And, really, its not hard. You just need to memorize five key phrases, all which sound something like “Yarrrgh.” But don’t worry if you forget them. You can always just resort to the more versatile “Arrrrrrr!”

However, one of the main drawbacks with talking like a pirate is that not everyone will think its endearing. In fact, most people will think it’s a little crazy. If you don’t believe me, just try taking the kids to a grocery store and just see the sort of looks you get from little old ladies when they say, “Shut yer scuppers and get out o’me way, you pack of henhearted numbskulls.”

But the funny thing is, it seems just as soon as you can master the expression, “Capt. Iggy Blood Beard be walkin the gangplank,” the day is over. And you have to go back to your old non-pirate ways.

That is until next year.

Until then, “Godspeed, matey.”

Debbie Farmer is the author of Don’t Put Lipstick on the Cat. You can reach her at [email protected].

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