Talk Like a Pirate Day: Yo, ho, ho and you cou


Piratz Tavern in Silver Spring pays homage to the pirate year-round. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)

It was columnist Dave Barry who dedicated a 2002 column to Talk Like a Pirate Day — then just an inside joke between two New Yorkers, John Baur and Mark Summers — and launched the international phenomenon. If you’re not skilled in the dialect of a seafaring rogue, Barry offered this sage wisdom for would-be pirates:

“To prepare for Talk Like a Pirate Day, you should practice incorporating pirate terminology into your everyday speech. For example, let’s consider a typical conversation between two co-workers in a business office:

BOB: Hi, Mary.

MARY: Hi, Bob. Have you had a chance to look at the Fennerman contract?

BOB: Yes, and I have some suggestions.

MARY: Okay, I’ll review them.

Now let’s look how this same conversation would sound on Talk Like a Pirate Day:

BOB: Avast, me beauty.

MARY: Avast, Bob. Is that a yardarm in your doubloons, or are you just glad to see me?

BOB: You are giving me the desire to haul some keel.

MARY: Arrrrr.”

Here are a few of the Talk Like a Pirate Day events for adults and kids that have turned up locally.

• If you “arrr” with feeling, you can score yourself some deep-fried booty: Krispy Kreme locations, including the one in Dupont Circle, are offering would-be Captain Jack Sparrows a free glazed doughnut; come dressed like a pirate and Krispy Kreme will surrender a full dozen. The company requests that you leave your swords and such at home, however, because brandishing those would be more scary than funny.

• The pirate-lover’s mecca Piratz Tavern in Silver Spring will mark the occasion with a night of “sea shanties, rum and pirate madness.” The fun kicks off at 7 p.m.

• For kids, the Eastport-Annapolis Neck Branch of the Anne Arundel Public Library hosts pirate storytime for preschoolers at 10 a.m. on Wednesday.

• And finally, the Ship’s Company Chanteymen, the best-known sea chanty group in the region, perform at Galway Bay in Annapolis. You can expect to get your fill of pirate songs 8 to 10 p.m.

Lavanya Ramanathan is a features reporter for Style.

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