» Name: Kassy Freely, or “Poppet” the pirate
» Job: Kassy performs with the Vagabonds, a pirate entertainment group. She also waitresses in character at Piratz Tavern in Silver Spring.
» Salary: $20,000
» What she does: Poppet brings some serious pirate sass to the performance group, which includes a belly dancer, a fire-breather and a sword slinger. The group performs weekly at Piratz Tavern, and also is hired out for parties and other events. Poppet, Freely’s pirate persona, is the attitude-laden, trash-talking character who won’t put up with a certain “w” word: “A guy came into Piratz, and he said, ‘Where’s my grog, wench?’ I put my [real] dagger in the table and said, ‘You call me a wench and this will go in your gut.'”
» Would you want this job?: Being a pirate is a great way to act out, and it’s the one profession that actually encourages misbehaving on the job. It’s all about getting into a fun character who can be either an extension of yourself or the complete opposite.
» How she got this job:
Freely was a regular at local Renaissance festivals but was looking for something different: “I had all my clothes and I loved it, but I hadn’t quite found my role there.” Having already been pirate-minded — her all-time favorite movie is “Yellowbeard” — she naturally gravitated to a pirate group her friend was in. Poppet was born out of Madeline Kahn‘s defiant character from the movie.
» How you can get this job: There are two options: 1) Find some (hopefully, friendly) pirates, befriend and join, or 2) Get some friends and start your own troupe. Freely lists the Laughing Man Tavern and, of course, Piratz Tavern as two places where pirates convene. Immerse yourself in a character, which, of course, means working on that Keith Richards drawl.
Written by Express contributor Robyn Mincher
Photo courtesy THUDD