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Thursday, September 18, 2008


International Talk Like a Pirate Day is Sept. 19, but don't worry, it's not a federal holiday, yet, so the mail should be running and if you forgot to get your wife a "matey" card, her feelings will probably stay intact.

Talk Like a Pirate Day, TLAPD as it is acronymmed, is a holiday mainly for office annoyances and an excuse for guys to wear eyeliner, but it's quickly turning into a day of big on events (see below) and an excuse to just have fun.

Git' Yer Freek on wit da Pirrrate Gear Matey!!!

The simplest celebration requires you to walk around and say pirate things ("aye, arrr, matey") to your friends and co-workers -- eyeliner optional. More extravagant events include full-blown festivals with canons and live music.

Last year, the day was celebrated at the International Space Station and the White House with a few 'arrrrs" and since the day coincides with the autumn equinox bringing the first sunlight in six months, the holiday is a big hit at the South Pole.

International Talk Like a Pirate Day Events
From library and events to pub crawls, it's a day when everyone, kids and drunks alike, can celebrate in their own special and appropriate way. We've scoured the globe for all the events and highlighted the best 15 here (in no particular order):

Portland, Ore. - Portland Pirate Festival - This is the "Pirate Guys" hometown festival and one of the biggest with two days of live music, grub and grog, kids activities and historical re-enactments complete with canons

Philadelphia, Pa. - Real Pirates at The Franklin - This is where the The Pirate Guys will be this holiday with an appearance at the this Nat Geo traveling exhibit

Tempe, Ariz. - Arizona Corsairs -- Pirate group (and we mean pirate group -- read their mission statement) takes over Tavern on the Mill with a pirate talking contest , a costume contest and general pirate shenanigans

Kissimmee, Fla. -- Old Town Pirate Party - Popular Kissimmee district hosts second annual fest with trivia, contests and classic hot rods cruising, sorry no pirate ships

Papillon, Neb. - Midlands Pirate Festival - Bellevue Berry and Pumpkin Ranch is overrun with pirates and family fun including musical acts, costume contest, freakshows, faeries and hands-on pirate activities like canon handling

Copenhagen - Rock Piraten - Translated as "Rock Priate" this big Danish (not the pastry) nightlife party keeps Copenhagen knee deep in rum, DJs and typical pirate debauchery.

Hesperia, Calif. - Pirates n' Treasure - Pirate boutique celebrates its one year anniversary with a blowout party, a radio remote broadcast, free giveaways and a Jack Sparrow impersonator

Oceanside, Calif. - Oceanside Harbor Days - Annual Oceanside festival gets in the spirit with a Pirate's Cove section that features live music, belly dancers, costume contest and pirate fights

Studio City, Calif. - Studio City Tattoo -- Celebrate exactly like a pirate with discounted pirate tats, live music and free food

Denver, Colo. - Buccaneer Bash - Sunken Bones Society throws its annual fundraiser

Austin, Texas - Opal Devine's Freehouse - 6th Street gets wenched with a sexy costume contest and party

Batesville, Ind. - TLAPD Party - All-ages fun fest at the library with live music from Hogeye Navvy

Angel Fire, N.M. - Experience Snowboards -- Popular shop is throwing a Pirate Oktoberfest with beer, brats and buxom beauties to raise money for Team Angel Fire, a youth ski and snowboard club

Staten Island, N.Y. - Staten Island Zoo -- Pirate adventure includes seafood cooking demonstrations, tours and talks with costumed attendees getting free prizes

Goodyear, Ariz. - Estrella Mountain Park - Kids go on a real treasure hunt to learn about using maps and compasses

St. Louis, Mo. - Arch 106.5 - The whole town will be in the spirit with popular radio station 106.5 broadcasting the whole day in theme.

For a full user-submitted list, including small gatherings, check out the official site.

Why Sept. 19?
"The Pirate Guys" John Baur and Mark Summers, now known as Cap'n Slappy and Ol' Chumbucket, invented the holiday in 1995, but kept it on the down-low until 2002 when they reached out to humor columnist Dave Barry. They cold-e-mailed Barry asking if he would become the official spokesperson. He accepted and with that blessing and subsequent column, the holiday was launched and continues to grow in popularity.

Since the fateful e-mail in 2002, the two inventors have been all over the papers and morning shows and even appeared on an episode of ABC's 'Wife Swap' with Baur's wife, Mad Sally." In fact, it was the birthday of Summer's ex-wife that inspired the September 19 date since he "already knew the date and wasn't really using it for anything anymore."

Whether the day sticks as a legitimate holiday like Halloween or walks the plank of history like National Honesty Day still remains to be seen ... seen through one eye open lest ye remove ye eye patch, matey.

Personally, I think the best way to Cellebrate Talk Like a Pirate day is to rent a boat and go out and Buck an Ear.... or something like that. If you are in the Vancouver British Columbia area check out my favorite Pirate Rental Boat guys at Granville Island Boat Rentals (Also known by their Pirate Name as GIB'r... AAAARGGH) Their website is http://www.boatrentalsvancouver.com/

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