"Pirates of the Blogobean"


Do you have what it takes to be a Pirate?

Apparently, Steve H. Graham doesn’t. He doesn’t even have what it takes to write humorously about pirates, which he demonstrated by failing to sell a humor book titled “How to Be a Pirate”, and then blogging about it. The first thing that made it obvious that he shouldn’t even try to write humorous stuff: using his middle initial “H”. Middle initials are absolute Doom for a writer of humorous stuff, unless you have one of the few funny middle initials. “G”. “J”. “K”. “O”. “Q.” “W”. All other initials are far too serious. Except “Z”, which is too silly to be funny.

Anyway, Mr. H. Graham’s writing came to my attention because it was posted to the Beloved MetaFilter by Steven C. Den Beste, who also uses a ve’sry non-humorous middle initial, but that’s okay, because he’s never funny. I could go for a few dozen paragraphs dissecting the failure of Mr. H. Graham’s attempted Pirate funnitude, but that would be unnecessarily cruel. And one of the NOT funny things about Pirates is their frequent tendency to be unnecessarily cruel. Pirates are willing to run you through with a sword, fire cannon balls at your balls, and, well, if you don’t know the specifics of “keelhauling”, trust me, you do not want to know. Still, even Pirates are not so cruel as to do a Fisking of another humorist’s writing. Unless that other humorist is Dave Barry. So let me instead attempt to write the first chapter of the Pirate Humor Book Mr. H. Graham was trying to write and open myself up to being run through, keelhauled or Fisked.


Yes, a Pirate is one of the coolest, most awesome things to be. In fact, it is cooler and more awesome than all the other coolest, most awesome things to be. How can I make such a wild unsubstantiated claim? Doesn’t everybody? But really… Why is being a Pirate better than being a…

NINJA – Do you realize how much training and discipline is required to be a half-way decent Ninja? And you’re usually travelling in groups, all dressed alike. No chance to develop your own style: no personal catchphrase, you’re supposed to be silent and stealthy; and victory dances are out. It’s like being in military school times a million!

VAMPIRE – You have to give up a lot to become a creature of the night: solid food, king size beds, Dodgers day games, And when you make the commitment to become one of the undead, there is no getting out. It’s like a cell phone contract for eternity!

SUPERHERO – The entrance requirements are a pain, unless you’re from another planet, and usually involve exposing yourself to something very toxic or radioactive and surviving. You could go the Batman route, but there’s that training and discipline again, and besides, there’s only one Batman. And do you really want to have to wear a brightly colored skintight outfit?

SECRET AGENT – Superspy guy like James Bond or Jack Bauer? Are you kidding? Those guys are just fictional characters; there’s nobody really like that. Get real.

So, if you want all the coolness, all the awesomeness, without uniforms, strict rules or radioactivity… the Pirate Life is the way to go!

But do you have what it takes to be a Pirate?

Anybody can say “Yaarrrr”, but are you the kind who can really mean it?

First, are you really Seaworthy? No land lubbers allowed. If there’s any piece of land you really lub, whether it’s a bustling city street, a suburban mall, a golf course, well, FORGET IT! You’re going to belong to the Sea now, and you’d better lub it or get out. And you’d better have your sea legs, and a sea stomach and several other sea body parts, because seasickness is a deal killer. If you’ve ever gotten back from a fishing trip and really didn’t feel like eating the catch, if you’ve ever gotten queezy while having sex on a waterbed, if you even know what Dramamine looks like, forget it, you can’t be a Pirate.

And you’d better not be shy of the sight of blood either… including your own. As a Pirate you will be required from time to time to remove someone else’s hand, leg, eye, testicle or kidney. And frequently you will have to your own hand, leg, eye, testicle or kidney removed. And when you do, you have to keep removing others’ hands, legs, eye, testicles or kidneys, and never show fear that you might lose your other hand, leg, eye, testicle or kidney, all of which would be sure career enders. In fact, if you’ve ever given a fraction of a second’s thought about how much Medical Insurance for Pirates would cost, forget it, you can’t be a Pirate.

There’s another thing about being a Pirate a lot of people don’t realize. You can’t have a strong sexual identity. That means being too heterosexual or homosexual, because Pirates, well, they’re omnisexual. That means you have to be ready to have sex with women, men, dead bodies, fish, parrots or an occasional small-bore cannon. You just can’t be particular when you wear puffy shirts and earrings and smell like an NFL locker room. And If you’re are, well, if you can’t guess what happens, then forget it, you can’t be a Pirate.

more pirate how-tos when I feel like it… yaarrr.

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