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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Column: Ahoy, me mateys!

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  • Avast! Hark ye closely, for on this day of Sept. 19, it be Talk Like a Pirate Day. (Also the birthday of Hermione Granger from the “Harry Potter” series for those who are curious.)
     
    Though, to be honest, I’ll probably do about as much pirate talk in real life as I’m doing in this column.
     
    Not that it isn’t great fun. It is. I have very fond memories of being taught the proper way to “Argh” at a Renaissance Fair. It is a lot of work, though, especially when you’re don’t speak the language on a regular basis.
     
    In honor of Talk Like a Pirate Day, however, I’ll throw out some mentions of my favorite scallywags and scoundrels.
     
    * Grace O’Malley: Grace (a very Anglicized version of her real name), was an Irish pirate who made a name for herself in the 16th century. She’s also the only real pirate on my list. She commanded a fleet of ships and a rather impressive amount of men in a time with women just didn’t do these things. She met with Queen Elizabeth I when she ran into trouble with the English, and Elizabeth reportedly took Grace’s side in the matter. She was still sailing the seas until she was at least in her 60s, and considering the average life expectancy at the time, that’s somewhat impressive.
     
    * Dread Pirate Roberts from “The Princess Bride” by William Goldman: Oh, Wesley. With his perfect teeth and eyes like the high seas after a storm, I have to include him on this list, even if he isn’t the original Dread Pirate Roberts.
     
    * The cat from “The Last Unicorn” cartoon: At no point in the story is the cat ever pictured sailing on a ship or plundering. He does, however, have a peg leg and an eye patch and spout off lines such as, “Avast! Hark ye closely, mum.”
     
    * Long John Silver from Disney’s “Treasure Planet”: I could say the Silver from Robert Louis Stevenson’s book, but I haven’t actually read it yet, and I’m rather fond of this telling.
     
    * Captain Jack Sparrow from Disney’s “Pirates of the Caribbean”: Well, naturally I couldn’t make a list without Captain Jack.
     
    Now then, away with ye, me hearties! Swab the deck! Strike the colors!
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    Tina Bridenstine is a page designer for The Shawnee News-Star.
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