Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Blogging from A to Z: Playing Pirate

During April, I'm participating in the Blogging from A to Z challenge -- one alphabet-themed post per day, starting with A is for Aruba Aftermath and ending with Z is for ... I don't know yet what Z is for, I'll figure it out when I get there.

"Bring me that horizon!"
At the helm of the H.M.S. Bounty, a few months before she sank off Cape Hatteras
I can't exactly explain how we ended up with these lockers full of period-accurate clothing, except to say my friend Grace was the first instigator.  From the first, we insisted on clothing that was historically plausible for "ordinary sailors" instead of flashy.  The cost to go that route, especially for the battle-ready swords, still makes me cringe.  At the same time, that extra investment yielded an appearance that has certainly opened doors to many unusual adventures for us.

We've talked about real historical pirates, men and women, and sixteenth-century navigation techniques, to schools and libraries.  We've posed for countless photos with tourists.  We've had opportunities as tour guides on historic tall ships, first an unexpected few days on the H.M.S. Bounty in Annapolis, and most recently the magnificent El Galeon docked here in St Augustine.  Most of all, we've met people we never would have met otherwise: crew members from the ships, new friends, and other historical and pirate reenactors.

Meeting namesake friend Jaye in Beaufort after we'd been facebook friends for years

I don’t really have a lot of qualms about being perceived as glorifying the bad guys. I learned from other historical-reenactor friends, you meet the kids where they are. Do what it takes to get their attention, get them hooked on history, and then use that as a springboard for the messages you really want to deliver. (at Croakerfest, Oriental, NC)

We even took our friends Mike and Lori to get their first pirate garb when they visited St Augustine

At the St Augustine pirate gathering, just a day after we arrived last November

More from the St Augustine gathering

Dressing two of our El Galeon friends in our garb for some fun times (photo by Teaira Marque) 
Photographer Teaira Marque looks better in my "lady" garb than I do.  Doesn't she look like she's eagerly anticipating some plunder?

My friend Grace started it all


  1. Since I first started reading your blog, I've always been interested in your pirate lives. Would love to see one of your living history events sometime!

  2. And we'd love to have you! Sooner or later, we'll share an anchorage.

  3. And we'd love to have you! Sooner or later, we'll share an anchorage.