It’s too early (just!) to start talking about Christmas. Too late to celebrate Fourth of July. There’s only one holiday that people the world over are preparing for at this point in September – it’s International Talk Like A Pirate Day! Every year on September 19, swashbuckling and arrrr-ing abound as kids and grown-ups don their stripy shirts and pirate hats and get up to plenty of pirate fun.
What is Talk Like a Pirate Day?
What? You mean, you’ve never heard of it?! International Talk Like A Pirate Day started in 1995 as a bit of joking about between friends John Baur and Mark Summers. They were playing racquetball and for some unknown reason started shouting encouragement to each other in pirate speak. It continued as just a bit of a joke between them and a few more friends until 2002, when columnist and New York Times bestselling author Dave Barry wrote about it. Obviously, a lot of people were just waiting for an opportunity to talk like a pirate because it’s since grown into a worldwide phenomenon. Talk Like A Pirate Day has even been celebrated on the International Space Station and in the Oval Office and been made into an official holiday in the state of Michigan. So, what are you waiting for? Get practicing now.
Learn how to talk like a pirate
Needless to say, it takes years of practice to pass for a true pirate, but everyone can add a little bit of pirate talk into their everyday lives with just a little bit of effort. Here are some handy phrases that’ll be especially useful if you’ve got a house full of layabouts you need to get up and ready to face the day in pirate style.
• Ahoy there! – Hello!
• Arrr! – General pirate sound meaning yes, I agree or let’s go and get our hands on some pirate treasure!
• Avast! – Stop and give attention
• Aye, aye Cap’ain – Yes, right away
• Give no quarter – Show no mercy
• Handsomely – Quickly, carefully
• Me hearties – My friends
• Show a leg! – A phrase used to wake up a sleeping pirate
• Sink me! – A dramatic expression to show surprise – “Well, sink me!”
Don’t just talk like a pirate – look like one!
To really going to get on board with Talk Like A Pirate Day, wouldn’t it be great to look the part too. After all, who doesn’t love the opportunity to dress up? And pirate dress up is a classic. You can even keep your costume handy and reuse it for Halloween in a few weeks’ time.
If you’re short on time or on a tight budget, you can throw on a stripy shirt, tie a bandana round your head, add a fake moustache or beard and – boom – instant pirate.
If you’re a crafty type, you could create lots of accessories to make your outfit even more piratey.
- Turn any wide-brimmed hat you have into a pirate hat by pinning up three sides. You could spray paint it black if you like and paint on a white skull and cross bones.
- Use black, yellow and white craft paper, card or felt, plus some strong grey card, to make all your pirate accessories including eye patch, belt buckle, hat, boots and cutlass.
- Cut up an old black t-shirt, sweater or jacket to make a waistcoat to add an authentic touch to your pirate outfit. Just cut off the arms, widen the neck, cut up the front and trim any off the bottom to get the length you want. Tie the waist with a red scarf for the Jack Sparrow look!
- Fill a small drawstring bag or satchel with chocolate coins for some pirate treasure.
Games and activities for Talk Like A Pirate Day
If you’re going to embrace Talk Like A Pirate Day wholeheartedly, there’s nothing better than planning a right old pirate knees up – that’s party to me and you. You could host a pirate-themed feast, decorate your house like a pirate ship or set up some piratey games.
Pin the Patch on the Pirate
- You know the classic kids party game Pin the Tail on the Donkey? Well this is just like that, but with a pirate… and a patch.
Stinky Seaweed Treasure Hunt
- Fill a box or bin with ripped up plastic bags, card, rags etc. to make it look like seaweed. Hide little prizes for your pirate guests to rummage around and find. If you want to make the game more yucky, add in some green or brown slime. Just make sure your prizes are well wrapped so they don’t get yucky too.
Treasure Chest Frisbee
- Best played outside this one! Get a large box with a lid, like a storage chest, blanket box or laundry basket, and prop the lid so it’s open just a crack. From an agreed distance, try to throw the frisbee into the treasure chest to win points. Could play as individual pirates or team up into two or three pirate ‘crews’.
- Use your party venue – whether it’s your house, your garden or a park – as the setting for a genuine treasure hunt. Hide the treasure, set some clues and make a map. And don’t worry about starting from scratch – Pinterest comes to the rescue with a ton of piratey ideas and printable resources.
Don’t forget to take pictures of your precious little pirates
What better opportunity to snap unforgettable photos of your friends and family than when they’re dressed up and messing about like pirates?
Then, when the party’s over and we’re all back to talking normally again, don’t leave the memories languishing on your phone or stuck on a hard drive. Discover the easiest, safest way to share photos with family using Lifecake.
For more tips on family fun, head over to our blogs – How to plan like a pro for taking baby to the beach and Christmas crafting with kids. Sorry, yes, we did just mention Christmas again!