Thursday, June 4

Still Here?? Whatever for?

Oh my DEARS. The persistence of the Internets astounds me.

It appears that dear Gus is following me around via a Twittering craft of some kind. Perhaps the boat makes a chirping sound as it goes? V. unsure on that point. Still, it appears that it may be time to dust things off after my long semi-retirement.

No, I was not in durance vile. It was a very nice condo in the Sandwiches Islands that my Merrikan chum recommended. But all the recent piratical news of late has made my typing fingers rather twitchy. The political developments, thank the dear LORD, are much improved.

I shall have to make improvements of my own to the dear old Grog Shoppe. We are much in arrears, and I shall have to move my own arrear rather smartly in order to bring it up-to-date and up to snuff (we shall remain a non-smoking establishment, however).

Thursday, April 6

Thrilling Tales of Derring-Do

Dear Gus has moved his blogging enterprise to (actually, quite a number of the other shipmates are there also, as well as myself). He relates there that he had a recent foray with an invasion of carpenter bees in his back garden. My daft Merrikan friend also had a close encounter of the irritable stinging insect kind and she told me the following story, which I related in a comment to Gus.

Hornets. It had to be hornets. My daft friend had an encounter with them at a house she was helping a former friend to sell.

The nest was on the front porch and after much discussion and confabulating an Action Plan was decided upon. Before leaving the house that afternoon, a step ladder, extension cords, and an industrial-size clip-on shop light were carefully and quietly set up on the front porch. Everyone went home, dreading the dark. For at 8pm, my friend and her cow-orkers returned to commit horneticide. They had purchased several cans of Hornet-B-Gon and work gloves. My friend was picked up and she, her "friend" and the "friend's" husband drove in trepidatious silence to the empty house. The husband walked slowly and quietly toward the porch, carrying two cans of canned hornet death. He positioned himself on the stepladder, within easy reach of the nest. All was darkness and quiet.

That night it was my friend's job to plug in the shoplight, which cast a bright, harsh light on the hornet's nest and its small, dark entrance hole. At the agreed signal, she plugged the light in and made sure the cords were out of the way for the man's escape. The man immediately sprayed the contents of first one, then the other can into the hole (his aim was a bit shaky). The "friend" sat in the car with the engine running.

Then a few dark wriggling hornets began staggering out of the nest and it was Time To Go. My friend unplugged the light and legged it for the car, the friend's husband right behind her yelling for his spouse to get ready to "peel." Off they went, congratulating themselves on their lucky escape.

The next day, the nest was much quieter, but there were still hornets and they had made another entrance hole to avoid the poison at the old one. So it all had to be done over again, except this time the husband was not available. It was my friend who had to stand on the ladder in the dark and her former "friend" who plugged in the lamp at her signal. After delivering the second can, they ran off to the car shrieking with laughter and slammed and locked the doors behind them before speeding away...with the windows down, which was a minor oversight, but no harm done.

This time, the nest was thoroughly soaked around both holes and the bottom, and no hornets wriggled out waggling their stingers in defiance, that night or the next day. In spite of this success, my friend decided that, like that disgraced Merrikan politico, she did not have a future in pest control.

Wednesday, February 8

High Tech Galleon Plunderers!

The husband of my DAFt chum reports:

Spanish police have broken up a ring of undersea looters who have spent the last two years allegedly plundering the archaeological treasures of Spanish galleons and other historic ships that sank off the coast of southern Spain.

At the weekend, the local civil guard in Cádiz announced the arrest of two Hungarian men and an American woman believed to have set up an on-deck laboratory on their ship, the Louisa, where they used hi-tech equipment - including an undersea robot worth €600,000 (£410,000) - to illegally identify, salvage and treat artifacts from the wrecks. More arrests are expected.

Good Lord! They are treasure-salvors without portfolio. Adventurers after our own hearts! I wonder if that rascal Nelson knows them?

Tuesday, February 7

Supply Problem Solved!

Gus Openshaw's Whale Killing JournalDear Gus! has been kind enough to gift me with a gigantic beer in thanks for my support of his upcoming, or perhaps it is his outcoming book:

If you click on the book, it will benefit very much, and also a personal charity of mine a scosh.

And look at the size of this beer! No more problems of supply for me... er. I believe underbeneath the "Burps Ahoy" banner, it very possibly says "12 fl. oz." which I'm reasonably sure is Merrikish for "Not very much beer, really" or possibly "12 foolish old sotz."

Apparently I was wearing "beer goggles" when I received this gift. Never mind.

Sunday, January 22

The Beeb | Africa | US navy captures Somali 'pirates'

The US navy says it has captured a number of suspected pirates in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Somalia.

Well done. I am pleased to report that the vessel in question was the U.S.S. Winston Churchill. This would make a certain Former Naval Person quite proud.

Friday, January 20

Whale Brittannia!

A seven-tonne whale has made its way up the Thames to central London, where it is being watched by riverside crowds.
The northern bottle-nosed whale, which is 16-18ft long and is usually found in deep sea waters, has passed Parliament and is moving upstream.

Good HEAVENS! A Whalish relation of the blubbery "B" whale!

Friday, December 23

Support The Missionary Position of the Flying Spaghetti Monster! Help Buy A Pirate Ship and Fight Global Warming!

It is the position of the newly consecrated religion of the Flying Spaghetti Monster that there is a scientific correlation between the obvious lack of classical, sea-going pirates under sail... and global warming.

In the interests of science and enlightened Pastafarian consciousness, all proceeds from the sales of the to-be-published Gospel According to the Flying Spaghetti Monster will go toward the purchase of a pirate ship. Said ship will help to reduce global warming by its very existence. It is a perfectly rational argument, if a little... circuitous. However, you can't argue with the mathematics: there is a direct and opposite correlation between the number of buccaneers and the hotting up of the environment.

As you know, my spiritual affiliation is C of E, but I do have a great deal of affinity for other schools of thought and belief. The dear Buddhists are lovely people, for example, quite peaceful and contemplative, yet with strong aesthetic values.

The Flying Spaghetti Monsterites, or the Pastafarians as they like to call themselves, are quite a bit more anarchic, but they are quite industrious and also very crafty. I am more than willing to lend them a little support (and also purchase the Gospel, since it appears to be tastefully done).

I wonder if there will be any Flying Spaghetti Monsteries, full of monkeys and nunsense?

Thursday, December 22

Modern Pirate Adventuring!

So little news of note lately, my dears.

But here, at last, is a tale of a modern adventurer's search for the Pirates of Panama!

Tuesday, November 8

The Boat O' Biography Of Gus Openshaw Is Nearly Launched!1!!111!!!


News at last. Gus has finally gotten off his duff and written his most thrilling adventure to date. Well, actually, he's probably in the fourth or fifth revise of his memoirs of the thrilling adventures of his everso reality-based experiences last year, but the truly thrilling part is that it's to be published as an actual book.

I am so proud of the dear captain. I do hope that those of us loyal shipmates who hung on to hope and burnt incense and so forth might have a chance to meet Gus on his interminable book deal tour junket.

Tuesday, October 18

Gus Openshaw's Whale-Killing Journal AT LAST!

Simply THRILLING news. I shall have to alert dear snuggs as to the impending somethingess that is about to happen. And perhaps to refurbish our decent funereal wear in case Gus' dire warning comes true.

Ahoy, shipmates, Gus Openshaw here. Hope you all are still alive. I am, for now anyhow. (Yeah, I know, most of you probably guessed that given that I'm writing up this here blog entry now, but for those few of you who didn't, George...)

Reason I might buy it is I'll be going out to sea again soon. Big news on that (that's why there's a scrimshaw of my typewriter below (though truth be told I'll probably type on the computer)) soon.

In the meantime, can you guess what Jesus, me and President Hoover have got in common? If you guess right, there's a pile of scrimshaws in it for you. To submit your guess and/or get on my mailing list, send an e-mail to So I guess the postman really has got nothing to do with either.

We had better issue a Call to Arms, Legs, and sundry other Limbs. All hands on deck (DRAT! PARDON! It's been so long).

Tuesday, October 11

Guests Coming Out of One's Orifices

With the decline in the pirate trade (everyone seems to have gone Temperance or some such) life has become very quiet here at the Grog Shoppe. During the touristic season the guests come and go and there's very little of note to report.

Howsomeever, we seem to be headed into a much more busy time, as the nice rugged Kiwi fellow's firm has contracted for rooms again for their madcap incentive contest or travelogue or whatever it is. However, I had the presence of mind to have my solicitors (Messrs. Obfusc and Wigtape, Esquires) look over the agreement this time, and I have the right to offer alternate accomodations to anyone for any reason.

Oddly enough, this year it's gaggles and gaggles of 'Merrikan families. My dim friend warned me of this, and I thought I knew the oddities of 'Merrikan family life tolerably well, but each new arrival (or rather, each new set of arrivals) would appear to offer new challenges. I have a guest list, but have no idea which family will arrive when.

The Black family was the first to arrive - that is their name, I mean no disrespect. They are lovely people, and the two young boys are very well-spoken and charming. They seemed quite, quite downcast at being the first to arrive and so I and my staff have done my best to find them interesting things to do and enjoy their rather forced vacation at my humble establishment.

All well and good, but the next family to arrive smelt of gunpowder and lamp oil, and the father did nothing to ingratiate himself further. He seemed to be casting blame all about except on himself for some reason. The young teenage son was quite comely, but I sensed trouble if any future guests should turn out to be teenage girls (which according to my guest list may be the case). So I not so reluctantly found them accomodations at a soulless modern hostelry out by the motorway.

The father had complained of the smallness of my rooms and of the scent of delicious tipples wafting up from the barroom, so off they went said I.

In other news, I've done a spot of housekeeping, and evicted a rather strange Japanese gentleman who seemed bent on running a business out of my very premises. The cheek! He has been summarily ejected.

Monday, September 19

Avast! A graciously happy Talk Like A Pyrate Day to all!


I do hope that all and sundry are enjoying themselves in whatever piratical pursuits as seem best to them.

With the possible exception, of course, of actually illegal booty looting from those less fortunate.

Monday, September 12

MONDAY'S LETTERS: 'Opus' Creator Expounds on Publishers' 'Acute Terror'

The answer to Ms. Bushkoff is that the palpable fear on the part of publishers is simply one of lost subscribers. Just one flame e-mail seems to wreak panic these days. As circulation declines, it has become an acute terror. It manifests itself directly in timidity. And since many desperately want to see comics as expendable (Ha! ), we're slapped down the fastest when we offend. That would be me.

This is new.

The irony is that the very thing that should be utilized to better stem the broken levee of newspaper circulation is spice and edge.

And that is exactly what so many publishers run from. Off the cliff, some of us suspect.

Berkeley Breathed
Breathed is the creator of "Opus," which is distributed by The Washington Post Writers Group

Friday, September 9

Pirate Jack : A Podcast Novel Podcast Info

Yes, yes, it's been quite slack on these premises of late. However there appears to be a new pirate adventure that's come over the horizon.

First of all, one must obtain one of these fangled Pod thingys. Or a computational device that can play music and suchlike from the Interweb.

Then after a certain amount of bother, one can download "podcasts" and listen to music gathered by other Pod thingy people (you can recognize them by the white wires, which are attached to their brains and cause them to be inattentive to others in the immejjit vicinity).

Then one can enjoy a young man's novel pirate adventure novel whilst listening to the pod thingy.

Evidently the author has gone to the bother of reading his story, chapter by chapter, so that one may listen at any such time convenient (rather not while driving a vehicle, however).

It is a very interesting idea. I wonder if Gus has thunk it yet.