Avast there me buckos, Monday is Talk Like a Pirate Day.
After it was featured in a column by humorist Dave Barry in 2002, what once was a goofy idea celebrated by a handful of friends has turned into an international phenomenon that shows no sign of slowin' every Sept. 19 — because 'tis fun.
Tampa Bay is full of celebrations and deals, from free doughnuts at Krispy Kreme to discounted boat rides. And don't forget to change your Facebook language settings to English (Pirate), so your status bar will read "Update your Plunderin.' " Instead of "Like" you click "Arr" when one of your mateys has something that be pleasin' to the eye.
The hardy holiday actually started in 1995, but Barry's nationally syndicated column in 2002 is what put some wind in the sales of the pirate ship captained by John Baur and Mark Summers, known among their pirate friends as Cap'n Slappy and Ol' Chumbucket.
According to the unofficial holiday's official website, Ol' Chumbucket and Mad Sally will be in Florida visiting Cedar Key this weekend.
"The town got hammered by Hurricane Hermine, but the plucky pirates of the town are thumbin' their noses at the storm and vowing that the Cedar Key Pirate Festival is on," the website says.
If you are sticking closer to home, Tampa Bay Krispy Kreme stores will give you a free doughnut Monday if you talk like a pirate, a dozen free glazed beauties if you are dressed like one. Don't have a Jack Sparrow costume handy? You can use the custom Krispy Kreme Snapchat pirate filter to digitally "dress" like a pirate. Show your snap to a team member inside the shop and score ye bounty.
Perfect your pirate lingo from 6-10:30 p.m. Friday Sept. 17 when Gaspar's Grotto in Ybor City will hoist a pint or two for pirates with live entertainment, drink specials, food and pirate contests. Tickets are $25 to benefit area hospices, so they aren't total scalawags. 1805 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. (813) 495-9039.
The Pirate Water Taxi, which has 14 pirate-infested stops along Tampa's Riverwalk, Channel District and Davis Island, will be running its buy one get one free special Saturday through Monday with each purchase of a regular $15 all-day, hop-on, hop-off wristband; $10 for children 4-12. The offer is valid only at the Tampa Convention Center dock ticket booth at 333 S Franklin St., Tampa, and must be purchased before 6 p.m.
And don't forget you have to talk like a pirate to get the deal. Here's some suggestions:
• Greet the cashier with, "Ahoy, me hearty!"
• Arrrrr! Avast! And Aye! Use these words as often as you can, no matter the context.
• Tell your mate you are lookin' for a pub where ye can hoist a few flagons of grog over some grub.
• "Bilge rat" is an insult of the highest magnitude, like the bilge rat who refuses to participate in International Talk Like a Pirate Day.
Ye can stuff a message in a bottle for Sharon Kennedy Wynne at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @SharonKWn.