Wednesday, August 04, 2004


I love Seattle!

Entered by Ol' Chumbucket, aboard the Festering Boil, Aug. 4

Ahoy shipmates! It's been a wild summer, and last week was the highlight so far.

Before I say another word, let me say that the Seattle Seafair Pirates, our hosts for the week, are a great bunch of guys - a GREAT crew. They let us hang out with them - terrorizing tourists, riding the duck all over town, drinking and carousing and just generally behaving like pirates at all hours of the day and night. It was great! Thank you Peter, Mark, Jerry, Pat, Barnacle, Bunny, Bubbles (those last two are guys, really) Joel, Shane, Kerry and ... well ... all the Pirates. It was sort of like hanging out at a fraternity reunion - only with cannons.

In particular, it was the best week of Cap'n Slappy's life (he's an old Seattle boy, so this rang all kinds of memories.) I had a great time too.

The highlight of the week was the Torchlight Parade. Imagine - we're waiting in the staging area for hours. The Pirates and their vehicle, the Dreaded Moby Duck, are near the end of the parade, so we sat and watched virtually the entire thing go by before it was finally time to go. We swung out of the staging area, past Seattle's Space Needle, and onto the route, then made the big turn down Fourth Street heading through the heart of the city.

And there spread out in front of us was the 2 1/2 mile route with almost half a million people lining the streets waiting for us! What a rush! They enjoyed the whole parade, but the Pirates are a sentimental favorite and when we came into view, their cheers turned into an actual roar! It was incredible. About two thirds of the way through, as we started up the incline, I realized that I should be tired from all the walking, I should have a headache and a sore throat from hollering at the crowd, and I was drenched in sweat. But I felt great! The crowd's energy and enthusiasm carried me up the hill as if I were flying. It was over too soon.

Several adults I know who grew up in Seattle have talked about how big a part the pirates played in their memories. A common comment was, "They scared the hell out of me as a kid, but I loved it." Knowing that I am now one of those memories for some other kids is very cool.

At the party later a couple of the veteran pirates asked if that was my first parade. It was. They expressed surprise, telling me I'd worked the crowd like a pro. It may be the best compliment I've ever received.

Thank you Seattle. Oh, and we sold about 200 books there, so that's a good thing. A very good thing.

Signing off - buy the book, please.

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Nice to hear you had a great time! I like Seattle too. Want to move there with me?
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