Booty Call

Isn't it about time for a pirate backlash? Apparently not.

The comment launched the tale of an adventure that took him across the nation as he traced his roots. I guess everyone's treasure map is a little different. His had brought him to this joint. Which brought me to my next question.

"Why's this place called the Pirate Republic?" I asked Chef Bill.

"Because it's a sovereign nation, baby girl," he shot back with a wicked smile.

Right now, it was a nation with a whopping population of seven, who were about to elect to do another beer-and-sake, which Parya had set up while we were flapping our gums.

"Are [the temptation to substitute Aaaarrrr is almost overwhelming when you're in the Republic, and you're encouraged not to resist the urge] these shots always on the house?" I asked.

"Nope, they're on him," Parya said, motioning to the buttoned-up guy at the end of the bar.

Our benefactor introduced himself as Michael, whose tale included finding his fortune in yacht sales before becoming a polo pony man. Surf, then turf. The man knew how to keep his life in the right order.

And how to buy friends.He'd even shared his crab cakes with Em, which I suspected had something to do with her New Year's resolution, "More cleavage!"

It was a resolution she'd accomplished this evening in a little black dress with a plunging neckline. The fuchsia of the demitasse bra kept peeking out and winking at us as she moved. A chest of pirate treasure!

Soon, Emily and Michael began playing the little swinging-a-ring-on-a-string game, and my friend kept winning by landing the tethered O on the pirate's hook embedded on the fencing across the alley.

"Yup, you're a hooker," I laughed, and she along with me.

"I was a professional ring-toss thrower before I was a computer network consultant," Chris joked with a professional dead pan on his mug.

"Where's my grog, you saucy wench!?" Bill bellowed later from behind an eight-foot pirate statue as he wheeled it in from the sidewalk outside.

"Looks like the diet worked," Chris quipped about the pirate's skeletal form.

Soon, perhaps in tribute to our bartender, whose combination of levity and earthiness reminded me of a tribal Tinkerbell, the stereo began playing the Pixies. As she swabbed the decks and Bill battened down the hatches, we finished our drinks awash in a joy that only such surf-punk can inspire.

"The owner of this place is the real deal. He sailed all around the world," Parya proclaimed, and then, apropos of nothing that I could discern, she yelled a few feet to her coworker, "Shut the fuck up!"

Bill put his hands on his knees, bent over, and made a request: "I like to be spanked when you talk to me like that," and his coworker gave him a few gentle wacks on his poop deck.

And that's how it goes at the Pirate Republic: You drink some grog, you walk the plank, you tell some jokes (or write them on the wall), and growl Aaaarrrr until you're satisfied. If you're lucky, you may even get a saucy wench or salty dog interested in your booty.

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