Thursday, April 15, 2010

Pirates of Men's Pants

Jim Thrapster confesses he is somewhat disappointed with life as a pirate. "It's nothing like it's shown in the movies," the thirty-one year old Londoner laments, sitting in his dank hut on the Somalian coast. "I thought it would be all sun, sea and excitement, seizing gold and busty women from passing ships and carousing wildly in Caribbean taverns! Instead, it's all rum and buggery! " Thrapster, who gave up his job in credit control for a life on the high seas, has found the reality of modern piracy to be very different. "For one thing, I had to come all the way to this African hell hole to get work as a pirate - they told me in Jamaica that they hadn't had pirates there for centuries," he says. "When I got here I found they didn't even have proper ships with sails! All they've got are these bloody dinghies - you try boarding an oil tanker from one of those."

Thrapster was dismayed to find that the pirate dinghies didn't even mount guns. "There isn't enough room for a cannon on them - if we're lucky we'll have a bloke with an AK-47 standing at the sharp end," he reveals. "It's even worse when we board ships - there are no flintlock pistols or even cutlasses! Machetes are usually the best we have. Last week, I had to make do with a piece of wood with a nail in it whilst trying to take a container ship." The booty to be had from such raids has also disappointed the would-be pirate. "All we got from that bloody container ship was a cargo of cheap Chinese-made garden ornaments," he says. "There's no point in burying that crap on a desert island - you might as well just dump it at sea."

His fellow pirates have also proven sorely disappointing to Thrapster. Far from the band of colourful characters promised by the likes of Treasure Island and Pirates of the Caribbean, he instead found himself in company with a band of murderous cut throats. "It's outrageous, not a single one of them has a huge beard, let alone a tricornered hat," he declares. "Not only that, but their personal hygiene is terrible - they all stink to high heaven and none of them seem to have heard of toilet paper." The night life has also fallen short of Thrapter's expectations. "Homosexuality seems to be the main entertainment around here. Mind you, as the only women appear to be toothless crones, it is hardly surprising," he reveals. "You have to join in, or get your throat cut. But I don't mind telling you that being buggered senseless by fifteen roaring drunk pirates every night isn't really what I had in mind when I signed up. I mean, I didn't see Johnny Depp getting jolly rogered up his windward passage by his crew in Pirates of the Caribbean. That film was highly misleading."



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