First off, let me explain why I’m a little reluctant to blog about the secret pirate bar. There is a sign out front when its open, so it’s only marginally secret in reality. Nevertheless, it is open somewhat irregularly (only after 10 or so on Thursdays) and is generally referred to as both ‘secret’ and ‘pirate.’ You see the risk I’m running with the regulars if a bunch of landlubbers take the place over as a result of this blog (read: keelhauling). So, I’m going to write about it, but not reveal the location. That’s for you to figure out.
The ‘secret pirate bar’ is not an official name. Variously referred to as the Oyster Destroyster, the Man O’ Bar and other terms less polite, it had a pattern of changing names each week. The bartenders, Rowan and Nicole, would pick their favorite from the entries placed into a jar by customers whose suggestions predictably became increasingly salty as the night progressed. Since the recent hiatus and reopening, this competition seems to have been replaced with a crayon drawing contest; the winner rewarded with a free pint. While this seems to have resulted in some confusion as what to call the place, I fully support the switch. It’s amazing how serious people can get with crayon art.
Crayon art is a long-standing tradition at the pirate bar, with all the bench seats equipped with butcher’s paper and crayons for that purpose. Such activities lend an air of unpredictability to the place. Will there be an impromptu dance party? Maybe. Will a sea shanty band show up to play the bones, melodica and a kitchen sink? Could happen. Will they pass out lyrics to the patrons and have a singalong of “What do you do with a drunken sailor?” Most definitely. If you were wondering, there are 20 answers to that question, including the obvious (#1 Stick him in a bag and beat him senseless), the bizarre (#15 Soak ‘im in oil till he sprouts a flipper) and the incomprehensible (#17 Tie him to the taffail when she’s yardarm under). After enough $3 pint specials that last one might start to make sense. Reserving your Thursday nights for the pirate bar sure does. Where else are you going to show off that new sailor cap?