Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Talk like a pirate

No, we're not still on the raiding theme.

Slate magazine's "Explainer" column has long struck me as a pretty decent model for how journalists can get good stories and get them mostly right: The people who contribute to this just go and ask real specialists (who get credited at the end of the column — take note, Safire!) about questions many of us might wonder about. The latest one is: Did Pirates Really Say "Arrrr"? As usual for Slate, this is tied to popular culture, namely Pirates of the Caribbean. (Johnny Depp just got an MTV award for his role, apparently.)

The answer to their lead-in question, sadly I suppose, is no, figuring from where pirates actually came from — it's a Hollywood deal, they say.

But this is a much broader movement … if you don't know, it's time to fix that by clicking here, matey. Check out the 'how to' link and don't skip the 'how to talk like a pirate in German' stuff. And when September 19, International Talk like a Pirate Day, rolls around, I'll be talking that historically inaccurate mishmosh from the website to all the chumbuckets I hang out with.

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