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Pirate Fest, June 2011 - Put-in-Bay, OH

Mission laughing
Photo: Mary Diamond
Mission having an AWFULLY good time.
Chapter 3rd. Of the events on Friday night, including going back to the campsite and checking out the work everyone else had done there; dinner out; being pressed into service as bachelorette party judges and what transpired then; hanging around at Hooligans Irish Pub at least eight times; dancing (yes, dancing - it doesn't happen often so be sure to enjoy it while you can); and other strange and not entirely well-remembered occurrences in Put-in-Bay.

Back at the camp, dinner was just getting started. Things had been so crazy getting the event organized that our groceries didn't arrive until late. The Crescent Tavern
Photo: Mission
The Crescent Tavern
Donna was making noises about getting hungry, so we decided to go into town with Cheeky and see what we could find. Donna said she was getting cranky on the way, so we decided to stop at The Crescent Tavern, the first place we came to following a cursory glance at their street menu. There we met Shannon, M.A. d'Dogge and Michael who had clearly been imbibing.

We explained that they were cooking dinner back at the campsite. M.A. d'Dogge decided to stay with us while the others said they were going to camp. (But not before finishing their beers. Do you see a trend here?) While we were all sitting around yacking a woman appeared asking us to pose for a photo. Friday Dinner
Photo: Mission's Camera
Friday dinner with M.A. d'Dogge, Mary and Lisa.
That's Shannon standing and the waitress in pink.
She handed us a card, indicating that our photo could be found on the funcoast website. I'd post it, but that would sort of defeat her purpose in being on the island, so you'll just have to go check it out for yourself if you're interested. (Based on what I recall of Friday night, I wonder if they do blackmail as a sideline there at Funcoast?)

For dinner, Mary and I split fish and chips, which was descent. At the last second I decided to try the shrimp soup which was excellent and which I highly recommend to all the readers if you ever make it to Put-in-Bay. It was the best shrimp soup I had on the island. (It was also better than the lobster bisque, but don't tell Michael.) I asked the waitress if the service folks stayed on the island or come over every day. She said some came over every day, but she preferred to stay in a dorm on the island. I'll be that's fun. I actually think Fish Fly Park bordered on one such dorm. Of course, even at dinner the tourists were a highlight of the town as you see below. After dinner, we toddled back over to the campsite to prepare for some serious bar-hopping. By my count I had had about a dozen drinks at this point, which may explain what will soon follow in this chapter. (Plus it may explain the stupid balancing the check photo. I can't believe I even put that in here.)

Mission with Mary and Lisa
Photo: Mission
Mary, your author and Lisa.
Look at the grin!
Mission Balancing Check
Photo: Lisa Dousharm
Add sad checks and
balances joke here.
The photographer
Photo: Mission
The photographer from
Funcoast.com
A Bachelorette Party
Photo: Lisa Dousharm
Pink bachelorette party girls at Pub.
(Yet more foreshadowing.)

The bar hopping officially began right where I left you before I added that nifty dividing line: The Crescent Tavern. If ever you want to generate traffic for the pirate camping crowd in Put-in-Bay, the key appears to be to put your bar in site closest to the campground on the side of the street where the pirates will normally be walking. Being dressed in pirate garb allowed us to get into bars without paying any cover, so I recommend that. There is a downside, however. We were barely into the enclosed area before our entire group was recruited to judge a bachelorette contest. Yes, there appeared to be three bachelorette parties - Amy's, Anne's and something that started with a 'V'...Victoria? - vying for some unknown prize. (Or maybe Dancing at the Crescent Pub
Photo: Mission with Mary's Camera
People dancing at the Crescent Tavern
not vying for any prize at all other than to say they won. They were all quite enthusiastic, by which I mean "really loaded.")

The way this worked was this: we were all to stand in a line and each party of girls was to walk, or rather, dance, by and impress us with...well you know what with. I found this pretty hilarious because we were a gender-mixed group. Each of the major known genders were well represented amongst our pirates. This appeared to have no effect whatsoever on the behavior of the young girls who bumped and ground by (and into) us with great fervor. After each group had gone by once, the DJ deemed them not to be enthusiastic enough. (By which he couldn't have possibly meant "drunk" because there was no way on earth these gals could get any more intoxicated without the use of an IV.) So they had to do it all again, this time with the colored lights. One of Victoria's girls even flashed us, but propriety prevented me from taking a photo. (What kind of a website do you think this is? If I had those kind of photos here, I'd probably be charging money.)

That was apparently satisfactory for Mr. DJ, so he called some of us up to the stage. We chose M.A. d'Dogge as our bachelorette party spokesman (for obvious reasons), although the decision on the winner was pretty well unanimous: Amy's group. Amy was very excited, although I am not sure if she is in the pictures or not. I decided I really wanted a drink, so I pushed my way up to the bar. (Crowded bars are really not my thing, but when in Rome...)

The Crew 'Judging'
Photo: Mission with Mary's Camera
The girls stream by while the crew 'judges.'
Bachelorettes dancing with colored lights
Photo: Mission with Mary's Camera
Do colored lights make judging any easier?
The winner?
Photo: Mission w Mary's Camera
Amy? Maybe?

We eventually left The Crescent Tavern for greener pastures. Something like this happened last year as well. A group of us left the campsite with the idea of hitting a bunch of bars along the main drag along the way. Just like last year, we didn't stop at any of the bars along the way (and there are at least six or seven of them), Hooligan's Pub
Photo: Mission
Hooligans daytime reference pic. (The UHaul is the
Bastard Bearded Irishman's Tour Vehicle.)
but we went straight for Hooligans. I am not complaining about this, but just noting that we start out with this grand plan at one end of the straight and then basically head pell-mell to the other end so we can go to Hooligans Irish Pub. I don't have a good night time shot of Hooligans, so I'm just going to go ahead and post the day-time establishing shot I took here for your reference. You may have to adjust your eyes after seeing it, for which I apologize, but I want you to have a good ref shot. OK?

I was walking with Mary. As soon as we got in front of the Beer Barrel Saloon, I got very excited. (By which I mean "very excited.") "Why?" you ask, guilelessly. Because of the monkey. The front of the Beer Barrel Saloon has a row of really cheesy neon palm trees, one of which contains a monkey. Regular readers will note that your author has a predilection for interesting animals. A squirrel
Photo: Mission
The inevitable squirrel
This has apparently always been so.. Shortly after I'd learned a basic vocabulary, I'd be walking outdoors with my parents and loudly announce "Squirrel!" to my parents. They'd look around and, not finding any squirrels, ask me, "Where?" Then I'd point to the top of a forty or fifty foot tall tree where, you guessed, there was a squirrel the visual size of micro-dot perched on the top branches. (Today I require reading glasses to make out the backlit menu at McDonalds. There's probably a moral here, but I sure don't know what the heck it is.)

Anyhow, to my original point... when I was putting together last year's Put-in-Bay Surgeon's Journal, I really, really, really wanted to use a photo of the neon monkey in the neon palm tree in the title. Of course, I had not taken a photo of this, so I searched all over the internet to try and find one. The best I could come up with was a really small one that looked badly distorted when blown up to the size needed for the title, so I posted that in the Journal. I could find lots of photos of the neon palm tree, however, so I just used them. Still, to satisfy my own desires, below is what last year's title bar might have looked like had I had Mary Diamond along to serve as my photography conscious and my long-exposure tripod when I was looking at the monkey and thinking about how cool it was last year at Pirate Fest.

The Alternate 2010 Put-in-Bay Title Bar
Photo: Created by Mission
The rare neon monkey alternate, Art Deco Font Put-in-Bay 2010 SJ title.
This sells for almost fifteen times what the normal title (seen below) sells for on eBay.
The Alternate 2010 Put-in-Bay Title Bar
Photo: Created by Mission

Before our Journal account actually arrives at Hooligans, I want to take a break from the 'Mission Narrative' to report on what was happening with another pirate party. Connie listening to girl with inflatable guy
Photo: Silas Thatcher
I can't even begin to guess what this conversation
was about.
Guy explaining something to Connie in the wagon
Photo: Silas Thatcher
The bouncer explains that if the wagon is
going to continue to be so rowdy it will have
to leave.
It seems that Silas and Connie Thatcher and their friend Carol had struck out on their own. The way I got it, Connie was tired, so she asked to be taken in the wagon as you can see here. Note that Connie was in, but definitely not on the wagon during the evening. (I have to imagine with all her kids, any chance to get out an party in a city like Put-in-Bay is like manna from heaven.) Although I was obviously not there, I understand they had a pretty good time with the wagon. What surprised me was that the bars let them bring the wagon in. That just goes to show you what type of 'anything goes' environment they have there. Although I understand that the wagon had one too many and got belligerent with the bouncer and had to be carted out. (Literally.) (That was admittedly really bad.)


Drunken Bearded Irishmen Band
Photo: Mission with Mary's Camera
The Bastard Bearded Irishmen performing at Hooligans
This brings us to Hooligans. The joint was standing room only when we arrived, so we all wheedled our way to a small pocket of open space between the rest rooms and the band. Just as last year, they appeared to have chosen their band based on sheer volume and ability to play Irish music well.

We later learned (as you will see) that they were pretty friendly folks. (This means that they liked our costumes.) Their band was called "The Bastard Bearded Irishmen." which was actually quite strange given that most of them didn't have beards. In fact, their fiddler was technically a girl who had little hope of fulfilling the requirement set Mission Blotto
Photo: Mary Diamond
What do you do with a drunken Mission?
forth in the second adjective of their name. Based on my experience with women, I had doubts that she really wanted to do so either. So that was a mystery.

Although, frankly speaking, I probably wasn't pondering it. In fact, I have a feeling my neurons had decided that with that much alcohol floating around, they may as well relax and spend the evening laying about, dozing and dreaming of South Pacific islands. I was left to function with my few remaining wits. This meant the idea of dancing seemed appealing. Now don't take this lightly! Normally I can analyze the reasonableness of the mere idea of dancing into submission, but tonight M.A. d'Dogge Dancing
Photo: Mission with Mary's Camera
M.A. d'Dogge willingly engaging in dance
was not going to be normal. Besides, Mary has this tendency to get me to do things I normally wouldn't even consider, as you will remember if you followed the link about the stinky swab on the previous page. So your surgeon was apparently going dancing in the Irish style.

As I recall it (which would be 'vaguely'), this whole dancing thing was started by M.A. d'Dogge. He is the sort of guy who probably actually enjoys dancing. (In other words, he probably has at least some manual dexterity and coordination. Even in my most sober moments I wouldn't be so bold as to claim that.) He was doing some sort of stomping dance that I recall looking fairly simple. Mary Diamond and Cheeky soon joined in so I was either coerced by them or was actually blotto enough to decide to join in all on my own. Thinking back on it know (hazily) it seemed to me that it was actually pretty easy to pick up. Of course, if you really wanted the skinny on this, you'd have had to have found someone who was sober from our dancing group and ask them. (The odds of finding such a person are probably pretty low.)

The crew dancing
Photo: Mission with Mary's Camera
The crew on the dance floor. I have no idea what Uncle Spam's deal is, but
I notice that Cheeky appears to be dancing with Lob.
Mission and Mary Dancing
Photo: Mary's Camera
Mary, Mission and a green rag on the dance floor.
(Can someone message me and explain the rag?)

Tony's Garage Put-in-Bay
Photo: Mission
For some reason which I either was not privy to or have since forgotten, we left Hooligans and went down the street to Tony's Garage. (Photo at right. Sorry again - put your sunglasses on before looking at it after staring at all those other shots.) From what I recall of Hooligan's, it was very, very crowded in addition to being very, very loud. So if I had to guess, I'd say that we went to Tony's so we weren't all wedged into the small space by the band. Either that or Uncle Spam was getting fresh. Pick your favorite reason.

Tony's Garage proved to have a far more bizarre decor, which meant I was almost immediately taken with it. As you can see below, there were weird skeleton decorations on the stage, advising us to go away and the entertainer was dressed in what I can only guess would be French & Indian War style ("Now with extra feathers!") I'm not sure if he was going for pirate or this was just his normal get up. The (presumably) more sober elements of our crew found a table and parked.

Cool Skeleton Thing
Photo: Mission with Mary's Camera
The cool skeleton thing. Go away!
The Feathered Performer
Photo: Mary's Camera
The feathered performer
A Place to Sit
Photo: Mission w Mary's Camera
The real reason we probably left Hooligans: seats

Mission and Guy with Goofy hat
Photo: Mary Diamond
"Trust me son that is you!" "Uh... That's just Goofy."
Those of us who weren't very sober, all engaged in a round of Stynky's Stupid Hat Swap game. Those of you who read the 2008 Pirates in Paradise Surgeon's Journal may recall the rules from the special Easter Egg page. Or...maybe not. In fact, there may not actually be any rules. It's hard to say because both times it happened, I was in no condition to take note of any rules. (Coincidentally, both times I have been involved in Stynky's Stupid Hat Swap game, I have had Mary's camera because mine failed to succeed in the clutch. Coincidence? Cue the Twilight Show music!) I have talked with Stynky since the original Stupid Hat Swap game and he suggested that the reason for it was that he found it droll to get pirate re-enactors who identified so strongly with their hats to part with them. Personally, I think that is a load of hogwash and he just saw someone's hat at PiP that he wanted to steal and started this idiot game. Fortunately it was not my hat. While many people seem to want to try my hat on (Foreshadowing!), none of them actually want to keep for fear that they'll be called a 'pilgrim' all night.

M.A. d'Dogge in Hat
Photo: Lisa Dousharm
M.A. d'Dogge in a hat with what appears to be a severed arm on it.
Kate in Bryan's Hat
Photo: Mission w/ Mary's Camera
Kate making George jealous wearing Bryan's
hat. (Isn't this a lovely shot of her?)
Ed and Sue swap hats
Photo: Mission w Mary's Camera
Ed wearing the hat of one of the pirate groupies,
possibly named Sue.

Mary in Clint's Hat
Photo: Mission
Mary Diamond.
Ed and two Tourists
Photo: Mission w/ Mary's Camera
Jenny and Sue with Ed in various people's hats
Jay in Lisa's Hat
Photo: Mission
Jay Babcock
Mission & Michael
Photo: Mission
Michael and Mission

Mission and two girls
Photo: Mary Diamond
Now that's what I'm talking about. (It's the hat.)
Too bad I don't remember this very well.
Mission alarmed
Photo: Mary Diamond
Did someone goose me?
(Caption: Lisa Dousharm)
You may notice in that last photo above that you author was in pretty rare form on Friday night. What can I say? When I am out with good friends having a good time dressed in what I perceive to be sort of silly garb (knee pants), I can be a really silly drunk.

Since I can't hide the photos shown in this series under a rock (because they're on Facebook) I'm going to put them here. After this you will have seen more than enough of me.

Mission silly
Photo: Mary Diamond
The expression had to do with the hat.
Mission and Ed 2
Photo: Mary Diamond
Ed and Mission
Mission and Ed 1
Photo: Mary Diamond
Ed and Mission (who is losing his focus)

Trish with the Fish Mug on her head
Photo: Mary Diamond
Did someone goose me?
(Caption: Lisa Dousharm)
Well! While you've seen enough of me being a silly drunk, you probably haven't heard enough, so now I have to tell a tale on myself or those that were there will call me on it. This particular story all begins with Trish, whose birthday it was. She was celebrating her date of birth the way I was celebrating...well, I wasn't really celebrating anything, I was just having a good time. Now let me tell you how the story goes (or how I was told it goes by Shannon, Trish's husband, for I don't recall it all quite this way. Well, OK, I could have stopped at "I don't recall it all."

Shannon claims I announced to Trish that since it was her birthday, I had to buy her a drink. (Those of you who know me well will immediately begin to suspect the validity of this story based on that statement alone.) She said she wanted a lemon drink, but not a beer. So I went up to the bartender and asked for such, but she brought me a lemon beer. I protested loudly about this, so she exchanged it for a hard lemonade drink, which I brought to Trish. Shannon, who was allegedly standing by witnessing all this, said I then told him that since I had bought Trish a drink, he should fill my mug with one. (That sounds more like me.) Then I couldn't find my mug. Trish and Shannon claim it was sitting on the table in front of her, right where I had left it, which is entirely likely. I then decided that I must have left my mug at Hooligans and I should go back and look for it. (This really sounds like me.) Mary Diamond, concerned for me being able to find the place, decided to go with me.

We took the most direct route, which, as near as I can recall it or at least make it up, appears in the photo below left. There, I've no doubt I searched all over, which was probably tough because the place was packed with people as I mentioned before, probably asking several people if they had seen my fish mug. (None of whom could probably hear me at all, but my attention span was limited anyhow.) Then Mary and I went back to Tony's Garage where, *surprise* the mug had been the whole time. Uh huh.

Route from Tony's to Hooligans
Photo: Mary Diamond
A chart showing the most likely route we took to Hooligan's
Stunned guy with Mary Diamond
Photo: Mary Diamond
Stunned guy with Mary. "Your fish what?"

Eventually the group decided they'd had enough drinking at Tony's. The more sober people in our group (both figuratively and literally in this case) decided to go back to camp and to bed. Me? I went with the Forsaken crew who went back to Hooligan's. Upon climbing the steps, I indignantly asked the doorman why he wasn't checking my ID any longer. "Dude! You've been in here like eight times tonight!" I couldn't argue with that, so the lot of us went in.

I actually do know when to stop drinking alcohol and start drinking water, so I switched to water for the rest of the evening. We stayed, danced and listened to the Bastard Bearded Irishmen until the bar turned the house lights on. Everyone started filing out of the place, except the band, of course. They had drinks. Maybe we bought them. Who knows? They invited us to stay, which resulted in the fine picture you'll find below left. Finally it was high time we left. Mary Diamond and Lisa/Cheeky Actress dropped me off at my hotel which was on the way back to the campground. It was a good time.

Mission and the Doorman
Photo: Mary Diamond
The irascible doorman at Hooligans
The pirates and the Irishmen
Photo: Mary Diamond
The Bastard Bearded Irishmen and the Drunken Beardless Pirate Crew.

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