Wednesday 9 November 2011

Shiver me timbers

"35 year old male, wielding a mallet and a sword, threatening self harm, police on scene"

Standard. Nice bit of mental health to get the ball rolling and there is nothing quite like the threat of a sword wielding maniac to motivate you to save lives and make a difference. We pulled up to the street and headed in the direction of the police cars. Usually a safe bet! It was a terraced town house, no easy rear access and the front was covered in scaffolding. We wondered over to the coppers who looked rather amused. They hadn't been able to gain access to the property as he was barricaded in, possibly armed and had possibly doused the barricade in petrol. Oh, and he was dressed as a Pirate, complete with eye patch, telescope and tricorn captains hat. In fact not too dissimilar to Captain Jack Sparrow! The sword in question was indeed a cutlas. We put on our stab vests and watched the action unfold.

Our patient, the pirate, kept appearing at the upstairs window and climbing out onto the scaffolding. He looked very unstable and twitchy! He was shouting at every one below in particular the police officer trying his best to reason with him!

"Be gone you lily-livered son of a biscuit eater. And take your hoard of sqiffys with you"

You can't help but laugh! I genuinely believe he thought he was a pirate. We were sat a way back as every now and again, he would disappear back inside and an array of household items would fly out the window. You could hear Captain Prat shouting:

"Clear the decks me hearty's, we are over run with scurvy dogs"

This was surreal, I've seen my fair share of mental health patients but I've never been so fixated on one's behaviour. He was frantic! It transpires he was being evicted and clearly did not want to leave. The poor guy given the arduous task of talking him down made it clear an enforcement team was on the way but alas. He would not be reasoned with!

"If you bilge-sucking scallywags enter I'll make sure ye dead men tell no tales. I'll hang ya from the yardarm"

As it was apparent from arrival that this would be an extremely blogable event I was writing down as much of what he was saying as I could. Not many people get the opportunity to go to work and get front row seats to watch the public meltdown of a pirate. 

"You can't make me leave, I have letters of Marque to occupy this vessel. Stop trying to hornswaggle me debloons"

On cue, a police van pulled up and out bundled 12 officers in riot gear. For want of a better phrase they were going to storm the ship. On seeing this development the pirate let out a very loud 'Aaaaarrrrggggghh' and he vanished back inside.

"Batton down the hatches me hearty's, the pillage is upon us"

I for one, was crying with laughter. The police were taking it all rather seriously, the odd smirk but generally stony faced. I however was gone. Every time I looked at him or he spoke I was shaking like a tonic clonic seizure. The police eventually ruined my fun. They smashed their way in and after plenty of screaming and shouting the pirate was brought outside, and what a disappointment. I was hoping to see the pirate in full costume but this long haired, bare footed man came out with jeans and a black t-shirt. Distinctly average and he didn't even growl at me! What an anti climax it was, though it still stands alone as the funniest day of my career so far. I literally just met Steve the Pirate!!


I took the liberty of googling some of his phrases and below are their translations!

Aaaarrrrgggghhhh! - exhortation of discontent or disgust
Batten down the hatches - put everything away on the ship and tie everything down because a storm is brewing
Bilge-sucking - insult
Cutlass - short heavy curved bladed sword used by pirates
Dead men tell no tales - phrase indicating to leave no survivors
Doubloons - other coins or found in pirate hoards and stashes
Hang 'im from the yardarm - punishment of those captured in battle
Hornswaggle - to defraud or cheat out of money or belongings
Letters of Marque - letters issue from governments during wartime to privateers endorsing the piracy of another vessel
Me - my
Pillage - rob, sack or plunder
Scallywag - mild insult akin to rapscallion or rogue
Scurvy dog - the pirate is talking directly to you with mild insult
Shiver me timbers! - comparable to "Holy Crap!"
Son of a Biscuit Eater - insult directed towards someone you don't like


  1. I'm going to have to call more people "son of a biscuit eater"

  2. Im more into bilge-sucking scallywag!!

  3. Very amusing and a good read, but not for the pirate I fear,but life goes on.

  4. Love it!! I once had someone visit the library who insisted on speaking throughout his enquiry in the style of Yoda.... interesting day


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