Thursday, June 28, 2012

It's Great to be a Pirate

Facebook is still full of posts about the Put-In-Bay Pirate Fest. The same thing happened after the last pirate event on the Santa Maria - people were excited about it for days. I'm thinking about how this compares with the 17th century colonial and English Civil War events I spent decades going to.

The numbers were similar. Except for a very few anniversary events, 17th century events were never huge and have been shrinking for the last 15-20 years. We had around 20 at Put-in-bay and close to 40 at the Santa Maria. This is more than I have seen at a 17th century event in years.

People mixed more. Most 17th century events are military events with participants coming as part of specific units. The units tend to keep to themselves. When events were bigger, some units took the distinction between officers and common soldiers a little too seriously. I remember seeing officers watch as soldiers pitched their pavilions for them. These same officers got steak while the common men got stew.

I don't see much of that in pirate reenacting. There are different crews but at the last couple of events no one cared. Even at larger pirate events the crews mix a lot more than at military events.

All of this is good. There is less friction and everyone gets along better. The end result is that everyone enjoys themselves more and wants to do more with that group of people.

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