I stumbled onto a pirate’s den yesterday during a late afternoon walk, and I feel it’s my civic duty to warn all my beloved little scallywags that the Painted Lady is hiring.
“Pirates wanted for pursuit of ill-gotten booty,” the sign reads. “Peril certain, infamy assured. Apply in person, Oct. 31. Starting wages no less than five chocolate doubloons.”
Of course I was hooked, but I was also both on a schedule and on the phone, so I had to keep walking. I returned last night with a tiny recruit and we both intend to muster when Halloween comes.
Treat yourself to a lingering view of the house on the corner of Drew Street and Pacific in Appleton and make sure you save some extra time to enjoy the display.
Because, along with their purple-hued ship that both sparkles and snares, these pirates can spin a yarn.
Chapter one begins with a warning.
“Sing, O muse, of the hubris of Gentleman Jim, that brought such woe to the crew of the Painted Lady! Many a soul it did trap in Dead Man’s Cove and many a good sailor it did consign to the Deep, for such is the fate of those who tempt Poseidon’s wrath.”
You might thnk this tale sounds familiar, that it had been ripped the pages of pirate’s tale set long ago and far away.
But you’d be wrong.
The story goes on to describe a bedgraggled fisherman named Jim who washed ashore on the banks of Lake Winnebago.
I won’t spoil the ending but I can tell you that chapter two winds south to Fond du Lac and back up to the Northwoods and mentions a lady who laid low the Kraken.
Here’s a nod for Halloween wit, and local lore, and neighbors who take the time to write a whole tale to amuse a bunch of people they don’t even know.
All hand hoy! to the house on the corner and, maybe, make your way their twice — one to enjoy the pirate’s tale and the other to sign on to join the scourge of the seven seas.
Yo ho ho ho the pirates life for me.