Last Wednesday night, when asked about the new film Captain Phillips, Knicks legend Walt "Clyde" Frazier responded, "I'm a sailboat captain. I don't wanna hear about pirates." For Clyde, the film clearly brings back traumatic memories of his own dealings with pirates. Fortunately, we here at Posting and Toasting have been given a first-hand account of the harrowing tale.
August, 2013: Clyde's 50-foot chrome-plated sailing yacht cruises the treacherous currents of the Indian Ocean. Clyde is decked out in his usual casual sailing outfit: a 19th-century crushed-velvet powder blue naval officer's jacket with gold lapels and shoulders tassels (seen here modeled by Christopher Lee in the film Horatio Hornblower) and matching plumed bicorne hat. The ship does a brisk 15 knots as Clyde reclines in his hammock sewn from the manes of 1000 lions, sipping a sparkling carrot juice, accompanied by First Mate Mike Breen and five foxy ladies in mink bikinis.
First Mate Mike Breen: "You know, Clyde ... "
Captain Clyde: " ... Captain Clyde."
Breen: "Sorry ... Captain Clyde. Remember, the Coast Guard warned us about sailing too close to Somalia."
Clyde: "Don't worry, First Mate Breen, I go where the wind and Mother Nature take me. Ladies, raise the mixing mast! Par to Starburns!"
Suddenly, two speedboats filled with nattily-dressed Somali men brandishing AK-47's appear off the ... ahem ... "Starburns" bow.
Clyde: "Say, is that Dikembe and his friends? I knew we'd be in Africa, so I sent him a message and asked him to come on over."
Breen: "No, Clyde, I think they're pirates."
Clyde: "Ain't no way they're pirates, First Mate Breen. They're not wearing puffy shirts."
Breen: "These aren't the old-fashioned pirates, Captain Clyde. They're modern pirates from Somalia."
Clyde: "So you're telling me they don't have any good puffy shirt tailors over there in So-marly-ya? That's sad. I got the number of a good puffy shirt guy down in San Antonio. Maybe they could use it. Ladies, go down below deck and bring me my tailor Rolodex."
Breen: "I think they mean to board us!"
Clyde: "Uh-oh, I hope they're not planning on staying for dinner. We might not have enough T-bone steaks and caviar for everyone. Ladies, can you check the fridge too while you're down there!"
The pirates swim up to the boat, climb aboard and fire off several rounds.
Clyde: "Look at these pirates, with the tenacity! Fording and boarding!"
Pirate #1: "Look at me ... I'm the captain, now."
Clyde: "Son, there's only one man I call "captain", and that's Willis Reed. Say, those machine guns are looking a little rusty. Would you like to try some of the Turtle Wax I use on my Caddies? Guaranteed to make 'em shine! Ladies, would you get me a can of Turtle Wax and some pineapple juice for our guests?"
Pirate #1: "Call your embassy. We demand $30 million American dollars in cash."
Clyde: "In cash? Whooooa ... not sure I'm carrying that kind of cash around with me. Why don't you boys help yourselves to whatever's in the cooler?"
The pirates check Clyde's cooler. They find a six-pack of Diet Pepsi's sitting in a cache of 30-carat diamonds.
Breen: "You've been using diamonds instead of ice all this time, Clyde? No wonder my Diet Pepsi is always so warm!"
Clyde: "Ice melts, dummy! Then you have your Pepsis floating around in dirty water ... slimy and grimy! Diamonds never melt. It's physics, First Mate Breen! So tell me, So-marly-yans, why so much unnecessary violence?"
Pirate #2: "We come from a very poor country, and we need money to pay the bride-price."
Clyde: "You boys are going about it all wrong. Do you think the ladies stay with Clyde because of the money? Oh no! You need a little something called style. Doesn't matter how much money you make, no lady will want you if you walk around in them ratty T-shirts."
Pirate #1: "But it says in the Holy Qur'an..."
Clyde: "Look, everyone knows Clyde is down with the Holy Qur'an ... but sometimes you need to augment that heavenly wisdom with passages from a book I call "Rockin' Steady." -pulls out a copy- Just follow this little book, and you'll be the coolest pirates in all of So-marly-ya."
Pirate #1: "Truly this is a sacred text. Thank you, Captain Clyde. We've seen the error of our ways. We will give up this life of piracy."
Clyde: "That's more like it! Or at least find yourselves some puffy shirts first."
In the end, those two pirates found something more valuable than money: the wisdom of "Rockin' Steady." Armed with that book, they became the president and vice-president of Somalia, and resurrected the country's economy by convincing Cadillac to build three new factories near Mogadishu. Two years later, Somalia's basketball team will go on to win FIBA's African championship. They're now favored to medal in the next Olympics.
Once again, Captain Clyde's work is done ... until next time.