While starting a new story, I blanked out when I needed a good name for a pirate ship. Googling "pirate ship names," I immediately came on a website called seventhsanctum.com with a whole battery of "generators," or programs that randomly generate appropriate names for monsters, heroes, ships, you name it. I had it spit out a few pirate ship names before I took words from two of the combinations to make my own, "The Vile Mermaid," featured in the unfinished story below.
The site seems geared toward role-playing gamers, but I think it could be handy in many situations. You could name your pet or baby from either "goblin names" or "evil minions." This probably appeals to me more than most because when I was a kid I used to write numbered lists of nouns and adjectives that I liked and then roll D&D dice to generate random combinations, sort of like mad libs without the connecting story.
Yes, there were some slow and lonely times out at my house when I was growing up.
The Monkey and the Ghost Ship
A very high-strung monkey named Mr. Tinkertot lived on a pirate ship, The Vile Mermaid, in 1899. It was getting pretty late in history to be a pirate. Most of the pirates on board were getting old, especially Captain Poisoneyes, who was becoming fat, deaf, and forgetful. However, he could still give a man an angry look powerful enough to wither his timbers.
Even though the pirates were old enough to know better, they still drank and smoked to the point of folly. They drank horrible pirate ales, wormy tequilas, dirty rums and toxic vodkas from the Black Sea. These men would take the fermented juices of any spoiled thing and slurp it from a bottle. They drank until they vomited and they drank some more. Anything they couldn’t drink, they smoked. Mr. Tinkertot didn’t like to drink or smoke, so he spent his time patrolling the poop deck, the crow’s nest, the mast ropes and the hold. He even walked the plank sometimes, just for fun.
One day, the ship’s cook, Roasty Whiskermeister, very drunkenly tried to smoke Mr. Tinkertot’s tail. The monkey was sitting on the captain’s shoulder at the time. He shrieked and grabbed the captain’s ears, and the captain tripped over a pile of old beer bottles, falling painfully on his knees and elbows.
“Blast ye, Whiskermeister,” said the captain when he saw Roasty sanding there with a smoking match in his fingers. “I’ll soon give your job to a broad-shouldered woman.” He rubbed his knees and glared at Roasty till a little tear rolled down the cook’s dirty face. Then Captain Poisoneyes looked around and said, “What a slobby lot we are! It’s time we cleaned this pigsty of a ship! If I fall over garbage again, some mangy fool’s gonna walk the plank!” Mr. Tinkertot was clinging to the ceiling, which he often did when the captain was angry.