Tuesday 15 November 2011

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My Wife's Obsession with Captain Jack Sparrow

I blame the Beach Boys. They wrote a song for the movie Cocktail called Kokomo, about how great the island lifestyle is, and it hit home with me. Of course, I think it was meant to be a generic lyric and not a strict instruction book, but I've been known to be a bit too literal at times. When it came time to book our honeymoon, I started at the beginning of the song:

Aruba, Jamaica ooo I wanna take ya 
Bermuda, Bahama come on pretty mama 

I first tried to book us in to Aruba, but there were no reward flights available when we needed them, so we moved on to Jamaica and had our honeymoon there (yes, if Jamaica had been unavailable, Bermuda was next on the list).

I'm not entirely sure why I was so insistent on a Caribbean destination. Something about the beach and the ocean breeze, combined with a total lack of urgency to do anything, seemed to make it a perfect destination for two people starting out together. Which it was. Lori and I quickly settled in to the island lifestyle of being free, not worrying about anything, and never being late no matter what time we showed up. It was a fantastic week, despite my wife's refusal to swim in an ocean full of fish (I had to push her around on an air mattress), but after our time was up we returned home and launched in to our married life of work and having kids. The only reference to our Caribbean experience was an occasional "No problem mon!"

Until 2003. The beginning of the Pirates of the Caribbean series brought the character of Captain Jack Sparrow in to our lives, and boy did he make himself at home in our house. In particular, he involved himself in every conversation, internet search, and from what I heard, about 50% of my wife's dreams (although "Steve" and "Jack" probably sound very similar when mumbled while you're asleep...yeah, let's go with that).

Now while I can be a tad protective, I'm not an unreasonably jealous man, especially when it comes to fictional characters. Johnny Depp had been around long enough (and played enough strange roles) to assure me that my wife's infatuation wasn't directed towards him, but the problem with competing against a fictional character is that they don't have to abide by the same rules. If I was a womanizing, rum drinking, unemployed scoundrel, my wife wouldn't have given me a second look. Apparently those traits are a major draw when applied to a fictional pirate.

I can live with the double standard though. I lived through having to be silent every time a commercial for a Pirates movie came on, and I've survived having our tv tied up for two and a half hours whenever one of the networks decided to air a Pirates film (and a half day once when stupid TBS ran a marathon). I've ignored the buying of Captain Jack Sparrow posters under the pretense of putting them up in our girls rooms, only to "find out" that our girls prefer puppies and kitties on their walls. I've even managed to resist asking why all five of us have to have each of the Pirates movies on our iPads at all times (I suspect that at some point Lori's going to line the iPads up and try to watch all four movies simultaneously.). There's only one thing that bothers me about my wife's crush on Jack, and it drives me nuts because it's not the way it's supposed to be.

I really like the guy. I'm supposed to groan and mock my wife for her celebrity crushes, but I can't because Jack is awesome! To be honest I'm not entirely sure what it is about him that appeals to women, but the guy lives a life every man should envy. I mean other than having a hundred people and a few ghosts chasing you everywhere trying to kill you. Put that aside. Focus on the freedom, the life of adventure, the absolute lack of fear, and the charisma....oh the charisma. I can't explain it, but boy what I wouldn't give to have it. (Ummm...just in a "win friends and influence people" kind of way. I'm not talking about the "woman in every port" part of it.)

To me though, the best part of being Captain Jack Sparrow would be the vagabond lifestyle. The freedom to pick up and go any time I want. One day Cuba, the next day St. Lucia, the next day whatever island catches my fancy, all the while battling the forces of good/evil (Did we ever figure out which side Jack was on anyways?). The ultimate life of adventure, and if it came with heroic battles, beautiful women, and a great high tempo soundtrack, then all the better.

The actual boat used for filming Pirates 4, sailing off the shores of Hanauma Bay in Oahu.
I guess Jack is the guy they mean when the phrase "Women want him and men want to be him" is tossed around. It probably wouldn't be fair of me to hold my wife to a higher standard when I'm carrying my own man-crush for Jack around with me. I guess for now I'm going to have to live with the posters on the wall and the 10GB of space blocked out on my iPad. It's my own fault for insisting on a Caribbean honeymoon. Somehow though, I doubt that if we'd spent our honeymoon in France, I'd be writing this same post about Gerard Depardieu.