Crochet + Pirate Hat + Goose: A Contest

Jun 30, 2008

Tonight I got an email that's left me doubled over laughing. I can't sleep because I keep giggling. I could send another reply to the inquirer and ask about the context, but I thought it might be a fun creative exercise to throw this open to the whole crochet community.

And so.


  • Write a 300-word (maximum) piece of fiction that ends with some form of the line "Do you have a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose?"
  • Minor variations in grammar are acceptable, but the meaning must ring true.
  • Leave a comment to this post with your entry.

I imagine just the thought of participating will be enticing enough, but I'll come up with some sort of prize. I'll arbitrarily close the contest, likely within a week.


UPDATE (2 December 2008): Aaaand the (very belatedly announced) winner is: Fraucoach, whose story had me laughing and laughing. Thank you, all who participated!

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SkaMama wrote
on Jun 30, 2008 3:37 AM


Beach4 wrote
on Jun 30, 2008 6:42 PM

I woke up in the future. It was the rain on my face that tipped me off. I was pretty sure I'd gone to bed in a room. With a roof. You know, as is standard for bedrooms. And I woke up in a place where water was falling on my head, clearly I'd travelled forward in time. The other thing that really tipped me off was the fact that birds were running the show. I didn't see many humans about - and when I did see them, they were mostly scurrying for cover. Things weren't so bad with birds in charge though. The environment seemed to have righted itself - nature was flourishing, the air was clean. There was pretty birdsong in the air all the time. Uh, you did have to watch where you stepped though, and umbrellas were apparently required at all times, even when not raining.

I did stumble across a few humans finally who offered to take me to the bird in charge to see if he knew anything about spontaneous time travel. The humans suggested, strongly, that I take some kind of offering to the bird. They said he was fond of hats. I had to have them repeat that but I'm pretty sure that's what they said - hats. Why not, geese probably look good in hats.

So, not knowing what else to do, I focused all my concentration on your shop and popped myself back in time (and space - that's even harder) so I could get yarn and a crochet hook to make my offering. Now, I need to know - do you have a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose?

HopeE@2 wrote
on Jul 1, 2008 6:45 AM

As much as I loved my job at the Local Yarn store, it was only a way station on my true journey. As both a Pastafarian, and a waterfowl fancier, I discovered a unique calling. His noodly appendage found special favor in pirates. In my heart I knew that Geese were well suited to the piratical life. And so many people would learn about the Flying Spaghetti Monster when they heard about my Goose Pirate training lake. So I was saving up to buy the land to start this new form of worship.

I hoped to one day find someone who shared by vision, but didn't really expect anything. Then, one beautiful June day, of all the Yarn Stores in all the world, she came into mine.

Shyly, she asked. "Do you have a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose?"

TammyH@24 wrote
on Jul 1, 2008 12:33 PM

My youngest daughter has always danced to the beat of a different drummer. She never follows the crowd and likes to stand out just a bit. She left the house yesterday wearing a men's bathing suit with bright orange and red flames, camouflage sneakers, and a turquoise patterned hoodie! It works for her though.

She is a very compassionate person and takes on the problems of those around her. She often shows her love through gifts she crochets. This includes animals. She has had an uncanny ability to communicate with animals since the day she was born. I can see her yet as a little girl sitting on the porch stoop carrying on a conversation with her dog and sharing a yogurt with him. A spoonful in her mouth, a spoonful in his mouth and so on.

It is not unusual for me to discover a stray cat or dog smuggled into her bedroom or for her to be scheming a plan to help correct an injustice being done to some animal she has stumbled upon. So it really came as no surprise when she came home one day very upset about a goose she had met at the pond behind our house. She told me about this terrible game the ducks would play which would single out the goose. Each day she would spend the afternoon trying to convince the goose to stand up for himself but he was just too afraid. He had no self confidence and so the taunting continued. Until the day my daughter burst through the door waving a tiny sword from her Barbie doll collection, yelling "I've got it! I know how to make him brave!" "MOM!!! Do you have a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose?"

glitterbear wrote
on Jul 3, 2008 12:31 PM

I think it started with my neighbor’s kids. Stuff kept showing up in my yard. Barbie dolls. GI Joes. Bratz dolls. Dora and Diego dolls. Free decoration, I thought. I lined ‘em up in my flower bed. My neighbors think I’m strange anyway. People noticed. And more anonymous objects showed up. Gnomes. Flamingos. Fairies. Frog stepping stones. Hummingbird and woodpecker whirlybirds. A wooden stump carved to look like a bear. Sculptures built of old car parts. Metal birdbaths that had seen better days. Plastic bouquets of orange daisies in neon green sand buckets.

And the came the geese. Six of ‘em. Not cartoon-ish geese either. Plastic geese. Life-sized white plastic geese. The sort of geese pink lawn flamingos wish they could be. And they came dressed. And re-dressed. I’d leave for work, and come home to dressed-up geese. Easter Bunny geese. Uncle Sam geese with fireworks strapped to their backs. Cupid geese with bows and arrows. Santa geese, with little sacks and plates of milk and cookies. And one day, inexplicably, Pirate Geese.

So, you ask, what does one do with Pirate Geese? Why, a field trip of course. Two in the front seat, four in the back. Seatbelts more-or-less fastened over them. Drive them down to the local yarn store, line them up next to the Koigu, and ask the poor girl behind the counter, "Do you have a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose? I need six.”

Emrc22 wrote
on Jul 5, 2008 1:26 AM

My dearest sister,

I am sorry to write to tell you how miserable I have been on this wretched journey to the new land. The days have been long and dull on this slow sailing ship and the only events have been of the most dreadful kind.

The worst of such event was when our ship was boarded by pirates. My dear sister, these pirates were twice as awful and fearful as any you have ever heard of.

The pirates have taken anything of value, including livestock, from our ship leaving us destitute with little food to continue on our journey, should we even make it.

Bound and tied as I was, I could only cry with distress as the pirate captain went through my knitted trousseau with delight. I begged him not to take my precious ivory knitting needles. The pirate captain stood and pushed the needles down my dress. He put his fearful face to mine and declared “Arr, I be no knitter! I have a proper hook!” And sister he held up his arm to reveal a large curved silver hook where his hand should have been.

“We pirates CROCHET!” he yelled, to which the other pirates cheered and yelled.

I now understand why Aunt Jane always considered crochet to be lesser than knitting – why it is practiced by pirates! Though judging by their crocheted vests, caps and scarves, pirates can crochet with skill, flair and style.

As the pirates left our vessel, the captain, with a goose under his arm, came to me and asked

"Arrr, Do you have a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose?"

VicJoRob wrote
on Jul 5, 2008 8:31 PM

The rain fell hard as the trio made their way to their final destination -- Castle Noth. They trudged through the mud with thoughts of the warm bed and a warm meal they hoped awaited them. Unbeknownst to them, however, the castle was not in any condition to open its doors to strangers.

Baroness Noth, the elderly diva whom poverty had forced to open the castle's doors to paying guests, was, thankfully, the last of her line. Locals called her batty, well aware that her grasp on reality seemed to loosen as the years went by. Some blamed her decline on the death of her young husband at the hands of the groundskeeper. Others said she had always been a bit "off" and pointed to her lonely childhood spent in the company of servants. Living alone, except for a few servants, she now spent her days working the womanly arts of crochet and embroidery and entertaining her menagerie of pets with tales of pirates, wolves, and trolls. Her favorite was the story of the Seven Swans, about the seven brothers of a beautiful princess turned into swans by a jealous step mother. But no dogs or cats or canaries could be counted among those pets. For Castle Noth, ancestral home of the proud Prussian Nothhard family, was overrun with all manner of geese. Swans were not indigenous to that region of the country so the Baroness lavished her attention on geese, the next best thing to swans she thought.

The rain continued abated. Drenched, the young travelers approached the castle door. They had made it! But before they could knock, the door flew open. Frantic, the Baroness begged, "Do you have a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose?"

VicJoRob wrote
on Jul 5, 2008 8:38 PM

My favorite!

FaithF wrote
on Jul 6, 2008 3:09 PM

One spring day, as I was exploring the woods near a stream, I found a nest full of tiny goslings and their mum! Squawking angrily, Mother Goose quickly led her little ones away from me. However, I noticed one of the goslings was still fluttering around in the nest. When I looked more closely, I realized that it had a broken leg. Unable to resist, I scooped up the little ball of fluff and took it home for plenty of TLC.

Eventually, my little friend grew big and strong. I named her Twitter, and she followed me everywhere! However, I noticed something odd: It almost seemed as if she could actually understand what I was saying sometimes. Then, one day, I was trying to decide which yarn to use for a scarf I wanted to crochet. Jokingly, I asked Twitter what she thought. "That one," she replied, motioning towards a yummy mohair blend. "It'll go great with your favorite vest." I blinked, then nodded. "You're right, Twittie--thanks!"

I soon realized that Twitter would only talk to me when I was alone--never in front of anyone else. For obvious reasons, this led my family to be quite skeptical of my tale. I begged her repeatedly to prove that I wasn't crazy, but she would only shut her beak tightly and shake her head, even when I offered to give her the gorgeous mohair scarf in return! …Until the day that my mother happened to be surfing Twitter and I were walking through the room on our way outside, and she noticed what was on the computer screen. Hopping up on the desk, she considered it for a moment, then asked, "Do you have a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose?"

on Jul 7, 2008 10:17 AM

When my friend, Lana, arrived at the front door with yarn and crochet needles, my heart sank. This meant an evening of non-stop talking as her crochet needle reached mach speed.

The cat was swiping at the ball of yarn as Lana crocheted the ugliest goose doll I have ever seen. Lana had brought a bottle of wine which meant she would stay until we finished it, and it was a big bottle! After a few glasses of chardonnay, Lana’s crochet and conversation became rather pleasant, and much to my surprise, I was actually enjoying the visit!

Jimmy Buffet was signing, “A Pirate Looks at Forty,” and since Lana and I are Parrot Heads, we were singing along not missing a beat! Then a brilliant idea! Jimmy Buffet concerts and thousands of dollars for a goose dressed like a pirate! But the biggest question was could Lana crochet a pirate hat to fit this goose?

“Yes!” She screamed as she frantically began to crochet a tiny pirate hat for the goose doll. It was priceless! It had charisma, it was soft and cuddly, and I wanted it! The next thing I knew, Lana and I were holding onto the goose each of us tugging on the poor little guy’s legs. Lana had crocheted her little fingers to a nub, and here I was trying to take away her goose doll in the tiny pirate’s hat!

Good sense prevailed. “Just think! If Jimmy Buffet likes it, then we can sell it to thousands of Parrot Heads and become instant millionaires!” Lana and I presented the idea to Jimmy Buffet’s people, they loved it, and now we are living in Hawaii basking in the sun all because Lana had a crochet pattern for a pirate hat small enough to fit a goose!!!

Fraucoach wrote
on Jul 7, 2008 12:42 PM

I knew I’d been hornswaggled when I heard the thud of the plank behind me. Why had I followed that trail of chocolates? Now I would be a pirate’s wench—goodbye London, and there was nothing to be done with it.

Once I proved myself an able cook and mop, the pirates treated me favorably, with an occasional extra ration. On the third week out, I noticed their leader, Rodrigo, gazing at me with steel gray eyes. Once, he flashed a dazzling smile at me, revealing all three of his teeth—one of them gold!

“Don’t go getting’ any idears, girlie,” a grizzled pirate warned me. “Esmerelda is the only one’s in his heart.” Rodrigo spent long hours petting and feeding his pet goose, Esmerelda. Any mate who gazed hungrily at her would have to deal with Rodrigo’s dagger.

And yet, Rodrigo flirted with me. We playfully swiped our mops at one another during deck swab. He would rip my bodice. I would rip his, and then we would have a contest to see who could sew their bodice back up first. He usually won: sailors are notoriously good with a needle. My sewing was adequate, but I really missed my crochet hooks. Hearing my longings, Rodrigo carved a graduated set of hooks, complete with thumb rests, from his ivory stash.

“Soon my pretty,” he said, “we will land in Lisbon. There you shall have gold rings, boots of Spanish leather, all the yarn you desire, and perhaps a new bodice. That one is looking pretty shabby.”

And then, I hatched my plan to win his heart. For the next few weeks he drilled me in Portuguese grammar. When we docked in Lisbon, I flew off the boat to the nearest LYS. I ran in and asked breathlessly:

"Você tem um padrão de crochê um pirata chapéu pequena o suficiente para caber um ganso?"

on Apr 30, 2010 11:33 AM

@ myphonyaccount , that’ s not the whole truth. Sure, a well designed light and small car CAN be better than a poorly designed big and heavy one. But a small car will always have a tougher crash if it meets a big and heavy car, that’ s just plain physics