P is for Pranking Primates & Perplexing Pirates – A to Z Blog Challenge

We are pleased to participate in the A to Z Blog Challenge (http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/). The Story Crossroads theme for this year is Beating the Odds…Lucky Folktales Around the World to Brighten Your Day. Each post highlights that the stars aligned and what would have normally been…bad…turned out after all. Considering what we – as humankind – have experienced the past year, how nice is it to remember that all of us can “beat the odds” to some level in our lives.

And we’ll admit now…some are actually myths, legends, or epics rather than only limited to folktales. So is that a type of “loading the dice”? Ah, but the stories were too wonderful to pass by.

PRIMATES-

From Brazil

People noticed that primates were in danger due to a certain highway in Brazil. The court ordered for a special bridge to be built with trees planted on top of it. The primates, such as golden lion tamarins, could then cross without being hit by vehicles. Here is that article that was published on August 7, 2020.

What makes primates dangerous?

Usually we are the more dangerous than primates. Though primates – like monkeys – are sometimes tricksters around the world including in Brazil. Some people fear primates in carrying diseases that transfer easily to humans. When primates become adults, they tend to be more aggressive. But in this story? Well, isn’t nice to have a sense of humor?

50-words-or-less summary:

Garden with fruit trees. Fruit given if know names of trees. Animals asked and fed. No one remembered a tree’s name. Monkey asked old woman. She told him name. Monkey created song with guitar. Asked tree for fruit. Expected delicious. Awful! Monkey shared name to watch others’ reactions. Many laughs.

That Monkey was lucky that no animals wanted revenge to eating awful-tasting fruit…and that it was “safe” fruit despite not the best flavor. As a side note, isn’t that Monkey lucky to have the ability to play guitar. No wonder that Monkey has a great sense of humor.

Finding the Story:

https://www.worldoftales.com/South_American_folktales/South_American_Folktale_12.html#gsc.tab=0

Normally I wouldn’t do a second story…but it was too fun to pass up.

PIRATES-

From Ireland

Irish piracy has been around for at least 14 centuries. Some people have a hard time picturing Irish pirates due to all the movies of the “Pirates of the Caribbean,” yet piracy has only been in that area for 70 years.

What makes pirates dangerous?

Pirates can loot but also take prisoners…or not take prisoners. The common punishment was to execute pirates by hanging. Only if someone is pregnant could such a punishment be avoided.

50-words-or-less summary:

Anne Bonny and Mary Read,” swashbuckled despite the belief that women on a ship was bad luck. Anne and Mary sailed with John “Calico Jack” Rackam. Pirating adventures. Anne and Mary caught. Escaped hanging as “pled the belly.” Jail until could verify pregnancy. Not pregnant. Still lived long lives.

Those two pirate queens were lucky that people were willing to believe they were pregnant when they were not. Even when it was verified nine months later, Anne Bonny and Mary Read still lived long lives.

Finding the Story:

http://www.thewayofthepirates.com/famous-pirates/calico-rackham-jack/

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/if-theres-a-man-among-ye-the-tale-of-pirate-queens-anne-bonny-and-mary-read-45576461/

Please share in the comments…or anything on your mind. While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has year-round offerings with virtual as well as proper-distanced/masked/outdoors.

We are excited for the monthly All Things Story virtual workshop series as well as the hybrid Story Crossroads Festival on May 10-13, 2021 (then viewing beyond the event to June 15, 2021). Interested in deeper articles and e-workbooks plus stories, activities, and recipes? Then pursue Story Crossroads Memberships.

As we are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, you can also support by donating today!

See a teaser of our Story Crossroads Academy. While the video has closed captioning, the “Storytelling Basics in 8 Hours” is free and includes American Sign Language.

Cap’s Off to You!–R.E.A.C.H. Utah / Utah Pirate – and Celebrating Story

REACH Utah - Utah Pirate collage

Featuring:  R.E.A.C.H. Utah – Utah Pirate

501(c)(3) Nonprofit of Story, Imaginative Play, & Much More

Photo Credit: Vladimir Chopine

The skeleton flag billows out from the pirate ship through R.E.A.C.H. Utah / Utah Pirate across many lands–from FanX to the Utah Renaissance Faire. Oftentimes, R.E.A.C.H. Utah is shared on the same line as Utah Pirate. Though this organization is much more than pirate ships that inspire imaginative play. These people dress as pirates, mermaids, and even King Arthur himself as they enter schools to teach how to develop stories while simultaneously teaching anti-bullying, literacy, history and the arts. We are thrilled that they participated at the 4th Annual Story Crossroads Festival during the “We All Have Stories” Family Marketplace.

On May 15, 2019, the wind was summoned and that skeleton flag waved to all who came. Some families and Cub Scout groups explored the ship and created their own stories as they became pirates themselves. They met a mermaid, whose red hair cascaded down her shoulders.

We had hoped to have at least 400 people attend the “We All Have Stories” Family Marketplace. We had no more than 150 people. Perhaps people were worried to fly away in the wind.  Yet, the people who did come were delighted and clamored about the pirate ship.  The Story Train, that rode near the pirate ship, had many passengers.  Several vendors had to weigh down their canopies with water jugs or cement blocks.  One of the canopies blew out from the volunteers attempting to put it up.  One person even landed on the canopy due to the intense wind.  Thankfully, everyone was fine…except for the canopy.

Though, the pirate ship was never in danger of collapsing.  That ship was built to withstand any storm.

Starting an organization like R.E.A.C.H. Utah / Utah Pirate can be as adventurous as facing a storm.  Mandy Brown and Tyler Young are the main strength behind R.E.A.C.H. Utah / Utah Pirate. Mandy, in particular, founded the whole idea and already had experience working with elementary schools. She formerly worked for the Utah Board of Education and is aware of the latest on curriculum standards and what teachers are in need of most.  Tyler joined the team in 2014, about a year after Mandy brought the organization into being.

Many other volunteers and people work with them including support from Dungeon Crawlers Radio and Paragon City Games.

Here are the R.E.A.C.H. Utah programs (from website):

King Arthur Anti-Bullying

King Arthur and his Knights come into your schools and classrooms to teach about the topic of anti-bullying. We not only teach how to deal with a bully, but also teach how bullying affects everyone involved.

Every Day Super Hero

We bring in various super heroes (such as Spiderman, Batman, or Wonder Woman) to teach that every person has a super hero inside. We also teach that being a super hero is more than just putting on a costume or having a super power.

History

We currently offer interactive lessons in Siege weapons, Pirates, including Pirate History, Map Making and Pirate Flags, the Medieval Time period and Renaissance time period. These lessons are taught by various characters.

Literacy

We offer a creative writing class, where we emerge the students into a story line and have them finish out. Striking the imagination and helping them learn to use it.

Arts

We currently offer basic lessons in Renaissance art using Michelangelo. We construct an art challenge to show students how difficult it was for him to paint the Sistine Chapel.

STEM

We currently offer basic lessons in Siege weapon history, including the science, technology and math behind them. This lesson, kids get to use and fire siege weapons and make their own mini catapults.

So toss, tip, or take off your cap to R.E.A.C.H. Utah / Utah Pirate!

Take a picture anytime you see their ship at various events and parades.  Post on their Facebook page or your own page to show how far that ship has sailed.  Add the hashtag  #FoundTheShip.

We also have year-round events such as the monthly house concerts and the 5th Annual Story Crossroads Festival that will be on May 13, 2020.