Sunday, April 17, 2011

The Best and the Worst: People to Be Stranded on an Island With

In this day and age, with cell phones, GPS navigation, and all sorts of satellite communication, it is very unlikely that any of us will wind up stranded on an island somewhere in the South Pacific.  All we'd have to do is call 911 and say something like, "Hey, it's Chris on the Verizon network and I'm on some tropical island located at 41 degrees, 15' 31" north latitude and 95 degrees, 56' 15" west longitude."  At which point, the 911 operator would say, "You idiot, that's not an island, you're in Omaha, Nebraska."

If by some strange confluence of events I were to end up stranded on an island, there are certainly a few companions that I'd love to have with me.  And of course several that would be among my most horrific nightmares.

So let's take a look at the best and worst people to be stranded with on an island.  For the sake of argument, we're going to assume this is a decent-sized hunk of land with a reasonable variety of plant and animal life, not the stereotypical tiny desert island with two palm trees and a hammock.


1. Donald McKay (1810-1880)

There's nothing really funny or creative about this choice, but since Donald McKay was a 19th century Canadian-born shipbuilder, I'd have to assume our stay on the island wouldn't be very long.  We'd spend a couple days gathering up raw materials, and I'd sit back and relax while my new pal Donny whipped up a 75-foot clipper ship.

Good thing, too, because from the looks of him, he's probably a crotchety old fart. I can only imagine what we'd talk about if our stay on the island extended more than a week.

Me:  So, Don, how about a game of beach volleyball?

Don:  No, thank you.

Me:  Do you even know what beach volleyball is?

Don:  No.

Me:  Let me explain.  I hit the ball over the net that someone conveniently set up prior to our arrival, you hit it back, and so on and so forth.  If someone misses, the other guy gets a point.  First one to fifteen wins.  Sounds fun, eh?

Don:  No.  It doesn't.  Now if you'll excuse me, I must go wash my knickers.

Probably best if we just built the ship and got the hell out of there.

2.  The Wonder Twins

The superpowers of Zan and Jayna would be very convenient to have around.  Zan, as you may know, can convert himself to water in any form, and Jayna is a shape-shifter who can transform into animals -- mythological, or real.  Certainly, all I'd need is for Jayna to become a giant sea turtle and Zan a strong oceanic undercurrent, and I could drift home in no time.

But why not have some fun first?

"Wonder Twin powers . . . activate!"

"Form of . . . Sandra Bullock!"

"Form of . . . pitcher of margaritas!"

Or maybe . . . 

"Form of . . . Angelina Jolie in a white t-shirt!"

"Form of . . . bucket of water!"

The possibilities are endless.

3.  Tina Fey

This one is a tricky proposition.  Obviously, if you're going to be stranded on an island, and you're a guy, female companionship is a must.  But who would you select?  Keep in mind that the "physical activity" would only be part of the equation.  Most of your time would be spent in other ways, so having a gorgeous pea-brain would be more frustrating than tantalizing.

Before I continue, let me remind you that for the purposes of this exercise, you are on my side.

In college, my frat buddies and I had a rating system.  All women could be scored on a ten-point scale in two categories -- looks and personality.  For instance, a hottie with spaghetti for brains might score a 9-3.  Nine points for looks, three for personality.  For a woman to be considered "relationship material," the general rule of thumb was that she'd need to score around a fourteen total.  If she were an eight in looks, you could deal with a six in personality.  If she was only a five on the looks scale, but her kindness and sense of humor garnered a nine on the personality charts, that was fine also.  Again, this is for relationship purposes.  There was nothing at all improper about a one-night stand with a 10-2, or having a 3-8 for a drinking buddy.

Based on that information, the perfect woman to have with me on a deserted island would be Saturday Night Live's  Tina Fey.  Cute but not stunningly-so, with brains and a sense of humor, Tina would rank around a 7-8 or so.

And that'll get it done.

4.  Emeril Lagasse

If I'm going to be on the island for a stretch of years, I'm going to get awfully tired of  fish and berries.  Seriously, I might be able to trap a woodchuck or something, but there's no way I could prepare and cook the thing in any way that would render it edible.

Bam!  Enter Chef Emeril.

I'd do my part of course, catching fish, hunting various animals, and gathering plants and fruits suitable for human consumption.  And then Mr. Lagasse could whip up dishes like "Squirrel l'Orange,"  "Grilled Breast of Seagull with Coconut Sauce," and blackberry tarts for dessert.

Being stuck on an island doesn't mean you shouldn't eat well.

5.  Gwen Stefani

Going back to the ratings scale mentioned earlier, No Doubt's singer Gwen Stefani is definitely a 9-plus on the looks scale so anything around a five in personality, and she clears the bar.  Plus, she's an excellent singer.

So . . .

If I were stranded on the island with Gwen, she could spend hour after hour performing for me, providing endless enjoyment and pleasure.

The rest of the time, she could sing.


1.  Jeffrey Dahmer

With this freak as an island-mate, any hope of a good night's sleep goes right out the window.  Not that there would be windows, but you get the drift.  At any given moment, Jeff might slink into my hut, stab me to death, and then to add insult to injury, fry me up for breakfast.

Let's face it, the guy's a psycho.  Sure, I might try to reason with him, explain that the two of us working together would give us the best chance of long-term survival and eventual rescue, but sooner or later the conversation would deteriorate into something like this:

Me:  So, Jeff, what say we get started on building some sort of water craft?

Dahmer:  Water craft?  What?

Me:  You know, like a raft.

Dahmer:  Oh, I don't know about that.

Voices in Dahmer's Head:  Kill him!  Kill him dead!  Eat his liver!  I'll get the fava beans!

Dahmer:  Heh heh heh heh.

Me:  Um, Jeff, what are you doing with that pointy rock?

Generally speaking, your chances for rescue decrease dramatically once you're dead.

2.  Joan Rivers

This one might strike you as an odd choice, but let me explain.  If there's a woman on the island with me, there's always a chance that I'll get delirious enough, desperate enough, or flat-out horny enough that I'm going to take a run at her, no matter who she is.

I'm not proud of this, but there's no arguing with testosterone.

Worst case scenario, after three years on the island (and the smart money says it wouldn't even take that long), Plastic Joanie and I would give in to our basest desires and do the deed.  And with my luck, we'd get rescued the very next day.

No way could I carry on living after that.

3.  Gilligan


Even with six other castaways, one of whom was a professor with multiple graduate degrees, Gilligan managed to screw up rescue attempt after rescue attempt.  With just the two of us, all hope would be lost.  On top of that, just co-existing with this goober would be enough to inspire thoughts of smearing myself in raccoon blood and plunging into shark-infested waters.

And here's another thought.  What if he developed a crush on me?  Not that I'm the most desirable guy in the world, but let's look at facts.  Gilligan was stranded on an uncharted desert isle for years, and not once did he make a move on Ginger or Mary Ann.  Did he have a thing for Navy dudes?  Not that I'm judging, of course, but if Gilligan started trying to woo me with moonlight walks or dinner at sunset, it would just be awkward.

He's not my little buddy.

4.  Wally, My Elementary School Bus Driver (no photo available)

Wally was overweight, smelled like sweaty asparagus, smoked cheap cigars (how he got away with this on a school bus, I have no idea), and to top it off, he had a giant, never-healing, oozing scab on the back of his bald head.  As he drove the bus, all us kids tried not to stare at the massive head wound, but we couldn't help it.  It was like the curse of Medusa.

Also, he was mean.  He tolerated absolutely zero talking on the bus.  On the bus!  It's not like we were in the middle of a math test, or sustained silent reading.  It was a bus ride to school, we wanted to chat.  But the minute someone said, "Hey, don't we have a report due today?" Wally would be all over us, in his mafia-boss baritone:


On an island with no school buses and a limited supply of cigars, there's no telling what the guy would be capable of.

5.  Tom Brady

I can't say that there's not an upside to being stranded on an island with Tom Brady, because there is.  If he's stranded, there's no way he could play football for the New England Patriots, thereby improving my New York Jets' chances of winning the AFC East.

But here's my main concern.

Realizing that this is of course hypothetical (and unlikely), in the event that a plane full of Hooters girls crashed on our island, there's a good chance that Tom would get most of the action.  Come to think of it, setting the bar with Brady is probably over-stating my chances.  I mean, really, like he's the only guy I'd lose the battle for Hooters girls with?  I'd probably be in the same predicament if I were stranded with Tom Cruise, Tom Hanks, or hell, Tom Brokaw.

But let's stick with Brady, because I can't stand the douchebag.  And ladies, the picture here is my way of apologizing for that sexist "ratings scale" stuff.  You're welcome.


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justin said...

Awesome, I never fail to get a chuckle of where our mind goes

J.J. in L.A. said...

Joan Rivers? Seriously???

I'd pick Roseanne Barr. Sure, she's a hefty girl but at least she'd be entertaining while arguing the merits of 'entertaining' you.

Quirkyloon said...

This was brilliant Knucklehead! Just brilliant. And hilarious.

Eva Gallant said...

Great post! I'm still chuckling. You have an unusual mind, to say the least!

Danger Boy said...

Not a bad list. I might swap an entry or two, but you've done a good job on behalf of men everywhere.
Also, the "you're on my side" disclaimer nearly netted a coffee spitting. Well bowled.

laughingmom said...

Love this! But might switch Emeril (if I was a guy) for Giada -prettier and no "BAM!" every five minutes).

Boom Boom Larew said...

Going with Donny as choice number one was inspired. He's probably not going to hit on the requisite chicks, either. My only change would be exchanging Tina Fey for Jon Stewart. Oh... and using the 14 point scale for any other guys.

Janna said...

Awwww. I liked Gilligan. When I was a kid, Gilligan's Island was my very favorite show, and I memorized most of the episodes. This drove my parents completely insane, which actually explains a lot when you consider how I turned out.


Here are some that would be on my list.


* The professor from Gilligan's Island (I had a crush on him when I was a kid).

*Johnny Depp (!!!)

*Someone whose farts stink so bad that the green cloud would be visible from aircraft flying overhead. (We're rescued! Yay! No, wait... why are they flying away?)


* Justin Bieber (!!!)

* Martha Stewart (Sure, she could make nice huts and blankets out of palm leaves, but she'd always be complaining about how messy my part of the island was. Not a "good thing."

* Stephen Hawking (After the batteries wore out on his voice-machine thingy, the conversation would just be waaaay too awkward.)

Me: "So, wait, what were you saying about the relationship between subatomic particles in a supernova?"

Him: "Clearly the ratio isssss... bllllrrrgggghhhhh..."

Me: "Yes? What? What?"

Him: "Gnnnnn... Hhhhhh."

Me: (*awkward pause*) "Um. Gosh, look at the time...."


notactuallygod said...

I think a lot would depend on the time frame. If you expected a quick rescue then Gwen or Megan Fox. If it seemed like it might be a while, Tina Fey.

But if the chances for rescue seemed remote you should take Tom Brady. Don't be afraid you'll eventually go gay and wind up as the girl. Kraft and Belichick would make sure Brady got found and brought back, and you'd tag along.

Suldog said...

Will it ruin your opinion of me if I tell you that I once had a major crush on Joan Rivers? Yeah, I guess it would, but too late now! Remember, I'm an old fart. She wasn't made entirely of plastic back when I was 12 or 13.

As for the good list, why not take Maryanne from Gilligan's Island? Great looker, seems not entirely ditzy, warm personality, and she knows how to cook something like 843 different dishes using nothing aside from coconuts and fish. You can kick Emeril to the curb AND have sex like a crazed weasel. BAM!

Jenn Thorson said...

You definitely put a lot of thought into this. A frightening amount of thought into this.

I think my Worst would be being stuck on an island with that dude from the Progressive Insurance ads who says "I am a wind storm, shaky shaky." No one would look for him, and unfortunately, I'd be stuck with him.

PS- Have you heard Gwen Stefani's solo album? It's pretty awful. Better tell her to sing the No Doubt hits instead.

Homemaker Man said...

2 things to consider: Gilligan's astonishing flexibility

Joan River's giant, collagen soft lips.

That is all.

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