Castaway Blues



Suggested Audio Jukebox ♬


[1] No Doubt “Don’t Speak” 
[2] Randy Crawford “One Day I’ll Fly Away”
[3] The Prodigy “Funky Shit”
[4] Jellybean “Jingo”
[5] The Carpenters “Close To You”
[6] Dexy’s Midnight Runners “Come On Eileen”



Anyone know where I can find some words? Just a couple of thousand should keep me ticking over for the time being. I promise I’ll have them straight back to you and will even give them a polish up before the handover. You see, they fail me right now, and I’m finding it increasingly difficult to finish a solitary sentence without hitting backspace. It’s every writer’s very worst nightmare and the literary equivalent of wet-tail; that moment when inspiration thoroughly eludes you and the mental bailiffs come rushing in to confiscate your furnishings. So what do I do? Well I’ve heard all about mind over matter and this would appear the ideal time to put that into practise. However, when it’s your mind that’s got you hamstrung, it’s time to start thinking of that plan B. Perhaps my fingers will lead the way and that is precisely why I’m writing this now. The problem is, it’s those same fingers tapping delete, and they appear to be in cahoots with my top box. What now? Type with my toes? Do an Ash and saw both my arms off up to the elbows before changing my pseudonym from Keeper to Thumper? Maybe I can find myself a secretary to dictate to, although my tongue appears to have gotten wind of the mutiny and has swollen up to the size of a pig’s trotter. Crazy Ralph was right, I’m doomed! I’m all doomed!


This is a desperate state of affairs and I feel rather hard done by that, organ by organ, my entire body is rapidly switching allegiances. Is there an antidote I can guzzle, a vial of slurp that can assist in redressing the balance? I’m open to pretty much every kind of suggestion other than alien probing and even that is beginning to appeal over sitting here in front of a blank screen, scrambling for morsels. But whats this? Words. Little did I know that my ghost writer has paid a visit and crafted me what looks suspiciously like an opening. Once I’m in, there’ll be no stopping me and, unless I read this back to find the words “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” repeatedly, I’d say I’ve made it past border security. If they catch me out here, way beyond the first stanza, then they’ll have my guts for garters and stomach lining for suspenders. Thus I believe the thinking man’s choice would be to head off on a wild tangent and just pray that they cannot follow my tracks. Of course, I’ll be heading directly into the unknown, and cannot guarantee that our journey won’t be fraught with great peril but, should we too become woefully lost, then I give you my blessing to eat me.


I have to warn you, I’m pretty stringy right now, and you’ll be lucky to fill a KFC Bargain Bucket with the meat from my weary bones. Toss the lungs as they’ve had it and make sure you don’t undercook my kidneys as they’ve been known to excrete urine when not slowly corroding. I know they say that piss is sterile but that doesn’t make it lemonade remember. Quench yourselves if you really must but, the moment your face starts twitching, I’d say that’s your clue right there. For now I suggest we leave this infernal place before the bloodhounds come a sniffing and, would you believe, I have just the method of transportation to put some distance between us and them. Remember I mentioned tangents? Well how does this one grab you? My fifteenth best friend is a Peregrine Falcon named Eddie and he’s swooping in as we speak to carry us away to climates new. We’ll be able to start a fresh, build a new life, look towards the future once more. And the kicker is that nobody will have the slightest of idea of our coordinates. That is unless Eddie suffers from mid-flight diarrhea and leaves a trail of white ash to our hideout. I’m a little perturbed that he had an Indian curry last night but always carry alka seltzer with me and shall pour some down his pecker before lift off just to settle that tummy. Fly Eddie fly.


And fly he is. Wow. The view from up here is simply breathtaking and Eddie has decided to take us via the scenic route just to ensure that we get our money’s worth. If you look to your left, then you’ll see that we’re currently passing an idyllic desert island that boasts an entire population of zero. Isn’t it a beauty? White sands that stretch for miles, more palm trees than inside Jon Lovitz’s walk-in wardrobe, and deep blue sea that knows absolutely no end. If it wasn’t for the fact that it is completely uninhabited, this would have made rather a delightful destination for a two-week holiday, but I suspect it would start to lose its appeal by the second week. Speaking of which, take a quick look topside and check on Eddie will you. He appears to be flying somewhat erratically. Why are we hurtling towards the sand at speeds in excess of 250 mph when Peregrine Falcons have only been recorded to reach 200 through diving? Is Eddie going for a record? And why is he twitching uncontrollably? Furthermore, is that a blow dart sticking out of his temple? Fuck it, I didn’t watch the safety demonstration before take off. Well I kind of did but that air hostess was something wasn’t she? Did you see the bit where she pointed to all available emergency exits? I swear I spotted a nipple you know.


I don’t know quite how to say this but … Eddie’s dead. The blow dart didn’t kill him and seems to be little more than a fast-working sedative but crashing beak first into a pile of sharp rocks did him few favors and it pains me to say that he has clocked up his final air miles. I don’t know what’s more distressing right now: calling his wife Edie and informing her that Eddie’s cruising days are now in the slipstream or the fact that there is absolutely no technology on this island and my one faithful carrier pigeon now resembles a feathered flan. Looks like we’re stuck here for the foreseeable, unless a passing cruise liner comes along to offer us a lifeline. That could be months, if ever, so I guess we’d better be getting ourselves acquainted with our surroundings and attempt to salvage whatever we can from the wreckage. Survival is the key here and, with a little luck of the blind variety, those two discarded UPS packages will contain a Swiss army knife and six-berth tent. I’ll never find out if I don’t at least try. It’s what Eddie would have wanted. Well that and some back-up engines.


First things first, was it really necessary to tape these packages up like Tutankhamun? While aware that they have a reputation to uphold, I’ve known maximum security chastity belts easier to get into and it all seems a touch excessive if you ask me. Secondly, and here comes that swift and decisive kick to the nut tail, the contents aren’t as beneficial as I’d hoped. The first contains a toothbrush and, while dental cleanliness is next to godliness when marooned on a desert island for potentially the rest of eternity, it’s electric dagnabbit and batteries ain’t even included. Not to mention the fact that I have no toothpaste to lay down on its bristles. This leaves only its alternative use to fall back on and, given that it’s been scientifically designed to reach those stubborn back teeth, perhaps I’ll now be able to locate the rectal G-spot that has been eluding me since I first went foraging. What a crushing disappointment and, unless package number two is chock full of Butterfingers, I shall be considering this a big fat waste of my time and exertion. No time like the present I suppose.


Okay so it’s not a six-berth tent or handy multitool but, all things considered, an all-American blow-up doll named Sarah Jane is pretty much the next best thing right? She even comes with her own orifices and bears an uncanny resemblance to Linda Lovelace so that should be the deep throat covered then. If I had to hazard a guess, then I would imagine this is one of those knock-offs Chuck Traynor was trying to eBay back in 2002 before karma paid him a long overdue visit. Granted, it’s hardly the first item you want in your survival kit but, alongside my brand new dormant electric toothbrush, my first night as a castaway promises to be something of a voyage of discovery. If only there were some liquor to help me temporarily forget how stranded I am, then I’d call this one fairly conclusive reason to be cheerful. Perhaps I can guzzle some wild berries and cross my fingers that they possess hallucinogenic properties as opposed to paralyzing me while my renal system shuts down two organs at a time. I’ve checked the national statistics and it would appear that I’m too young to die so I’ll just leave it down to my old drinking buddy fate to see me good. Bottoms up.


It’s a strange feeling this paralysis. On one hand, I cannot move a solitary muscle and just soiled myself front and back but, on the other, my tan seems to be coming along nicely. For the record, both my lungs have just collapsed in unison and I’m reasonably assured that I needed those bad boys for respiratory purposes. However, what’s really yanking my crank is that the whole zero population deal turned out to be grossly inaccurate and I now have a better idea of where that wayward tranquilizer dart came from. Again my feelings here are decidedly mixed as, while the tribesmen seem intent on saving my life by forcing an antitode to the poison down my gullet, I’m finding the fact that they’re running a tape measure down my inside leg whilst licking their lips a tad distracting. By the way, does anyone have any idea what “se Dine sèvi. Bon apeti” means? If I didn’t know better (and I don’t just so you know), I’d say I’ve stumbled across some of those cannibals I keep hearing about. And you know what that makes me don’t you? Hors d’oeuvre.


I’m a little put out as they could have scraped up Eddie’s obliterated remains and cooked up a broth to feed at least six but it seems I have been foiled by the Ya̧nodanödingdong tribe’s insistence that the Peregrine Falcon is a sacred bird and therefore immune to being used as ingredients. I know I suggested that you lot could chow down if things got really desperate but we all say things in the heat of the moment that we have no idea will ever come to fruition. Besides, I know that you’d only take what was necessary to fend off starvation, whereas one of the tribeswomen just shuffled away to her mud hut to retrieve their finest crockery and their resident DJ has just pulled Jingo by Jellybean out of its sleeve, the Extended 12″ Version no less. Granted, they have no means to play vinyl but the Ya̧nodanödingdongs are nothing if not resourceful and have discovered how to play it simply by dragging a femur around it in circular motions. I always imagined meeting my maker to something with a dash of emotional resonance, perhaps a power ballad or something by the London Philharmonic Orchestra, but not sodding Jingo. Ironically it was Eddie’s favorite jam but that doesn’t help me. Where’s the dignity I ask you?


As far as small mercies go, this one is veering curiously close to hefty, and I may just have found myself an eleventh hour lifeline you know. In honor of their fallen comrade, whose cause of death was pretty much conclusively their doing I might add, the entire tribe have begun to dance in formation and this has kindly coincided with the feeling returning to my upper torso. Both legs are still dead as dodos but, if I can haul my truffle from this rock altar and drag myself away from the devil’s kitchen, then Jingo may well be about to become my favorite jam too. It appears to be working a treat and not a single one of these hungry hippos has batted an eyelid at my last-ditch escape bid. Just a few more yards and I’m home free, or at least, back in the wretched predicament I was ten minutes ago only with my tap dancing days now far behind me. I know what I’ll do on my return to the beach, I’ll start me a fire dagnabbit. I mean, how hard can that be? I’ll have to keep an eye on my blow-up hot chick as I’m reasonably sure that she’s flammable, and tell a campfire tale or two whilst licking coconut shells that I have absolutely no idea how to crack open to ensure I don’t pass out from malnourishment. You never know, the gods may be smiling down on me, and that passing cruise liner may show up to whisk me away from this picturesque purgatory. You’re damn right I’m keeping hope alive, even if only by artificial means.


Told you I’d catch a lucky break. Ye of little faith, don’t try and tell me those aren’t slate obituaries you’re inscribing. You thought I was seaweed didn’t you? Well who’s laughing now you braggarts? I could tell you who but, instead, I shall chant it by way of giggles. You see, Peregrine Falcons tend to travel in packs and Eddie’s second cousin Eileen just swung by to see what was going on. I haven’t the heart to tell her about Eddie’s harsh demise just yet or, more accurately, I’m too fixated by her dazzling undercarriage to give a fraction of a fuck about clipping her wings. Now you tell me, is it wrong to stare at a Falcon’s tight and alright hiney with every intention of nuzzling those tail-feathers? Is there a law against that? Is that why Snuffleupagus did that stint in Sesame State Penitentiary? I heard it was possession with intent to sell as it was no coincidence that Oscar The Grouch began watching Apocalypse Now on perpetual loop around the same time that Snuffy moved in on the street. Mind you, I would have banged Big Bird given one-third of a chance, there’s something about those kinky leg hoops that makes a man/muppet go all unnecessary. Anyhoots, Eileen’s got it going on, so much so in fact, that my inflatable ball-and-chain has started to get jealous. It’s a toss-up but I don’t need a foot pump to join the bird appreciation society so ta-ta to excess cargo. Let’s see the plankton attempt to figure out what to do with you.

“Hey Eileen, how do you feel about swinging a left up ahead and stopping off at the Bristol Hotel for a spot of peck and tell? I hear their rates are reasonable”



“That means yes right?”


“Just checking”


Right then, I guess I should just come clean with you all before we soar any farther. You may be about to witness an act which, I’d like to assure you, wouldn’t happen under normal circumstances. I’m fairly sure that it doesn’t classify as bestiality and I’ve never read a bad word said about birdiality so that makes Eileen fair game for a keen ornithologist such as myself. Just to warn you, while only modest in girth, this may get a little messy depending on whether or not she stopped off for a bite on her journey. Stay with me, I know I’m digging myself deeper into a hole that seemingly leads directly into a cauldron, but I’m nervous and tend to get all inappropriate when I’m on edge. It’s a tick, much like my penchant for screwing birds of prey in positions less comfortable for them than me. Perhaps it is time I zip it so to speak and let you just take in the view some.

“It really is quite breathtaking up here in the clouds, don’t you think Eileen?”


“Just so you know, you may feel a slight pinch in a moment or two. Fret not as it’s just turbulence and remain in the upright position if possible as I’ll be kind of banking on the curvature of your spine not deviating for the next six-and-a-half minutes or so. Sound doable?”


You see. We’re just two consenting adults, prisoners of desire caught up in the moment. And you know what that means don’t you my featherless friends? Time to up the tempo some and find out what kind of wingspan she’s packing.


Can I get a yee haw? Actually perhaps an arrrgh! would better suit the occasion as it turns out that “CAW!” actually translates to “You stick that thing anywhere near me and I’ll drop you faster than a hula hoop on DJ Qualls”. That’s right, the lady does not approve, and I’m currently free-falling towards, what I’d imagine to be, a denouement as excruciating as it is utterly conclusive. I guess, in that respect, I’m honoring Eddie too although I fear I may have severed those particular ties the moment I stumbled dick first into Eileen. Judging by my current rate of plummet, I’d say I’m around seven seconds from blitzkrieg and that leaves just enough time for those all-important final words. I’m actually tempted to opt for “Weeee!” but feel that it is only right to celebrate my tenure with something enriching and inspirational to leave you on a high after such a ding-dong battle with discontentment. Oops, too late.


Well ain’t that a feather boa to the earlobe, my landing was broken by deep snow, and I can only detect a dozen or so hairline fractures and a suspected cracked coccyx, plus minor bruising to my ego. Better yet, Eileen unwittingly released me straight back to base camp, just a few hundred yards from our starting beacon all those stanzas back. While fully aware that I was trying to make my escape from my mental tormentors in the first place; the difference now is that I’ve got over 3000 words under my wing and my rosy red cheeks no longer stand to be court marshalled. You know what that is? Homework bitches! Which reminds me, I cannot let the moment pass without showing my intense appreciation for the lend. You see, for every last vaguely improper adventure I undertake, I simply couldn’t do it if it weren’t for you guys sticking around. I know I’m likely already condemned to the great all you can eat banquet downstairs and wish is to be known that I have no intention of dragging you all down with me. But there’s more to me than a handful of congealed feathers and ominously shaded electric toothbrush. Besides, I’ve got a fresh set of heads back at HQ. One more thing, best not go mentioning my antics to the RSPB. I hear they’ve been inundated since the whole Snuffy-Gate affair. Remember Grueheads, the bird is most definitely not the word in this case. Isn’t that right Eileen?



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