Better than the blogs your mother used to make.


Look – Ashley, is it? – at least he has a name, and I guess that’s the most important thing.
No, no, this isn’t a joke, it’s just his name. Yes, I know it’s unusual, but I can assure you, it’s all in order. The thing you have to understand about my friend here is that he has a … a strange family history.
Look, do you read books? This whole mess is very easily explained. Have you read – … Books have everything to do with it, please, I’m trying to help you, here. Have you read the one about the castaway? No, not Castaway, that’s a movie. Yes, yes, I also enjoyed it, very good. Nice scenery. Now, the book… No, I haven’t seen The Terminal. Nor Saving Private Ry- Oh, my, you must certainly like Tom Hanks. Yes, he is good.
Now, the book. Robinson Crusoe? Really adventurous story, you know the kind. Violent storm, shipwreck, sole survivor. The kind of story you tell your children. Ok, maybe you leave out the bits on cannibalism, but all in all it’s a good read. They made a movie about it. With Pierce Brosnan, I think. It wasn’t very good, but– what? … Yes, I agree, Sean Connery was better, but he didn’t play Robinson Crusoe, ok? Look, just be grateful it wasn’t George Lazenby.
Anyway, I think I should take this moment to point out that Robinson Crusoe is a true story. Ok, some bits are a little embellished, but what isn’t, these days? I can assure you, it’s real life. My friend here is proof.
So, Crusoe is stuck on this island and has to make it on his own. For years he thinks he’s all alone until one day – a Friday – he discovers a man in– … I don’t know how he knew, maybe he brought a calendar with him. So he discovers another man on the island – rescues him from a cannibal sacrifice, in the movie – and calls him Man Friday, partly because he was found on a Friday, but mostly because Robinson Crusoe wasn’t really that imaginative. So, Man Friday becomes Crusoe’s servant and they live a life of token Hollywood action and – assumedly completely heterosexual – adventure.
Now the problem was that Man Friday was a native islander, and couldn’t speak a word of– … No, islander. Islander, with an “I”. Yes, yes, I know Sean Connery was in that too. Yes, big shiny swords. Swish-swish. Very nice.
Look, if you don’t stop interrupting me this is going to take all day. My friend just wants to get this document signed so we can be on our way. I’m sure you’re very busy as well, so please, sir, would you let me get back to the– ?
Oh… um… I’m sorry, I assumed… only, the beard… um… you must work out… do you run?
Ahem, yes, um, the book. Well, this is all very relevant, um, madam. You see, Man Friday was an islander and couldn’t speak any English. So Crusoe taught him. He taught him a lot, as it happens. All about the Queen, all about Christianity, how to make a sun-shade and pick cotton and be back before the ole mahstah came a-hollerin– … No, that was a joke. No. No, madam, there were no cotton fields on the island. Well, there probably weren’t. I was just commenting on the … you know what, never mind.
So Crusoe taught Man Friday all he knew about the world. Which, considering this was a man who thought an appropriate way of naming someone was to tack their gender onto the day of the week on which they were named, didn’t exactly constitute a high-school education.
The problem, however, arose when they were rescued. Crusoe took Man Friday along with him to the civilized world and tried to introduce him to all these new-fangled ideas, like horses and linen and slavery. And while Man Friday integrated quite well with his new world, and was eventually educated by people that actually knew their arse from their elbow, he – unfortunately – still retained a bit of Crusoe-ity. Which passed on to his children. Like diabetes.
So my friend here is one of many in a long line of nomenclatural cock-ups. He wasn’t taking the piss. What he’s written is correct. Yes, Man Wednesday the Fifth. Yes. Of September.

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