Eat up

Yesterday’s Daily Prompt:

Shipwrecked! Read the story of Richard Parker and Tom Dudley. Is what Dudley did defensible? What would you have done?

I know, it’s yesterday’s Daily Prompt again. In my defence, by the time it arrives in my feed it’s already lunchtime here in the UK.


So, the basic story is that these four guys are stuck in a lifeboat with no food or water. One of them (Mr. Parker) is ill, probably from drinking sea water. One of the others decides he’d make a good meal, so the next day he cuts his throat and the three survivors chow down.

Would I have done the same thing?

Would I run back into a burning building to save the child screaming out the window? In my dreams I would. In my thoughts I would. In reality? I hope I would, though I doubt it.

Would I rush into the road and shove someone out of the way, knowing the car would hit me instead? Again, in my dreams I would. In my thoughts I would. In reality, would I bollocks.

Raw meat

Anyone for another slice of Mr Parker? (Photo courtesy of Michael C. Berch, Wikimedia Commons licence.)

The truth is that none of us know what we’d do unless we were unlucky enough to actually be in that situation. We know what we hope we’d do. What we’d actually do in a sudden emergency or if real desperation set in – we can’t predict that while sitting on a comfy sofa in front of the TV.

So, to summarise, in case there’s any confusion, I would like to state categorically and for the record  that there is no way that I would EVER kill and eat someone just to save my own life.

Unless I would.

  1. January 24, 2013 at 7:01 pm

    Every time I read someone’s prompt on this topic I hear Hannibal’s voice in my head… 😉 Perhaps there is a middle way. Here in Holland two guys took little pieces of meat from each others butt and ate them on national television. I’m not sure how this would work in the long run though..

    Maybe everybody should travel with a little pork.. in that case no bad choices have to be made 😉


    • January 24, 2013 at 7:15 pm

      They did what?! Blimey.
      I guess sooner or later you’d run out of butt!


      • January 24, 2013 at 7:23 pm

        We’re a little off over here in Holland 😉 Somehow cannibalism is legal.. the surgeon who removed the pieces of flesh did get in trouble though.. don’t know how the legal stuff works.


        • January 24, 2013 at 7:32 pm

          Wow, that’s a surprise. Still, we have some weird laws in the UK as well, mostly dating back centuries which haven’t been removed. Things like allowing people to drive their livestock through the city centre on certain days and so on!


  2. January 24, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    That’s a delicious looking roast.


    • January 24, 2013 at 7:58 pm

      Yeah – there’s nothing like a nice bit of slow-roasted seafarer.


  3. Gilraen
    January 25, 2013 at 7:04 am

    It makes me think of that Rugby team in the Andes that crashed there and ate their dead (and some say near dead) to survive. I don’t know if I would, but you know as we say in the Netherlands (not just that part called Holland mind you) Hunger makes raw beans taste sweet.
    If it is the difference between survival and joining the dead person is there really a choice? Aren’t we then converting to our deeper survival and animalistic selves? I guess in circumstances like that you describe our culture and learned attitudes will be cast aside and our primal instincts take over; survival of the fittest.
    But how do you deal with it once you are back into society, once you have survived and the veil of culture draws up again. I would think that is even more difficult to deal with.


    • January 25, 2013 at 7:59 am

      Thanks Gilraen, I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there. We might do all sorts of awful things to stay alive and spend the rest of that life unable to live with ourselves.
      I think there was a film about the rugby team you mentioned but I never saw it. I never watch “based on true story” films, as instead of enjoying the story I would spend the whole time thinking “Oh God, this actually happened to an actual real person.”.
      If I can’t even stand the thought of someone else doing something like that, how would I live with myself if I did it?


      • Gilraen
        January 25, 2013 at 8:58 am

        Look it up on wikipedia, of 3 survivors is listed what they did afterward. But mainly they continued to do what they did before, living.
        And really why not? In a way it is the only way to repay the gift that was forced on them.


  1. August 31, 2013 at 8:44 am

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