I Survived! – True Stories of Human Survival

April 21, 2010

Welcome to what is sure to be another short-lived series, which will then be sent to the archives to play with the others orphans and occasional one-shots.

Welcome to I Survived!, a new series which presents the horrifyingly true stories of individuals pushed to their limits, usually as a result of their overactive lifestyles or lack of good judgement. Enjoy!

Robert dresses sensibly for the cool weather by donning an extra beard.

Robert Carroll
Having wandered way from the tour group while attempting to photograph a rare moth or something, Robert soon found himself miles away from the nearest paved surface/reliable cell phone signal.

As night fell, Robert was pursued through the underbrush by a roving pack of rutting elk, who had mistaken his awkward gait and brightly-colored shirt for a display of sexual availability.

The hours stretched into days and Robert began to lose hope of being rescued and resigned himself to being an elk “boy toy” for the rest of his existence. However, while cresting a ridge during the fourth day of his ordeal, Robert was spotted by a park ranger, who promptly cited him for leaving the designated trail. His fine was $470.

Micah foreshadows his near-tragedy with a recklessly upbeat hand signal.

Micah Wassermann
While surfing off the coast of Australia, Micah became separated from his surfboard while attempting to track down the “perfect wave.” As his board was pulled away from him by the receding tide, Micah cut his losses (and his Achilles’ tendon) and swam for shore.

His hopes for a swift return to shore were soon dashed (along with a majority of his 216 bones) when a vicious riptide hurled him against a rock formation a few hundred feet from shore.

Dazed, bruised and enduring images of a tanned and well-rested Robert Palmer, Micah made another attempt, moving at an excruciating pace of 30 feet per hour. Pushed to the limits of his endurance, Micah began to suffer vivid hallucinations, including one where he narrowly escaped being hung only to awake just as he was hung.

Disheartened and nearly immobile, Micah began to surrender to the urge to sleep. Just when all hope seemed to be lost, he was spotted by passing fishermen who greeted him with taunting shouts of “Get a horse!” The taunting continued all the way through his rescue and admittance to the local hospital.

Although he has resumed his surfing hobby, Micah still cannot bring himself to listen to Robert Palmer.

Six Flags Over Quantico: Where Dreams Come to Die and Become Horrible Walking Nightmares

Kate Hastings
While visiting the local amusement park, Kate fell 45 feet from a malfunctioning Zipper into the nearby ball pit. Sustaining compound fractures in both legs, Kate found herself sinking into the quicksand-like balls. Grasping for the nearest handhold, she was able to pull herself to the entrance using Isaac (age 9) and Chelsea (age 7).

Exiting the ball pit, Kate was unable to locate anyone over the age of 10 to assist her in her crawl to the nearest aid station. In fact, her general state of disrepair and corresponding trail of blood caused a panic, setting off a chain reaction that saw Kate buried under an avalanche of shoes, followed by the massive shoe rack itself.

Completely abandoned (much like the children around her) Kate waited for help to arrive, occasionally lapsing into unconsciousness. Her savior came in an unlikely form. She awoke to find four carnies gamely lifting the shoe rack off her compressed spine in order to better get a glimpse up her skirt.

Using an assortment of hand gestures and grunts, Kate was able to exchange a quick peek at “the goods” for a drag to the aid station. They agreed and soon Kate was being ignored by the sullen teen staffing the First Aid tent. A quick peek at “the goods” later and Kate was off to the emergency room, covered in Spongebob bandaids.

Kate refers to the experience as “the worst of her adult life,” but adds that she is “suing the living fuck out of Midway Entertainment, LLC.”



  1. Amazing the number of accidents that result from malfunctioning zippers. Kate should consider herself lucky that the Carnies had been fed that day – she could have suffered a far more gruesome fate.

    • Ha! Kate is indeed lucky. Not too many people place their lives in the care of carnies and live. (I mean, other than climbing onto their rickety rides and watching them lazily punch the green button. But I suppose if you bought the all-day pass, you knew what you were getting into.)

    • Seriously I can’t believe these things are even being said. Just go ahead and group everyone together. Lucky the carnies have been fed. What a idiot you are. Like everything in life those carnies did an awful thing THAT’S NOT ALL CARNIES…..

  2. Most of my “I Survived! – True Stories of Human Survival” happened during childhood. It all started with ‘cooking’ up a bottle of aspirin to feed me and my brother. This may have been the genesis of my interest in pharmaceuticals and recurrent tinnitus flares. Moving on to tackling and flailing at my father at age four because he had run over my mother with his car (I should mention the ‘mow down’ happened in a dream). I once found my mother wrapped in a sheet and wriggling while concealed under my bed (where she was hiding from my father)…this was especially disturbing because I found her during my habitual ‘boogeyman check’ in the closet and under the bed every time I came home…here was the boogeyman looking like some writhing larval Kafkaesque Poltergeist right UNDER MY BED!!…traumatized and performing ‘boogeyman checks’ up until age 30. Sexual abuse by male babysitter at age 8-9 (we won’t go there). Mother abandoned me and my baby sister at a hotel and disappeared. This was not in the least bit alarming as we were regularly abandoned and relished our ‘alone time’ (code for feral shenanigans). Management, however, WAS alarmed and called police after a week and a half (turns out she was incarcerated for not returning a rental car…a phone call with a heads-up to the hotel would have been appreciated though). Mother’s husband at the time (# 2 out of 9 lucky bastards) drove his car into a telephone pole to get her attention one day (as I recall, it was a highly effective strategy). Same husband would assault himself by repeated slaps to the face (much like my current neighbor, although he prefers a knife, green metallic boxer shorts, a fedora and water bottles in which he drips blood from his self inflicted facial wounds) and aforementioned step-father once lined us up against the wall with a loaded gun (that definitely got her attention). The excitement and survival never ends (as it is ongoing…referencing my ‘colorful’ neighbor). More installments to come in Volume 2.

    • You know, when they say “Truth is stranger than fiction,” this is most likely what they mean. “They” could probably amp this up a bit by saying, “Truth is stranger than bad fiction.”

      Now that’s strange. Anyone who has stumbled across fanfic knows this.

      That’s quite a life you’ve lived, e3h. I can hardly wait for Volume 2, which I suppose means I’ll have to write my Volume 2, just to get the ball rolling.

      A fedora, eh? Takes all kinds…

  3. I love this new series and hope that you don’t kill it, like you’ve killed so many innocent and hilarious series before. If I were this series I’d make sure you knew my name, interests, likes and hobbies just to make it that much harder to take my life….if I were this series. Then again I’m being hypocritical.

    “….who had mistaken his awkward gait and brightly-colored shirt for a display of sexual availability.” You’re writing continues to evoke an involuntary laugh reflex which always seems to end with me wiping spittle from my screen.

    Did you ever read about my harrowing surfing drama in Costa Rica? If not I’ll stop back and drop off the link.

    • Scott, I’m really going to try to make this series last, even if it means going way past its sell-by date. I feel awful about all the series I’ve abandoned over the last year or so. Sometimes I can’t sleep, wondering if we’ll ever find out more about Rock and Roll. Or checking in on our favorite soaps. Or visiting the Time/Life bookshelves.

      Thanks for the kind words and fine mist of whatever beverage you were trying to drink, Scott. I have not read about your surfing escapades, but I await your linkage.

  4. I agree with Scott, CLT.

    I only hope that this commendable new series isn’t killed off suddenly in a horrific car accident, only to be brought back a year later in an awkward shower scene, under the guise that it was all just a really bad dream.

    (Not that you’d do that, I’m just saying is all.)

    Personally, out of all these amazing stories, I think the one that grabs me the most (charges pending), is Robert Carroll’s fascinating account of surviving both the elements and subsequent “elk laments”, with nothing but a beard and my Dad’s old casual Friday work attire.

    Whether it be because of his fascination for rare moths or something (always an attractive quality IMHO), or his ability to overcome his handicap (read: awkward gait) and become a non-successful ridge- crester, it’s tough to say. But the fact that he not only survived this harrowing event, but did so while at the same time posing for the latest issue of “Grizzly Adam’s Mountain Man Magazine—Eddie Bauer Edition”, is reason enough for me to realize that he’s a better man than I’ll ever be. (fingers crossed!)

    Looking forward to more of these, CLT. Especially since people who survive have always been my favorite kind of people.

    • As this series already has a tremendous amount of well-wishers, I will do my level best (as the kids say) to stretch it out for at least another couple of installments before sending it out to play in traffic.

      Your dad must have worked a fascinating job if “Casual Friday” allowed for the growth of an extra beard. Of course, every day is Casual Friday if you’re a lumberjack. Or an elk-banger/bangee.

      Thanks for the hilarious comment, bschooled. It’s because of comments like these that I have the inspiration to start/abandon series in the first place.

    • Despite the fact that you have left hundreds of comments here, the spam filter decided that this time you were actually trying to increase my penis/breast size and casually tossed you into the moderation queue.

      I’ll check these out, Scott. A harrowing true-life adventure is always more harrowing when it has actually happened.

      I’ll mentally re-insert those exclamation points as I read it.

    • What a harrowing tale!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (those are the 117 exclamation marks you removed from your comment). I actually have a similar tale although it involves morphine, a swimming pool, CPR performed over-zealously and a very sore sternum that lasted a month. Glad you survived!! I, too, wonder many times about the ‘many worlds’ theory. It sure would explain all the zany shit that has happened to me over a lifetime. You might want to emblazon BBM somewhere prominently to remind you of the fragility of your existence and what a great ride it can be when you are not being bopped by the ‘board of life.’

    • I think that the many worlds theory would also explain lost…

    • Truly harrowing story, Scott. The kind of story that grabs you and makes you glad it happened to somebody else.

      I guess when the natives treat you like a crazy white boy, it’s just not “their way.” They actually think you’re crazy. And for good reason.

  5. Nice opener for this new series. I am surprised that Kate wasn’t killed outright by the microbes that live in ball pits. A legit Level Four Bio-hazard.

    Look forward to additional installments, funny shit CLT.

    • A ball pit is truly a disgusting place. All those filthy children wandering around in socks or *gasp* bare feet.

      Looking back at this now with nearly 48 hours of hindsight, I can only imagine the fun that could have been had if I’d changed the protagonist to a male, what with “ball pit” and “zipper” being key elements.

      Oh, well. There’s always next week…

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  7. I remember that Micah bloke coming a gutsa off his board, became a bit of a thing over here, was all over the news, and on those My Face sites and everything, then that group formed, the “Get a Horse Micah ya Mofo” and that really caught on and the poor fella copped it from all angles I tell ya. As if he hadn’t been through enough…

    • Nice. There’s enough slang in there to build an entire Encyclopedia Dramatica. From what I understood of the comment, Micah needs a horse. A surfing horse. Talking is optional.

      Thanks for the stellar comment, ruby. Great to see you again.

  8. Wow. That’ll teach me to wander in randomly.

    • Won’t it, though? The stories didn’t really get dark until the comment thread…

  9. “she was able to pull herself to the entrance using Isaac (age 9) and Chelsea (age 7)” – that’s funny!
    Once again you’ve caused deep self realization, in which I found out I haven’t survived through anything. Why can’t tragic mishap find me?!?!

    • It sounds like it sort of did. You’re only short a cell phone, but it’s a start. Just apply yourself. Put yourself in dangerous situations more often. And bring a journal.

  10. Sound advice; I’ll get started right away!

    UPDATE: I locked myself in the closet for the weekend and ended up eating my own leg. Does that count?

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