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Best-of joke of the week: "The Castaway"

Posted by John McIntyre at 9:41 AM | | Comments (1)


Prof. McI.,

Respectfully*, I question the appropriateness of this "The Castaway" joke-of-the-week, in light of the very recent Italian cruise liner tragedy off the coast of Tuscany. Sadly there were five deaths at last count, and still scores of passengers unaccounted for..... and presumed dead. Miraculously over 4000 on-board were rescued. Thankfully the vessel ran aground,(or a-reef, to be more precise) not far from the shoreline, although the waters were frigid, and the coast is very rocky at that location.

Some would argue I'm being my usual nitpicky self here, and they may be quite correct in that judgment. It's just that when I initially saw your joke header, I immediately thought of those unfortunate souls in that frightening ship disaster-at-sea. I guess it's my problem?

Actually, I rather enjoyed the joke, showing that basically in the realm of religious belief we each often wrestle w/ the multiplicity, and nuances of orthodoxies, dogmas, and rituals presented to us in the panoply of organized religions out there; and we can be very fickle about our true allegiances, and quick to convert, or switch sides on a mere whim.

Basically, our stranded character is a congregation-of-one, so he could pick almost any religion of his fancy, and build his house(s) of worship accordingly. But as is the spiritual seekers experience, at some point they see the light, and realize that there are a number of avenues to practiced faith. it's just this guy had a carte blanche of options. At least that's my read. What say you folks/

What's that old adage about "no man is an island"?

*John, no disrespect intended. Just the knee-jerk observations of one perhaps over-sensitive blogger, 'tis all.


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About John McIntyre
John McIntyre, mild-mannered editor for a great metropolitan newspaper, has fussed over writers’ work, to sporadic expressions of gratitude, for thirty years. He is The Sun’s night content production manager and former head of its copy desk. He also teaches editing at Loyola University Maryland. A former president of the American Copy Editors Society, a native of Kentucky, a graduate of Michigan State and Syracuse, and a moderate prescriptivist, he writes about language, journalism, and arbitrarily chosen topics. If you are inspired by a spirit of contradiction, comment on the posts or write to him at
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