Brisbane, Australia On the Subject of Islands

Islands are fantastic. As landforms go, they’re the tops.

Would Dr. Moreau have set up shop in a fjord? Would Captain Flint have hid his gold on Treasure Peninsula? Would troubled vacationers seek out Mr. Rourke on Fantasy Isthmus?

I don’t think so.

You can’t beat islands for that kind of stuff. Oh sure, you’ve got your occasional mountain peak with a mysterious castle atop it, but islands pretty much have the market cornered. Prospero had his own island. So did Ulysses’ Cyclops. The dismembered head of Orpheus sits on an island to this day, pining for his lost love, Euridice. Lesbians come from an island. The Prisoner was stuck on one. So were Robinson Crusoe and Swiss Family Robinson. Godzilla shared his with a whole bunch of other monsters. So did King Kong. And let’s not forget Jurassic Park.

What’s with the designation: Swiss Family Robinson? Where did they get that? Can I be American Person Matt?

Tyco Brahe is one of my favorite historical figures. His island was given to him by the King of Denmark. Those poor bastards, the Rapa Nui, got stuck on Easter Island and built all those giant heads to try and get the hell off. The Galapagos islands are where Darwin thought up evolution. The Azores are in the middle of the Atlantic. They were settled by the Portuguese seven hundred years ago. Who knew there were islands in the middle of the Atlantic?

You know what else is great about islands? When you cluster a whole bunch of them together, you get an archipelago. That’s a fun word to say.

I’m looking forward to Micronesia.

For those who don’t know much about the place, it’s citizens are not, as some people suspect, incredibly tiny.

Tonight I had dinner with my dear friend, Brad. He came up with an idea for a sitcom about a rich, gay, clean-freak, New York attorney living in an apartment with a serial killer. They’d bicker a lot about stains on the carpet and things left in the fridge, but in the end you’d know they couldn’t get by without each other. The show would be called “Dahmer and Greg.”

How many of you saw that punch line coming?

It’s been raining a lot lately. I keep my laptop out on the balcony these days, so its weather-resistance has been thoroughly tested. It passed.

I’ve got a lot of stuff left to do. I’ve done pretty well these last two weeks, but I’ve been taking it easy more than I should have. Now I’ve got big visa worries. A lot of the countries I’m going to are hard to get visas for. I need to send my passport off to about 4 different consulates and wait a week or more for each one. That’s hard to do when you’re country-hopping and have no mailing address. I’m going to call the consulates tomorrow. I’m not sure how I’m going to resolve this problem.

I don’t think anyone likes hearing stories about people discovering they’re due enormous tax refunds, so I’m going to keep that one to myself. Rest well knowing that I’ll surely get bitten in the ass for it sooner or later.

Less than 6 days until I leave.

That’s what Bush is waiting for. He wants to preemptively invade a poor, isolated country on the basis of paranoid suspicion and turn the overwhelming majority of international sentiment violently against the U.S. population while I’m actually in the air.

You only need to stall until Wednesday, George.

I purchased some Melatonin today. They sell it over the counter, but it’s heavily diluted. And you can’t get it by prescription in Australia, so this watered-down homeopathic crap is all I can take. Tonight I begin the experiment. I’m going to try a heavy dose and see what happens. Sounds like a good idea, right?

Good thing I’m unemployed.

I’m also going to take some Melanin to see if I can make myself black.