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Stranded California Man Too 'Embarrassed' To Use Phone

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the I'll-call-later dept.

Idle 33

Brian "Goat Man" Hopper, spent five days stranded on Roe Island, north of Concord in Suisun Bay, because he was too embarrassed to phone for help. Hopper lived off vitamins and native plants while trying to repair his inflatable raft. "I was embarrassed to be stranded on an island," Hopper said. "I thought I could fix my boat and make it to land ... I didn't want to spend the taxpayers' money to have the Coast Guard come rescue some stupid guy." After almost a week he finally gave up and called a cousin for help. No word on what makes Hopper the "Goat Man."

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33 comments

Ironnnnyyyyy (2, Funny)

intellitech (1912116) | more than 3 years ago | (#34332788)

The irony of a man too embarrassed to use his phone to save himself who is presently safe and being publicly embarrassed on slashdot is approaching unbearable.

Re:Ironnnnyyyyy (1)

intellitech (1912116) | more than 3 years ago | (#34332830)

And, perhaps I'm missing something, but why exactly was he embarrassed? Here's a better article, if anybody else happens to be able to make more sense of this:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/11/23/BA8N1GFV82.DTL [sfgate.com]

Re:Ironnnnyyyyy (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 3 years ago | (#34334022)

And, perhaps I'm missing something, but why exactly was he embarrassed?

Are you saying if you were out rafting and became stranded on an island you wouldn't be a little bit embarassed?

Re:Ironnnnyyyyy (1)

intellitech (1912116) | more than 3 years ago | (#34334496)

I'd consider the notion that perhaps I shouldn't have been out rafting in the first place, and that maybe I need somebody to come save my ass.

Re:Ironnnnyyyyy (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 3 years ago | (#34385928)

I didn't see the island coming.

Perhaps it was hidden behind the waves.

The waves were not there a week ago.

Re:Ironnnnyyyyy (2, Interesting)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34335188)

From the article:

Reeves said Hopper once lived in a cave in Nevada for three months, had walked through Death Valley and had made a Northern California forest his home for an entire year. "When we found him," Reeves said, "he was naked and fishing in a stream ... He's been living off the land for at least 20 years."

"A little bit embarassed" wouldn't even begin to cover the humiliation of having to be rescued after a few days if I was this dude.

Why? (1)

rtfa-troll (1340807) | more than 3 years ago | (#34363936)

He went rafting; He had a leak; it happens. He then tried to help himself. He wasn't in deep trouble, so he did his best. He built shelter, he started gathering food. Eventually, but before he was in deep trouble; whilst he still had a cell phone working, he decided to ask for help. He got help. This is text book survival stuff. The rescue services are not there to help you when you stub your toe. They are there for when you finally really really need their help and can do no better. The fact that you would have been in deep trouble a couple of days earlier and might not survive if you got this far is hardly a criticism of the guy who can comfortably survive for longer.

If anything, this shows why it is reasonable for him to go out rafting in these conditions whilst it might not be reasonable for the average slashdotter.

The rest of the story (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34377146)

He was embarrassed because he was sailing a raft made entirely out of inflatable "real porn star" dolls...

Re:Ironnnnyyyyy (1)

marqs (774373) | more than 3 years ago | (#34372770)

This proves that the sum af embaresment is constant. or perhaps it even inflates and grows over time.
BEcause now he not only had to deal with the initial embaresment, but also hade the added embaresment of explaining why he waited so long.
And on top of thet he get to be an /. celeberty. AND avery one si speculating why he is called the "goat man". I can see another embaresment coming his way

self-rescue (2, Insightful)

Spud the Ninja (174866) | more than 3 years ago | (#34334290)

While it's good to have as a last resort, people are far too quick to call for search and rescue. I think it's commendable this guy did his level best to rescue himself before calling for a helicopter.

Re:self-rescue (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34334984)

Step 1. Strand self on island.
Step 2. Call for help immediately but claim that you'd already been there a week.
Step 3. Profit!

I think we found step 2!

Re:self-rescue (2, Interesting)

vawarayer (1035638) | more than 3 years ago | (#34339424)

(...) people are far too quick to call for search and rescue.(...)

I could not disagree more.

It takes a long time for SAR ressources to get to your location when you are stranded somewhere, sometimes up to several hours. It's not like when you're in the city and you just dial 911, and you have an ambulance, cops or firefighters at your doorstep in minutes. So when you decide that you've been stranded long enough, that your boat fire is out of control just now, that your plane is going to dive nose first, or that you've been lost so long that you can't remember... well, guess what: you'll have to wait a bit longer, buddy ! .... and good luck btw.

I have had many cases at my SAR-related job of people calling in, not wanting to disturb, a bit shy, and hesitant, reluctant to being rescued.... where it'd be SO f* much easier for us to go save your ass, and done - and done. We get a thrill when we get this chopper - or boat - or volunteer searchers call list - going anyway.

I plead for anyone who ever needs SAR service not to hesitate a minute. Because when you decide that you REALLY REALLY need NOW a rescue... it might be too late.

Unless, you think your life, or the safety of whoever is on a trip with you - family & friend - is not worth a phone call, or that your ego is more important.

Re:self-rescue (1)

Boogaroo (604901) | more than 3 years ago | (#34340136)

This is why I have regular flares, orange smoke flares, signal flash, water, food, bedding, etc...
When I go into the wilderness. I've never had to use anything more than water, food, bedding, matches/lighter, and bandages.
I'm prepared for more, but if the shit hits the fan, I want rescue teams to find me or those I'm with as fast as possible.

Re:self-rescue (3, Insightful)

Therilith (1306561) | more than 3 years ago | (#34348910)

There's a difference between "My burning plane is about to crash" and "I'm stranded, but I know enough to live off the land until I can figure out if I can get myself home or not".

Re:self-rescue (1)

vawarayer (1035638) | more than 3 years ago | (#34383796)

oh yeah... i know exactly what u mean... "i'm stranded, but i know enough to live... oh, wait, that wasn't supposed to happen... shit now i'm fucked.... help me !"

Re:self-rescue (1)

Abstrackt (609015) | more than 3 years ago | (#34394308)

There's a difference between "My burning plane is about to crash" and "I'm stranded, but I know enough to live off the land until I can figure out if I can get myself home or not".

If it takes five days to figure out whether you can get yourself home there's a bigger problem.

Re:self-rescue (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 3 years ago | (#34357912)

I think it's commendable this guy did his level best to rescue himself before calling for a helicopter.

OR he could have just around day 4 or so made the same call and someone could have just leasurely came out with a BOAT. The helicopter WAS that unneccesary and embarassing result he was trying to avoid, and easily could have.

Not calling immediatley for help was bravado. Not calling for help by day 4 was just plain stupid

Re:self-rescue (1)

rtfa-troll (1340807) | more than 3 years ago | (#34364074)

He had water, shelter and a fire. The average slashdotter can survive for three months on his fat reserves and even normal people typically last for more than a month [survivaltopics.com]. The difference between four days and ten is minor. The coast guard could just as well have come by boat at the point that he did call them. However, they wouldn't do that because picking someone up from land on a boat is much more dangerous than using a helicopter. Even calling his friend wasn't entirely stupid (though he should have called 911 directly and told them his friend's number instead); if his friend had an idea of his plans then he can keep the coast guard informed even if the guys cell phone battery ran flat.

cell phone battery (1)

OrangeTide (124937) | more than 3 years ago | (#34343470)

"After almost a week he finally gave up and called a cousin for help."

I don't think my phone can last a week on stand-by. He probably watched the battery power on his phone closely, and that may have been what made him finally give up.

Re:cell phone battery (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34349030)

Can you hear me now?

The Goat Man (1)

irn_bru (209849) | more than 3 years ago | (#34348674)

There was an old Welshman who was walking with his grandson. Presently, they came upon a wall.

“Ye see that wall, there?”
“Yes.”
“I built it, I did. I built it with my own two hands. I built twenty others just like it. But do they call me Hugh the Wall Man? No.”

They continued walking on their way...
.
“Ye see that barn, there?”
“Yes.”
“I built it, I did. I built it with my own two hands. I built thirty others just like it. But do they call me the Hugh the Barn Man? No.”

They continued their walk until they came upon a house...

“Ye see that house, there,?”
“Yes.”
“I built it, I did. I built it with my own two hands. I built fifty others just like it. But do they call me the Hugh the House Man? No"

"But see if you SHAG JUST ONE GOAT!”

The Goat Man (-1, Redundant)

irn_bru (209849) | more than 3 years ago | (#34348702)

There was an old Welshman who was walking with his grandson. Presently, they came upon a wall.

“Ye see that wall, there?”
“Yes.”
“I built it, I did. I built it with my own two hands. I built twenty others just like it. But do they call me the Hugh the Wall Man? No."

They continued walking on their way...

“Ye see that barn, there?”
“Yes.”
“I built it, I did. I built it with my own two hands. I built thirty others just like it. But do they call me the Hugh the Barn Builder? No."

They continued their walk until they came upon a house...

“Ye see that house, there?”
“Yes.”
“I built it, I did. I built it with my own two hands. I built fifty others just like it. But do they call me the Hush the House Man? No."

"But see if you SHAG JUST ONE GOAT!”

Did they really send a chopper? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34360368)

It seems like any number of recreational boaters with working dinghies could have rescued him.

If you're in a situation like that, it seems like you could explain to the authorities that it's not that urgent. The harbor patrol or Coasties could very cheaply rescue you with a dink, not a chopper.

By taking such a long period of time, he probably put himself in a state where they figured he might be delusional. Failure to respond to an emergency in a level-headed fashion is far more embarassing than making a sane request for help.

The Goat Man (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34377122)

I believe he earned that nickname due to what he did for sexual relief during his week stranded on the island...

The goat man (1)

ArsenneLupin (766289) | more than 3 years ago | (#34397252)

No word on what makes Hopper the "Goat Man."

But this article [sfgate.com] has an interesting excerpt of his "packing list":

said he started out Wednesday morning on the Sacramento River, where he loaded a $300 inflatable raft with camping supplies, two burritos, a bag of vitamins, a Bible and a mannequin of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

hmmm... I wonder whether this "mannequin" was "anatomically correct"...

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