Opinion: Pet Peeves

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Struggling to Love Thy Neighbors

By Mark Crantz

No man is an island. Stop. That’s not right. No man is an island, except Gilligan. Gilligan’s Island was a popular TV show until Gilligan was rescued. Then people didn’t care what happened to Gilligan once he returned to the mainland. Everyone just assumed Gilligan was where the rest of us were. Stuck on the 405.

Now, there’s a new show in town gaining national attention. The show’s plot is about two neighbors locked in a property dispute over outside artwork. They are both rich and might own the island Gilligan was stuck on. 

The neighbors have set their sights away from the ocean and onto each other. I imagine every evening they go out to their patios glaring at each other hoping to legally take each other down like the evening sun over the Pacific. Emotions run high. They are seeing red and an assortment of other heated colors that rival California’s most spectacularly polluted sunsets.  Love thy neighbor, they do not.

Meanwhile, Gilligan’s car has broken down on the 405. He’s calling to other motorists for help.  No one stops. Most motorists whiz by with a passing thought that nobody including themselves would look right in that white hat on that skinny guy flailing his arms around.  Others look at the flailing arms and think there must be a car dealer nearby. A few commuters slow and appear to be good samaritans with AAA, but then roll their windows down and shout out the triple A’s followed by hole.

The neighbor with the artwork is furious about being sued over his own artwork. He yearns to free himself from the bonds of his neighbor’s legal action. To inspire his neighbor to drop the suit, he begins playing the theme song of “Gilligan’s Island” over and over. The neighbor who hates Gilligan and his stupid white hat calls the police to shut down the blaring music.

Gilligan remains stuck on the 405. He thinks about calling the Skipper for help. Then thinks he better not. Skipper will just get mad at him like he always does. He’ll never get rescued. Then Gilligan hears it. The sound is faint and coming from far away. He can just make out the melody. It’s the theme song from “Gilligan’s Island.” Like a beacon Gilligan walks towards it.

The police show up over the noise ordinance. They try to explain that rich lives don’t matter more without saying as much. The neighbors won’t take the hint. The police reason with the overheated neighbors and get them to agree on turning off the Gilligan’s Island theme song for the theme song of “Frozen,” instead. 

The neighbors assemble their legal crews to make plans to set sail to court. The one neighbor is set on proving he’s the one and only man who is an island. The other neighbor is reckoning to prove beyond a doubt that no one is an island, if the artwork is offensive.

Gilligan arrives. But he’s not sure, if he’s in the right place. His theme song has been replaced by the “Frozen” song. It’s his second favorite song. He rings the doorbell of the disgruntled artwork owner with the good taste in music.  He waits and sings out loud…

“So cut through the heart cold and clear/Strike for love and strike for fear/See the beauty, stars and sheer/Split the ice apart!/And break the frozen heart.”

Crantz tells the Indy he hopes the neighbors can make up. He suggests putting on a Gilligan white hat and popping a beer. It will smooth out the edges. 

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