What I learned about Homesteading from Gilligan’s Island

Let’s just jump into the most pressing question…were the castaways on Gilligan’s Island preppers or homesteaders? I mean that’s the burning question right? I know there is a lot of cross over between the groups, but let’s take a hard look at the facts. I’m pretty sure that if they had known that they would be stranded on an island for years and years they would have done some things differently. If they had thought to prepare for the unexpected they probably would have packed a little differently (like maybe a life raft)….. In fact we may have labeled them as preppers if they had had the forethought to prepare for this event.

However, they didn’t prepare and yet they did remarkable well with that they had on hand, so instead we’ll call them homesteaders. Granted the Howells and Ginger packed an amazing amount of clothing and miscellaneous items for a three hour cruise, the professor had mad skills with a coconut and bamboo inventions and they did have incredible luck with needed items washing up on the beach, but hey let’s not begrudge them their good fortune. After all, they did learn to up-cycle items they had on hand and items they found locally to make huts, beds, clothes and even more amazingly, washing machines, coconut phones, radios, lie detector machines, ovens to bake all those coconut pies, bicycles, pedal cars… the list goes on and on. With their inventions and homesteader ingenuity they were able to survive big game hunters, vitamin C deficiency, vampire bats, gangsters, head hunters, radioactive seeds and a whole collection of other oddball visitors to the island. Pretty amazing if you ask me! Heck if we had left them there a few more years they probably would have created an alternative fuel source from coconut and bamboo and solved our world’s fossil fuel pollution problem, but alas, they were rescued. What we can learn from them is to celebrate their creativity  and ingenuity by recognizing some of the most important homesteader traits:

1)      Work as a team, even when one of them does something so stupid you want to vote them off the island…Oops! Wrong show.

2)      Never give up, even when the natural glue source you find and use to repair the boat dissolves and you are stranded once again….or in any other discouraging situation.

3)      Finally, remember that nothing is impossible with some imagination. After all, if the professor can invent a lie detector machine out of bamboo and a ship’s horn you can surely create something to solve whatever dilemma you might be facing.


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