Children of the Mountain

This weekend, the number one movie in America is a film called “Children of the Mountain,” a survival story very, very loosely based on the darkest year of my life.

The film tells the story of several children who crash land on a tropical island and survive with the help of their trusty dog and some friendly pirates. I have received many questions from the press about my experiences on that island, mostly based on the false assumption that the film has something to do with what actually happened. It does not.

We were not, in fact, stranded in a tropical paradise, but instead a hellish, rocky tundra many miles off the coast of Nova Scotia. Many months were spent wasting away on that rock in the cold sea. It was devoid of shelter and any sign of life.

The pilot did not die saving us from a tiger. He was stabbed in the heart with a length of driftwood after threatening to rape Timothy Hickman if Timmy didn’t hand over his last remaining biscuit.

All the children besides me — Timothy, Billy, and Christian — did not survive with me in a cave under a waterfall as portrayed in “Children of the Mountain.” We instead drew straws, and cannibalized each other, one-by-one. I am the only survivor, and there passes not a day I am not haunted by shame and guilt.

I was not saved by a friendly band of pirates. Rather, I was abducted and sold into sex slavery, only to escape months later by gauging out the eyes my keeper with the butt of a spoon.

Nothing about my experiences resemble “Children of the Mountain.” There was no friendly dog. We did not build bamboo pipes to transport water. In fact, the only potable water we had came from seagulls we juiced for blood. And most of all, we did not sing songs about coconuts and loving life without our parents. However, the scene where we fight over who gets to wear the only hat, oddly enough, did indeed happen.

To clarify, “Children of the Mountain” is a great film. I especially liked the songs “Jungle Party” and “Mmm, More Coconuts.” Just please stop asking me how badly I want to go back.

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