Would You Pay to be Kidnapped?

“Why on earth would someone pay hundreds of dollars to fly halfway across the country for the pleasure of being abducted by thugs, handcuffed in a basement for hours, and forced to pee into a Gatorade bottle? GQ made Drew Magary go find out.

kidnapped-01After watching and being inspired by David Fincher’s ‘The Game’, Adam Thick, an ex-convict, founded Extreme Kidnapping in Detroit.

We also discussed the use of a safe word. Adam noted that some clients forgo a safe word so that they won’t be tempted to use it. I gave him a safe word anyway, because—as the old saying goes—it’s better to have one and not need it than to need one and not have it while a hungry barracuda feasts upon your exposed scrotum. Also, choosing a safe word is even more fun than choosing a name for your fantasy football team. I went with fidelio.

Finally, we needed a proper backstory—an explanation as to why I was being pretend-kidnapped, and what exactly my pretend kidnappers wanted from me. Extreme Kidnapping suggests a few time-tested story lines. You can be a secret agent. You can be a scion to a massive corn-oil fortune. I chose “mistaken identity,” in which I am mistaken for another, far richer Drew Magary, my own personal Big Magarybowski.

Interesting look at how authenticate something can be when the experience is essentially fake and everyone knows it’s fake.

Comments on this entry are closed.