When I was a child, I dreamed of exotic travels around the world, building a log cabin deep in the woods, living on an island surrounded by coconut trees, and writing a book.
I grew up watching Gilligan’s Island in the sixties. Although all of my girlfriends wanted to emulate Ginger or Mary Ann, the professor was my idol. I had no interest in baking banana cream pies. The professor’s creativity and ability to construct a modern life out of rudimentary driftwood and the assortment of odd garbage that washed ashore fascinated me. He built water lines out of bamboo poles, telephones out of coconuts, and a bicycle made out of the old boat motor parts that the shipwrecked gang would pedal to generate electricity. Someday, I fantasized, I was going to live on an island like Gilligan’s.
Rest in peace, Mr. Schwartz. I’ll try to carry on your legacy by sitting right back and telling a tale..or two through the coconut radio.