Adam Thick, an ex-con who did time for counterfeiting, runs a company called Extreme Kidnapping, which stages consensual kidnappings for fees ranging from $500 to $1000 (he was inspired by the movie The Game).
GQ magazine gave him $1500 to kidnap a writer called Drew Magary and hold him overnight, torturing and terrorizing him to the best of their ability and within the confines of their prior agreement. Magary documented his experiences for the magazine, describing a few moments of real terror, some inadvertent bathos, and a reflective moment at the end where he compared his experience to that of a friend who was kidnapped and held by terrorists. It's a good read:
I heard the hiss of the blowtorch. Someone else in the room—Cody—grabbed my cuffed hands and began prying loose one of my fingers. I could feel the heat from the torch and became momentarily alarmed. Even though this all still felt fake, I tend to recoil from blowtorches.
"Gimme your finger."
He let go and I yanked my hands back. They ripped the tape off my bare skin and led me to a filthy, half-inflated air mattress. They gave me a sip of water, duct-taped my mouth shut, and chained my right leg to a weight bench. Then they left.
More hours passed, and I found myself missing my kidnappers. At least when they were around, things happened. The story advanced. I desperately wished I had brought a friend along, someone I could turn to and say "This sucks" every few minutes.
Kidnapped (Just Kidding!)
(Image: Kidnapped by Venom - Part 1, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from metrojp's photostream)
You’d be forgiven for thinking the videocassette format long-dead, but it turns out that Betamax is still around. Sony is finally going to withdraw tapes from sale, bringing a 40-year story to an end. The last recorders were sold in 2002. ベータビデオカセットおよびマイクロMVカセットテープ出荷終了のお知らせ [Sony; via The Verge]
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