How To Be A Good Captive, And Other Notes From My Fake Kidnapping

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I have an article in this month's GQ about my experience with a luxury abduction service, which I paid to kidnap me and hold me captive for 14 hours or so. (Here I am talking about the story on The Howard Stern Show, if you care to listen.) Given that Adam Thick, owner and operator of Extreme Kidnapping, was inspired by the David Fincher movie The Game, I had images in my head of an elaborate cat-and-mouse situation, wherein I would be kidnapped and then shuttled to six different exotic locations, tempted by femme fatales, and forced to square off against a minotaur in the center of an elaborate wheat maze. Instead, I got thrown into a piece-of-shit Blazer and locked in a basement for 14 hours. Being victimized is NEVER as cool as you think it's gonna be, I tell you. Anyway, here are some extra tidbits from the article, which you can find over at

• I would make a terrible blind person. I was blindfolded for most of my captivity (though the blindfold was less a blindfold than it was one of those sleepy masks you wear on a redeye flight; I peeked under it many times). I already knew I was a clumsy person, but the blindfold exacerbated my native ungainliness a hundred times over. I acted like someone who had just purchased a pair of legs and was using them for the first time. Getting out of the car, Romeo, one of my kidnappers, pushed me forward and I took very short baby steps because I was afraid there might be a bottomless pit in front of me. But Romeo kept pushing my torso faster than my feet were going, which caused me to fall forward over and over again. "Goddammit," said Romeo, "will you move already?" And whenever I had to get up from the basement floor, it took me several seconds to figure out how to go about it since I was handcuffed. The henchmen laughed at me as I tried to do this. I heard, "What the fuck is wrong with you?" more than once. At the end of my captivity they led me back up the stairs and I walked directly into a door.

"Oops," Cody, another of my captors, said, "that door's ajar."

Thanks for the heads up, Cody.

• A couple times, I twisted my wrist inside the cuffs by accident and had no way of twisting it back. I have no idea how I was able to twist it to begin with. Every time Cody fixed my cuffs, it took him five minutes because they were such cheap pieces of shit. "Goddamn Korean cuffs," he said. Don't buy Korean handcuffs unless you hate the person you're cuffing.


• Clients can have a safe word, if they want one. Mine was "fidelio," but I never used it. This will make no sense at all, but part of the reason I never uttered the safe word during my captivity—apart from the fact that I would essentially be skipping out on my job—was that I felt compelled to prove myself to my captors. I didn't want them thinking I was a pussy, even though that was clearly the case. I wanted to see this all the way through. That's a dumb guy thing. I can't believe I wanted Cody to know I was hard. I am not hard. At all. I'm pathetic. I thought that I would be kidnapped for 24 hours, but when they dumped me off after a mere 14 (which is PLENTY), I thought that maybe I had done something wrong. Maybe I was a shitty prisoner. KIDNAP ME LONGER, GUYS! I'M TOUGH ENOUGH!

In my exit interview, I asked Adam if I was the biggest pussy he'd ever kidnapped. Here is his formal assessment:

I've seen whiners before and I've had people say their safe word, so all in all, you were a moderate. On the whiny side of the scale you scored above average, meaning you whined about stuff more than the avg. client. BUT, you never said your safe word either, so that counts for something in that you completed your adventure without opting out. Some whiners do it just to get on our nerves and irritate us, to force us to act, I got the sense that you were whining not to initiate a response, but to get better accommodations! lol

I wouldn't consider you a pussy. You made it through all right.

BOOSH! Not a pussy! HIGH FIVE!

Kidnapped (Just Kidding!) [GQ]