This article originally appeared on VICE Canada. The VICE Canada Slack channel can, at times, be an unruly place. We fight, we make fun of one another, we sometimes talk about story ideas, but usually, it’s not the most productive place.
This lack of progress in what we get paid for was compounded this morning when our social media guy, Sasha Kalra, dropped a meme into one of our main channels and set off a never-ending argument that resulted in our editor demanding it be turned into content. The meme, above obviously, tells you to pick two of the options as they will defend you while the rest come to kill you. The options are 50 eagles, ten crocodiles, three bears, seven bulls, one hunter, 15 wolves, 10,000 rats, five gorillas, and four lions.
Our extremely thorough and scientifically accurate arguments are as follows. We will list our Twitter accounts if you want to tell us how big of idiots we are in the cyber world.
The Hunter, 15 Wolves
It is a well-known cliché, but it’s true—man is the most dangerous animal. And that is why I am picking generic hunter as my first defender. If this hunter was some SEAL Team Six fucker or Liam Neeson, or Liam Neeson playing a former SEAL Team Six leader who is pulled out of retirement after his daughter’s fiancé is taken into a South American jungle by a generic rebel played by Javier Bardem, then yes, the decision would be obvious. But here’s the thing—even the dumbest hunter with an average gun can do a lot of damage to an animal (Here’s proof!) I’m assuming my hunter just has a regular rifle—a Winchester Model 70, which Google says is the most sold rifle in the US. (It is WITHOUT QUESTION that my hunter is American.) It’s bolt action and can have a five-round capability. According to some random rifle forum I just found, your average shooter should be accurate at about 500 yards with an 8.58mm. So there’s my point, 500 yards! That’s a lot of time to hit some big ass animals. The animals I am most worried about in this scenario would be the lions, who can go up to 50 mph in short bursts, meaning they could potentially get to me within about 25 seconds (but likely much longer) from 500 yards away. But there’s only four of them and my hunter has five shots before needing to reload—I guess I’ll take those odds. And here’s the main reason for taking the hunter—he’s the most dangerous opponent if I don’t pick him. Sure, I can have a bunch of gorillas and bears to hide behind, but I would likely still get picked off from 500 yards away and I really don’t want to die at the hands of an American.
My second biggest worry would be the bears, who run more like 21 to 24 mph. Now the bears are why I’d take the wolves—they are plentiful, they are fast and agile and most importantly, they have experience fighting bears. I am confident that the wolves can handle the bears long enough for the hunter to start taking them out. Also, wolves took out Liam Neeson, remember, they are an underrated animal.
As for the rest of this tricky scenario—the gorillas do worry me, although they aren’t really known to be man-hunters, are they? I assume this is on land, so the crocodiles are at a bit of a disadvantage and again, are large enough to shoot. Bulls? Unless you are on their back, whatever. OK, the rats are super fucking gross, but their top speed is only 8 MPH and even in my diminished physical state, I trust my cardio can give me the distance I need. Rats need to eat and drink constantly. I eat and drink constantly, but I don’t need to. I can outlast them.
As for the eagles, uhhhh, I don’t really have a plan but has anyone ever been eaten by a eagle? I am just going to assume in this scenario that I have a hockey stick to swat them away.
-Josh Visser, managing editor
50 Eagles, Five Gorillas
Look, I’m not going for pure deaths here. I’m thinking logistically—I’m a survivor, not a killer.
To start, the rats—while, yes, probably the worst way to go—are going to get stomped to death in the melee. The wolves, well, I’ve seen wolves, and they’re just big dogs who will go down quick. The bears, well, there are just not enough of them. You know what… let me explain.
Now, my first answer was ten crocodiles and five gorillas, but I came around on the eagles for one very important reason: sight. Now I’m assuming that these are smart eagles, and they will go for the eyes of my foes, and in the world ruled by mother nature, they will be fucked. This also works doubly because if I don’t put the eagles on my side, I’m going to have to fight a two-pronged battle—one in the air, and one on the dirt—I don’t need to be constantly looking up for these goddamn winged menaces all the time. Also, they will have to take out the hunter first—like immediately—because that motherfucker has a gun. They blind him, I sneak up to him, and boom, I've got myself a gun—I will let him get trampled and eaten by the rats. Then, on the back of my favorite gorilla comrades, I’ll start popping off some of my more intense foes with my rifle.
For the gorillas, well, they play a couple logistical roles for me: A) I will pick my favorite, and I will hide behind that beauty while the shit is going down. B) Have you ever seen a gorilla mad? It’s fucking nuts. The four boys apart from my favorite will be snapping crocs necks, throwing straight lefts to knock out blinded lions, powerbombing blinded bulls, climbing trees so they can drop swanton bombs on the blinded bears, and doing that thing in the Avengers [where the Hulk slams Loki a bunch of times] to the wolves. At the end of this, I think I made my argument, and I will say I respect Sasha, Sarah, and Drew’s choices; that said, I do not understand Mr. Visser’s.
-Mack Lamoureux, staff reporter
Four Lions, Three Bears
Going to start off by saying that survival in this bizarre animal cosplay scenario would be great, but not necessarily the goal. I’m choosing the lions because I am a Leo, and I feel like we will understand each other best and work well as a team. If I am going to die via herd mobbing, I certainly don’t want to be surrounded by 10,000 rat-friends, no thanks. I’m choosing to ride and/or die with a small crew of apex predators.
In this scenario, I imagine having the smallest team will actually be the key to staying alive. All the reptiles and eagles and gorillas can go at one another, while team fuzzy takes a nap by the watering hole. If some asshole militia guy comes over and interrupts our chill time, I’ll ask he make it quick, straight to the head. Game over!
-Sarah Berman, associate editor
Ten Thousand Rats, Seven Bulls
First of all, I want to make it clear that anyone who takes the hunter has no idea what they’re doing. That looks like a shotgun, so it’ll take some time to reload, and when there’s a pack of animals coming to kill you, you don’t have that kind of time. Also, do we know that this mystery person has a good shot? What if it’s their first time shooting a gun? Are they used to the recoil? I’m trying to imagine this person shooting 50 eagles, and the results don’t seem pretty. They maybe fire off one or two shots before a gang of eagles is poking their eyes out and shitting on them. Don’t take the hunter. You’re better than the hunter.
I really think you’re all underestimating the sheer volume of rats at play here. Do you really want to deal with 10,000 rats that are probably all carrying the plague or some other sort of life-threatening disease?
No, you don’t.
After watching a fair amount of BBC's Planet Earth, I’m fairly confident that bulls play great defense and can form a pretty solid line to wear down the other mammals. Send 1,000 rats in the other direction to distract the eagles, and let 9,000 go over the line and slowly kill the rest of the animals.
Also, I’m a firm believer that if you pick the hunter, you’re a Donald Trump supporter.
-Sasha Kalra, social media guy
50 Eagles, Seven Bulls
Listen. I love bears, and it breaks my heart that I will have to fight three of them to the death in this contest. But that’s just the way life goes sometimes when you’re one man making hard choices about how not to get murdered by nature. Five, even four bears—it’s a no-brainer, you’d want the bears. But three? Cruel and impossible.
Anyway, air support here will be critical. You will have all these animals coming at you, and some asshole with a gun trying to take you out. Fifty eagles will ensure that you retain control of the terrain and establish a zone of controlled chaos that will be crucial to your success. There will be like 10,000 rats there, and even assuming a very high attrition rate, you are going to need a wide spread of birds around just generally fucking things up.
You also need like two birds, tops, to take the guy with a gun. Maybe these are also falconry-trained birds, and one of them could bring you the gun after the hunter is blinded. You have this armada of birds throwing rats around like weapons. Meanwhile, you’re just riding around on a bull blasting gorillas in the face with a rifle, which is extremely badass. It’s like a scene you’d paint on the side of a black van in the 80s.
It’s unlikely any of this would be smooth. More realistically, if/when the eagles are compromised by some of the larger animals, the bulls are your best line of defense. You can launch this powerhouse stampede where they gore the shit of our everything. The bulls will hold the line while you run away from all these random animals trying to kill you. I recommend finding a boat because outside of those aquatic dinosaurs, most of these creatures are not as functional in the water. Just get to the sea and crack anything coming behind you across the face with an oar. You’re golden.
It’s important to always have an exit strategy.
-Drew Brown, politics columnist
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