Times certainly change when it comes to crime, which is why we enjoy reading about the history and fictionalized accounts of some of the greatest thieves in our time — real or fake. Case in point: Long John Silver. He was probably literature’s most adored pirate next to Captain Hook, although we loved to hate the man with the hook hunting for the swift Pan. But the reason why we enjoyed Long John Silver transcends that of any morality, or immorality as it were (as Long John Silver was no saint, that’s for sure), as well as any fish restaurant of the same name! Want to know why?
Long John Silver Dared to Dream — of a Treasure Island
That’s right. He may have been a thief. But a thief of no one. Long John Silver wanted to be the man crossing the finish line first, basically. He had a map. He was willing to lie, cheat and steal to get to the X that marks the spot before anyone else, hoarding the treasure for himself. Who wouldn’t?
There’s a certain joie de vivre about the man known as Long John Silver, which echoes the more modernized version of the snazzy pirate, Captain Jack Sparrow of Disney’s “Pirates of the Caribbean” fame. We love to watch the pirate fumble around and make a mess of everything, and we understand why: even if it’s wrong. Plus Long John Silver was a bit of a father figure: to one Jim Hawkins. And that right there, even more, makes the man known as “Silver” that much more endearing.
In Today’s World of Crime, Though, Long John Silver Would Be a Saint
Look at identity thieves, for instance. One of the top crimes in the world. Identity theft protection to this day is at the forefront of necessity, especially with the rise of the Internet and social media (did Long John Silver have a Facebook account? I think not!). All the LifeLocks, Identity Guards and other services for a lot of cloud-based credit restoration can tell you straight out that there’s no “treasure island” to be found. We, the people, are the treasure islands, and those identity thieves are our own personal Long John Silvers.
Thievery. Robbery. Breaking and entering. Larceny. That’s the world of today when it comes to stealing. Long John Silver? That’s just a man with a parrot and a dream to find the richest island never discovered. Robert Louis Stevenson must’ve had some love for the gritty pirate as he wrote the book!