Can you even fall asleep on a surfboard?

This month, 84-year-old Diagnosis Murder maverick Dick Van Dyke reveals he once fell asleep on a surfboard and was ‘rescued by porpoises’.

There are three words in the sentence above that even in the miracle playground of the cosmos are almost mathematically impossible to meet in combination. Via what I can only assume was a particularly hellish acid trip, let’s say, in the six or so hours immediately before the supposed incident, they have Princess bounce house forced themselves together in composition to found a remarkably unlikely anecdote. What, exactly, is Dick Van Dyke doing as the subject of a sentence with the words ‘surfboard’, ‘rescue’ and ‘porpoise’ in it?

Well. He casually explained to Craig Ferguson on the Late Late Show earlier this month:

“I went out once and fell asleep on that board. I did — and I woke up out of sight of land. So I looked around, and I started paddling with the swells, and I start seeing fins swimming around me, and I thought, I’m dead. They turned out to be porpoises – they pushed me all the way to shore. I’m not kidding.”

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Let’s be honest now. Dick Van Dyke is a true player. I mean, aside from his extensive list of classic films, he defines Diagnosis Murder with his brand of nonchalant detective genius, and if he wants mans banged out, he just calls in Barry ‘not as sick as my dad but still passably half-maverick as officer Sloan’ Van Dyke. Think about it: he went and got his son, to play his son. Now that’s commitment to acting realism.

‘Barry Van Dyke’. Just imagine being called that. Just for a second. ‘Barry Van Dyke’. Okay that’s enough.

(Barry Van Dyke)

All things considered I have to say, I’m sorry Dick, but this is getting a bit tripped out for me. It probably happened in a dream at some point in the seventies, or in the bath at a moment of excessive drug consumption. Again, probably in the seventies. If anything, surely there would be logistical problems in pushing a man on a surfboard if you were a porpoise?

The thing is though, no matter how much this opposes reasonable belief, I can’t deny it and neither should you. For all the solved murders and chimney sweeping tap dancing, I believe you Dick.

You were rescued by porpoises after falling asleep on your surfboard and drifting out at sea to a potentially life-threatening position of remoteness. Amen.


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