The New Survival Signal: Underwear

When Ben Lipscomb spent 12 hours lost on a duck hunt in the flooded timber of Arkansas'Bayou Meto WMA last January, his ordeal was sure to make some local headlines. But it was his desperate method of signaling the rescue helicopter that drew national attention. "I had to do something," says Lipscomb, an attorney in Rogers, Arkansas, who got the pilot's attention by waving his underwear from the barrel of his Benelli Super Black Eagle.

Lipscomb had been hunting with friends when he struck out on his own to find a new spot.

After shooting his limit of mallards, the 43-year-old and his Lab, Josey Wales, thought they were heading to the boat. Instead, they ended up wading in circles until dusk. With a cold front coming and his coat back in the boat, Lipscomb ate a raw duck breast for sustenance. "It tasted awful. I gave some to my dog, and he wouldn't eat it."

When the state police helicopter finally flew overhead, Lips-comb waved his camo cap but the pilot couldn't see it. "So I pulled down my waders and tore off my underwear," he says. "I guess it's my 15 minutes of infamy." --PHILIP BOURJAILY