by Steely Philly…
That’s right. There’s a five-mile stretch between the mainland and the island where I live and the only way to get across is by ferry. It takes forever! So, I think I’ll build me a bridge.
The problem is, boats pass by all the time. Big boats. And then there’s the occasional earthquake. So they tell me it’ll have to be a suspension bridge. No problem, I say. It’ll have to be a suspension bridge. So what?
So what, they tell me, is that five miles is way too long for a suspension bridge. Currently, the world’s longest suspension bridge, the Akashi-Kaikyo in Japan, is 1991 meters. That’s only 6532 feet, or about a mile and a quarter long.
So, I say? So my bridge will be the longest suspension bridge in the world. So what?
Now, you may wonder, what qualifies me to go around building bridges? First off: go fuck yourself. Secondly, I went to Frick Cantaloupe University. Ever heard of it? It only has one of the best engineering programs in the country. So who better to build a bridge than me? Besides, it’s my island. Mostly my mainland, too. If anyone is going to build that bridge, it’s going to be me.
And who am I? Well, I’m one of those kids whose dad basically invented the Internet. So when I proposed the idea of building a bridge to those flapper jacks down at the state capital, and they said they simply didn’t have the money, I told them I’d pay for the damn thing myself. There really was no way for them to say No after that.
So how much does a five-mile long suspension bridge cost, you may ask, complete with all the bells and whistles? You don’t want to know. The paint alone cost me more than a million bucks. I decided I’d paint it all up in rainbow colors. It was going to be the prettiest darned bridge you ever did see.
So I spared no expense. Remember, the Golden Gate Bridge cost 1.5 billion in today’s dollars when it was completed back in 1937, and it’s not even a mile long. On top of that, it was virtually built with slave labor. How much was my bridge going to cost? Don’t you worry about that; I’ve got plenty of money to burn.
The Golden Gate Bridge took nearly four years to build, but I didn’t have four years. My birthday was coming up in June and I needed the bridge to be ready for my party. So I hired every construction company in the tri-state area to have the whole thing done in just under six months. They said it was impossible; but then again, rules are meant to be broken. Right?
The bridge was completed in early June, just in time for my birthday. It was a big, beautiful bridge, all in rainbow colors reaching to the sky. There was a DJ at the top blasting music everywhere, and the Rockettes even showed up. The governor was there, the mayor, and a dozen movie stars came. (I tried to get the President, but he was busy on a project of his own at the time. Too bad.)
I christened the bridge with the world’s largest bottle of champagne, and to cut the ribbon, I had the world’s largest pair of scissors made. It was a glorious day, indeed.
My friends were the first to cross. The state university band was there to greet them on the other side, and there were hot-air balloons and fighter jets screamed across the sky.
And then, just when the bridge was jam-packed with cars, there was this hissing sound. Then, a snap. Then another. Cables were flying everywhere, cracking like whips. And then, as the concrete began to crumble and the steel started to strain, the whole damn thing came tumbling down.
It was bad. Titanic bad. You can only imagine.
After all was said and done, it was determined that the whole thing was my fault. They said I should never have built a bridge five miles long. In fact, they said I should never have built a bridge at all. You see, while it is true that I did go to Frick Cantaloupe University, and it is also true that Frick Cantaloupe has one of the best engineering programs in the country, the thing is, well, my dad had to buy them a building just to get me in. Even worse, he had to build them a new football stadium just to let me graduate. So, there’s that.
Did I get into trouble for my whole five-mile bridge fiasco? You bet your ass, I did. I was grounded the whole summer. No birthday party either, although I did get to keep the pony. As for my finances, after the usual payoffs to all the spooj jockeys down at the state capital, it was back to business as usual. Business as usual, if you don’t know it already, is not very expensive at all.
So, what’s next on the agenda? Hmm. Thing is, I’m really into clean energy. I’ve been thinking about building a nuclear power plant. A big one, like in The China Syndrome. They really aren’t all that expensive to build either, just a tad over $10 billion.
Yeah, I think that’s what I’ll do. Christmas is coming up, and that would make a great gift for the people of my state: a big, beautiful, nuclear power plant.