We are privy to an interoffice memo between Boris Fornhenge, Director of Design and Engineering for Hyper-Citation, Inc. and Noreen Crimpanfortis, Vice President of Business Affairs. Mr. Fornhenge heads up the engineering department that executes flawless designs incorporating the wild dreams that Hyper-Citation comes up with into operational spectacles for the whole world to enjoy. In this confidential and potentially explosive memo, Mr. Fornhenge warns his exuberant superior about the perils inherent in the unpredictable sod bridge high above the New Jersey Turnpike. Mr. Fornhenge alludes to the use of safety rigging, but in the end realizes that Hyper-Citation has its own set of guidelines that don’t necessarily rely on harnesses and safety nets. Meanwhile, Noreen receives word from her father, Morris Crimpanfortis IV, that there may be a change of venue in the near future for young Morris. Noreen tries not to think about the host of calamities that loom for her blithering brother if he were forced to take a position with the stunt team on this risky display high above the Jersey Turnpike . . .  

TO: Noreen Crimpanfortis, Vice President of Business Affairs

FROM: Boris Fornhenge, Director of Design and Engineering

RE: Preventing a Disaster at the Alexander Hamilton Service Plaza


Greetings, Noreen. Just to spell out this billboard situation for the fine folks at Kentucky Power Glide, let me reiterate something in hopes of making it perfectly clear: we’re not playing around with this sucker. I am concerned for the stunt personnel riding the lawn mowers. First of all, I hope we all agree to suspend operations at the first sign of rain. Do you know how slick that bed will get up there? Nobody mows their lawn in the rain anyway, right? And transitional seasons between winter and spring and fall and winter–it could start freezing at that elevation. Has anyone taken that into account?

Danger in the Air

I know that Hyper-Citation contracts with Dirkie Tirk’s stunt professionals, and they’re all top shelf I am not in the least calling into question their commitment or ability. I’m just wondering if the drivers of the lawn mowers shouldn’t wear safety harnesses. It might help if they should happen to catch a bad roller and pitch over the side.

Now, I realize that Hyper-Citation generally eschews safety harnesses and other hidden contrivances, claiming that the devices somehow compromises the “purity” of these gut-wrenching displays. I’m not here to argue with success; just to let you know where I stand on certain baseline issues.

In that same vein, I hope that rotating six hour shifts is not asking too much. If I understand correctly, crane operators at the shipyard are only required to work four-hour shifts. And that might be stressful work, but not as rife with potential danger as what these performers are going to be forced to endure. Do you know the raw, nonstop punishment this enterprise will entail? This is extra mile stuff we’re talking about here.

Human Grass Blades Don’t Help

I have an additional concern with the sheer number of human grass blades bungee jumping off the display. We are right now looking at upwards of 2,260 jumps per hour. The parking lot of the adjoining Alexander Hamilton toll plaza will be a beehive of activity as the blades use this as a landing zone (LZ). We need to incorporate static lines so they have a means of returning quickly and uniformly to their grass pods at various levels of the sod bridge. I’m just concerned that the constant stress resulting in the pulling and tugging of the diving grass blades does not compromise the integrity of this massive undulating structure.  The dandelions with jet packs will be a much more manageable proposition; their maneuverability will not impact negatively on the infrastructure of the sod bridge. Rest assured, I will be monitoring every facet closely once the display launches.

I want you to put yourself behind the wheel of that riding mower for one minute. Think back on the most daring, gut-wrenching, puke-inducing amusement park ride you’ve ever been on. Then multiply it by ten and double it for good measure. That does not even begin to describe the sheer terror of riding a lawn mower over a rise in the terrain, then dipping sharply to a place where you’re hanging on for dear life. When motorists realize there is a person 250 feet above the turnpike trying to keep an edge while the structure seemingly tears apart at the hinges…well, I don’t have to tell you the kind of instant international notoriety this will score for Kentucky Power Glide, Inc.

When All Else Fails . . .

As a final note, I have spoken with representatives from the highway commission regarding use of the parking lot of the Alexander Hamilton service plaza. If something happens to go terribly wrong up there–Heaven forbid–we have permission to use their property as a staging area for the medevac equipment and all other associated emergency operations.