It is impossible to ignore the fact that the construction cranes that stand over the incomplete “other Bay Bridge” project are now festooned with joyous holiday lights. What better way to highlight a debacle in the making than to turn it into multicolored constellation of logic-eating fund-raping jubilation? Seriously, I think the City is onto something. This is in the spirit of dentist drills with kazoos built in, or Cirque du Soleil tax audits administered by twin Asian contortionists in monkey-fish costumes, or the American invasion force in Iraq wearing Hello Kitty fatigues, and the Disney Main Street Electrical Parade marching through Baghdad every night.
Personally, I love the idea of dressing up tragedy, though I can see where one might think it misleading to adorn objects of shame in such gay finery. Can a fleet of clown cars add that extra something to the sweet wonder of the George W. Bush funerary procession? Do loose chimpanzees in darling cowboy costumes, and jingle bells retrofitted to the machetes of marauding rebel assassins really lift the spirits of fleeing African villagers? Should my boss deliver my performance review, a la Blue Man Group, through a corrugated PVC didgeridoo? The answer to each of these questions is a resounding yes!
When we celebrate misfortune we’re grabbing life by the hips and saying, “it would seem that I am your daddy!” To do anything less is to concede to our own inevitable defeat. Let us instead make adversity our pretty pony, and let sorrow be the burkha that covers our hilarious Groucho glasses. L’chai-im! I think each lie should be delivered with a gummy bear, each spanking with calliope music. Coffins should have jalopy tail fins, and chrome mufflers, and spinners! And as for those dormant cranes, I don’t think we’ve gone nearly far enough. The decorations should take a note from the Price Is Right props department, with a thousand glimmering dollar bill signs, while strap-on klaxons belt out the whistling portion of the Colonel Bogey March.
I want to hear that drum roll as our self-celebrated little society circles the drain, and that one last cymbal crash when the cockroaches realize that the long nightmare is finally over.