Life in Possibility City

I live in a place called Possibility City. I don’t expect you out-of-towners to have heard of it, despite our cutting-edge ad campaigns which you might have seen on late-night cable between singles-line commercials.

I can vouch for the suitability of the name Possibility City, because of the chatter I hear on the streets and along the bike paths.

Can we get a new bridge? It is possible. No city in America has spent more time talking about new bridges than Possibility City.

Can we get light rail, or better public transit? Absolutely possible. Our school superintendent takes job candidates out for $300 dinners. Do you think we are not high rollers?

We might possibly have a National Basketball Association team here one day. I hope they are named the Possibility City Possums.

Sure, we have our problems. Who doesn’t? Mistakes have been made. Yes, we throw our animal carcasses from Possibility City Animal Services into the city dump, but name me one major metro area that doesn’t struggle with that.

(We are moving forward on a kick-ass polar bear exhibit, which should more than make up for it. You can write that down. Possibility Accomplished.)

And, yes, we’ve given a boatload of money for downtown development to some outside outfit that doesn’t exactly like to tell us what they’re doing with all that cash. But what are you going to do? These things sometimes happen between strategic partners. It was either give the money to them or this fancy TV preacher.

I want to talk today, however, not about possibility, but reality.

A lot of cities are spinning their wheels on trendy gimmicks like transit and bridges and job creation; but here in Possibility City we do not get bogged down in such infrastructure mumbo-jumbo and group-think. We are not trying to remake the wheel. We are remaking the paddle-wheel.

That’s right. When we had a situation in which our steamboat, the Belle of Possibility, wrecked in the river, we were not content to tread water, ha ha.

We took it to the garage where they told us that the jockey bar on the paddle wheel was bent and needed replacing, and we did not flinch. We stepped up to the plate. Then they called and told us that the tread on the paddles was worn and we needed new ones. Not unexpected.

And we are adding a $350,000 air conditioning system — because those Possibility River breezes aren’t as soothing as they once were. Name me one other major city that is installing air-conditioning on its paddle-wheeler. Go ahead. Also we have ordered power windows and keyless entry.

But now, we suspect we might have gone to the wrong mechanic. The repairs, originally estimated at $10,000, are going to cost $40,000.

Two days ago, they said they would need to replace the rotors if they could not turn them. And now they say the timing belt looks worn, and that they may need to flush and fill the radiator.

If this boat were not such a necessary part of remaining on the Cutting Edge, you might hear some mumbling around Possibility City. But we must remain proactive. It is the price that must be paid to have a next-generation paddle-wheel steamboat.

Also, we are in the midst of a Major YouTube Grass-Roots Promotion and cannot be sidetracked.

Regardless, at the end of the day, you can be sure that this Possibility City will not be caught up You-Know-What Creek without a paddle-wheel.


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