How to Improve a Port Paradise


How do we improve a Port Paradise?

This is not as crazy as it sounds. Recent published scientific research by the EPA and others has concluded that we are more likely to find bacteria in sand than in the lake itself. So in an era when antibacterial products fly off the shelves, getting the trots can be a beach bummer. Pave the beach, problem solved! Now we have the only germ-free beach in the world! Can you say germaphobe tourist attraction?

Why would the municipality do this? No more hassle from residents in beachfront starter-castles concerning the evils of dunes. They will never again have to bulldoze the dunes in order to save them! Plus a paved beach means a brand-new parking area for which we can charge premium rates! Councilors feel deeply guilty that many property-tax-paying residents have to either pay an extra $150 a summer or fight for free parking spaces with day trippers. Now they can sleep at night knowing there are enough new spaces available to designate on-street parking for residents only!

In fact Council is way ahead of us. They already embarked on a pilot project when they concreted Glover Park leaving a mini Stonehenge in their wake. There, on occasions like Harbourfest, musicians and their appreciative audiences are spared the bother of scoring hallucinatory drugs, as the merciless sun, bouncing off the concrete, produces the same effect. Likewise our new paved beach would swap illegal mind-altering substances for natural sun-induced delirium. Saying yes to asphalt means saying no to drugs!

We might think paving our beach to be prohibitively expensive. But we would be wrong. Think of the savings, with no sand to groom on a daily basis, no sand to plow after a windstorm. Yes, we would miss the sound of the army of early morning municipal workers equipped with their leaf blowers and the conviction that sand never returns from whence it was blown. But they could be transferred to those parts of the municipality that envy the attention we get as a resort community. There they could blow actual leaves, thereby distributing make-work activities more fairly and alleviating the angst of the have-nots.

So paving the beach, with a handy asphalt plant next door, will save money. But should that be a priority? Didn’t the municipality proudly and generously spend like drunken sailors to construct a quarter-million-dollar boat launch on behalf of sober sailors so down on their luck that they navigate their trailers past the deserted paid parking? Given our proposal, we might expect our property taxes to go way down. But wouldn’t it be better if the savings were directed to improve the lives of those aforementioned boaters who can’t even afford twenty bucks for parking?

Some critics might object to the fact that we are advocating paving over heritage microbes and replacing the organic with the artificial. But they might be less distraught if we were to paint the asphalt in a fetching sandy hue. We might think this whole plan an impossible dream. Admittedly our proposal is not a concrete one. But asphalt is the next best thing.

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