***Note: I was originally going to publish this piece on the tenth anniversary of 9/11, but decided not to out of some misguided sense of “respect.” The last time I visited NYC I was downtown by the Ground Zero construction site and noticed tourists walking around with shopping bags from the 9/11 Memorial Gift Shop. No joke, those words were printed on the bag. My fears that this piece of written whimsy might be taken the wrong way were instantly assuaged. NOTHING could be more disgusting than capitalizing on the tragedy of that day with a fucking GIFT SHOP. And ultimately, there’s no way that my own mental ponderings could ever be remotely as disrespectful to the people who died that day as the actions of so many of our esteemed politicians who used the horrible event as an excuse to bring their own greedy, cynical designs to fruition, and permanently fuck up the world at the start of this century. So here you go; my tribute to the tenth anniversary of September 11th, unaltered, in its original form, a mere three years after the fact. Tasteless, irreverent, and unapologetic as always. My only apology is that it’s late. Enjoy!
America has become a celebration of mediocrity and complacency lately. We’re all about having meetings and making plans, but we don’t really do anything anymore. We certainly don’t make anything, except of course for crushing debt and bombs. Case in point: Ground Zero. We’ve arrived at the ten year mark of the 9/11 tragedy in New York, with all the pomp and ceremony that we usually bring to remembering a dark time in our history, and thus far we’ve done fuck-all with the empty plot where the twin towers once stood. The construction of the new “Freedom Tower” has only just started, and it’s part of a very un-ambitious memorial site. The underdeveloped space in lower Manhattan stands proudly as a true testament to the apathy that’s come to characterize our country and our culture in the past decade. We haven’t accomplished a single ambitious goal since we put a man on the moon. Fear not, though, for I have a plan to fix all of that.
The proposed Freedom Tower will be 1776 feet tall, symbolic of our nation’s founding, and it will have a reflecting pool, and a bunch of other boring shit. We need to think bigger. Recently the world’s largest hotel was completed in Dubai. It took them only six years to build. I say we one-up them. On Ground Zero, we should construct the world’s new tallest building. The Dubai hotel is half a mile high; so I say let’s go balls out-FULL MILE! After all, giant phallic symbols are an American tradition, and it’s high time we started doing them right again.
One mile into the sky it’ll stretch, towering over the rest of New York City. Recklessly tall, the whole structure will sway back and forth precariously on windy days, the furniture will have to be bolted to the floor, and the elevators will have to be rocket powered to get all the way to the top. We’ll have to create a pressurized atmosphere on the upper floors because there’s hardly any oxygen that high up. There will be a vast network of cables anchoring this triumph of engineering and hubris into the concrete below. The whole thing will be built in defiance of both nature and god, just like a good American achievement should be.
And of course we’ll keep the name “Freedom Tower.”
Now, instead of just calling it the “Freedom Tower,” and turning it into some stock exchange headquarters full of offices and suits, or a boring memorial, or even a hotel just to spite Dubai, I say we make it live up to its moniker. Let’s make it the actual beacon of freedom to the rest of the world that we always claim America is. It will be the single freest place on the planet. How do we do this? We allow you to do literally ANYTHING there without any repercussions.
Picture it: a giant monolith stretching up into the heavens, where any single thing ever conceived of can be done with absolute impunity. There’s no oversight and no rules. Any indulgence you could possibly fathom is available. For starters, the lobby will sell jet packs. Yes, they’re pricey, but completely worth it, as you get to jump out the window on any floor, and go to any other floor you desire, zipping past all the suckers waiting in line for the elevator. You can even use it within the building to just hover around and avoid walking. Given all the fat fucks we have in this country that idea should be a real selling point. Plus, the jetpacks will pair quite smashingly with the other item you can pick up in the lobby: your gun! That’s right, everyone gets a handgun. You might be thinking “Hey, isn’t that unsafe?” The answer is “Yes!” Of course it’s unsafe. That’s the point, you dumb chicken fuck.
On the first floor you will find an expansive eatery, containing buffet style food. Only the most endangered species will be served of course. The kind you can’t get anywhere else. Roasted racks of Panda ribs, served with a mixed green salad topped by pan seared dolphin meat in a balsamic reduction. Braised bald eagle in a vodka cream sauce made with the milk of Chilean kingfishers and the tears of baby seals. And speaking of seals, there will be a “Club your own dinner” themed section. You think veal’s tender? Wait ‘till you get your hands on some baby seal. The blubber marbling makes it melt in your mouth. And don’t forget the new take on surf ‘n turf, the orca and panther combo meal! (Comes with a side order of braised Native American).
And speaking of Native Americans, once you’ve had your fill of sinfully rare meat, head upstairs, ‘cause there’s a casino in the building, and I’m not talking weak-ass video slots. I’m talkin’ full on Indian style, lose-your-house-on-the-next-spin gambling. Anything can be wagered here. Cars, clothes, sexual favors, children. The options are limitless! It’s the thrill of a lifetime, but be careful, ‘cause this doesn’t operate like other casinos. If you can’t pay back the house we don’t take you out into the dessert and let Joe Pesci beat the living shit out of you with a Louisville Slugger. Oh no, we strip you naked and ship you straight up to the cannibalism floor, (which will be explained very soon). And of course, at all times there are topless showgirls performing on the craps tables, throwing cocaine-battered lobster tails directly into your mouth. Naturally, as with all fine gambling establishments, this floor has no clocks and no windows, so in the case of a fire, you’re all screwed. Oh, and be sure to hit the Russian Roulette table if you’re feeling extra devil may care.
After you’ve emptied yourself of all material wealth at the casino, climb into the elevator and step onto our “Rape and Pillage” themed floor. Here you can finally live out your marauding bandit fantasies. We provide you with any costume you’d need, from Pirate to Viking, and even a Henry Kissenger outfit! Whether you’re burning Icelandic villages and ravaging Caribbean wenches, or ordering the illegal carpet bombing of southeast Asian countries while stealing their natural resources, raping and pillaging has never been more fun, nor have you ever looked so authentic while doing it!
Then we move up the tower and come to the domestic violence floor, where there are people of any sex (we don’t discriminate, someone might wanna slap around a tranny), all of whom you can be quickly and legally married to before beating them senseless. You sign off on a quick annulment on the way back to the elevator and you’re on your way. And don’t worry about those employed on this floor for your beating pleasure, they’re handsomely paid. And their family is spared… Not that we have their families at gunpoint in a basement somewhere of course. That would be illegal…
Next, hop on the elevator and head up to the mid-tower observation deck, where there are a variety of things provided for you to throw at the people on the streets below from half a mile in the sky. Fixed telescopes are provided so that you can watch your projectiles sail to the ground. If you’re lucky you’ll get to see one of nature’s most beautiful rarities: a person being crushed to death on a sidewalk by a small object. You can actually see their torsos collapse and fill their legs to the bursting point, before exploding forth in a satisfying shower of blood and guts. From the height you’re throwing things at, even a penny would turn an ordinary human into a bloody Jackson Pollok painting with a half block radius. Did you lose your retirement because those douchebags on Wall Street mismanaged your employer’s account? Well now’s your chance for retribution! The observation deck in suspended directly above the entrance to the New York Stock Exchange, so feel free to take a dump on all the brokers during their lunch break. With any luck they’ll look up at the last second and realize that they deserve to be split in two by a hunk of human shit traveling at the speed of sound. Then they’ll explode in a shower of red justice. Bring the kids for this one, it’s fun for the whole family!
Have you ever wanted to get knocked up just so you could watch them suck the unborn fetus out of that clear plastic vacuum tube? No? Well regardless, now you can do that on our Abortion floor! Here you can experience the magic of a judgment-free, medically sound termination of your fetus without the legal restraints that often come with seeking a pregnancy solution in certain southern states. For those of you who prefer to go old school, there are numerous “back alley” approaches. We have the good old cross-border Mexican coat hanger, or for those of you who prefer a little flair, there is a full time staff of skinheads ready to kick you in the stomach and shove you down a flight of stairs.
Not pregnant? No problem! We bought up Christopher Reeve’s stockpiled stem cell collection at his estate auction. Pennies on the dollar! They were just collecting dust anyway; it’s not like it was legal for him to put them to good use. But now they won’t go to waste, because we can quickly implant the cells in your uterus just so that you can experience what it’s like to have an abortion. Might make you appreciate having children even more one day should you choose to do so.
Are you a man, and technically incapable of being with child? Well, we’ve thought of you too! And science has something to say about nature discriminating against males. You remember that documentary Junior with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito? We’ll inject a fetus into your abdomen just so you can see what it’s like to terminate a pregnancy. Then your girlfriend can quit pulling that whole “Well you’ll never know what it’s like to carry a child, so you just don’t understand,” crap on you when you get into a fight about who left the fridge door open.
Women, am I right guys?
Why would you want to do any of these horrible things on these floors? That’s not important. No sane human being would. But the whole point of the Freedom Tower isn’t the reasoning behind anything you do, it’s to just do it because you can!
On to the rest of the festivities! (After bypassing several hundred floors that will be rented to various law offices, the sole purpose of which is to defend the Freedom Tower’s activities against the criminal charges that will be brought against it daily, if not hourly).
Have you ever hungered for the taste of human flesh? Ever wake up in the middle of the night with a burning desire to find out what real baby back ribs taste like? Do you find yourself salivating when you drive by a horrendous fiery auto accident and see them carting away a body bag filled with perfectly good cooked meat? Then welcome home you sadistic weirdo, this is the cannibalism floor!
That’s right, here you can enjoy the sumptuous feast that is your fellow man. You’ll be free from the guilt that comes with killing and roasting a drifter to satisfy your craving for strange treats. Here everyone is equally guilty of a horrible crime against nature, so sit down, avoid eye contact, suppress your guilt, and dig in!
Are you twisted enough that you actually enjoy meeting the most dangerous game before you field dress and barbeque it? Then you’ll love our “Authentic Post-Apocalyptic” section, where you get to stalk and bludgeon your prey with a tire iron before constructing a primitive spit roast over a trashcan fire. It’s like you’re really in “The Road.” Cormac McCarthy would be so proud.
Finally, we reach the top floor, which is dedicated to one simple thing: the forceful end of another human being’s life. A giant indoor arena has been constructed for bloodsport. We are after all the new Rome and the empire is burning, so let us act accordingly. By entering this arena you forfeit your right to life and can engage in mortal combat with complete strangers, using whatever implement of destruction you see fit to wreak havoc and bathe the cheering crowds in carnage.
The method by which you destroy the lives of your fellow man is entirely up to you! One on one combat? But of course! Team death matches? We’ve got that. Fancy yourself a “real man?” Then take part in our Insanity Survival Challenge! Choose your weapon and then face one attacker after another until you either die of blood loss or tap out, (like a total pussy).
Now if you thought that the fun was over now that we’re at the tippy top, you could not be more wrong. What does any giant phallic structure have? A giant needle spire. This one is especially good though, as there is a platform at its peak from which you can jump to your own death. Hey, suicide’s illegal everywhere in this country, but keeping with the True Freedom mentality of the Freedom Tower, s’all good here bro. Now the depressed and hopeless of this country, (an ever growing faction), can fling themselves from NYC’s tallest building without fear of prosecution. Wait, how the fuck does the government prosecute people for offing themselves if they’re already dead? Goddamnit, our laws make no sense… Who cares?? This is awesome!
Once again, I’d highly recommend that you aim for some Wall Street asshole on his lunch break. I shudder at the beautiful thought of one of them looking up as a shadow zeroes in on them and the last thing they see in their life is a lunatic hurtling at their head screaming “This is for mismanaging my retirement fund you cock sucking pig!”
Another great feature of this suicide spire? At that height you’ll be travelling at such incredible speed that your body, (or at lest scattered parts of it), will end up permanently embedded in the concrete below. You can become a part of the world’s greatest city forever!
Now of course this whole demented thing will cost a metric shit ton of money to build. Not quite as much as a decades long war in the middle east, but certainly a good chunk of change. As a result, admission to this glorious building with cost a pretty penny. I’m thinking somewhere in the neighborhood of an even thousand per head. “But Andre!” I hear you cry, “As a populist how can you justify erecting a structure that will only be privy to the wealthy?” Well, as much of a man of the people as I consider myself to be I also recognize that doing big and awesome shit requires money, that’s just the unfortunate nature of the world we live in. But goddamnit I do love to let the rabble into everywhere. So the solution is simple. Every morning at 7:00 AM we let the first three thousand people in line fight to the death for free entry. Once the herd has thinned itself down to a thousand, they’re golden. And because they earned their ingress the good old-fashioned way, they get to go in before ticket holders. Take that, rich fuckers. Their balls outweigh your bucks.
While this whole concept may seem like an insane crime against humanity, (and I’m not arguing against that case), I truly believe that it would benefit America. The construction of such an odd monstrosity would mean a MASSIVE public works project the likes of which America hasn’t seen since the New Deal. It’s a job creator. Thousands of people will be employed in the building of it, and thousands more for its maintenance. It will revive our shit diving tourism industry and revitalize NYC overnight. To accommodate all of the tourists we’ll just level Staten Island and put up a massive international hotel and spa. I suppose that the city of New York can just start dumping their garbage in Jersey instead. Not like anyone would notice, the place already smells like a damn tire fire, am I right?
The most important economic impact that my idealized Freedom Tower will have wont even come from ticket sales or tourism draw. I think so much bigger than that. We’ll put cameras on every floor and televise all of the insanity, turning this great American experiment into the ultimate reality television show. Give it its own network running 24/7. Let’s face it, that’s what the majority of the dumb fuck people in this country want anyway; a chance at fifteen minutes of fame for the most pointless of reasons, or to at least live vicariously while watching other moronic simps pursue their fifteen minutes. We take all the proceeds from the tower itself, the new mega hotel (formerly the garbage dump of Staten Island), and the new television network and we use that money to finally balance our fucking budget. If anyone in government has a better way to dig us out of the financial black hole that we’re in then I’d like to hear it. Otherwise, lets tear down that piece of shit currently standing at One World Trade Center and start from scratch. Let’s make something truly amazing that we can all be proud of. Something ghastly and awe inspiring. Sure it’d be in poor taste, but it’s still a better way of honoring the dead of that day than using their deaths as an excuse to permanently fuck up the world.
Happy 9/11 to all, and to all a good night!