Saturday, January 27, 2007

It's Raining Men.

It seems that an old warehouse district in Seattle got gentrified during the boom years of the '90s. What used to be warehouses are now chock full of tech companies and tech company employees. There's one minor catch, however: This particular warehouse neighborhood is right under a 155-foot tall bridge, complete with pedestrian walkways, which pretty much ensures a fairly steady precipitation of depressed folk onto the dot-commers below.

Thirty-nine people over the past decade have committed suicide off the 155-foot-high Aurora Bridge -- eight in 2006 alone -- and counselors are regularly brought in to help office workers deal with the shock of seeing the leap or the bloody aftermath.

At least one woman, Sarah Edwards, drives on the left side of the street near her office ever since a body landed on the hood of a co-worker's car.

Imagine, there you are, pulling into the parking lot at work, sipping on a double mocha half-caf latte when *KA-WHAM!* some busted Wall Street punter craters the hood of your Subaru right there in front of you. It'd be enough to put you slightly off your feed, no? In the most delightful twist of all, the bridge is a national historic landmark, and Seattleites don't just go mussing up the aesthetics of those with big-ass chain-link barriers or nets or whatever, at least without a decade of meetings, studies, votes, chanting, and incense.

So, hey, depressed? Feel like ending it all? Go to Seattle and go with style; pelt a yuppie, help keep a grief counselor employed. If you jump wayyy out, you might get that car swerving into the wrong lane.

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

About 16 years ago I was working at Applebees in Memphis and I had a table with a couple and what was obviously the ex-boyfriend. There was a bit of crying, then some yelling, and then a gun was pulled. I had just walked out of the kitchen when the ex put the gun to his head and blew his brains all over the front window. My manager still tells the story that I walked up to him and said, "I'm not cleaning that up." All I remember is walking to the back and hurling my cookies.

Brass

PS Apparently, Applebees' policy is that you don't have to pay for your meal if someone kills themselves durning your dining experience.

Gay_Cynic said...

You've hit the Seattle Process dead on...and let's not forget the part about city officials ignoring, over-riding, or undermining iniatives and such that they don't like.

*sigh*

And now we have the Alaska Way Viaduct replacement debacle *scroan*

Ahab said...

My family all lives up in the Seattle area, if I'm not mistaken; I know exactly where that bridge is.

Before I came to my senses, I used to work in a hotel that had a 20 story indoor atrium. Nothing like someone hitting the lobby floor at a good clip to throw off a dance party.

Paul Simer said...

If I ever do this, I'm doing so while wearing a t-shirt that says, "Pelt a Yuppie."

DL in NC said...

As a volunteer EMT/firefighter in a rural department, I have responded to less trendy attempts at suicide. I recall one where a guy went to the outhouse and blew out his intestines with a shotgun. He died a week later. There was no collateral damage to yuppies.
DL in NC

Billll said...

It's enough to make one lobby for the euthanaisa booths from Futureama. Step inside, insert coin (no credit), and the booth is flooded with nitrogen gas. Four minutes later your body is dropped through the trapdoor and whisked to the recycling / dogfood / soylent green factory, and noone gets pelted. Unless you had a nice pelt, in which case it would go to the wig factory. Waste not, want not.

D.W. Drang said...

"Seattleites don't just go mussing up the aesthetics of those with big-ass chain-link barriers or nets or whatever, at least without a decade of meetings, studies, votes, chanting, and incense."
A mere decade? We wish!
Hey, we have a few spare socialists we can let you have, cheap...

Brandon said...

I knew it rained a lot in Seattle, but damn.

Anonymous said...

So....no one has thought to paint a bullseye on the pavement in a convenient spot? As long as they insist on demonstrating gravitational attraction, it would make sense to concentrate the detritus and thereby save Subaru hoods. Besides, how else can we keep score?

B&N said...

Subaru? Seattle actually lets real cars into the city? Since when did they start doing that again? I thought you could only drive a Prius or one of the assorted sissy-mobile hybrids within the confines of their eco-green city limits.

david said...

An article about 39 people killing themselves and 10 comments on the article and not one person expressing any whimpy overly sentimental tripe about the damage to the mental health of the people who experienced these horrible events.

I knew there was a reason I liked reading this blog.

Anonymous said...

Ya think they got an office betting pool???

Matt G said...

My only problem with suicide is that most people don't seem to know how to do it very well.

Other folks get hurt, and that's not right.

Want to waste some morbid time?
Read some suicide notes.

Homer said...

Long story short, but once I threw out one of my standard one-liners, to wit: "Geez, suicide is starting to look like a practical alternative." Problem was, I said it within earshot of an FBI psychologist while at a predominantly LE-participant IPSC match (I had just finished a pair of killer stages where I might actually have scored higher without a gun....). This attracted his attention and eventually led to the inevitable professional question as to whether I thought about suicide much.

My response was: "Yes. I recommend it to a lot of people."

No sense of humor, those guys.

phlegmfatale said...

"a decade of meetings, studies, votes, chanting, and incense"
Um, they're probably also waiting for returns on their polls to see if fencing their bridge will be ok with rustics in Burundi and Lithuania.

Anonymous said...

I've had a lot harder things happen to me in life than most "suiciders".

So I totally don't understand that mindset.

Would I do it? No way, I'm wayyy too hardheaded for it.

So I vote for either the Booths, or the nice "opt out" center where you at least get death and a movie.

Billll said...

Maybe if we arrange for the booth to be flooded with hemp fumes first, along with a sound track featuring Nirvana and Pink Floyd?

Probably too much like shooting over bait.

DirtCrashr said...

The techno-yuppies are missing a big payoff. Paint the bull's-eye on the road and put-out some of those quarter-operated telescopes - but with digital video for taping the fall. Jumper ties a string to it or something and you get a follow-shot that automatically gets uploaded to YouTube - there's gotta be money in it...

Shane said...

There was a book that had a high dive on the roof of a building. I don't remember if there was a bullseye.

Tam said...

" There was a book that had a high dive on the roof of a building. I don't remember if there was a bullseye."

Oath of Fealty, by Niven and Pournelle. :)

markm said...

No, the automated suicide booth would never work. You need beautiful suicide hostesses in revealing outfits.

I'll try to drop in later today and see if anyone else remembers the SF story that came from...

bob said...

"I'll try to drop in later today and see if anyone else remembers the SF story that came from..."

Vonnegut’s Welcome to the Monkey House

markm said...

Bob, that's right.

Tam said...

I'm actually surprised that no junior web developer has parked a cam in his office window and put a spliced montage video on YouTube done to the soundtrack of "It's Raining Men"...

staghounds said...

There is a pool in Florida-

http://www.jumperpool.com/

Anonymous said...

I don't get why they don't aim for the water, at that height, water = concrete and the fish get free food (gotta keep the salmon and sea lions fed, they are important for the local economy up here).

Kristopher said...

I like the target idea.

But unless you are part of a team, you can't score better than 10x ...

Anonymous said...

My GAWD I love you people!
2dogs

Kingsley S. Hall Jr said...

You know about what one of those two earthquakes that damaged the hell out of the old ceiling in our 1927 Elma Theater had to say to the other?

He said "It's not my fault.