Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Anschutz and Denver’s Grand Experiment

(Warning: satire ahead)

Hickenlooper and Madison Cooperate to Arrange Large-Scale Experiment in City Park

Sewage effluent from Metro Wastewater, euphemistically called “effluent”, is being used to irrigate the lawns and fill the lake at City Park. This we know. What we don’t know, because no environmental impact study was ever conducted, is the effect this treated sewage water plus Lowry toxin is having on the creatures that inhabit the park, in particular whether or not exposure to the effluent can impair the immune system and provoke illness or death by "natural" causes.

In an effort to determine the effects of using this pollutant-laden water, squirrels were first enlisted. Many contracted bubonic plague and died after exposure. Although unsolicited, an adventurous monkey at the near-by zoo volunteered and gave his life for this phase of the experiment.

Next, ducks were pressed into service. A total of over 1000 of the wild quackers made the brave sacrifice to prove the effluent safe throughout the wastewater system, but perished from avian botulism in the process, after their immune systems were undoubtedly compromised.

Now, in a final effort to determine once and for all if this greywater concept is safe, humans will be enlisted for a three-day experiment in the park next summer. Phil Anschutz (billionaire) , long-known for his interest in science, John Hickenlooper (Denver mayor), an avid science-fiction reader, and Carla Madison (City Council), not so much into science but always willing to go along for the ride, have devised an extremely clever experiment to get to the bottom of this mystery.

During a three day period in July 2008, up to 100,000 brave humans will be enlisted to test whether or not the e. coli and chemical substances permitted in the sewage effluent irrigation and lake water by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, are sufficient to make them sick. After donating upwards of $75 each to help defray the cost of this massive undertaking, the human subjects will enter the experimental zone, fenced off and well guarded by over 300 off-duty police.

To make their experimental time more endurable, food and adult beverages will be provided, at prices unfortunately inflated by the risk factor involved. To help pass the hours necessary for proper exposure, music will be provided at many stages by civic-minded musicians, who will, themselves, risk exposure.

Experimental subjects will be encouraged to roll on the grass, eat food without washing their hands, and smoke a calming medication designed to make them lay back. According to Chuck Morris, Chief Coordinator of Experimental Design, this “laying back” is an essential part of the experiment, without which maximum exposure could not be attained.

Some subjects will be exposed to the sewage effluent in another manner. Fifty foot-high blasts from the water fountain, located in the center of the lake, will provide an aerosol spray of mist to bring individuals more directly into contact with the effluent.

Experimental zone boundaries will extend to the fence of the nearby Denver Zoo. Some animals will undoubtedly enjoy the tunes and dance to the music. Some, not so much.

Neighbors of the park, with some trepidation, have agreed to leave the experimental subjects alone, as they course to and from the experimental zone. “They told us some of the subjects may act like zombies, but we won’t mess with them unless they try to mess with us.” said one man, who stood in his yard with arms crossed in defiance, and asked not to be identified.

After the three-day exposure period, subjects will be required to report back to AEG Live, the optimistically named medical sponsor. Any illness or death attributable to the experiment must be promptly reported, and those affected (or their families) will receive large (unspecified) bonus payments, according to Morris.

Anschutz pointed out that this is the first experiment of its kind anywhere in the United States. Quoting the President of the United States, Anschutz summed it all up: “This will finally answer the question, “Is our families safe?”

1.) It should be noted that although many subjects will and have been harmed in the conduct of this experiment, advancements in medical science and sewage effluent use will be well worth the price.
2.) Thanks to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment for providing the details of this rigorous experiment in Regulation 84, available online at
3.) If you have read this far and do not realize this post is satirical, you should definitely not volunteer for the experiment, as you are already probably brain-damaged, and your participation could drastically skew the results.


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