Elected officials from the town of Hanahan, South Carolina held a press conference yesterday to announce that they signed a contract with 800 year old Italian consulting firm, Alighieri and Associates. This renown company specializes in renewal and renovation solutions for growing municipalities.
They were responding to concerns voiced by local real estate agents, home builders, and bulldozer retailers who have belatedly come to the realization that uninhabited non-wetlands acreage in the town of Hanahan is becoming a rare commodity. What remains of this land, one inside source told me, must be developed in a way that assures “maximum profitability with minimum soul-searching.”*1
Mayor Minnie Newman-Caldwell stated that city councilman, Michael Sally, had recently returned from Florence, Italy where he spent an entire week meeting with Alighieri engineering and architectural design experts. “This was not a junket!” declared the mayor. “The city of Hanahan did not pay for his travel expenses. The entire bill was picked up by movers and shakers a lot higher on the totem pole than either me or any of my fellow elected officials!”
The mayor paused and pointed at the large poster on the wall depicting Hanahan’s organizational chart.
“Lookie there!” Mayor Minnie hollered (in her awesome Granny/Beverly Hillbillies impression). “You betcha, dad-gum it! Them suckers is way up there…they’s a sniffin’ the good clean air while we’uns is down here with the worms, the snails, and the crickets!”
The mayor jumped up and screamed: “That high falootin’ Mrs. Drysdale gets my dander up!” She then collapsed back into her chair and was overheard saying something to the effect that it was high time that the “good folks “in Hanahan get a mob together to go out and burn down all the remaining mobile homes in “our” town.
“Pestilence! Plague!” she shouted…”Unworthy!” she spat out…
Sensing that he was losing the attending press, councilman Sally stood up, turned off Mayor Minnie’s microphone, and gave a brief presentation about his fact-finding journey to Italy. He dimmed the lights and gave a digital slide show as he was speaking. Mr. Sally stated that the Alighieri firm has gained renown over the years for their ability to design quality housing systems based on a highly efficient and ancient system of human habitation which he described as “Vertical Downward Stacking…VDS for short.
“Here I am inspecting firsthand a vibrant, self-sustaining Alighieri designed community. VDS is a time-tested, efficient system of construction which will not only maximize the development potential of the remaining usable land in our great little town but will guarantee me an uninterrupted paycheck for decades to come! Just think of it! These holes are damned near bottomless! How many prospective buyers can you cram into one of these pits? Lord only knows! And, who needs recreational space when you are always in a state of free fall?”
Not one to miss the publicity bandwagon, the mayor turned on her mike and hollered… “You’re darn tootin’! But didn’t we forget to open this meeting with the Lord’s Prayer and the Pledge of Allegience?” Mr. Sally pointed out to the mayor that this was not a planned city council meeting but was a press conference and that those formalities were not necessary.
The city councilman continued…”Here I am enjoying a little after-hours fun with top officials and the board of directors of Alighieri. I kinda messed up because I though it was a costume party and dressed up as a rodeo clown. They took my mistake in good humor, however, and even seemed to get a kick out of my frog hat. After a while they really warmed up to my good old American frat house sense of humor and laughed hysterically at the fart lighting routine! I taught them how to pull off this timeless gag without getting second degree burns. The key is to never do it buck naked. I learned that the hard way!”
“What a swell bunch of guys! We cooked a pig over an open spit and drank cider and pomace wine out of clay fired mugs. It was a real treat…this invaluable time spent getting to know each other. I walked away with a new vision of what could be accomplished in Hanahan if we applied Alighieri techniques.”
“And the next picture is of me inspecting one of these roomy little abodes. I’m the one wearing the red and yellow shoes.”
“And here is a shot of my tour of an active, happy Alighieri community.”
Mr. Sally closed the press conference with a a self-congratulatory speech about all the good stuff that our elected officials do for us and asked the media to stand at attention for the 21 potato gun salute that he had arranged for a local cub scout troop to perform in his honor…a tribute to his years of service to the Hanahan community.