Part 24: Fit the Twenty-First : Just Enough Education To Perform
Fit the Twenty-First : Just Enough Education To Perform
The rest of 1936 passed without incident, and since we had barely any money by the end of the year (as usual), but in the new year of 1937 that we could start wasting cash again.
A new subway line was established; eventually this would extend into the industrial districts, but for now the first station in the Yellow Line was made operational.
The population was growing again, nudging the 100,000 mark.
With slightly more variety in the shape of the apartments.
Also, a new route was laid down to the east, I imagined that the replacement airport would be put out there somewhere.
The immortal (zombie?) Granny arrived at my office with another of her great ideas.
What is this.
Because if stairs don't have lighting, people might fall down and break their necks!
I looked over the "report" that she'd presented me, and then summoned Mortimer on the telephone, telling him I wanted to waste his time for a minute.
OK, I'm just going to sit back and sick Mortimer onto you.
Mortimer came in. I handed him the report. He leafed through it, looked at me, looked at Granny, looked at me again, looked at Granny again.
Wal, this is stupid.
Seriously, did you think I'd say yes to this?
It was worth a try, did I tell you about my grandson? He makes automatic relay switcheroo thingamijigs.
Go away go away go away...
Oh, and we had some renaming to do. When I was questioned by the press, I just said "it wasn't my idea"...
So not much happened in 1937 either. The subway extension and various fiddling about accounted for most of the cash.
In 1938, the Maxwell Smart Bridge was finally rebuilt. I supposed to perform the opening but I was late and they decided to go ahead with it, I got there just after Moe had cut the ribbon in my stead, so I missed it by that much. Not that I minded Moe getting to do the honours.
I decided I really wanted to drive up the land values in various parts of town, so I intended putting more playing fields down in one area, which began to be known as Parkville.
The second stage of the Yellow Line was finished, and I hoped this would take some pressure off the other transport options.
It wasn't that cheap, but it would be very effective.
Further expansion of East Funkytown was undertaken.
We needed another hospital, as well.
So that was placed in Parkville. This was specifically a paediatric hospital.
And so the grumbling about high taxes had started up again, even though they had just been lowered to 7%. I had no idea what the rationale was, but it wasn't going to happen in a hurry.
I mean, for even Sophia to be complaining about it in her usual haughty manner *sigh* was unusual. Didn't mention the kid. I assumed she was well into her teens now, providing she actually aged, unlike everyone else in town. Of course it was odd, but then I wasn't aging either. I couldn't account for it.
The downtown waterfront was looking quite impressive by this stage.
The population fluctuated as usual, some months it got tantalisingly close to six figures only to drop downwards. We were at full employment, though, which was not a bad situation to be in.
And before I could blink, 1938 was over and 1939 was upon us. With a bit of luck we'd break through that mark before the year was out.
For the past year the neighbouring mayors had been soliciting for garbage, which I declined on all occasions. It was time for a third incinerator. This was going to eat most of our cash, of course.
I just stuck it next to the other two, as usual.
There was enough left over for some more housing subdivisions, so I hoped this would push us over the brink.
And, finally, it just happened. We'd done it. 100,000 within forty years, including that earthquake.
As soon as that happened, Sophia had turned up at the office. I gritted my teeth and had Beryl let her in.
I have something delightful to present to you!
Ehhh, it's not a child support suit, I hope.
She stood there for a second, then winked at me.
Nothing like that. No, it's a very nice performing arts centre! The people of Funkytown will be able to see plays and concerts and opera in the finest of surroundings!
Oh great, so how much is this going to cost? We haven't even put that geyser park down yet.
It's being paid for by a partnership of city philanthropists, and cultural grants from the state and federal governments. The city doesn't have to put in a cent! Isn't that wonderful!
Yeah, it is wonderful, I suppose.
So hurry up and put it somewhere.
So I found a location for it downtown, as suggested, near the harbour and just a walk down from city hall.
I have to say it looked pretty good.
The Funkytown boy-made-good and clothes-store mannequin tycoon BrklnBruzer put up most of the money, so it got named after him. Of course I was called upon to attend the opening performance, alongside Sophia. We watched one of the worst magicians in the world perform his act. It got particularly bloody as Weir attempted to saw his assistant in half and succeeded to the point where the paramedics had to be called.
"Don't worry", Sophia said, "we've got Bing Crosby coming next week."
Another problem was the increasing tang in the water supply. I have to say that I hadn't had much to do with Karen in a while, but I was kind of expecting her to turn up with the news.
Well, there were a few pollution hotspots, but I couldn't say it was too bad. We would have to do something about it soon, though.
Pity the treatment facilities were fairly pricey.
That, and that I'd promised to build a new college at this point. The existing one was becoming quite crowded.
There was still discontent about the taxes, but with so much that needed to paid for, they weren't going down any time soon.
And, yes, we needed a damned airport, as Constance and Prunella kept pointing out. The destruction of the original was really the most galling part about that earthquake, it just seemed to be Nature's way of telling us that man wasn't meant to fly.
But ome 1940, that was really the only thing that I was still rueful about in the aftermath of the quake, and I would fix that. Otherwise, Downtown looked great...
People were happily getting lost in the labyrinth that was East Funkytown...
And Parkville was quickly becoming the most desired suburb in town.
I assigned a few arbitrary names to some of the new parks too, the origins of the names being a mystery to the residents.
So, by 1940, the drums of war were beating their martial tattoo across the wider world once again, but in Funkytown things were relatively peaceful.