“Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.” - Mark Twain
When’s the last time that you looked at the Space Needle? Has it been an hour? A day? A year? Have you never bothered to look up at it because you’re trying to avoid it? Did you know that being able to see the Space Needle is an issue in Seattle? It is! That’s totally what this article is about.
According to The Seattle Times, the construction of dense, tall buildings is obstructing the view of the Space Needle in many public spaces (I would have broken the story first, but my Editor refuses to get me an intern). In 2001, city planners went so far as to create legislation protecting the view of the Space Needle from 10 city parks, including Kerry Park in Queen Anne and Volunteer Park in Capitol Hill (though I can never see the Space Needle with that damn sun sculpture in the way). The legislation defined a good view as one that features 75 percent of the tower and that adorable saucer thing at the top. For me, it’s all about the bottom of the Space Needle, but I’m weird like that.
Many of these taller buildings are being constructed in South Lake Union, which you may know as that place with all of those overpriced food trucks. While the view of the Space Needle will not change in Volunteer Park, many sidewalks, streets and bike lanes in Capitol Hill will lose their prized view. Unbelievable! This will not stand. If we can’t see the Space Needle, it won’t even feel like Seattle anymore, and if it doesn’t feel like Seattle, we should separate. There’s no other solution. Meet me by the water tower at dawn and we’ll begin planning. Lives shall be lost in our fight for independence, but the blood will give birth to a new self-governed city.
Look, I may be getting a little ahead of myself; this is just a very important issue to me. I love the Space Needle. I need to see it at least 10 to 20 times a day, and get very irritable if I don’t. “Don’t talk to me,” I say, “I haven’t seen the Space Needle yet.” I mean, it’s how I get around the city! I don’t use maps; I just look out of my car window while driving and figure out where I need to go. When people give me directions, I ask them to tell me where the building is in relation to the Space Needle. “Pretend the Space Needle is the center of a clock,” I implore, “and tell me where to go.” They usually hang up (bunch of Space Needle haters). Maybe this sounds stupid to you, but what landmark should I be using? That stupid pink elephant?
The solution to these obstruction problems is obvious: We make the Space Needle taller. It’s already pretty short as city towers go, at least when compared to that monstrosity in Dubai. Why not add a few feet? It will be good for our ego. The view from the Space Needle isn’t even that high; I can see more when I stand at the top of the human pyramid that my Editor makes all the writers take part in every week.
If knocking down the Space Needle and building a taller one sounds ridiculous, perhaps you’ll like a more rational idea: building another Space Needle. We can create more views of the Space Needle by building more Space Needles. Every neighborhood should have one. As long as we build more Space Needles than apartment buildings blocking them, we can stay ahead of the curve. What’s that? You want to hear a third solution? Okay, we give each neighborhood a clear view of the Space Needle for a few years, and then build up and knock down the tall buildings in another neighborhood so they can see. Make the people keep moving between buildings. I don’t know the exact schedule, but we let Capitol Hill see the Space Needle in 2014, Ballard in 2015, and so on.
What are we supposed to do instead? Remember what it looks like when we can’t see it? That’s outrageous! If we don’t stop this construction, seeing the Space Needle will be like seeing a friend in prison or going to a peep show. “You have 10 minutes. No touching.” Is that what you want? Is that how you want to live?
You do? You’re probably right, it does sound kind of hot.