Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Purple People Bridge

So, they had this abandoned railroad bridge in Newport, KY, see. And they renovated it as a pedestrian bridge, see. But someone hired "focus groups" to determine what color it should be painted, and the answer came back: purple. That's what you get for having more money than sense, and for not being able to make a decision yourself. Then again, the focus groups recommended a darker purple, and the powers-that-be decided to ignore that part and chose a pale lavender.

More infamous than the bridge itself is the "attraction" they tried to organize around it, which consisted of walking a set of steps that go up and down the top perimeter of the bridge. It might have been interesting, had they not charged 60 bucks for the experience, and not made you don idiotic-looking yellow and purple full-body costumes (in the dead of summer, even!) and made you wear headphones blasting music and ridiculous sound effects into your ears. They also made you sit through a painfully boring hour-long "orientation" video before the walk.

Not surprisingly, almost no one wanted to take part, and they withdrew the program in Summer 2007 due to utter lack of interest. (You can still cross the "Purple People Bridge" as a pedway to Cincinnati, though.)

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