Saturday, December 05, 2009

Please consider the facts.

I've been scouring the web for information about concrete in stadiums. Unfortunately, I can't find how much concrete was poured in the construction of Texas Memorial Stadium. Giants Stadium, which is roughly comparable in seating capacity, required over 29,000 tons of concrete with an additional 13,500 tons of structural steel. For the sake of argument, let's use these figures for Texas Memorial.

I also discovered that a cubic yard of concrete weighs 3,500 pounds. So this means that there are roughly 16,500 cubic yards of concrete in our stadium.

Now imagine the following scenario. Pretend that an Andy-favoring deity has cheated on his behalf by doing 99.9% of the work for Andy. This deity has already taken the stadium apart and separated all the concrete into 16,500 solid concrete cubes. Andy’s only job is to transform these solid cube of concrete into rubble.

Everything is already laid out for him. Andy need merely go from block to block. Chop chop chop. Next block.

Simple. Easy as pie. An idiot could (and is) doing it.

There’s no fear of Andy getting crushed. No logistics to work out. No steel girders to work around. No glass to shatter. No concrete structures towering a couple of hundred feet in the sky to climb. No balancing necessary.

Just a chopping-friendly paradise for Andy. 16,500 perfectly manageable pieces.

But friends, how long would it take for Andy to reduce these concrete cubes to a state of rubble? How many of those cubes do you think Andy could go through in an eight-hour day?

Let's go nuts and assume he can go through a cube an hour, which is just stupid. He can't. Remember, these aren't cinderblocks. These are solid concrete cubes, each weighing two tons. So at this rate, he's reducing eight cubic yards of concrete per day to rubble.

Now get ready to sit down. Under this ridiculously simplified chopper-friendly scenario, it would still take him 5.67 years to complete the task.

Assuming he worked 365 days a year.

Friends, think on that. Over it would take over five years with virtually all the labor taken out of the task and all the trickiness removed.

Now let’s get back to the original bet. I remind you that it is a stadium we are dismantling and not just a bunch of concrete cubes. He’ll have to work around the girders. He’ll have to scale those towers. Just climbing up the dang thing and tethering himself to it would take time.

Oh, bother.

The photo is of a ramp (just a tiny wee portion) of Kenan Stadium, which is far smaller than Texas Memorial. Think about how long it would take to break up this structure with a sledgehammer. We ain’t talkin’ nicely laid-out concrete cubes.

It would take a long time, folks.


justcurious said...

Cool. I said 5-7 years. What do I win?

Michael B said...


That was the sound of my chin hitting my sternum in dejection.

Ok fine, I'll admit there was something weird in the coincidence. But it was only that. Okay?

justcurious said...

It's probably to your sledgehammerer's advantage that Texas Mem. is not as scenic as Kenan. Less to distract him from his chopping duties = even less chopping time.

Michael B said...

Justcurious: Not as scenic? What are you talking about? I've been to both, my friend, and Texas Memorial is amazing. You have a view of the Texas Capital.

justcurious said...

Can you see tumbleweeds rolling down the streets?

Andy D. said...

"Paging - Mr. Zerr. Mr. Lou, Zerr...."

Andy D. said...

A haiku (per the open-ended invite for me to post 'em):

The perspiration,
Start ta smell o' desperation,
As ol Mister Too Early Grave Dancer there,
sees his butt in the mirror,
in the reflectionation of his big ol white pantsdropification.

Michael B said...

Justcurious: Tumbleweeds? You forget that Austin is the oasis. You're thinking about the rest of Texas.

Andy D: That haiku is...perfect. Good grief, we're childish. Loved it. I'm thinking of making "reflectionation of his big ol white pantsdropification" my Facebook status. Probably I shouldn't.

Claudia said...

Rarely have I laughed harder than I did reading the words "reflectionation of his big ol white pantsdropification." Bravo. You two are hillarious. Ah, I needed that.

Michael B said...


I'll speak for Andy in saying tomfoolery is our business, and bizness is a bustin out and boomin. in fact, we're opening up a new shop. come on down and check us out.