Paul W. Rankin

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Ice Fortress One

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/06/09/climate/antarctica-rift-update.html

Dear friends,

As some of you will undoubtedly be aware, a one-trillion ton iceberg the size of the US state of Delaware has broken from the Larsen C Ice Shelf of Antarctica. Of course we cannot ignore this as a harbinger of the perils of global warming, but we can’t focus on the bad news. I for one am taking this as an opportunity by announcing that I will shortly be moving to this gigantic iceberg and claiming it as my own.

I know what you are thinking, “But Paul, you have no authority to claim this iceberg as your own!” Don’t be such naysayers! I have checked with the relevant authorities, and it turns out that there are none, no one owns icebergs because they are actually just big hunks of frozen water floating in the ocean.

Once I arrive at my new home, I will set to work turning it into a ice utopia, taking my inspiration from sub-zero-environment pioneer Mr Freeze. Which brings me to my next announcement: I’m extending this offer to you friend, to join me for the beginning of a new era, the age of Ice Fortress One. Join me in building a new ice-bound community, battling polar bears, cooking penguins for dinner, and all the skiing and snowperson-building you could ever wish for.

This may sound like pie-in-the-sky thinking, and yes, I’m sure many other intrepid icebergians have already set in motion existing plans for colonisation, and perhaps they started preparing years in advance, just waiting for the day the iceberg achieved its independence. But remember that this thing is the size of Delaware. Have you ever been to Delaware? I haven’t, but I have scrolled over it on Google Maps, and I can assure you it’s a modest size — large enough to have multiple towns. Imagine that, an iceberg breaking free with all that room, just floating there, up for grabs!

To get this community going, I am starting a Kickstarter to buy some good jackets (really warm ones) and paddles. We will need to periodically paddle Ice Fortress One back towards the South Pole to prevent unwanted melting.

I’m really excited. How often does a gargantuan iceberg break from Antarctica? Probably now only a handful more times during our lifetimes.

If you have any questions, or concerns about ancient alien viruses buried deep beneath thousands of years of ice, just know I am available by return email (until I move to Ice Fortress One, which won’t have internet or any kind of telecommunication).

Keep cool friends!