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Barrel Shopping

barrel for going over falls

A barrel like this would be great…but I prefer something in color.

Now that I’ve decided to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel, a few slight logistical wrinkles need to be ironed out.

First and foremost: I need a barrel. I have several vital requirements for the barrel I choose for my journey over the falls:

  1. It must be watertight enough to endure the 681,750 gallons of water that travel over the falls per second without it filling with water and killing me horribly.
  2. It has to be sturdy enough to endure the 2,509 tons of force created by the 681,750 gallons of water that travel over the falls without losing structural integrity and killing me horribly.
  3. It must withstand the 167-foot drop without bursting on impact and killing me horribly.
  4. It must be spacious enough for me to comfortably fit into. (I don’t like to be cramped almost as much as I don’t like to be killed horribly.)
  5. It must fit onto the top of a Mercury Marquis. (I have bungee cords.)

My search for a suitable barrel has been less than fruitful.

It’s startling just how unhelpful the employees of Lowes are when it comes to barrel shopping.

You wouldn’t believe the slack-jawed looks I get when I ask them where they keep their barrels for going over waterfalls–they gape at me like I’m a moron.

The people at Ace Hardware are even less helpful. Their little jingle: “Ace is the place with the helpful hardware folks,” is a blatant and disgusting lie. It should be: “Ace is the place where smug, judgmental pricks named Todd question your mental stability.”

I went to a website of the deceivingly named Crate & Barrel–utterly useless unless you plan to go over Niagara Falls on an overpriced chaise lounge.

(I did, however, find a delightful celosia black hand-knotted area rug.)

It appears in order to find a suitable barrel for going over Niagara Falls, I’m required to have one custom-made.

Going over Niagara Falls in a barrel is turning out to be more difficult than I had imagined, but I will soldier on.

liquuor barrel

What a great barrel; I just have to empty it of the Jack Daniels inside–it’s a plan!

Here we Go!

barrel over falls

Here I go!

I’ve decided to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel.
I know what you’re thinking: that is a fantastic idea and not in any way reckless or ill-conceived.
You probably think the only thing to surpass my level-headed decision-making is my sense of adventure and almost unparalleled bravery.
You’d be correct–the level of your perception is stunning.
You are nothing like the naysayers in my sphere of influence, people who use harsh terms like reckless, ill-advised, wildly insane, dunderheaded, pea-brained, attention-seeking prat, dangerously maladjusted, and stupid.
Stupid is a very hurtful word.
These skeptics like to point out the majority of the individuals who have gone over the falls in a barrel have perished horribly.
Well, I’m not in the majority. If all those mental competency tests The New York State Board of Mental Health made me take are to be believed, I’m quite far from the majority.
In 1930 George Stathakis went over the falls in a barrel with his 150-year-old pet turtle.
If a geriatric turtle can survive going over the falls in a barrel, I think I can manage.
George died, but his death could have been barrel unrelated–everyone has to die sometime, right?
Anyway, my preparations to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel have begun.
By the end of summer, you will see my name plastered all over the news. (And not for indecent exposure this time.)
I will keep you updated on my progress.


I can do anything a turtle can…except stay submerged underwater for extended periods of time…I’ll be fine.

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