HowTo:Create a sandstorm

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When your sandstorm works as intended the whole neighborhood should take on the appearance of this Cairo parking lot.

Anytime you want to create a sandstorm, it should be a fairly easy process. Don't let anyone tell you that it's too complicated or not worth the time or trouble. You'll see.

Why create a sandstorm?

A sandstorm comes in right handy when you think the environment needs a little kick in the pants. Mother Nature has a way of keeping her ecology in order, and has carefully regulated topsoil production for hundreds of millions of years. Things grow, then either die or shed their leaves, and the bacteria, worms, and other denizens of the deep have one field day after another. They mull about, chewing and spitting and shitting and pissing, building up the soil for their offspring to enjoy for the next million years or so. Why disrupt this cycle? Why not! Think about it. According to the holy book, you are a special creature and have been given dominion over the earth by God almighty Himself. Who are you to look a gift horse in the mouth? The earth is yours my friend, Jesus and his pa gave it to you, and you might as well have some fun with it while there's some of it left. And what better way to put on a show than to create a sandstorm.

Step One: Manufacture or Find a long stretch of sand

Yesterday's natural rich topsoil, today's manmade desolate wasteland.

Sand. Surely those tiny granules are Lady Luck's funny gift to the starving masses, because there's plenty of it, and more is being manufactured every day. To make some, go out and find a bunch of that healthy and "Just-teeming-with-life!" topsoil. Then carefully destroy its nutrients with overgrazing, deforestation, and overplanting. Finally, dry out what's left, and pretty soon, almost before you know it, sand aplenty! You now have so much dead soil on your hands that you can create your sandstorm and have some left over.

But what if you don't want to make your own sand? Don't worry. Plenty of others have been making sand long before you got around to it. And you know what? Most of them have just left it lying around for an up-and-comer like youself to jump on. Deserts are a common place to find some sand, as are the former grazing lands of the American Southwest (a windswept prairie before the cows got to it, with a cheerful helping hand from friendly ranchers who pointed-out the grasslands to the cows). Also check out the entire continent of Australia, most of Mexico, Central America, Africa, and big swatches of Europe, Asia, and all of those islandy places.

Now that you've got your sand, just put your lips together and. . .blow.

If that doesn't work, just roll up your sleeves and. . .

Step Two: Pile it up

Pile it up

That's right, just pile that sand up. You do this by stealing lots and lots of bulldozers and back-hoes and buckets, and then you and your friends start to bulldoze, back-hoe, and bucket. Take all the sand from miles around and pile it up on one spot. Try to make a hill that can be seen from space.

There will be times during this process when you will want to quit. The sun can get pretty hot when you're digging up sand, and then some of it will ride up and stick to your sweaty face. Just drink enough water, pull a bandana over your mouth and nose, and keep yourself focused on the task at hand. It helps to sing one of those slave songs (16 Tons, Chain Gang, Hoedown Throwdown, etc.) to keep your mind busy while the sand piles up before you. Then there will be those harder-to-resist times when your inner-child will either want to stop all the hard work and play in the sand or it'll feel like lying down and taking a nappy. Don't listen to it! Slap that inner child in the back of its head, right on that soft spot that tends to cave in if you press too hard, and keep on digging and hoeing and scooping.

Another distraction may come if any locals, police, or sneakin'-in-the-back-door government types come snooping around. When they ask "What's ya doin'?", just put your hands in your pockets, shrug your shoulders, spit on the ground, look at them nonchalantly, and say "Nuthin". That usually appeases them, and they'll be on their way. If the locals don't leave, put them to work. And if the cops and government types stick around and seem to be eyeing your back-hoe suspiciously, remember that an exchange of money usually works wonders with stubborn authority figures.

But the whole key here is to just keep piling up the sand. Haul sand to the top of the pile, pat it down with your foot, and then pile more sand onto it.

Step Three: Admire your pile of sand

Look at that! Look what you and your friends have made! Damn, that's one big pile of sand. Take some pictures, spend a couple of hours walking around its perimeter, and race your friends to the top. The fat and out of shape ones won't be able to make it all the way up there, but at least they'll get as far as the foothills.

Step Four: Fry that bacon!

Blow it up

Now you're ready for the crescendo. Check your local weather reports and pick a day when the wind will be especially strong. Then you, your friends, and your corrupted authority figures should carefully place rows and rows and rows of fancy high explosives into the sand. Dynamite, nitro, plastique, C-4, a few thousand M-80s, and that half-megaton jimmy-stick you've "requistioned" from your local military ammo dump, stick all of it right there into the base of your sand hill. Attach a very long fuse, back off, and let 'ir rip. Light that candle. KABOOM!!!. The sand will fly up into the air about a mile, be distributed in the wind, and you'll have something pretty damn exciting to write home about (and to put on your resume).

By the way. . .

. . .this is what this page will look like if you read it while standing in the middle of your sandstorm.

Step Five: Videotape it and post it on YouTube

Why of course! Your goal: A million hits. So many hits that they could be seen from space.

Your YouTube vid should look something like this. Hire a guy to tape it while you, your friends, and your paid-off authority figures jump up and down in front of the lens and moon the audience.

Step Six: Watch the news!

Open a few beers, turn on your television, and enjoy the results of your labor. Here is how two typical American towns will look after you've played your sick little game, packed up, and gone home:

Kansas City, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri

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