Satire | Campus Scout | Scout travels across America: New York City

By Campus Scout

Scout awakes from a reefer-driven nap to the bulging sound of a ship’s horn.

Previously enjoying some much-needed relaxation in Atlanta, Scout presently is perplexed as to his current location. The ship’s sound dictates Scout must be on the water, yet the darkness surrounding Scout’s sights define his location as “to be determined.”

However, with the majority of Scout’s senses hindered, one sense reigns supreme despite the current quandary; a smell exceedingly apparent that Scout is free to calculate his position.

An aroma of fresh gabagool radiates Scout’s plight.

With this knowledge, it is safe for Scout to assume that his whereabouts are within America’s mid-Atlantic north — a land abundant in Italian heritage and local sea-vessel traffic.

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After what feels like 45 minutes to an hour or so — as Scout’s marvelous internal clock decreed — light reaches Scout’s eyes after what appears to be a bag of gabagool being hoisted off him.

The ferry’s present placement: Staten Island; its destination: New York City.

And abruptly there she was, glimmering green and welcoming Scout to his final destination, the Statue of Liberty brazenly presided over Scout’s entry into the city’s centrum. Following thousands of miles, life-threatening experiences and escaping two cheugy comedians, Scout’s concluding objective lay eagerly above the horizon.

Still, a heavy aspiration remained. Over the course of traveling across America, the American spirit persisted as uncharted. Although Scout visited nearly every grand state in the union, the closest the scrupulous journalist came to unearthing this essence was preventing its detractors — “comedians” Jimmy Kimmel and Ellen DeGeneres — from blocking its progress.

The Staten Island ferry deposited Scout at its Lower Manhattan terminal. Immediately, Scout is greeted by a particular odor emanating from the excess affluence clouding the skyline.

Left with no choice but to escape this stench, Scout departs for safer refuge. Cruising the Northbound 1 train, Scout’s exit from The Battery is marked by multiple pizza rats as well as the occasional piss aesthetic decorating stairs down to the subway.

Nevertheless, Scout’s search for refuge concludes when a speaker announces that Times Square is the subsequent stop.

Off the northbound subway, Scout is captivated by the parade of towers above his stop. Steel and glass superstructures dress New York’s skies as Scout is dazzled by their shine. Likewise, Times Square’s roar appeals to Scout for a brisk visit.

Relentlessly observed by this astute reporter, Times Square is, simply, the cultural capital of the world. Here, establishments require little to no persuasion for entry due to their Times Square placement already inferring their opulence.

Additionally, local and welcoming restaurants like the Hard Rock Cafe, Hershey’s Chocolate World and Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. put one into the mindset of a native New Yorker with fantastic charm and their connection to the community: Think locally, act globally, folks.

At capitalism’s central station, Scout is left with awe at the digitally grand and electronically expansive landscape peppered with flashing displays. One would consider the American spirit satisfied at this center for capitalism, yet the square’s billboards dictate that even here, material desire persists.

Nonetheless, the concluding search for the real America endures.

With quintessential “American” locations like Colorado, Hollywood or the South failing to provide any semblance of this craved spirit, Scout begins to wander throughout Manhattan — heartbroken that his journey ends no better than it began in Iowa City.

Despondent to the big-city thrills, Scout meanders west across the urban jungle to ponder a swim in the nation’s finest waterway: the Hudson River.

Not many New Yorkers will admit that to achieve peace in the city, one must seek the rail yards. Moreover, as Scout is a native of the railroad-replete Illinois, this bold journalist finds pleasure in the tranquility of train tracks.

Outside of a megadevelopment deemed the “Hudson Yards,” Scout sits upon a bench while the Hudson and its proud brown moderately charge. The sun is once again visible to the reporter, following hours of sporadic obscurity due to the soaring skyscrapers.

It is here, in his humblest hour, Scout will discover the genuine America.

Noticing a pigeon carrying a slice of gabagool overhead, Scout’s glance behind introduces himself to the structure titled “Vessel.” Its open design features countless stairwells to nowhere, and its exterior prompts a viewer to consider whether all modern art is subjective or genuine flaming garbage.

However, the Vessel’s lackluster air is, undoubtedly, the American spirit. With its design declaring both fortune and failure, the Vessel itself is a portrait of America. Located in the heart of an immensely expensive development, while also acting as a blaring detractor to beauty, the Vessel is together pointless and powerful.

The search ends here; the real America is uncovered as Scout stands beneath the stairs-to-nowhere Vessel.

Move over Columbus, there’s a new pioneer in town, and this time, he has no intention to commit crimes against humanity.

*Campus Scout writes opinion-based, satirical stories and uses fictional sourcing.*

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