Recently, there has been great concern about the toll this past winter took on the Island’s roads, including Midway Road—which has been reduced to dirt and broken bits of asphalt.
The Island has dealt with some bad roads in its time. For years, New York Avenue served as a test for shocks absorbers and a carnival ride for kids in the backseat. But, apparently, we now have several roads as bad as that. How to do good repairs on a no-money budget is the big question.
Enter the gang of four. Myself, the brilliant Patty McGayhey, the beautiful Liz Toth (who has a man with a boat—no ulterior motives here) and Meyer Lemon-flavored Skinnygirl got together to see what solution we could contribute.
“First,” says I, “how hard could it be to make a road? It’s like a cake. We need a filler of some kind, like flour and sugar, a bonding agent, like eggs, a way to shape a giant blob, like a cake pan, and a pounder to get out the air bubbles, like dropping it on the table twice.”
“Okay, so we need pieces that will be indestructible, like stones, but more elastic, so the road can freeze and defrost without cracking. Something flexible and indestructible,” says Liz.
The Skinnygirl made her rounds.
“Alright,” says Patty, “what warps but is not destroyed by microwaves, or dishwashers? What can be run over by a truck, and may bend, but never breaks? Is impervious to water, but mysteriously stains from tomato sauce?”
In unison we say, “Tupperware!”
“Not the new stuff,” Patty continued, “but the old Tupperware. Our mothers’ Tupperware. Everybody on this Island has that old faded, warped, lid-lost-years-ago Tupperware somewhere. If we collected all we could, the next problem would be how to chop it into bite-sized pieces. But, who can destroy Tupperware?”
Not missing a beat, Liz’s dark eyes flash. “Teenage boys. Trust me, boys can destroy anything. We just tell them we’re making a YouTube video and we need them to reduce this giant pile of bowls to rubble. They’ll figure it out. In no time we’ll be hip deep in plastic pieces of pastels.”
The Skinnygirl ran around the table again.
“We’ll need cement, rubber cement, I think a half ton of each, pebbles and our plastic pieces. We’ll rent a mixer, stir gently and pour over the bald curve on Midway,” I say.
“We can get volunteers to help us pat it into shape,” says Patty. “It’ll be so pretty. A road of Tangerine orange, Daffodil yellow, Avocado Green, Blueberry—but we still have to solve the problem of getting rid of air bubbles so it’s nice and firm, but that big construction roller will just carve ruts into it.”
Two month later, supporters surround and applaud myself and the other Island women of magnificent size, as we roll around shaping and packing down Shelter Island’s first burp and seal pavement.
Even the Skinnygirl was there.