Paul Pearson is an artist who builds wooden bongs in the Australian town of Woodenbong. He wants to build a giant wooden bong as a giant Woodenbong tourist attraction to save the town, but the residents of Woodenbong aren’t all that amused at the idea of a wooden bong representing Woodenbong. This might sound like a stoner’s Dr. Suess story, but it’s all very true, according to the Australian Broadcast Company.
“I’ve always had an interest in bong-making and art,” Pearson told ABC last week. “I’ve been doing it all of my life.”
“Tourism is our only option for survival [in] this dying village,” he added.
While Pearson tried to create a petition for residents to support his project of building a humongous wooden bong, the town only has a population of 361 residents and most of them lean toward the conservative side. For some reason, they do not think the idea of a wooden bong in Woodenbong is so hot, even though it seems like the most obvious proposition in the world.
“I haven’t spoken to one person that thinks it’s a good idea,” Chris Reid, the head of a local fundraising group, told the New York Times. “We don’t want to promote drug use.”
“It’s quite a conservative community,” added Mayor Danielle Mulholland.
In addition, the wooden bong concept has also offended some indigenous Aboriginal tribes in the area. Apparently, Woodenbong is a westernized version of an Aboriginal word that loosely translates to “duck on the water.” In fact, “the name Woodenbong has nothing to do with a bong,” a Githabul elder told the Times.
Pearson, however, is undeterred in realizing his dreams of a giant wooden bong in the town, possibly one that towers higher than 50 feet in the air. Should the town not agree to pay for the project to draw tourism, Pearson has considered finding funding other ways. “I don’t think I need to convince people,” he told ABC. “It’s pretty obvious.”