In a discovery that is shaking both physicists and politicians to their very cores, a pothole on a residential street in downtown Toronto has today opened to reveal something truly extraordinary: an alternate universe. And, much more surprisingly, one in which elected governments look after their infrastructure, and voters understand that this costs actual units of currency.
“Holy shit!” exclaimed one bystander, as police quickly cordoned off the diminutive, two-metre-wide road void. “Look at that politician down there on Other Earth, giving an honest account of what it’s going to take to keep the roads drivable and the bridges from collapsing. And the Other People are actually voting for him! What inconceivable magic is this?”
World-renowned particle physicist Fabiola Gianotti, who rushed to the scene of the wormhole from CERN headquarters in Switzerland, wasted no time in releasing a statement outlining the importance of the discovery.
“While we are certainly astounded to suddenly have access to a parallel universe, and are eager to explore its ramifications on our entire understanding of existence, I’ve come directly here today to determine the answer to the two crucial questions raised by this discovery: How do these Other People’s cities afford to clear the sidewalks? And will they come and do ours?”
Politicians around the world immediately questioned the veracity of the finding.
“I have no doubt that this pothole opens into another realm,” said Toronto Mayor John Tory, getting out of the customized cold-weather dune buggy he uses to commute through the shattered asphalt of his decaying city. “But there is no way I believe that people down there vote for candidates who say that infrastructure maintenance costs money, and that kicking it down the road just makes it worse. Even if promising to do so in the short term could get them elected, as per my experience.”
Ontario Premier Doug Ford, who recently saved a relatively small amount of money by deferring a large amount of money in school maintenance until someone capable is in office, agreed there was no way this could be correct.
“What the hell is an Other Earth? I bet they’ve got all sorts of weird ideas about basic incomes, mental health supports, and actually assisting the families of children with autism. Just fill that damn portal in and stop giving people crazy ideas about what it costs to live in a properly run province.”
And to the south, Americans reacted almost wistfully to the news the Canadians had found an conduit to a better political example in a pothole.
“We used to have time to look in our potholes,” said a man in Rochester, New York, as he stared desolately across Lake Ontario towards the fissure in the space-time continuum. “Not anymore. We’re too busy arguing with the assholes.”
“But just imagine,” he added, kicking the ice at his feet bitterly. “An entire world full of people who know that politicians who make impossible promises are full of shit. I bet they don’t even demand Other Mexico pay for those repairs.”