Monday, December 16, 2013

The Mystery of the Emergency Button

Have you ever pondered the deeper mysteries of life?  Where did I come from?  Why am I here?  What does the fox say?

These are the mysteries that man has sought to solve since time immemorial.  Today I'd like to add another mystery to this list.  What does this button do?

To give you some context about this button, it's located at Gold's Gym in Orem, Utah.  There is a room with a swimming pool and a hot tub.  It is about 5 feet from the hot tub.  I would have given you a picture of the hot tub with the button in the background so you could see it in context, but the people in the hot tub were giving me weird enough looks when I was taking a picture of the button.  They probably would have started rioting if I took a picture of them chilling in the hot water.  (But maybe they would have considered my creepy picture taking to be an emergency.  They could have pushed the button and solved the mystery.)

So, I'm trying to figure out what exactly this button does.  How does it know the nature of your emergency?  Does it drain the pool in case of drowning?  What if it's a chocolate emergency?  Does it dispense chocolate?  Does it put up the bat signal in the sky?  Does it call the button pusher's mom?  Maybe it just says some soothing words.

If I were designing an emergency button, I think one of the first things I would have it do is notify the staff that there is an emergency.  The staff would be able to determine the nature of the emergency much better than the feeble skills of the simple button.  But the one thing that we know about this button is that it doesn't notify the staff.  They want the pusher of the button to do that manually.

The only comforting thing is that the sign doesn't say, "notify Jack Bauer if used."  That at least leaves some hope that the button notifies Jack Bauer.  If there's anyone who knows how to handle an emergency, he would be the guy.

But I ask again, what does this button do?

Naturally, we spoke with some of the staff to see what they knew about it.

"Don't push it."

"But what does it do?"

"Just don't push it, it's for emergencies only."

We went around in that circle for several minutes.  The lady was very adamant that the button was not to be pushed.  She also was very adamant that the result of pushing the button was not something that mankind was ready to know about or comprehend.

I can only assume it's some sort of Doomsday device.  If the enemies of the gym have taken control, we push the button so that the gym self destructs and the precious gym never falls into enemy hands.

Or maybe it dispenses chocolate.

What do you think the button does?  I'd love to hear some theories.


  1. I think you should push it quietly and walk away. New blog post.

  2. Replies
    1. That made me really happy. I think it's correct, based solely on the awesomeness of it.

  3. Next time you go, tell the lady if she doesn't tell you what it does, you're going to cause an emergency and push it.

    P.S. Look who's reading/commenting on a blog post for the first time in FOREVER! Yep, feel special.

  4. It depresses probably one quarter to one half inch.

  5. Personally I think if Jack Bauer were there he would push the button and set off the doomsday device, then single-handedly get everyone to safety after he gets electrocuted and then shot in the side and stitching himself up.


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