NEW YORK ( – In honor of the fiscal cliff’s 2013 arrival, Times Square organizers today said this New Year’s Eve, the gigantic crystal ball will slide down its traditional 77-foot flagpole, then plunge another 395 feet to the ground, where it will smash into pieces and cause overwhelming economic damage and personal hardship.

Unlike previous ball drops, organizers say they also plan to shoot fireworks down at the crowd instead of up in the air.

“We always try to do something relevant for a new year if we can, and having the ball plummet and explode was the obvious approach for 2013,” said James Cardin, executive director of the Times Square Alliance. “We’re treating it very much the way Congress is treating the fiscal cliff. Nobody wants it to happen. Everyone says it’s crazy. People will absolutely get hurt. It’s perfect.”
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg immediately blasted the decision, calling it “irresponsible and dangerous” for the 12,000-pound ball to fall 25 stories above the Square into more than a million people below.
“Thank you,” Cardin replied. “We think so too.”
Unlike the Mayor, Times Square revelers said they were looking forward to the celebration, hoping it gives them a more visceral sense of the problems caused by the impending tax hikes and spending cuts.
“I don’t understand the fiscal cliff or sequestration or Earned Income Tax Credit expiration, but I can understand thousands of crystal shards flying through the air and eviscerating my body,” said Angel Martin, 24, of Brooklyn. “I only wish people from around the around the country could be here with me to experience it. Particularly anyone from Congress.”
Cardin conceded the potential lack of widespread damage is a drawback, but said the Alliance has planned for that.
“Obviously it won’t hurt a great number of people at first, but we’re asking everyone in Times Square to run around in a panic the moment the ball shatters,” he said. “And if everyone watching from their hotel rooms around the Square would consider jumping out their windows, that would be great. We really want to get the atmosphere right.”
Just before press time, Bloomberg announced Times Square Alliance members will be arrested if they go through with, “one of the most stupid, wrong-headed, and ill-conceived plans in the history of this country.”
“Oh now stop,” Cardin replied. “I’m blushing.”
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