Aiming to end arguments with residents about whether Westchase pool staff really heard thunder, a Westchase pool lifeguard has invented and installed a new thunder machine he’s nicknamed the Boom-o-Matic.
Under Westchase pool rules, lifeguards who hear thunder have to shut down the pools or 30 minutes.
“This is a game changer and a big stress reliever for staff,” said Westchase lifeguard Osbert Ooglevy, who invented the machine. Last year Ooglevy won the Southeast Regional High School Robotics Championship with his entry, Killzilla. “I’m so tired of residents arguing with me about whether I’ve really heard thunder. The Boom-o-Matic will leave no doubt.”
With just a touch of its button from the lifeguard chair, the Boom-o-Matic not only broadcasts a deep boom of thunder from the pool buildings, it also sends the thunder sonically through the pool water. When activated, the Boom-o-Matic’s six different recordings of thunder can be heard five miles from each pool. “On a perfectly sunny day, the Boom-o-Matic can clear the playground at Lowry Elementary,” bragged Ooglevy. “If there’s a south wind blowing, we even have to warn MacDill Air Force Base so they don’t think they’re under attack.”
There were some hiccups with Ooglevy’s earliest version of the machine. “One of the booms it broadcast apparently sounded just like a gator mating call,” he admitted. “At one point, there were 12 large gators in the pond by the West Park pool just hoping to get lucky.”
But, he insisted, all the kinks have been worked out and the new machine is a lifesaver.
“I can’t tell you how many times rude residents have argued with our lifeguards about whether they heard thunder,” said Ooglevy. “All Westchase lifeguards are carefully screened and highly trained. We must pass rigorous hearing tests before getting hired. We have several lifeguards on staff who, while sitting in the lifeguard chair, can hear thunderstorms from as far away as Daytona.”
“We’re like highly trained dogs and ultrasonic sounds. We hear dangerous stuff that average residents just can’t. Residents just need to trust us,” he added.
Now, Ooglevy says, whenever they see doubt in any residents’ eyes, they just hit the Boom-o-Matic button. “You should see how quickly they clear the pool now,” he said.
“I’m a little suspicious,” said frequent Westchase swimmer, Kent Grooney. “How will we know the new system won’t be abused? I’ve been doing my laps in the pool when a big truck goes by. Then the lifeguard whistles and clears the pool for thunder. Most days I’m afraid to fart at the pool for fear it will trigger a shutdown.”
“That’s a ridiculous exaggeration,” Ooglevy responded. “Whenever there is any question in our minds, we’re trained to look for bubbles.”
Ooglevy quickly added, “Westchase residents who use the facilities can be so rude and entitled! People think we pretend to hear thunder just so we can go back into the pool office and respond to some silly text we receive. That’s totally ridiculous! I can personally assure you it has to be a very important text.”
Ooglevy then held up a finger. “Hear that?” he asked WOW’s reporter.
“I heard nothing,” the reporter responded.
Ooglevy tapped a red button on the lifeguard chair and the pool deck boomed and shook. “Sorry. Gotta go,” he said. “I’m on break.”
This story is satirical. It is not true and is provided simply for entertainment purposes.