Amid all the chaotic negotiations and political hubbub surrounding the national debt in Washington, we're having a little trouble wrapping our heads around the $14.3-trillion limit the US has for borrowing.
What exactly could you do, if you had that amount of money?
Sure, it's exponentially larger than any amount we'll ever have disposable. But that doesn't mean it's not fun to fantasize.
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You could buy the world a Coke, and you could teach it to sing.
A Coke in The Boston Globe vending machines costs $1.25, a 30-minute voice lesson can cost $20, and the latest population clock from the US Census Bureau shows 6,951,681,990 people worldwide as of midday Wednesday.
Added all up, everyone on the planet could get a Coke and a voice lesson -- and we'd have enough money left over to give more than 707 million additional hours of voice lessons to the (ahem) "tonally challenged" among us.
Newton North High School's $197.5 million price tag caused quite a stir during the past few years. With our insane amount of money, we could pay for more than 72,400 copies of it.
Think what the Bay State would be like with 206 of these schools for every town.
Imagine what those increased resources could do for the state's troubled MCAS science scores.
Say what you want about the Big Dig, but we did get a nice green space out of the deal for the mere cost of $21.93 billion. Why not do that a few more times?
The debt ceiling is equivalent to about 652 Big Digs. Why not give it a shot in Quincy or Canton?
No Boston fantasizing would be complete without a Duck Tour. They're good enough for the Stanley Cup-winning Bruins, so they must be good enough for our $14.3 trillion.
At $32 a duck tour for an adult, you could bring 446,875,000,000 of your closest friends -- or roughly 595 times the number of active Facebook accounts. Yes, that would include Mark Zuckerberg.
Speaking of the Bruins, with our $14.3 trillion we could have their famed $156,679.74-post-Stanley-Cup party at Shrine nightclub 91 million times.
Hopefully, Foxwoods has 3 billion Jager bombs ready.
Let's be honest: If any of us had trillions of dollars just lying around, we'd make our way to Cape Cod a time or two.
Sure, we could probably afford our own boat to get there from Boston, but it would be more fun to take the fast ferry from Boston Harbor Cruises at $79 a round-trip ticket for an adult to Provincetown.
At those prices, you could send all Massachusetts residents 27,645 times. Think of how popular you'd be!
If cars and digging new highways aren't your things, how about creating more access to the commuter rail?
The MBTA has invested in 20 new locomotives at the cost of about $5,700,000 each. Think there would be fewer problems getting in and out of Boston for national championship celebrations if we had 2,508,771 more locomotives on hand?
All this math has got us hungry.
Hungry enough for about 1,148,594,377,510 cheese pizzas from Pizzeria Regina.
It might take us until the early morning to eat that much pizza. If we're lucky, it will be late enough (or, rather, early enough) to head to Dunkin' Donuts to start in on the roughly 67,136,150,234,741 Munchkins we could afford at the cost of $2.13 for 10 holes.