Re: The Hellevator

by The Inmate

Everything in modern city life is calculated to keep man from entering into himself . . .

—Thomas Merton

Maybe this world is another planet’s Hell.

—Aldous Huxley

One of the disadvantages of many types of work is “dead time.” This is not a result of laziness or incompetence but simply a necessity for many jobs. For instance, people, like myself, who drive for a living cannot do paperwork while driving on the freeway, though it may appear that we do. In large companies just walking to a meeting may require five or ten minutes when nothing of economic consequence is accomplished. If you stop to think about it our daily lives consist of many, many minutes and even hours of dead time–wasted time. The responsible corporation or individual must attempt to retrieve as much of this time as possible and now they have help: the Elevator Portal™ and Cabtivator™.

Peter Fayette the President and CEO of the San Diego-based Televator Corporation stated the problem this way: “Think of the number of hours people spend in elevators each week . . .” I thought about it and it is astounding to consider the gigantic amounts of idle time that millions of people in the civilized world spend standing quietly staring at an elevator door with nothing to do, nothing to occupy themselves but their own thoughts. Peter Fayette’s company offers a flat-screen, internet-based visual display system for almost any elevator. The beauty of this portal of knowledge is two-fold: first, every elevator when occupied has a captive audience and Cabtivator™ will give them what they want: news, sports, entertainment and advertising; secondly, the company that installs the system will receive revenue from advertisers. By installing Cabtivator™ not only does the company provide elevator occupants with useful information, but in the process it also contributes to its own bottom-line.

The Televator Corporation in my estimation has only licked the tip of a giant Popsicle™ of opportunity. Just imagine all the time people spend in company rest rooms. The call of nature probably costs our country billions and billions each year. With new flat-screen technology Cabtivators™ could be installed above urinals and in the doors of bathroom stalls. In fact, with proper sensor devices the advertising could even cater to individual needs. For instance, the height (or length) of a man could be easily determined as he stood to urinate and advertising specific to each man might flash on the screen (i.e. penile enlargement for the insecure or XXXL condoms for more well-endowed males). Because advertisers could give corporations a commission for any products purchased by their employees they will no longer lose revenue when their workers go to the rest room.

In many areas of the country real estate is too expensive for the average employee. The solution is obvious: construct houses with Cabtivators™ on the walls and ceilings. The advertising on the kitchen Cabtivator™ would of course be different than the advertising on the Cabtivator™ in the shower. Each house occupant could fill out a detailed profile of himself or herself so that the advertising and entertainment would be appropriate. You would not want a professional wrestling fan getting the news on the latest Shuttle launch or a politician seeing anything related to ethics. No longer would people have to daydream while doing housework. Sensors could also be installed in the home so that, for instance, when spouses argue a prominent marriage counselor might appear on the screen in the room or rooms where the argument takes place. Depending on how heated the argument becomes local home repair companies might also advertise. On the other hand, when spouses are making love an advertisement for a special-priced vasectomy by their local urologist could be read on the ceiling Cabtivator™ by the spouse who prefers the bottom. Lifetime advertising in your home could significantly defray the cost of that home and contribute to a higher standard of living.

These are only a couple of ideas and I am sure that more intelligent and discriminating individuals than myself who work at the Televator Corporation could come up with even better applications than the ones I have put forth here. My only regret in seeing my first Cabtivator™ at 625 Broadway in downtown San Diego is realizing all the time I wasted riding elevators. I can only hope that downtown companies see the necessity of this ingenious product and help me restore at least a little of the knowledge that I have lost during the last 14 years riding elevators not equipped with the Cabtivator™.


The Corporate Asylum’s Captivator™ will be available for corporations in the spring of 2001. Captivators™ may be installed in corporate conference rooms, offices and hallways where specific essays from this site pertinent to the business of the day will flash on the screen. A computerized voice can also be programed to read essays out loud at the appropriate time. For instance, a Captivator™ in the CEO’s office might start blaring out the essays on ambition or giving speeches. For an additional fee Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, Jonathan Edwards’ “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” and Emerson’s complete essays will be made available. For even more money we will throw in theatrical productions of Mark Twain’s “The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg,” Melville’s “Bartleby the Scrivener,” several versions of Faust, the complete plays of Shakespeare, Dante’s The Divine Comedy (presented in real time) and “Our Corporation” a new play based on Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town.” Please write for pricing or to set up an appointment for a free demonstration.

works cited:

  • Merton, Thomas, No Man Is An Island, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Publishers, San Diego, New York, London, 1983, pg. 108.
  • Huxley, Aldous, quoted by Dr. Laurence J. Peter in Peter’s Quotations: Ideas for Our Time, Bantam Books, New York, 1980, pg. 239.
  • The Televator Corporation web site at http://www.televator.net.

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