Welcome to Fiction Friday, the once-a-week time for us all to have a bit of fun at the end of the working week. Note: The story below is completely fictional. Any resemblance to real people, events or issues is purely coincidental.
GLADSTONE is set to become home to the world's toughest triathlon, in an event designed to show off the city's unique features and test the mettle of fitness fanatics everywhere.
"This triathlon will make Tough Mudder look like a leisurely stroll in the park," event organizer Max Runalot told The Observer.
"We decided Gladstone would be the ideal location for such an event, given its industrial nature and the huge amount of people with nothing else to do except go to the gym."
The 2014 Bridge to Boondocks Quagmire Pro, to be held in March, will begin with a swim out to the middle of Gladstone harbour, dodging some of the hundreds of boats that take to the waterway every day.
Harbour activity will continue as normal, with swimmers expected to keep a keen eye out for any coal ships or leisure craft bearing down on them.
"We've heard the harbour is in pristine condition and there are no problems whatsoever," Mr Runalot said, "so we're not expecting to need detox showers for swimmers at the end of that leg.
"Nevertheless, bonus points will be given to anyone returning to shore with a two-headed fish or mutant cane toad."
The cycle leg will take in the notorious Kin Kora roundabout, with riders expected to do three laps of the roundabout while indicating properly and using the correct lanes. No traffic control measures will be in place.
Riders also will head out along Gladstone-Benaraby towards the QAL red mud dam.
"We've been told drivers in Gladstone are skilled and courteous, especially the truck drivers, so the riders shouldn't have any troubles," Mr Runalot said.
"And even if they do, dodging massive trucks and crater-like potholes is all part of the fun."
The turnaround point at the red mud dam will include a hastily constructed swinging bridge across the dam, which riders can carry their bikes across.
"Anyone who falls in will have to wait for the rescue chopper, so we imagine people will be treading carefully," Mr Runalot said.
"However, there will be bonus points for anyone who falls in and manages to swim to the edge of the dam before continuing on.
"Red is such a pretty colour."
The run leg of the triathlon will take in picturesque Barney Point, the Wiggins Island coal terminal ("We love all the colours of Gladstone, even black," Mr Runalot said) and the Gladstone Ports Corporation headquarters, where runners will be expected to salute the much-loved organisation.
The event will finish in the CBD, with an after-party at the Reef Hotel.
"We're told nothing ever happens in the CBD, so we thought it would be the ideal spot to finish, seeing as there'll be plenty of room for the finish line," Mr Runalot said.
"And The Reef seems to be the place to be, where all the best people in Gladstone go, so it'll be party time…once everyone has washed all the chemicals off their skin."
Mr Runalot said his only regret with having the event in Gladstone was that the women wouldn't be able to show off their brand new Lorna Jane gear.
"It'd get a bit ruined," he lamented.