The school bus that goes 367 mph

An Indianapolis man equips a school bus with a jet engine from a Phantom fighter jet, allowing for surefire on time arrival at school.

Sometimes when people do crazy things, you just look at them and think: "You're crazy. You should be locked up, the key thrown away, and the meals to consist of only tofu."

However, there are times when people do crazy things and have such beautiful, persuasive explanations that you can't help but be disarmed to the point of wanting to be that crazy yourself.

Such is the case with Paul Stender, an Indianapolis man who, together with his friends at Indy Boys, Inc., decided to equip a nice yellow school bus with an engine from a Phantom jet fighter so that it can get kids to school at more than 300mph over most speed limits.

While some might initially question why Stender and his friends should do something that appears so patently useless, just one look at his logic and you'll want to be driving that bus, which can screech to 367mph, without a crash helmet.

For the Telegraph quoted Stender as explaining his reason for creating a school bus that shoots 80 foot flames from its rear with these words: "I built the bus for two reasons. The first is to entertain people because, come on, it's a jet bus. The second, is to keep kids off drugs. Jets are hot, drugs are not."

Who could possibly argue with such a sweeping, soaring need to save children from themselves? Who could possibly deny Stender the chance to influence a few more young minds toward science and away from narcotic nihilism?

Stender said the whole bus was custom-built, as your normal school bus would end up in quite a messy state if you just shoved a jet engine inside and put your foot down.

Only around 5 percent of this special bus is actually original school bus. The remainder consists of handcrafted metals that might more often be seen on a 747.

Stender told the Telegraph that one of his additional reasons for creating this machine and taking it to show off at schools was to get kids away from other, more debilitating forms of technology. "There's more to life than sitting in front of computers," he said.

Stender did offer some very personal motivations for his flaming creation: "I grew up on a farm, and to tell you the truth, I always wanted to learn things myself and didn't like school much. I guess this is my revenge for all those days riding on the slow journey to school. Now it goes at my kind of pace."

What an improved, hopeful world it would be if school buses didn't get in our way on highways and those smaller roads that make passing impossible. Now if only Stender could make a jet-powered bicycle, so that those weekend bikers in their ridiculous tight advertising billboard clothing could shoot off into the distance and leave all reasonable motorists to simply enjoy the road.

 

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