Boredom, lack of self esteem, not enough money to buy Golden Virginia tobacco, off licence has run out of Rizla papers – all of the above are familiar events in the day-to-day existence of an unemployed person.
Fear not however because help is at hand.
We have committed ourselves to coming up with ways to help you get back on your feet and whilst sometimes we might write things that will make you think it’s us that need to be committed – you just might find some of our advice vaguely useful (although we very much doubt it).
Have you therefore ever considered building your own Egyptian Pyramid?
You’ll be able to claim that you own one of the seven wonders of the world if you do.
If examining the ancient structures at Giza rather than trying to be a ‘geezer’ sounds like it could be a blast, here’s what you’ll need to do to become successful:
1. Choose a suitable site
The first thing you’ll need to consider before constructing a giant burial chamber fit for a Pharaoh, is where to place the bloody thing. The Great Pyramid at Giza measures 756 by 756 feet at the base and is 481 feet tall, so you’ll need to consider whether your nan’s back yard is an appropriate venue for the monster construction project.
2. Consider the foundations as well….
The collapse of the Meidum pyramid and the odd shape of the so-called bent pyramid, alerted contemporary builders to the fact that you need good strong foundations if you’re going to build a structure weighing over 6 million tonnes that will withstand the elements for the next few thousand years. It sounds obvious now, but we’re referring to projects that were first constructed over 5000 years ago.
3. Get the orientation right
The sides of a pyramid always traditionally run parallel to the North-South and East-West axes, so if you want your pyramid to be authentic you will have to do the same. If you spent an amount of time in the cub scouts or girl guides when you were younger, you should be able to find true north using a compass but if, like most of the team here at The W1nners’ Club you struggle to decipher left from right, you’ll need to adopt the methods that the ancient Egyptians used in the days before compasses. This involves using the sun’s shadow to calculate true north and then finding the other directions using lines and right angles.
4. Mark out your pyramid construction site
If you work in the building trade this shouldn’t be too difficult, but if you’re going for a ‘method’ approach to pyramid construction you’ll need to measure your site using the traditional approach. This involves the use of ‘cubits’ as your unit of measurement which is the length from the tip of your middle finger to your elbow and ‘hands’ which is the width of an outstretched hand. This method was obviously highly effective, but we can’t help thinking that dwarves or people with gigantism may have had to do the jobs on the project that didn’t involve any measuring – for obvious reasons!
5. Level out your pyramid construction site
Again, you could do it the traditional way which involved excavating and levelling the foundation by pouring water into the excavated site and levelling all material above the waterline. Then you’d need to lower the water level and remove more material, continuing the process until the foundation was level. We suggest however that if you have access to a JCB, you should just use that instead!
6. Getting your building materials together
Obviously there was no Wickes, Jewson or Selco back in ancient Egypt (Howarth Timber on the other hand have been around for so long that we’re not sure if they played a part in supplying the Pharoahs with quality building supplies or not) so the ancient Egyptians had to acquire their materials from the surrounding landscape. Whilst getting hold of limestone, granite, basalt, gypsum (mortar) and baked mud bricks is a relative doddle these days, imagine how hard it must have been to excavate it by hand from the ground before the age of iron tools!
7. Move all your building materials
The great pyramid at Giza is reckoned to be comprised of 2 million blocks of stone weighing something in the order of 3 tons each – even by today’s standards that’s a hell of a lot of stone to move and it’s fair to say that you probably wouldn’t be able to fit it all in your boot after popping down to your local branch of Travis Perkins on a bank holiday weekend. You may therefore have to adopt the contemporary method which is speculated to be that of either dragging the giant blocks using wooden sleds and ropes or simply using wooden rollers. The ancient Egyptians also transported their stone along the Nile using barges and canals for the longer distances – worth considering if your proposed pyramid site is anywhere near a public waterway of any kind!
8. Assemble your workforce
Whilst the popular consensus is that Polish tradesmen are extremely hard working and reliable, you’d still need about 30,000 of them to construct a decent pyramid. Whilst Brexit may render the assembling of such a large workforce rather difficult, you’ll also need to arrange housing and a decent work’s canteen to feed your gang of labourers – again your nan’s house may not be sufficient!
9. Oh……and of course you’ll have to pay for it all!
It may prove difficult to find a quarry that won’t notice several million tonnes of limestone going missing so you might have to use concrete instead. By our reckoning this will set you back about £50 per square yard so a full size pyramid will come in at about £110million. Add in the cost of labour, architect’s fees and scaffolding, and we reckon your own personal pyramid will cost something in the region of about £250 million – not exactly small change if you’re unemployed!