Today the Golden Gate Bridge celebrates 75 years as beacon of engineering precision, aesthetics, and yes, suicide. On average, one person jumps to their death from the bridge every two weeks, "more than 1,500 to date," reports The Telegraph, with only one in 50 jumpers surviving the "four-second plunge." The remarkable yet painful to watch 2006 documentary The Bridge (which we strongly recommend) basically consists one year's filming of the Golden Gate Bridge in 2004, showing (in graphic detail) a number of suicides captured on film. While many have argued for suicide barriers, they have yet to be installed.
On a lighter note, the Golden Gate Bridge is a marvel to behold. However did they pick orange as the bridge's signature color, you ask? According to Reuters, it started out as a primer for an ghastly color scheme.
"Even the bridge's arresting dark orange color was an accident, first used as a primer while designers decided what to paint it. The Navy had argued for black with yellow stripes, to ensure it could be seen in a strait hostile to mariners, with dense fog, heavy winds and strong ocean swells. In the end, bridge authorities decided they liked the color - known as International Orange - and stuck with it."
As for revelry, an estimated tens of thousands will celebrate the Golden Gate Bridge 75th anniversary today, featuring festivities taking place in several locations near the bridge, including live music and entertainment, an art exhibition, a sustainability demo, and a vintage boat display. The event will climax in a massive fireworks that will highlight the bridge. (The bridge will be closed from 9 to 10 p.m. for the show.)