CHICAGO—Inspecting a lengthy fissure cutting across two lanes of U.S. Route 34, Federal Highway Administration head Gregory G. Nadeau told reporters Wednesday that while the nation’s infrastructure is in desperate need of repair, there was “a certain kind of beauty in decay.” “Yes, it’s easy to lament the wretched state of our country’s crumbling roads, but let us not forget that it also allows us to appreciate the cycle of life as nature takes its course, for it reminds us that time—not man—is truly in control,” said Nadeau, further musing that when seen in a different light, the pockmarked asphalt, rusted metal, and dilapidated concrete were almost picturesque in their unchecked deterioration, a poignant reminder of the fragility of even the grandest municipal visions. “Indeed, let us celebrate the splendor of something entirely new—this network of cracks here, that vast pothole there—being created from what was once an intact stretch of highway. The natural order gives birth to its own wonders.” Members of the press were then instructed to close their eyes and take in the gentle patter of tires rolling over uneven pavement, after which Nadeau reportedly dashed into his car and sped away.