The results are in for this year's Johnson County 4-H science project contest, held each year at the beginning of the summer. The winner, with a unanimous thumbs-up from 4-H officials and local authorities, is 12-year-old Billy Will, whose house of cards structure will not collapse. "We've used everything but a bazooka on it," said Johnson County 4-H coordinator Dixon Deckard. "We put a high-speed fan on it, we smacked it with a switch, we even Tasered it, but it continues to stand proud."
The house of cards, built by Will with no supporting material such as glue or paperclips, is a three story edifice, modeled, Will said, "on my grandma and grandpa's farmhouse that had to be sold on account of their farm failing."
Will, the middle of three sons of Roger and Shelly Will, said he made his structure "able to withstand both my big brother and little brother. That's why it's so dang strong."
Even structural engineers and architects are unable to explain the impervious nature of Billy Will's house of cards.
"It defies known parameters of physics," observed Indianapolis architect Jen DiChara. "We simply do not know what is holding this house together."
Some suspicious parents of rival 4-H contestants have declared, off the record, that they want a full investigation, including, said one parent who declined to be identified, "a look into whether there was some pagan witchcraft involved."
Shelly Will, mother of the budding builder, said that she watched her son create his structure. "It was kind of weird how focused he got on it. We were just so happy he wasn't watching TV."
One Johnson County resident, who requested anonymity, called Will's winning entry "a tried and true example of the Intelligent Design. There's no way a 12-year-old built that. Only God could of."
Billy Will, though, isn't interested in theories of religion. Buoyed by the success of his house of cards, he is moving on to other projects such as discovering if clams are really happy.