For a modern day celebrity tomb I decided to choose Shaquille O’Neal. He deserves a burial complex because he is a well known figure who did many things throughout his life. He played basketball but in more recent times he used known for his Gold Bond and Icy Hot commercials. His commercials are cultural icons and have spawned many parodies that are still fresh in my mind even after many years. I admit that this idea is done as a bit of a joke. I simply do not keep in touch with celebrity culture at all and the people who I would want to give a massive tomb complex are medieval figures so they do not fit in with the requirements of the assignment. The ideas I have for the tomb complex of Shaquille O’Neal have many parallels with the tomb of the first emperor.
The shape of the tomb will be a basketball court because he got his fame from being a basketball player. This parallels the reports of the interior part of Shi Huangdi’s tomb being a scale model of the rivers and stars that he ruled over. His fame was from being a king of the land and Shaquille’s fame was from being a king of the basketball court. Adjoining the main basketball court structure will be a large locker room. On another side of the court will be a room for storage of all the items he promoted in his life along with sports jerseys and other goods. On the third side of the court will be where the coffins of him and his family shall be. A large stone dome will cover the structure and be covered with dirt. The dirt will make the illusion of a large hill. On top of the hill there will be a giant stone replica of his head surveying the land around his tomb.
Along with the structure shall be many items buried to accompany Shaquille in the afterlife. In the locker room will be life sized marble statues of all the people who were ever on his teams in basketball. They will serve the same function as the terracotta warriors. Instead of defending him however, they will serve as friends he can hang out with in the afterlife. The storage room will contain large quantities of Gold Bond lotion and basketballs. The Gold Bond will help his body in the afterlife be moisturized and the basketballs will ensure he can continue his passions after death. The room will also contain jerseys that he wore from all his games along with his favorite foods. Statues of his pets could also be put in here along with food for them. His car will also be put in there so he can travel in the afterlife. All these items serve the same purpose as their ancient Chinese counterparts did. They will be possessions to give wealth to the soul of the deceased and ensure that his comforts in life continue with him in death. The items being real and not mere replicas will help show the importance and wealth of the person buried. This use of real items is present in the tomb of the first emperor. Instead of the terracotta soldiers fake weapons, he gave them real ones. In conclusion, Shaquille O’Neal’s tomb will be on the same level of glory as Shi Huangdi’s tomb but it will be smaller in scale.