A Thousand and One Nights (a novel)
Chapter One: Rodgers and Hammerstein -
It started on a cruise ship, where nothing was exactly real. The brass railings of the lobby staircase were molded industrial plastic, liberally coated with copper-colored paint. The ship’s largest funnel, visible from up to ten nautical miles, bore the company insignia in gleaming white and blue; it led nowhere, funneled nothing. The pool, deemed “refreshing” in the travel agent brochure, was waist-deep, heavily chlorinated, and too cold even for children. In a pinch, plastic ice sculptures were used for the Midnight Buffet. Stored in freezers and splashed with ice water to simulate melting drips, the statuettes (dolphin, starfish, palm tree) were appropriately cold to the touch. The slot machines were fixed to a timer, the bingo numbers were decided well in advance of the daily call. The rum punch was 80 percent Kool-Aid. And the surly pop duo in the Tally-Ho Lounge played to synthesized backing tracks.
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Last updated: Feb 15, 2017