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Phantom departs

Posted 07-22-2013 at 10:24 AM by PhantomCruiser

After a flurry of well executed phone calls, emails, notifications and exchanged bottles of alcohol, the crew of Phantom Manufacturing that was loosely attached to SRC Polygon had managed to truck or fly in several tons of white sand, miles of colored lights and paper lanterns and copious amounts of booze. Nearly everyone at the facility that wasn’t actively involved in the after-hours operation was milling about the cabanas and enjoying the ad-hoc beach party that John Kirby had arranged prior to his departure.

“Is it always this chaotic?” Maria asked as she and Nancy shouldered their way back towards their beach loungers.
“In some form or fashion it might seem that the answer is yes.” Nancy answered “Kirby is a professional administrator of chaos.” Nancy took extra care not to spill her drink as she unceremoniously plopped down onto her beach chair. “Don’t get me wrong, he’s meticulous and professional. And the boy sure knows how to throw a party, but his business acumen is miles beyond anything or anywhere most people have ever seen.”
“Sometimes he’s all serious, but then sometimes he reminds me of a little boy.” Maria intoned, perching on her own lounger.
“Well, he’s not bipolar if that’s what you’re thinking. But in some ways some people might think so. He’ll get really energetic on one project or another, and focus all his attention on it.” Nancy paused to sip her Mai Tai, “When he’s either finished, or far enough along that he can pass the work over to one of the minions; it’s party time.” Nancy’s though process was interrupted by a general hubbub over by an elevated platform being used as a stage.

Kirby’s image was projected onto a large overhead screen to the reception of some polite cheers and applause. He preceded with some obligatory thanks the administrator of the facility for the opportunity to throw such an unusual party, but his thanks were overwhelmed by the cheers, whistles and catcalls as Cleveland Davis took the stage pushing a karaoke machine. For, while more than a few people knew Kirby, nearly everyone knew Cleveland.

Kirby wrapped up his thank-you speech as Cleveland hooked the machine into the projector, and before long took the microphone from Kirby and flashed his Hollywood smile to the crowd. As a reggae beat started emanating from the machine, someone from the crowd handed Kirby an electric keyboard, and Cleveland donned his wayfarers. “I know what you be thinkin’”, Cleveland sang into the mike “And, yes. I am that talented.”

“Whooo Hoooo! That’s my man!” Nancy yelled as Cleveland started the first verse of Mary Ann.
“I think I see what you mean, about the party that is.” smiled Maria, as she started bobbing in time with the music.
The two women continued small talk with the occasional wolf-whistle from Nancy. “Hey, you must be having a positive influence on Kirby” Nancy pointed out Cleveland and Kirby exchanging the microphone. Kirby for his part smiled as he took the mike, held up a highball toward the crowd and began belting out a more than credible rendition of Last Mango in Paris. “That’s something I’ve not seen him do in years.” Nancy smiled at the thought of her friend and employer not only initiating the fun, but participating in it.

Kirby finished his song and he and Cleveland surrendered the stage to the next group in line for the karaoke machine. The pair made their way over to the ladies, with Cleveland grinning broadly at their applause while Kirby smiled sheepishly. “That’s my man!” smiled Nancy again as she held her arms open wide. Cleveland wasted no time swooping in for a kiss and hug at the risk of rolling the lounger over on its side.

Kirby for his part sat down next to Maria in a much more sedate manner. “I really hate to break off from the party, but I do have to leave out pretty early.” He said, more to Maria than to Nancy and Cleveland. “I figure I need to head back to the dorm and finish packing my stuff.”
“Ha! So you think.” Nancy chided. “I’ll have you know that the only thing not packed already is what you’ve got on now and what you’ll need in the morning.”
Maria poked Kirby in the ribs “Yeah silly boy, your bags are over at my place”, she stood and smiled coyly “Nancy and I took care of everything. So there’s no reason to not stay up all night.”
“So where am I going to sleep?” Kirby asked, somewhat incredulously.
“Kirb, my brother, I love you man, but you are sometimes as clueless as a man can get” said Cleveland.
“Sleep?” asked Maria as she tugged at Kirby’s shirt collar prompting him to stand up. “There’s no sleeping” she said as she led him off into the crowd.
Cleveland flopped unceremoniously onto the now vacant lounger and grinned at his wife “I take it you approve then?” he asked, peeking over his sunglasses.
“She’s a very sweet girl” Nancy replied, nonchalantly sipping her drink, “Even for a fighter jockey.”

* * * * * * * * * *

It was a very blurry eyed John Kirby that boarded the commuter flight to Singapore the next morning. As he surrendered his carry-on bag to the cabin steward he all but collapsed into the seat, mumbling his thanks as the steward offer him a pillow and blanket for the short flight. As he drifted off to sleep without even reclining the chair his last thought was, this really is a nice looking airplane.
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  1. Old Comment
    PhantomCruiser's Avatar
    I do hope no one is put off by the inuendo, it certainly was not my intention to carry the story off in this manner, but after a time the characters seem to do whatever they want.

    "Mary Ann" is a reggae tune I heard last time I was in the Bahamas. I though it was a catchy tune and it jumps in and out of my head at random intervals. I've scoured the internet to find a copy with no luck.
    "Last Mango in Paris" is an old Jimmy Buffett tune from the 80's and one of my many favorites, I've got multiple versions of it...
    Posted 07-22-2013 at 10:35 AM by PhantomCruiser PhantomCruiser is offline
  2. Old Comment
    ky's Avatar
    Who originally sang Mary Ann?
    Posted 07-22-2013 at 04:26 PM by ky ky is offline
  3. Old Comment
    PhantomCruiser's Avatar
    I've no idea... I've found an instrumental version with steel drums on one of those compilation "Caribbean Sounds" type CDs, but the band I heard in Lucaya did it much, much better.
    Posted 07-22-2013 at 06:25 PM by PhantomCruiser PhantomCruiser is offline
  4. Old Comment
    Posted 07-26-2013 at 06:19 PM by n122vu n122vu is offline
  5. Old Comment
    PhantomCruiser's Avatar

    Thanks a million dude. I was spelling it Mary Ann rather than Marianne. I've just found a really good cover by the Tiki Bar All Stars. Good stuff, I think it's time for me to plan another Islands Vacation!
    Posted 07-26-2013 at 09:23 PM by PhantomCruiser PhantomCruiser is offline
    Updated 07-26-2013 at 09:33 PM by PhantomCruiser
  6. Old Comment
    n122vu's Avatar
    You bet, glad to help.

    The wiki article seems to point to Mary Ann being the original spelling, with later artists changing it down the road, I guess to make it more American maybe? Who knows.

    Either way, glad I was able to find it.
    Posted 07-26-2013 at 11:14 PM by n122vu n122vu is offline

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