“If Given Enough Time” Conclusion Flashback Scene
The Day of The Rams Tailgate Party, Sarina the Event MC was looking for a few extra Stars to interview at the Tailgate Extravaganza and went to Hollywood to recruit the Biggest names in the Entire Nation to add more Hype to the Tailgate, as if more was needed.
Sarina went first to the house of the biggest Movie Star in the World. It was a very pretentious house with tall pillars in front, and it stood on tucked away in the Hollywood Hills. It seemed likely that the Movie Star might be chosen to go with Sarina to the Rams Stadium for the Tailgate.
The Movie Star was dressed in clothes from Sunset Boulevard, and looked like a Billion Bucks and sure to delight the Masses of Rams Fans at the Big Event.
"Are you ready to entertain the crowd at the Rams Tailgate Kickoff as everyone would like you to?" asked Sarina.
"Oh, yes!" said the Movie Star. "I have stories about my latest film and interactions with the biggest names in Hollywood. Will you take me?"
But Sarina was not convinced, for the Movie Star was not ready.
Then Sarina went on until she came to the house of the Biggest Pop Movie Star in the land. The singer was quite sure they would be chosen to go with Sarina to the Tailgate. Grammys adorned the home, and the Pop Star told Sarina a great musical performance would headline the event.
"Are you ready to perform at the Tailgate as the Rams Fans would like you to?" asked Sarina.
"Oh, yes!" said the Music Star . "I have been practicing the latest rendition of my Billboard Topping Hit. Will you take me?"
But Sarina went on again and came to the house of California’s Surfing Champion. The Star stood at the door, dressed in the wetsuit that had won the Championship, and holding the Prized Surfboard his arm.
The Surfer was quite sure they could provide the best stories and would be chosen to go to the Tailgate, for everyone loves a Surfer.
"Are you ready to go to the Tailgate as the Rams Fans would like you to?" Sarina asked of the Surfer.
"Oh, yes!" the Surfer said. "I have stories and stories about how I conquered the Pacific Ocean Waves. Will you take me?"
But Sarina said no a third time, for the Surfer was not ready.
Sarina did not know which direction to go in after the interviews with the Stars, and she began to think she would not be able to find any Star to interview at the Big Rams Tailgate Party.
As she tuned onto the Freeway to head to the Rams Stadium, she noticed a solitary figure walking down the side of the busy road coming toward her.
Soldier Sam was walking slowly with his head staring down at the Pavement.
Sarina looked at Soldier Sam. He looked like the Saddest resident of the entire LA Metro Area as his feet shuffled back and forth, making slow progress.
Sarina considered that no one in the Rams crowd would care about Soldier Sam and noticed his Walmart outfit and the holes in his shoes.
Sarina stopped her car and spoke to Soldier Sam.
"Would you like to go with me to the Big Rams Football Tailgate Extravaganza?” asked Sarina.
Soldier Sam looked up at Sarina’s face in surprise.
"No, I don’t know what a FootbalI Tailgate Party is, and I am not even ready for tommorrow” Soldier Sam replied.
“Jump in the car with me and I will bring you to the Rams Tailgate Party, Soldier Sam” Sarina encouraged him. “You are clearly in no shape to be interviewed, but there is a Great Need for someone to collect all the Trash and Recyclables.
“I’ll tell you everything you need to know about the Event” Sarina offered.
“Tailgating is literally Football Fans drinking beer and cooking BBQs from the back of cars in parking lots of sports stadiums before the game. They arrive hours in advance to make the most of the day.
“Tell Me More, Sarina!!” Soldier Sam Exclaimed.
The crowd is mostly sports fans, continued Sarina, “but the food, beer and fun attracts all sorts. We basically describe it as “a collection of many, many small parties happening in the one place at the same time,” began Sarina.
Believe Me, Soldier Sam, you won’t find the Rams Tailgating Information listed in any ‘top X things to do in USA’ articles on Google or Trip Advisor. Trust me. . That’s a good thing. It means you’ve found something real – an LA experience that hasn’t been tainted by the Modern World.”
Side note: it also means it’s not for the faint of heart types – It’s all about sports, beer, food, cultural experiences and good times, read on!
“We’re Here at Rams Stadium, Soldier Sam!” Sarina’s voice sounded like a beautiful anthem to Soldier Sam. No one had spoken to him in years.
“Throw on your power lights, Soldier Sam! We’re going to make our way through the crowd to the Grandstand, where I will be MC. Everyone will See You Soldier Sam!”
Get Ready! We’re going through!” The pounding of Soldier Sam’s Heat was increasing.
Soldier Sam was overwhelmed by the Crowd. He stared at the Massive Group of Fans, walked over and picked up Trash and Recycling Bags.
“Switch My Mission On, Sarina!, responded Soldier Sam “Full strength Ahead!
Soldier Sam wrapped up in his arms as many Trash and Recycling Bags as would be humanly possible.
“We’ll get through this, Soldier Sam.” Sarina assured him. “Together We will be Unstoppable!”.
“Not so fast! We’re moving too fast!” said Solider Sam asked “What are we moving so fast for?”
“The sooner we get the Grandstand, the sooner the Fun will start, Soldier Sam” explained Sarina.
“Hmm?” said Soldier Sam. He looked at Sarina like he had never looked at a woman in his life, He stood beside her, with shocked astonishment.
Solider Sam stopped for a moment and started to realise how important and rewarding his new position would be.
Tailgate Ambassadors tackle recycling, sustainability at football games
Tailgate Ambassadors work to educate tailgaters about the proper sorting of waste and to enhance the tailgating experience by providing tailgaters with recycling and trash bags they need.
While the football team and tailgaters prep for the big game, the Tailgate Ambassadors also are preparing to meet an important challenge.
The main goals of the Tailgate Ambassadors program are to educate tailgaters about the proper sorting of waste and to enhance the tailgating experience by providing tailgaters with recycling and trash bags they need.
Soldier Sam raced his engine a little. “Why don’t you wear your gloves, Sarina ? Have you lost your gloves?”
“I have to save my energy for the Show, Soldier Sam” Sarina replied. The Receptacles are your mission!”
Soldier Sam reached in his pockets and brought out the gloves. He put them on.
“Pick it up, man!” snapped a group of Fans to Soldier Sam as he readied his strength and lurched ahead. He started to drive through the parking lot, with full knowledge what a difficult task had been presented to him.
The Rams Tailgate was not bounded by Space or Time so there was a full gathering of Fans stretched around the Stadium on this important day.
Soldier Sam was the only one working that day so he started gaining the attention of the entire party, as he worked the crown educating them on just how important his mission was to the Future of Rams Football.
Educating tailgaters can make a huge impact on the game day experience as a whole.
The Rams decided to start with tailgating recycling initiative not because it was easy, but because we knew if we could change the culture outside of the stadium, it will carry inside.
At the heart of Tailgate Ambassadors are people who volunteer their Sundays to catalyze conversations with thousands of tailgaters about sustainability and recycling.
Tailgate Ambassadors trek through the tailgating areas around Rams Stadium equipped with supplies, giveaways and enthusiasm for engaging Rams tailgaters.
Some Rams Fans had mentioned he was “Industrious,” and assumed had got his invitation to the Tailgate Event in expectation, on the part of the Rams Team, that some portion at least of his Industrious effort would contribute to the general success of the entertainment event.
Up until that moment, Sarina had been unable to discover in what direction, if any, his Industry was directed.
Neither did his exterior suggest the sort of man that women are willing to pardon a generous measure of deficiency. He was just “The Trash Guy” to so many.
And now Soldier Sam was beginning to have launched on the world a discovery beside which the invention of gunpowder, of the printing-press, and of steam locomotion were inconsiderable trifles.
Trash Science had made huge strides in many directions in recent years, but this thing seemed to belong to the domain of miracle rather than to scientific achievement.
“All we really ask of you is to believe, Soldier Sam was saying to the Fans when he approached them with those trash bags.“that you have discovered a means for saving the world.”
“It is a problem at which I have worked for the last decade,” said Soldier Sam, ” but only during the last two years have my efforts resulted into Trash Bags of this strength. I have now been rewarded with smashing success.
Of course I have experimented with thousands of Trash Bag Materials, and when I made the acquaintance of this particular material, I saw at once that I was in contact with the future of NFL Tailgating Events. I have reached that goal.”
“We usually instruct Tailgate Ambassadors to work in teams. But today Soldier Sam’s efforts today stand alone, observed Sarina.
Soldier Sam had been equipped with both blue recycling bags and clear trash bags, and he distributed both to tailgating groups.
“A typical interaction involves the ambassadors approaching tailgaters and reminding them to put only plastic, metal and glass in the blue bags.”
Soldier Sam concluded his remarkable statement in a voice which he strove to downplay a triumphant effort. No one said he was just “The Trash Guy” anymore.
“And do you mean to say,” asked Sarina after a slight pause, “that you have taught the Fans to say and understand easy sentences about their Tailgating Waste?”
“My dear Sarina,” said Soldier Sam patiently, “one has to teach Rams Fans in that piecemeal fashion; when one has once solved the problem of making a new beginning in Trash Science, there is no other way.”
“I can now speak that language with perfect correctness.” added Soldier Sam.
So Solider Sam went in search of new Tailgating PartyGoers, and the Fans settled themselves down to the expectation of witnessing some more or less remarkable enthusiasm from Soldier Sam.
In a matter of minutes Soldier Sam picked up his pace working his way through the Parking Lot, his eyes dilated with excitement.
“By God, it’s true!” exclaimed Sarina.
Sarina’s Response was unmistakably genuine, and the Fans started forward in a thrill of awakened interest.
“What Drives You, Soldier Sam?” the Fans all started to ask.
“Although recycling at tailgates is a must, a visit from the Tailgate Ambassadors — in true Rams tailgate fashion — is a lot of fun.”
“Our goal is to promote sustainable tailgating, but we also want to enhance the overall tailgate experience. “People respond well to free things they can use, so we also distribute bottle openers and temporary tattoos to tailgaters.”
Soldier Sam had preached to absolutely incredulous hearers. His statement carried instant conviction. A chorus of startled exclamation arose from the Rams Fans gathered at the Celebration, amid which Soldier Sam started to smile enjoying the first fruit of his stupendous discovery.
“Will you take a break and have some beer, Soldier Sam?” asked Sarina .
“I don’t mind if I do,” was the response from Soldier Sam, couched in an enthusiastic tone. A shiver of suppressed excitement went through Sarina as he downed an entire 6-Pack in just a moment.
Another silence fell on the crowd, and then Sarina asked in her best district-visitor manner, if the Trash Business had been difficult to learn.
Soldier Sam looked squarely at her for a moment and then fixed his gaze serenely on her with Love. It was obvious that such questions mattered little compared to how beautiful Sarina is.
So, what do the Tailgate Ambassadors say about the large number of tailgaters expected to be serviced for the First Tailgate of the season at Rams Stadium.”
“We’re ready, bring it on!!” Soldier Sam’s demeanor had now turned completely positive.
“When your inclusion in this Tailgate Party was first suggested to the Front Office, Soldier Sam, Sarina started to explain, they protested that you were the most brainless figure of their acquaintance, and that there was a wide distinction between hospitality and my motivation to take care of a guy like that.
When I called them on that Highway Stop, the Front Office stated that your lack of brain-power was the precise quality which had earned you your invitation, as you were the only person they could think of who might be stupid enough to service the entire crowd with Trash Removal.
The moment they had said it every one realized the blunder.
“One does not usually discuss these matters in public,” said Sarina.
“From a slight observation of your ways since you’ve been in this Trash Position I should imagine you’d find it inconvenient if I were to shift the conversation on to your Love Affairs.”
“Would you like to go and see if one of the Concession Stands has got your dinner ready?” suggested Sarina hurriedly.
“Thanks,” said Soldier Sam, “but not quite so soon after my beers. I don’t want to disappoint.”
“Well, at least one thing is Certain, Soldier Sam”, Sarina realised.
“Yes, Sarina. Tailgate Ambassadors will be focusing their attention on the entire Rams Stadium Grounds with pride as long as the California Sun Shines” promised Soldier Sam.
“Judging by what you said to me on the Highway, just not too long ago, you were out for food.” Sarina said”
“I repeated your remark afterwards to the Tailgate Event Chiefs,” continued Sarina, “and said, ‘That Soldier Sam is a regular Hunger Marcher; he’d go anywhere for three square meals a day.”
“We can certainly upgrade scraps you always get at dinner-time,” promised Sarina, “and I will go see to it myself”.
“And my great discovery!” said Soldier Sam; “after all my years of research and experiment–”
“You can go and experiment your techniques with all the NFL Stadiums well into the future, Soldier Sam”. Sarina said matter-of-factly. “That much is clear!”
“I’m happy just here, Sarina” Soldier Sam replied.
“What better way to show the community, state and the nation that the Rams are committed to sustainability, not just on paper, but in action.”Soldier Sam was happy just to make it to the Rams Tailgate Event Grandstand Alive.”
Solider Sam’s promise was clear.
“Trash Ambassadors will always be out there talking with Rams Fans, enhancing their tailgate experience and promoting recycling all ‘For the Glory of Rams Football and the Entire State of California.”
The Rams Fan Guests had readied themselves steadily for Sarina’s Performance that night.
“After all your hard work today, with the Trash and everything..” Decided Sarina. “We will let you have the first word of the Evening.”
Really, Sarina?” Soldier Sam was shocked and honored as he and Sarina climbed up the stairs onto the Grandstand.
“Hey, Rams Fans,” shouted Soldier Sam..
“Let’s give a Big Shoutout to Sarina Right Now!! Let’s show how much we Love Her!!”
“And ME ESPECIALLY!!” Soldier Sam added, as the Rams Tailgate Kick Off Party Celebration started taking off into the Sky!!
To celebrate the big Rams Super Bowl, Sarina volunteers to drive the Fan Bus to Rams Stadium for the Super Bowl!
Sarina says the bus is really cool. It has all the latest innovations and an awesome spaceship dashboard. It all but drives itself, Sarina says. It’s painted Blue and Gold and it glistens in the California Sun. No one else has one like it. That's why I chose it, Sarina says.
All the Rams Fans come over to admire the new bus.. WE'RE GOING TO THE SUPER BOWL! Sarina shouts as though the fans were as hard of hearing.
Sarina shows Soldier Sam how the augmented reality on the windshield works. It's great at night too in case the freeway shuts down and the team has to take a later flight.
You can see everything a mile around you! Sarina started to quote the online manual that called up on her smartphone, this bus is a complete advanced mobile technology platform!
Stop showing off, Sarina,” Soldier Sam shouts. Just make sure we all get to Rams Stadium in one piece.
There are whirs and clicks as the seatbelts fasten themselves around them. They wave goodbye to the Fans packing the bleachers and they're off, Sarina making vroom! vroom! noises.
The freeway, more or less empty at first, starts filling up and soon they find themselves caught up in bumper-to-bumper traffic. All the lanes are jammed. There must be an accident up ahead, Sarina says. It's a nice day, says Sean, everyone's out for a drive.
The whole team feels someone bumping them impatiently in the rear. Sarina unbuckles and steps out to complain about this and her door touches the door of the muddy pickup beside them. The owner jumps out and demands money, pointing at his ride.
He is definitely not a Rams Fan!. Sarina apologises, but politely refuses, observing that no damage has been done. The guy asks again, Sarina says no, and the guy rears back and kicks a dent in the Rams bus with his steel-toed boot. We're even, he says.
Are you going to let yourself be bullied by that meathead, Sarina?”
We’re going to hit the Jack Pot at the Super Bowl if we can just get to Rams Stadium in time Sarina says. If we can just stick this out to the end.
The guy behind continues to bang into them and honk his horn. Maybe we should turn back, Sarina?”
The Fuck we are Sarina replies… “We’re going to the Super Bowl, Bitches!!
“Sarina Storms Orange Court After Cuse Win”
Amazing. Unstoppable! By all Verified Accounts of the Dramatic Events that unfolded at the Carrier Dome on Wednesday Night, a Night Sarina will never forget, almost every observer caught up in the moment would steadfastly agree Syracuse just Punched their Ticket to March Madness.
The Orange came through in the Clutch—Big Time-- knocking off yet another highly Ranked Team with even more last-second, Buzzer Beating Heroics.
Then, it happened… for the third time this season. Syracuse students, pent up in their sign-waving, orange-wearing section of the Carrier Dome the entire Game, released all their jubilant energy in a post-game court rush.
They streamed from the stands, rivers of both students and Alumns creating a current that puddled on the Carrier Dome court, where their team had just disposed of Duke on a dramatic, last-second shot.
But did He Call Glass? Evidently for Sarina, it didn’t at all matter that the Ball Banked off the Backboard. “Nice Shot, We Ballin’ Hard” she exclaimed.
Sarina somehow drifted straight to the scorer's table, her momentum carrying her toward a mob of students waiting to pile on. She remembered feeling not so free to move around, struggling to control her excitement.
Sarina remembered the elation, the disbelief. She remembers how all her emotions might collapse under the sheer weight of the absolute Pandemonium. “I just wanted to Bottle it all Up and have it Last Forever.” Sarina would later admit.
Last time, Sarina only witnessed the students mass straight onto the court from the Safety of her Living Room Couch. But this time, no. This time, she was suddenly enveloped with her fellow Orange Fans, who were enthusiastic beyond what they could then wrap their heads around.
Sarina’s initial inclination was to escape the throbbing bodies for the sanctity of the Parking Lot, where she would certainly be ahead of the traffic since everyone was causing Havoc on the Hardwood. But this time, she said, she "Totally Lost It."
"Everyone rushed the floor so fast, I didn't even realise how very quickly the floor would be Saturated with Orange. I was so Proud," Sarina said in a Later Interview, hours after the Bum Rush.
"We didn't even have consideration for our well-being cuz it was just too crazy out there. Eventually, everyone got out of the way and we were able to get out to the Parking Lot. But we were just having such Great Times with everyone, slapping hands. It was just amazing. An amazing moment."
Sarina was initially too stunned to react when the Orange Nailed a Small Prayer from Just beyond the Arc. She raised her hands in triumph, then headed straight to the scorer's table to just try to Get a Glimpse at the Replay from the official Monitor Screen.
"Honestly, it kind of took me a little bit to figure out what happened," Sarina said. "I just kind of stood there. I was literally jumping up and down in my chair. I literally could not believe ‘Cuse just so Totally Drained the Triple to knock off the Blue Devils.”
It went in and I just looked at the basket like, 'Thank you, Lord.' It felt really good obviously. Everyone stormed the court, so obviously that's great. You give out a couple high-fives, say 'let's go' and all that stuff."
Even now, Sarina couldn’t quite explain what happened or how she felt exactly at that Pivotal Moment, one that she now says she will never forget, even Years from now.
The Dome's big, boisterous atmosphere and how the crowd injected Sarina and all her Orange Friends with momentum and purpose. The game-winner was still a bit of a blur moments after it happened.
"Tonight, I just kind of froze up, it happened so quickly," Sarina said. "I just remember all my Orange Friends came and got me and I felt like the whole pile kind of pushed toward the centre of all the excitement.”
Sarina would later add, “I was just in the middle with the masses, with everybody just jumping up and down. It was all so Very Exciting. Obviously, this one is huge. This win keeps us in the mix, it keeps us where we want to be. This is the most exciting of them all."
"It felt Great. It went in for us. It always feels good to get a W, but this one was totally beyond Reality and Everything in Life I thought I understood," Sarina said later.
Sarina went on, still in Such a State Of Excitement. "I was just getting ready to go and Grab Nachos for overtime. It's one of those things. A True moment of Happiness and Joy that is unique in Time and Place, it can’t be replicated. Like True Love, It doesn't happen Again."
On Valentine’s Day it started rained Hearts at Rams Stadium. Sarina collected them and made unique valentines for some of her special friends. She opened a high tech training center with Valentine creating stations.
Sarina walked into the training center on Valentine’s Day and a bright red arrow goes whizzing by her face so Sarina dove to the ground and heard what seems like laughter.
It's Cupid! Not only is this special visitor a symbol of love real, but he wants to grab a bite to eat with you to talk about Love. What do you and Cupid talk about and what is he like in real life?
Cupid Loves to talk about how important training centers are and how rewarding the work is. This Valentine’s Day the trainees move through a variety of stations where they can put their skills to the test.
Sarina wrote an instructive memo directing trainees to create Heart Valentines, play Valentine’s Bingo or Lotto, play a game where they must pick up candy hearts with a pliers, and of course, eat some fun Valentine’s Day treats like M&Ms
Sarina is working with Rams Mascot. Sarina wants to do a special feature media spot for Valentines but she doesn’t know who to interview so Cupid shows up to help her solve that problem.
"Did I know it would turn out this way, I mean the season as far as the playoffs go and stuff?" Sarina confided to Rams Mascot early Valentines Day morning. "The squad had promise. We locked up all of our best players on huge contracts, and now look. They underperform or go to another team, or whatever. You see my point?
"I need to find someone to interview for Valentines Day," Sarina went on. "I really need to come up with some sort of media segment so I can make some kind of feature out of it. Things are slow at Rams Stadium now that the football season is over.
Rams Mascot leaned forward in his chair and said, "A new interview target will solve nothing. You're so unrealistic. Your problems run much deeper."
"And also this interview must be exclusive. I don’t want anyone to be talking to some other reporter too,” continued Sarina." "But it can't be anyone at Rams Stadium because I have been talking to them all season.”
“Sarina..” Cupid responded.
"Help me, Rams Mascot. asked Sarina. I had a dream last night. I was skipping through Rams Stadium holding a picnic basket and the basket was marked 'Interview Options.' And then I saw there was a hole in the basket..I need someone interesting to plug that."
"Sarina, the worst thing you could do is act out.” Advised Rams Mascot You must simply express your feelings here, and together we'll analyze them. You have been Working here for a long enough time to know there is no overnight cure. After all, I'm an analyst, not a magician."
"Then perhaps what I need is a magician," Sarina said, rising from her chair. And with that she prepared to leave Rams Stadium early that Valentine’s Day.
Then Sarina’s phone rang. Who could this be wondered Sarina. "Hello, this is Sarina, Rams Team Reporter"
"Sarina?" a voice said. “Sarina, this is Cupid"
"Cupid. Or should I say The Great Cupid?"
"I hear you're looking all over town for a magician to help you find the perfect interview segment for Valentines Day? Yes or no?"
"Sh-h-h," Sarina whispered. "Don't hang up. Where are you calling from,Cupid?" Cupid had snuck into Rams Stadium. He was within Striking Distance of meeting Sarina.
Sarina stepped outside her office and looked around Rams Stadium
Seconds later, Sarina was greeted by Cupid
You’re Cupid the Great?" Sarina asked.
"The Great Cupid. You want a bottle of bourbon to kick off your Valentine’s Day?"
"No, I want to interview someone I haven’t interviewed before. Someone that an interview with could turn into some great media content. I could make a great show out of it.
"But not bourbon? Cupid was surprised. “ Amazing. O.K., sit down."
Cupid has a magic time machine that transports you to any sporting event, past or future, to do a media segment with Soldier Sam, who will be available for any sports event Sarina chooses.
Sarina decides she wants to go to the very first game at Yankees Stadium in 1923, 100 years ago, so she gets in the time machine with her Yankees outfit and of course Soldier Sam is there waiting for her.
"You got it, Sarina. Give me a holla’ when you've had enough." Cupid tossed in tickets to the inaugural game in Yankees Stadium.
"You sure this is safe?" Sarina asked as Cupid began shutting the time machine doors.
"Safe. Is anything safe in this crazy world?" Cupid pressed the Action Activate button on the time machine.
Cupid was gone when Sarina opened the doors to the time machine.
She was seated at a Diner, and not just any diner. It was in the Bronx, the year 1923 within shouting distance of the new Yankees Stadium. Everyone in the Bronx at the time could hardly contain their excitement.
I can't believe this, thought Sarina, looking around. This is unbelievable. I'm here. I woke up on Valentines Morning like usual in LA and now I’m in the Bronx? 100 years ago!
At the same moment, Soldier Sam popped into the booth and introduced himself.
Soldier Sam looked at Sarina with surprise. "Goodness, you startled me," he said. "Who are you?" He spoke just about like what Sarina expected in the Bronx 100 years ago.
Realizing that it was her who Solider Sam had addressed, she said, "Excuse me. I'm Sarina, Rams Team Reporter. I-oh, boy!"
Soldier Sam smiled and said, "Would you like a drink? Some Bourbon? Maybe we could order some early brunch, perhaps?"
This Soldier Sam might be the perfect interview for my show on Valentines Day, Sarina thought. What a contrast with what she was accustomed to. She felt a sudden impulse to tell this guy she wanted to ask him some questions. Soldier Sam might be the perfect interview on Valentines Day. It appeared he was a Yankees Fan, just like her!!
"Yes, some bourbon," Sarina said, still shocked. And for Brunch, are we still going to do that? I’ll have Sunny Side Down Eggs, Buttered Toast and some pancakes. This might even be better than the IHOPs in LA!!
“Same for me” Soldier Sam told the waitress, and their order was promptly serviced. This kitchen is quick, thought Sarina.
"I’ve got tickets for the Yankees Game today," Soldier Sam announced. He was clearly excited to have someone to go to the game with.
After Brunch, Sarina and Solider Sam took a walk down the street leading to the Brand New Entrance of Yankees Stadium. Sarina’s head was spinning as she took in the scene around her.
"I've always dreamed that I could get an exclusive interview unlike any people back in 2021 could imagine. You seem like the perfect target,”Sarina told Soldier Sam.
"I Love your Style," Soldier Sam said. I mean the Yankee Jersey hasn’t changed in 100 years and it probably never will, but, I've never seen anyone like you around here. Your Hairdo, your makeup and smart pants…and your running shoes, It's so… so modern."
"These shoes are pretty standard in 2021 for LA," Sarina said. "They were marked down. 50% off Regular Price. You would have no concept of what has happened to currency due to inflation and other factors in 100 years. Didn’t that Brunch cost 2 dollars?
Sarina and Soldier Sam had just hailed a cab and sped off towards their destination, Yankee Stadium. Sarina’s heart danced on point. I am in Love, she thought. With the Bronx! Oh, what a treat, I am the possessor of a wonderful secret.
Sarina and Soldier Sam were drawing closer and closer to Yankees Stadium and they passed through traffic, to arrive right on time for the game.
Sarina couldn't hide her excitement as she passed though the turnstiles at the gate. She and Solider Sam were already hitting it off in their short time together, laughing and talking about their different backgrounds.
"My God, I'm at Yankees Stadium and about to get an on the record interview with Soldier Sam!" Sarina said to herself. "Me, who always wondered about the history of the city, growing up in the Bronx."
As the Yankees Game started, Soldier Sam was full of questions about where Sarina was before she was magically transported to the Bronx for the first game ever at Yankee Stadium.
As the Yankees Game got underway, Sarina and Soldier Sam began to discuss LA and explore the opportunities Soldier Sam would have there if they decided to go back to LA together after checking out the Bronx in 2050.
Soldier Sam began to realize that he could only truly understand Sarina’s Heart by understanding how She talks when she is in LA, finding a way of talking that warms her heart..
Soldier Sam was hardly a language guru, but he decided that not learning Sarina’s LA language sounded like a wasted opportunity.
No matter what the reason is, Soldier Sam figured that chances were pretty good that he would eventually tackle Sarina’s LA language.
“Now, Soldier Sam” Sarina responded, “You might think that learning how LA talks in 2021 is going to be a piece of cake, wouldn’t you?”
"I know, Sarina. You explained LA well. I'm convinced seeing LA in the year 2021 would be fascinating and fun. Soldier Sam decided “Of course, I'd want to have lunch with you there, anything else you would like to do, of course.
"We'll see, we'll see. I'll speak to Cupid."
As the baseball game was in full swing, Sarina called Cupid.
Then Sarina just remembered she had a meeting with Rams Mascot in less than 10 minutes. “Please excuse me I must make a call, Soldier Sam. This is called a Smart Phone. "But don't worry, it won’t take long."
“Take your time, Sarina” Soldier Sam wasn’t in any Hurry.
"O.K., Cupid! I got to talk to Rams Mascot.." Sarina got on the phone.
The phone rang a few times and suddenly Sarina was back in contact with LA, just like she had never left.
"So? Did I lie?" Cupid asked triumphantly.
"Look, Cupid, I'm right now late to meet with Rams Mascot to go over all those Stats, but I am having a great time in the Bronx” Sarina was still in amazement. “Who could have ever imagined this is what the Bronx was like 100 years ago!”
"My pleasure, Sarina.” Cupid was glad his time machine did what it was supposed to do.. Just don't mention this to anybody."
"Of course Cupid. I won’t even tell Rams Mascot that I am not in LA when I talk to him momentarily," Sarina promised.
Rams Mascot was on the phone with Sarina now, discussing the upcoming season, incredibly, as last season had wrapped up just a moment ago.
"Where've you been?" Rams Mascot snapped. You are late for our important meeting."
"I got held up in traffic," Sarina said.
Then Sarina brought up the idea of having Soldier Sam come back with her that afternoon to check out LA. Valentines Day was just getting Started!”
"Let me think about it," Cupid said. "Maybe I could work it. Stranger things have happened." Of course, neither of them could think of one.
"Where the hell have you been all the time?" Rams Mascot barked at Sarina. We’ve got work to do here. Are you trying to skirt your duties as Rams Team Reporter?
"Well, you’re acting pretty strange," Rams Mascot said. "Distant. Just don't forget about all the exit interviews you have to do with the Rams Players. The NFL doesn’t just stop on Valentines Day.
"Oh, sure, sure," Sarina said, heading for the Nachos Stand at Yankee Stadium. The Game was going beautifully and Soldier Sam was even more fun than she thought he would be.
"Right, Rams Football," Sarina said, having got Nachos for herself and Soldier Sam and heading back to their seats. Sarina was trying to shut out the sound of his Rams Mascots voice.
Sarina sat down in her seat and took a deep breath. In a few hours, she told Soldier Sam, we will be back in LA to check out the city and if there was time, Soldier Sam would be able to see what a brand new stadium is like in 2021.
“OK, Soldier Sam, Let’s have a look at some of the things that can make or break your LA learning adventure” Sarina began.
“Learning LA language I speak gives you a solid, lasting reason to stay in LA”, Sarina explained.
“As long as you’re interested in in LA in the culture that accompanies it and mystery, you’ll have a reason to keep learning the language’ Sarina continued.
“When you’re just getting started, you’ll be all pumped up about your new project, Soldier Sam” Sarina predicted.
You buy a notebook to collect new vocabulary, schedule time for your learning sessions, download tons of apps, and dictionaries on your phone.
As the weeks go by, though, you’ll start to realize that it’s not so easy to keep up. You’re busy with work, tired when you go back home.
The Yankees had won their inaugural game. What magic would the Bronx Bombers conjure up in the next 100 years? Soldier Sam could only imagine, but Sarina knew the answer to that question.
Right when the first ever game at Yankee Stadium concluded, before they even made it to the end of the aisle, Cupid worked his wizardry again. Soldier Sam and Sarina smiling and eager were ready to go back to 2021 LA.
Following Cupid’s Instructions, they held each other’s hand tightly, closed their eyes, and counted to ten. When they opened them, they were in a Taxi Speeding down the LA Expressway and just drawing up at the side door of the best taco joint in California, where Sarina had optimistically reserved a table earlier in the day.
"I Love it!” Soldier Sam said with excitement. It's everything I dreamed it would be," as he entered the Taco Stand surveying the city from their window.
"I've never been so happy!" Soldier Sam continued as he and Sarina finished up their Taco Lunch. "Let's go out on the town to see more!”
Sarina and Soldier Sam passed an exciting Valentines Day afternoon in LA. Sarina had told Rams Mascot she would be away from Rams Stadium on official Team business.
“That expedition was wonderful,’ Sarina said to Soldier Sam as they entered the cab taking them to Cupid’s Office. It was hectic, but worth it.
“LA in 2021 is such a charming contrast to what the Bronx was in 1923, even though that is a great scene too. Sarina agreed.
At Cupid’s Sarina and Soldier Sam climbed into the time machine and got hyped for the Yankees Game Double Header, but now they weren’t going back 100 years in the past, they were going to the future, the year 2050!
Cupid hit the activate transport button, but nothing happened.
"Hmm," Cupid said, scratching his head. He hit the button again, but still no magic.
"Something must be wrong," Cupid mumbled.
"Cupid, you're joking!" Sarina said with disbelief. "How can it not work?"
"Relax, relax. Are you still in the box, Soldier Sam?” asked Cupid.
"Yes, I’m still here Cupid. Is this a big problem? Sarina and I are so excited to go to another Yankees Game tonight on Valentines Day. Who could ever imagine an opportunity like this?"
Cupid pushed the button a couple of times hoping that would work. “I’m still here too Cupid” said Sarina. “Soldier Sam and I don’t want to spend Valentines Night here in LA. We want to go to a place in time neither of us have been to.”
"I'm still here, Cupid.”
"I know, Sarina. Sit tight." Instructed Cupid.
"I can't understand it," Cupid was starting to show some concern "It's such a reliable little trick."
But he could do nothing. "It's going to take a little while," Cupid said to Sarina. "I'm going to have to strip it down and check to see if the spare parts are still there. I'll call you later."
Since they had some extra time in LA, Sarina decided to take Soldier Sam to see Rams Stadium, in all of it’s glory.
"How was the conference?" Rams Mascot asked Sarina when she got back to Rams Stadium.
"Fine, fine," Sarina said, lighting the end of Soldier Sam’s cigarette passing it to him. Soldier Sam didn’t have a lighter on him and it was very windy.
"What's wrong? You're seen stressed. It’s not often that I see you smoking” asked Sarina..
"Me? Ha, that's a laugh. I'm as calm as a summer night. I'm just going to take a walk." Sarina eased out the door and met with Soldier Sam, who had stayed in the parking lot to check out how far automobiles had advanced. It was thrilling activity for Soldier Sam.
"Bear with me, Soldier Sam," Sarina said. She picked up her phone and got Cupid on the line.
A couple of hours went by like that.
Sarina told Rams Mascot she was leaving for another conference she had to catch, this one in Syracuse.
Then Sarina and Soldier Sam showed up at Cupid’s Office after having a few drinks of bourbon. They thought it would calm their nerves, but they were still stressed about their plans for Valentines Night.
"Relax," Cupid told Sarina.
"O.K., O.K. We know there's a problem." Cupid crawled under the time machine and started banging on something with a large wrench.
"So what should I do? This is the world of time travel," Cupid said. "It's all some work, even though everyone else thinks it’s magic.”
Take a walk down Hollywood Boulevard to burn some time. I promise I will get you to 2050 in time for dinner and the Yankees Game”. But Cupid was a bit unsure if he could swing it.
“OK, Cupid”, Sarina said quickly. “But Hollywood Boulevard can only hold our interest for so long.”
"What do you want me to say? Cupid asked. I’ve been working on this thing the whole time. As far as your personal interests goes, that I can't help you with. I'm a magician, not a secretary.."
The phone rang. Sarine answered and lifted it to her ear mechanically.
"Bring yourself and Soldier Sam over," Cupid said. "I think I got the bugs out of it."
Sarina’s heart leaped. "You're serious?" she said. "You got it licked?"
"It was something in the transmission. Go figure." Answered Cupid.
"Cupid you are truly a Magic Man.” Sarina was so relieved they would have dinner in the future and attend a Yankees Game after that. “We'll be there in a minute. Less than a minute."
Again Sarina and Soldier Sam hurried to Cupid’s Time Travel Station and again they climbed into the box with their tickets to see the Bronx Bombers in action—this time in 2050.
Cupid shut the doors, took a deep breath, and hit the Activate Button There was the reassuring popping noise, and when Cupid peered inside, the box was empty.
Sarina and Soldier Sam were a few decades into the future and Sarina breathed a great sigh of relief. Valentines Day night in the Bronx was going to happen!
This is going be a Great Valentines night, Soldier Sam”. Sarina promised. She still had lots of questions for the interview with Soldier Sam that she was getting more and more excited to piece together the next day.
"I can’t believe this!! “ Soldier Sam exclaimed. He was resolved to thank Cupid for the chance to experience such Greatness at Yankee Stadium that night, and was just as curious as Sarina to see what the Bronx had become in the year 2050!!
It’s was a beautiful night in the Bronx. The trains were speeding by right on schedule. Sarina would never get lost in the Bronx. While Soldier Sam was having a drink with Cupid before dinner, Sarina knew she was on a mission. A mission to get rid of a box of Spiders.
A truck full of Sarina’s friends rolled by her with pleasant greetings. When they were both at the stop light, the truck revved up and said they wanted to race Sarina to see who could get to the Bodega first.
“Oh, thanks guys. Thanks for making my night checking out the Bronx so much fun. On the way to the Bodega, speeding through the streets a squad car was tailing them. When they got to the Bodega, Sarina purchased some bourbon for the night and her motivations turned back to her mission, to ditch that box of spiders.
Get rid of it she must. Sarina did not like the business at all. She would much rather be at dinner right at the moment, but it was pretty fun just to witness what had become of the Bronx in 2050.
Then she thought of Soldier Sam. What were he and Cupid up to having drinks at the bar. Sarina figured they were just burning time until she arrived for dinner and they were all excited about the Yankees Game they would see that night.
But the mission was tough. Sarina flew by her old stomping grounds. Kids were still playing baseball on the fields under the lights just like she had done so many years ago. It warmed her heart to see that kind of activity.
Night was fast descending. Sarina had never seen it come down so fast. Soon, it would be back to the bar, back to the wild scene outside Yankees Stadium. Some things had changed in the Bronx, to be sure, but the love for the Yankees is something that will probably never change.
Approaching the water of Pelham Bay, Sarina drove up a paint-box corridor gifting its last pastel shades to the day. And reached a certain security at a bend overlooking the water.
Here there could be no complication. As she threw each Box of Spiders over the cliff it would be as far removed from her as if she were in a distant state of the Union.
Sarina had grown up in the Bronx. She had wanted very much to come to LA and be part of the Rams, part of a football team, but sometimes she missed the Bronx. Who wouldn’t? There were so many great things about calling it home.
On with the job though--she must part with her cargo--as soon as this next car passed the bend, Sarina would complete her mission of ditching that box of spiders once and for all. Sarina was not happy with spiders and it felt great to throw them into the water where they wouldn’t cause her trouble any more.
Meanwhile, Soldier Sam had arrived at the bar for a pre-game drink.
Cupid saw Soldier Sam alone at the bar and joined him by simply sliding into a chair opposite.
Cupid had some wisdom to impart to Soldier Sam. "Sometimes they just keep you under contract till until you aren’t useful any more, maybe because you can’t do what the Stars do or else someone younger than you can do what you are doing.”
"Oh no," Soldier Sam said starting to feel the stress of his job.
"Oh yes!" Cupid assured him. "I'm telling you. Why don't you go to another company and get borrowed until neither of those things are true? Have you thought of that idea?"
"I think it's a great idea,” responded Soldier Sam.
The prospect of a job did something to Soldier Sam. It countered all the struggle and filled him with an easygoing confidence. The set speeches and attitudes of success returned to him.
His manner had changed as he spoke to the bartender and stopped to chat with other patrons. He appeared just as he was engaged with momentous tasks in other parts of the globe.
By saluting Cupid with a friendly "Hello Captain!" he behaved almost as an equal, a trusted lieutenant who had never really been away.
"Soldier Sam, Sarina is… well she is " Cupid said. "It'll probably be in the papers tomorrow morning.
Soldier Sam started. "Sarina? " he said. "You mean the Sarina who will be joining be for dinner? And then we will go to the game to see the 2050 Yankees? Is that still on?" inquired Solder Sam.
“Sarina is just on a mission to get rid of a box of spiders that had been bothering her for some time. You know she doesn’t like spiders at all” explained Cupid.
"She’s clearly the best Valentines Date you ever had," said Cupid. You better treat her well, you know, put on your A Game. None of your typical nonsense.”
"I know--she's only been here in the Bronx since this morning. Well, there was the brief part of the afternoon in LA, you know, having lunch at the Taco Stand and then we had a run of hard luck when you couldn’t fix that time machine of yours. Thankfully, that all got straightened out. Thanks for that, Cupid.” Soldier Sam was indeed grateful.
"Anyhow Sarina will show up here in just a few minutes, "Cupid reassured him. "--and she was the best baseball player ever witnessed in the Bronx, Yes, ever with all those successful Yankees through the years.
Everyone at Yankee Stadium wants her to show up tonight so she can throw out the first pitch. The crowd will love it.
Once inside the restaurant where Soldier Sam and Sarina would have dinner that night, Cupid promised that will be all the time they need to check out all the pre-game hype on your smart phones. Well, if they still work—Technology had advanced a lot in 30 years. You will be lucky if the satellites still reach your ancient phones.
Why, Sarina was here in the Bronx before this restaurant even existed. When Sarina was in the Bronx all that time ago, it was just a newspaper stand next to the train stop. And look at it now!
'Sorry mister, you waiting for your dinner party to show up?”, asked the staff member stationed in the entrance to the restaurant door.
'I'm in a hurry, tonight” responded Soldier Sam. “But I think there is time to grab a quick bite to eat with my Valentines Date. And then we have to get our hands on Yankees Tickets for the big game.
Sure enough, Sarina showed up at the restaurant, her mission complete and joined Soldier Sam. They both decided they would shoot some dice outside the kitchen until their dinner meal was ready to be served.
"Between Yankees Games tonight guys?” the waitress asked. The first part to the double header earlier was an exciting contest. The Yankees really socked it to them. All the patrons were glad the Yankees won the game.”
“Actually, we were at the first game of a Yankee Stadium Double Header earlier this afternoon. But it was in 1923. The Yankees had a different line up and this restaurant wasn’t here at that time.” Sarina explained.
The waitress was a bit alarmed when Soldier Sam continued the story. .”Are you sure you guys haven’t had too much to drink today? That isn’t the typical conversation I get when I serve dinners here.”
“Well really” responded Soldier Sam, “We really did but you don’t have to worry about it. I’m sure you’ve heard crazy stories before. Everyone in the Bronx has always loved a tall tale. It makes things more interesting.”
Sarina and Soldier Sam had a wonderful dinner and their emotions were at a fever pitch as they began to think about how much fun the game would be, but were still without tickets. Maybe someone at the Bar could point them in the right direction.
As the bartender served Sarina and Soldier Sam some drinks, Sarina inquired about the potential to find Yankees tickets at this bar, or if they would have to scavenge somewhere else to get hooked up with that.
.Sure enough, the bartender had them ready in an envelope, he handed them to Sarina and said the tickets were on the house. Really, thought Soldier Sam? What a great break for him and Sarina. They wouldn’t have to pay for the Tickets. Or even have to leave the bar and go somewhere else to find what they were looking for.
'We had trouble about these, Sarina” the Bartender started to explain.
'Trouble? Why? Can't a couple of Yankees Fans get Tickets without any trouble?”. Soldier Sam protested. Why, Sarina is slated to throw out the first pitch. You mean we can’t stay for the game when it is basically Sarina’s showtime?
'It's not that” the bartender said. 'This game has been talked about so much, every seat is already spoken for.:
Unreconciled, Sarina complained, 'And they just didn't think of me? They didn’t think I would want to stay for the game after throwing out the first pitch? I can hardly believe that! We would even sit in the outfield bleacher section. We just want to see the game tonight, that’s all.'
'I'm sorry.' the Bartender hesitated. 'These are really Cupid’s tickets. He was so upset about something that he said he wouldn't go to the Game Tonight --and threw them on my desk. Something about a machine going out of order. I shouldn't be telling you this.'
'These are Cupid’s seats? Sarina was shocked
'Yes, Sarina' the bartender replied. “He can always get his hands on a tough ticket. He is always doing that Match Maker thing on Valentines Day. He can always find his way into Yankee Stadium without tickets. You know, because so many fans that night are on a date”
“What’s with all this attention” complained Soldier Sam as they walked through the crowd of packed Yankees Fans.
'They're looking at you,' Sarina explained 'They look at that Camouflage Get Up and wonder why anyone looks like that. They retired that pattern after you left the Service.
Sarina opened the envelope and handed the tickets to the Security Guy at the Turnstile.
'Hey Buddy, these aren't tickets for here.' He looked suspiciously at Sarina and Soldier Sam.
'I'm Sarina. I’m throwing out the First Pitch Tonight in Celebration of Valentines Day!
'Buddy, you're drunk, the guard looked at Sarina. These are tickets to another game. The only thing you are going to see on Valentines Day is the Mets play, who are they playing... Oh, Who Cares?'
'Go inside and ask Cupid,' Soldier Sam said. 'He'll tell you.'
'Now listen,' said the guard, 'like I said, these are tickets for a Minor League Baseball Game. Otherwise known as a New York Mets Game.' He was steadily edging Solider Sam to the side. 'You go to your Little League Baseball Game, you and your friend. And be happy.'
'You don't understand,” protested Sarina, “I’m throwing out the first pitch,. Everyone is here to see ME tonight.
'Sure. In a pipe dream.' The Guard responded.
'Look at the programme. My name's on it. I'm Sarina.'
'Can you prove it? Let's see your Passport.'
'This doesn't say Sarina,' announced the doorman. 'And this says you are from Wisconsin and not a single country in the world has been stamped. Why on earth would someone from Wisconsin be throwing out the First Pitch at a Yankees Game?
For once in her life Sarina could think of nothing to say.
Sarina and Soldier Sam were obviously gate-crashers, and the Yankees Security Officers had thwarted their effort to get in- to the Game. Little jeering jests from the crowd that had gathered were audible.
Suddenly, there was a flurry of activity at the Gate. Cupid walked toward the Yankee Stadium Security Guards until he saw Sarina and Soldier Sam..
'There you are!' Cupid shouted.
Sarina recognized Cupid.
'Go in and throw the First Pitch Sarina. You’re the Star of Valentines Day!” Cupid Announced.
Cupid threw his hands up like he ran the street and strode off into the curious crowd.
The conversation between Sarina and Soldier Sam during the Yankees Game that night moved too fast to describe in words. There would be plenty of time to recount the action when Sarina and Soldier Sam would return to 2021 LA.
“Soldier Sam, if you want to return to LA with me, you will need to test and try, to improve the way you communicate with me in LA. Learning each other’s language and the words we use to express ourselves, is going to help you with that.
Then, of course, there is the fun part: celebrating holidays that didn’t exist for you, or discovering media sources that you would have never discovered, if you didn’t meet someone in 2021 LA.
Learning LA language is going to put you to the test more than you’d think. It’s also a sign of respect for them and their life before they met you.
It’s a way to show me you care and you’re interested in my experiences, even the words we learned as kids.
It will reinforce your bond and teach you things about me that you’d never understand otherwise.
“It’s a big challenge, that’s for sure, but it’s one that is worth all of your efforts,” Sarina concluded.
After the Yankees Game, Sarina and Soldier Sam made their way to Club Cupid where the pair got locked in an argument about just how they each think Cupids Time Machine got broke when they were in LA earlier that afternoon- and most importantly could it happen again? What if another Valentines Day Activity ran into the same problems?
Sarina and Soldier Sam spent several hours at Club Cupid after the Yankees Game. None of their explanations of the time machine breaking down seemed to figure the mystery out.
Sarina and Soldier Sam agreed that it must have been a faulty motor that put the time machine out of commission. But each of them had their own ideas as to the cause that had delayed them earlier that afternoon.
Soldier Sam began to pace around. He came to the table next to the bar. “Sarina, I think the cause of the motor malfunction was probably motor overload, which causes the motor to draw more current. This, in turn, produces more heat than the motor was designed for, which reduces the life of the motor. Motor overloads usually result from improperly sizing the motor or a change in the driven load, including plugging of the system, a broken gear or frozen bearings.
On the table was a Time Machine Maintenance Manual. Would that provide the answer to the mystery? Sarina reached for it and almost knocked over their drinks. Books Marks spilled out of it and it fell to the floor with a Thud.
"But Soldier Sam," Sarina responded, "are you sure about that? I think it is more likely that the problem was vibration. That can lead to many issues with the motor, and can eventually cause the motor to fail prematurely. Vibration is often caused by the motor being positioned on an uneven or unstable surface. However, vibration can also be a result of an underlying issue with the motor, such as loose bearings, misalignment, or corrosion.
Soldier Sam gave a strange laugh. Picking up the maintenance manual, he started to page through it. There seem to be a lot of potential causes for Time Machine Motor failure. Maybe we will never know.
With the conversation about LA having been had, Sarina and Soldier Sam started to focus on what kind of experience simple things like having a drink together at Club Cupid would be like. And sure enough, they found out.
The back and forth between Sarina and Solider Sam at Club Cupid following the Yankees Win was a shouting match any great couple would be proud of.
When Sarina reappeared with fresh drinks, Soldier Sam, standing there with the maintenance manual became acutely conscious of how important the task ahead of them would be.
Cigarettes in his pocket, a drink prepared for him--it was all too impossible a mystery for he and Sarina to figure out.. Somewhere in the back of his brain an idea stirred.
Soldier Sam began to explain his new idea. “Sarina, Motor Winding failures are some of the most common electric motor repair causes. Stressful mechanical, environmental, and electrical operating conditions can all cause electric motor failure. Electrical failures are winding failures caused by an open contactor, bad connection, blown fuse, excessive heat, electrical overload, or broken power lines.”
The Valentines Day activity began to take shape, strange and wonderful. Sarina put the glasses on the bar in front of them and took a seat.
"Come over here, Soldier Sam," Sarina said so Soldier Sam went over and sat beside her. It was difficult getting a cigarette out of the pack, but he managed it. Sarina held a match for him, laughing. "
“Well," Sarina said, handing him his drink, "this is some perfectly marvellous mystery. You with a drink and a cigarette."
Soldier Sam took a puff and sampled the Bourbon. "I drink and smoke all the time," he said. He clinked his glass against hers. "Here's nuts to Cupid” he said, and started downing the Bourbon drink in earnest. The stuff was strong, but he made no grimace.
"Really, Solider Sam," Sarina said, her voice and posture changing, "you are insulting our Matchmaker." Sarina was now all special adviser to Cupid "
“You aren’t the only one here tonight with an opinion on Time Machine Motor Function. I’m starting to suspect the time machine motor got overheated, and that caused a number of performance issues. Overheating may occur when an electric motor is forced to operate in a high-temperature environment and the rate at which heat can be conducted to reduce at a significant rate. A proper cooling and ventilation system must be in areas where the motors are operated to act as a backup if the cooling system stops working.
Sarina looked at Soldier Sam in shock. He had only had a little of the drink,. That couldn’t have been too difficult of an explanation for him to get”.
"Did you down a whole bottle of bourbon while I was at the bar something?" Sarina asked.
“I’m a Mechanic Virtuoso” said Soldier Sam. "I’m always right.. about everything!."
"Soldier Sam!" Sarina shouted, getting to her feet. "That will be all of that. You must go at once and play some R&B Classics on the Juke Box. Maybe we will never know what caused that time machine to fail"
Soldier Sam took another stab at his drink. He tapped his cigarette out in the ashtray and put the pack in his pocket. Then he got up. Sarina stood glaring at him. He walked over and loaded up the Juke Box.
Then Cupid entered the bar.. "I'm here to talk about time machine mechanical failure with you two.”
Soldier Sam returned to the table. “Cupid, Sarina and I have been having a high-level discussion of the reasons why your time machine failed earlier this afternoon.
"Ah, Yes," said Cupid. He was silent for a moment, searching for the proper words to say.. "Soldier Sam" he said finally, "Sarina has worked hard on this motor problem, Soldier Sam, very hard”
“Yes she has” responded Soldier Sam. “But we still don’t know why the time machine motor went out of commission.. that’s your problem really, I mean with you promising the Valentines Day Time Travel and everything so…”
Cupid raised his hand to silence Soldier Sam’s outburst "It is the nature of these time machine failures to be complex," Cupid said.
“These matters are not for the simple amateurs like you to grasp, Soldier Sam. I've just had the best mechanic in the world on the phone.
“He would not, of course, commit himself, but he made enough generalizations to substantiate my suspicions that you are both wrong.” Cupid said.
“The cause of the time machine motor breakdown wasn’t getting over heated, or due to motor winding errors as you suggest. Sarina is also mistaken with her proposal that the problem was a result of vibration.” Cupid explained.
“It was…” Cupid paused. “It was just Dirt!”
“But Cupid” Sarina protested. “How could something as simple as Dirt impact travel in space and time?
“Well, Sarina and Soldier Sam” Cupid continued “Contamination from dust, dirt and chemicals is one of the leading causes of motor failure. Foreign Object Debris that find their way inside the motor can dent bearing raceways and balls, leading to high levels of vibration, like you suggested Sarina.”
But the real cause of the Time Machine failure was Dirt that blocked the cooling fan, limiting the motor’s ability to regulate its temperature, and increasing the likelihood of overheating as Soldier Sam proposed, but he never in a million years would have figured out that the problem was as simple as Dirt.
So you were both on the right track, but as always, I am the final authority because.. well, because I am Cupid, and you two are just a pair of Simple Valentines.”
“You may not know, Soldier Sam, but Sarina had proposed a reorganization of our entire Time Machine Directorate--subject to my approval, of course, subject to my approval.” Cupid repeated for emphasis. “This brought you, rather than anyone else, to her attention--but again that is for me to decide, not you. Cupid explained.
You drank and smoked all day," Sarina started shouting at Soldier Sam, "and you know it! You called Cupid a fool and said you were going to sock it to him”
Sarina stopped yelling to catch her breath and a new glint came into her eyes. "If you weren't such an ordinary, simple man," she said, "I'd think you'd planned it all, Soldier Sam!”
Saying you had the Time Machine Trouble all figured out-- because you thought Cupid wouldn’t show up to correct you and put you in your place! My God, it's really too perfect!"
Sarina looked at Cupid. "Can't you see how he has tricked us? Can't you see his little game?"
"I regret that this happened with the Time Machine earlier this afternoon" said Cupid. "I’m asking you both to dismiss it from your discourse. The time machine is working again and it’s about time you two got in it again so we can end this Valentines Day the right way!!:
"Yes, Sir," said Soldier Sam, anticipating his chief's "That will be all". We won’t give it another thought, we are ready to finish our Valentines Day off in LA, where we both can be the best we can be.
“Get in the time machine and be off to LA 2021, Soldier Sam and Sarina”, instructed Cupid. I’ll meet up with you guys on Valentines Day Next Year. I still have some business to do in 3000 tonight.
“Sarina Gets Soldier Sam Tickets!”
A Valentine's Day Short Story
It was Valentine’s Week in the Rams Stadium Studio. By Monday morning, Cupid had his Target all scoped out after scanning the huge population of Rams Staff considering what Love really Is.
There were Valentine’s gifts from producers to stars, and from agents to producers, all of them arriving at offices and studio locations: On every stage the workers heard of the gifts of players to directors or directors to players; champagne had gone out from publicity office to the press.
And loads of Rams Tickets for all the workers friends and family, dozens from producers, directors and writers fell like hearts during a Rose Storm.
In this sort of transaction there were exceptions. Sarina, for example, who knew the game from much experience covering the wide world of sports, had the idea of getting a new business partner. The Rams Brass were sending over a new one any minute--but Sarina would scarcely expect a present the first day.
Waiting for her new partner, Sarina walked the corridor, glancing into open offices for signs of life. She stopped to chat with the Rams Mascot.
'Not like the old days,' Sarina complained, 'Then there was a bottle on every desk.'
'There're a few around., replied the Rams Mascot.
'Not many.' Sarina was disappointed . 'And afterwards we'd run a tape of the football game--made up out of all the camera shot angles.'
'I've heard. All the best scoring plays stuff,' said the Rams Mascot.
Sarina nodded, her eyes glistening. “Oh, it was juicy. You damn near ripped your guts with excitement--'
Sarina broke off as the sight of Solider Sam, Smart Phone in hand, entering the studio recalled her to the reality of time present.
'Cupid has me working over the holiday,' Sarina complained bitterly.
'I wouldn't do it.' said the Rams Mascot.
'I wouldn't either except my contract is up after Valentines Day, and if I bucked Cupid he wouldn't extend me.'
As Sarina turned away the Rams Mascot she knew there was a lot of work ahead of her at the Rams Studio. Sarina’s assignment was to script a Recap of the Rams run through the Playoffs the year they played in the Super Bowl and the staff who were 'writing behind her'--that is working over her stuff--said that some of it didn't make sense.
'I'm Soldier Sam,' said Sarina’s new business partner.
Solider Sam looked excited, tired, efficient all at the same time. He went to the typewriter, examined it, sat down and took a flask of Bourbon from his pocket.
Sarina’s sensibilities kicked in. Self-control was the rule around here. Wasn't it bad enough to be working during Valentines Day Week? Well--less bad than being broke not working at all.
Sarina walked over and shut the door--someone might suspect her of ordering Soldier Sam around before even an hour had passed.
'Cheer up,' Sarina advised Soldier Sam. 'This is Valentine‘s Week.'
Soldier Sam’s burst of Bourbon Shots had subsided. He sat upright now, but clearly in no position to be productive.
'Nothing's as bad as it seems,' Sarina assured Solider Sam unconvincingly. 'What's it, anyhow? Are they going to give you the business if you don’t shape up?”
Solider Sam took one more drink and opened his note book.
'Who you been working for?' asked Sarina.
“Cupid” Soldier Sam answered.
Sarina widened her eyes. Now she remembered she had seen Solider Sam in Cupid’s office.
“I’ve worked for the Rams and Cupid for quite some time and yesterday he sent me back to Human Resources Department for reassignment.. He said I was always coming into work and putting a bottle of Bourbon under my desk. Which is True.
'I should have done some work there when I had the chance.' admitted Soldier Sam.
Sarina felt righteous stirrings. “Breach of Substance Abuse Policy in Cupid‘s Office? That's not grounds for reassignment!”
'But I had something to clinch it. Something bigger. I still have too. Soldier Sam started to explain.
But then, you see, I thought I was the best employee he had' Soldier Sam paused for a moment. 'Do you want to dictate something now?'
Sarina remembered her job responsibility and opened a script recapping some of the Rams Action.
'It's an insert,' Sairna began, 'The game we played in London'
Sarina paced the Studio.
“A quick rundown of touchdowns, starting from the Pick 6 that I predicted before the game even started,' Sarina decreed. “The whole defense doing a dance in the end zone.”
“The whole team dancing in the end zone even though they were on the opposite side of the field when the cornerback crossed the goal line?' Soldier Sam asked.
Soldier Sam‘s disapproval was evident. “It never used to be that way. Now, I have actually seen NFL players celebrate in the end zone after interceptions that weren’t even returned for touchdowns.”
'Takin it to the House!!.' Sarina looked at Solider Sam reproachfully, “that will be the Headline, not a bad attitude like you just displayed.”
Solider Sam looked up, startled. You want me to write that down?'
'Sure.' said Sarina.
“You wouldn’t be controversial even if you wanted to.” Solider Sam challenged her.”
'I'm writing this“ replied Sarina “Of course, it wouldn’t get by the editors But if I put your description of the play on a group message outside our studio, now that might ruffle some feathers.”
Sarina glared at him--She didn't want to change partners every week. Especially during Valentines Celebrations.
“Cupid can worry about that.' Sarina figured.
'Are you working for Cupid?' Solider Sam asked in alarm.
'I shouldn't have said that. You deserve better--'“ Soldier Sam tried to apologise for disrespecting the Players, even though someone needed to criticise them.
'Don't worry,' Sairna assured Soldier Sam. 'He's no favorite of mine anymore. Not that I don‘t even get many Game Tickets to hand out as I used to. But I‘ll look out for you with Season Tickets at the 50 yard line, if now we are going to be working together.
“Now. . . Where was I?' Sarina tried to regain her footing.
Sarina paced the floor again, repeating her last line aloud with relish. But now it seemed to apply not just to the game, but Cupid too.
Suddenly Sarina stood still, lost in thought. 'Say, what is it you got on Cupid? You know where his Arrows are hidden?'
'That's too true to be funny.' Soldier Sam warned.
'He knock somebody off due to their disinterests in being Completely in Love?'
“Miss Sarina I'm sorry I ever opened my mouth.' Solider Sam was in disaster control mode.
'Just call me Sarina “What's your first name?' she asked.
“Sam” he replied.
“Are you in Love, Soldier Sam?” Sarina was curious.
'Not now.' Soldier Sam was just waiting for Cupid to Strike him with an Arrow. Then he was planning on stuffing dozens of Roses in an Orange Bucket.
'Well, listen Soldier Sam: What do you say we go and grab some dinner?' asked Sarina. “There’s a Burger King right on the other side of the Rams Stadium Parking Lot.”
“Rams Mascot Puts in Official Two Cents Endorsement!”
A Valentine’s Day Short Story
Sarina could always get into Rams Stadium. She had been working there for a couple of seasons now--and most of the national guard troops patrolling the gates knew her. If Sarina ran into any tough customers on watch asking to see her Valentines Pass studio card she could get in by paging the Rams Mascot.
Sarina wanted to be in Love on Valentines day. She was Hotter than Fuego but had never really been interested in Valentines Day much, not even really celebrate the other holidays that dotted the calendar because they made her head spin.
'I've got a heart second to none,' Sarina told Cupid. 'All I need is to experience a Valentines Day scenario and to work with somebody who isn't all like all the Football players.
Sarina had cornered Cupid outside the production office as Cupid was going to lunch and they walked together in the direction of Burger King.
'You bring me an Valentines Day scenario,' said Cupid. 'Things are tight. We can't just spend a Love Arrow unless she’s got a viable Valentines Day scenario where she could fall In Love'
'How can you fall in Love without a Cupids Arrow?' Sarina demanded--then she added hastily: 'Anyhow I got the beginning of a Valentines Day scenario that I could be telling you all about at lunch.'
'I’m already having lunch with the Rams Mascot, Sarina. Write it out and see if anyone thinks you Valentines Day scenario is viable.
Cupid felt bad because he knew Sarina couldn't write anything out but he was having Arrow Target trouble himself. The war had just broken out and every potential target in LA wanted to end Valentines Day with the hero going to war. And Cupid felt he had thought of that first for his production.
'So write it out, Sarina!” Cupid suggested.
When Sarina didn't answer, Cupid looked at her- he could see it in her eyes how much Sarina wanted to have a Great Valentines Day.
'Scout around and talk to some of the troops on the lot,' Cupid said. 'If you can get one of them that thinks your Valentines Day Scenario is a good one, have them call me'
'I don’t want to Tell you my Dream Valentines Day scenario without one of Cupids Arrows on the line,' Sarina admitted.
They had reached the Burger King door.
'Good luck, Sarina. Anyhow, we're not in the Bronx.'
--Good Luck for you You’re not in the Bronx Sarina said under her breath.
Now what to do? Sarina went up to Studio Row and wandered along the cell block of writers. Almost everyone had gone to lunch and those who were in Sarina didn't know. Always there were more and more unfamiliar faces. And she had so much Rams work experience from all her player interviews.
The last door in the line belonged to a woman Sarina didn't like. But she wanted a place to sit a minute so with a knock she pushed it open. The woman wasn't there--only Soldier Sam who was seated reading a book.
'I think she doesn’t work from the Rams any more, he said in answer to Sarina’s question. 'They gave me her office but they forgot to put up my name.'
'You a Solider?' Sarina asked in surprise.
“I like to think I contribute to the National Defense Strategy in one Shape or Form” answered Soldier Sam.
'You ought to get 'em to give you some action, like Heroes are recognised for at the Rams Games.' Sarina wanted Soldier Sam to like her Instantly.
'No--I like writing.' replied Solider Sam.
'What's that you're reading?' Sarina inquired.
Solider Sam showed Sarina his Red, Heart Shaped Book.
'Let me give you a tip,' Sarina said. 'That's not the way to get the guts out of a book.'
'Oh.' Soldier Sam seemed distracted.
'I've been here at Rams Stadium for some time now-- I’m Sarina and I know what flies in the Media World. Give the book to a dozen troops hanging around at the Rams Stadium Gate to read it. Get them to tell you what stuck with them. Write it down and you've got a picture--see?'
Soldier Sam smiled.
'Well, that's very--very original advice, Sarina.”:
Sarina wanted to ask.. 'Can I wait here a minute? The Rams Mascot is at lunch.'
Soldier Sam sat down across from Sarina and picked up a limited edition copy of “Valentine’s Day Production Scenarios.”
'Oh, just let me mark that,' Soldier Sam said quickly.
Sarina looked at the page Soldier Sam checked. It showed Aircraft, Ships, Tanks and Missiles being boxed and carted away to the Theatre of Operations.
'How will you use it?' Sarina asked
'Well, I thought it would be dramatic if there was an Maintenance Guy around while they were packing the weapons systems. Just a regular Guy, trying to get a job helping them. But they can't use him--he's in the way--not even good cannon fodder. They want strong young Troops in the world. And it turns out he's the Guy who wrote up all the manuals they would need to keep their weapons systems operational.
'It's good but I don't get it,' Sarina said.
'Oh, it's nothing, a potential Valentine’s Day Scenario maybe.' Solider Sam brushed it off.
'Got any good Valentines Day Scenarios ideas? I'm in with Cupid but he isn’t convinced I can find a Target with Real Potential for True Love for his limited number of Arrows.“ Sarina asked.
Soldier Sam’s phone rang.
'Yes, this is Soldier Sam,' he answered the phone.
After a minute Soldier Sam turned to Sarina.
'Will you excuse me? This is a private call.'
Sarina got it and walked out, and along the corridor. Finding an office with no name on it she went in and fell asleep on the couch.
Later that afternoon Sarina returned to Cupids office waiting rooms. Sarina had an idea about a woman who meets a man in an office and she thinks he's a Football Player but he turns out to be a Maintenance Manual Writer also interested in Valentines Day scenarios..
Sarina engages him as a Football Player though, and they head for the 50 Yard Line on the Rams Stadium Field . It was a beginning, it was something to tell Cupid, Sarina thought--and, picturing Soldier Sam, she started to get excited.
Sarina became quite excited about it--felt like a woman for a moment and walked up and down Cupids Office waiting room rehearsing the first Valentines Day scenario sequence. 'So here we have a situation like it would be a Great Valentines Day. It involves Orange Roses and Real Love..
Oh, Sarina knew she could convince Cupid that She would be a Great Target for his Arrow on Valentines Day if she could just come up with something to say.
Cupid still busy?' Sarina asked for the tenth time
'Oh, Yes, Sarina, the Rams Mascot is in there with Cupid at the moment” the receptionist answered.
Sarina thought quickly. She could just bust right in there and sell Cupid on her Valentines Day Scenario, an idea good for a an Arrow because it was just the moment when Cupid and the Rams Mascot were planning out their Holiday Schedule.
Sarina walked innocently out and to another door in the hall. She knew it led right in to Cupid’s office. Drawing a quick breath she plunged . . .
'. . . So that's the notion,' Sarina concluded after a full hour. 'It's just a flash--nothing really worked out, but you could give me Soldier Sam’s phone number and I could have something on paper for you by Valentine’s Day!!”
Cupid and the Rams Mascot did not even have to look at each other. Cupid spoke for them both as he said firmly and gently:
'That's no idea, Sarina. I can't shoot one of my arrows on you for that.'
'Why don't you work it out further by yourself,' suggested the Rams Mascot. 'And then let's see it. We're looking for ideas--especially about the war.'
'A Girl can plan better if she knows that she will be in Love,' said Sarina.
There was silence. The Rams Mascot had downed Gatorade with Sarina, played Poker during all the downtime with her and always kept her company on the Sidelines during the Rams Games The Rams Mascot would honestly be glad to see Sarina put on Cupids Valentines Day Arrow Shooting Schedule..
About the war?” asked Sarina. 'Everything is war now, no matter how many football interviews a reporter like me has. Do you know what it makes me think of? It makes me think of a Maintenance Guy in the discard. It's war time and he's useless--just a man in the way.'
Sarina warmed to this conception, '--but all the time they're carting away the very weapons systems that he was responsible for writing all the equipment sustainment specs that would keep their operations running at full tempo, really a quite essential task. And they won't even let him help. It kinda even reminds me on myself on Valentines Day, actually, Sarina admitted.
There was again silence for a moment.
'That isn't actually that a bad idea,' said the Rams Mascot thoughtfully. He turned to Cupid. 'You know? In itself?'
Cupid nodded in agreement, checking his Valentines Day Arrow Shooting Schedule for final confirmation.
'Not bad at all. And I know where we could spot it. Right at Lunch Time outside the Burger King.
Presently they talked more about how something like this could turn into True Love.
'I'll give you one chance for True Love, Sarina” said Cupid. 'Sorry. Best we can do now.'
'You make me feel like that Maintenance Guy, complained Sarina--'
'Don't oversell it,' said Cupid, rising and smiling. 'You're on the Valentines Day Arrow Shooting Schedule.'
Sarina went out with a quick step and confidence in her eyes. Striking Soldier Sam with Cupids Arrow right in his Heart would really take the pressure off. Sarina left the studio proudly through the front entrance, stopping at the liquor store for a bottle of Bourbon to take back to her House.
By the time the Los Angeles Sunset came about, now with a bottle of Bourbon things were looking better than ever for Sarina…Valentines Day on Friday, if she could just get Soldier Sam to show up at Burger King for Lunch.
With a sudden rush of confidence, Sarina picked up her phone, called 1-800-USA-VDAY and asked for Soldier Sam’s number. Sarina’s Heart was pounding.
Soldier Sam was agreeable when Sarina spoke into the phone. After all, Sarina considered, how difficult can it possibly be to get a guy like that to show up for a Whopper with Cheese, Onion Rings and an Orange Soda right at Lunch Time.
'I'm hoping for a Date on Valentines Day too“, Soldier Sam was crystal clear about his intentions for Real Love and promised Sarina he would be outside Burger King waiting to open the Restaurant Door For her.
Sarina was pleased.. “If only Soldier Sam know there was going to be an Arrow through His Heart right at Lunch Time on Valentines Day. If Cupid remembers to show up. I hope he doesn’t forget since his Matchmaking Holiday Schedule is so busy. “Oh, no.. what if he doesn’t know what Soldier Sam looks like.
As Soldier Sam hung up, Cupid was just opening a bottle of Bourbon for him and Solider Sam to share at the Bar.
'Who was it?'
'Oh, some woman who came in the office,' Solider Sam laughed, 'and told me never to read the story I was working on.' Trying to act cool, as if he didn’t want to see Sarina on Valentines Day even more than she wanted.
“Should I believe you, Soldier Sam?' asked Cupid.
'You certainly will believe the True Intention of My Heart. I'll even think of her name in a minute. But first I want to tell you about a Valentines Day Scenario concept I had this morning. I was looking at a photo in a magazine where the Troops were packing up some weapons system to use somewhere overseas. And I thought, What if there was this Maintenance Guy who was looking for someone to do--'
“Cupid Puts On Magic Show At Rams Stadium!”
A Valentine’s Day Short Story
As Valentines Day got closer, Sarina was still trying to get Solider Sam to spill the beans about Cupids Secret. They had the studio almost to themselves--only a skeleton staff of technical workers dotted the walks of Rams Stadium.
The Rams Highlights script was progressing at a snail's pace but the friendship between Sarina and Solider Sam was developing by the hour.
Soldier Sam’s secret, Sarina considered, was a very valuable asset, and she wondered how many careers had turned on just such an asset. Some, Sairna felt sure, had their careers jumpstarted by leverage like that.
Why, it was almost as good as being in Cupid‘s inner circle, and Sarina pictured an imaginary conversation with Cupid.
'Cupid, it's this way. I don't think my extensive sports experience is being made use of here at Rams Stadium, Sarina was planning on saying. It's the new staff who ought to do the highlight scripts--I ought to be doing more supervising.'
'Or--?' Sarina figured that would be the response from Cupid
'Or else,' said Sarina to herself
Sarina was in the midst of her day dream when Cupid unexpectedly walked in!
“Happy Valentines Day, Sarina' Cupid said cheerfully.
Cupids smile was less robust when he saw Solider Sam, 'Oh, hello Solider Sam--didn't know you and Sarina had teamed up.. I sent you a greeting over to the Rams Highlights Pit'
'You didn’t have to do that.' Soldier Sam replied
Cupid turned swiftly to Sarina.
“My Boss is really putting the pressure on me,' Cupid said. 'I've got to have a Finished Love Story by Valentines Day.'
'Well, here I am,' said Sarina. 'You'll have it. Did I ever fail you?'
'Usually,' said Cupid 'Usually.'
Cupid seemed about to add more when the Rams Mascot entered with an envelope and handed it to Solider Sam--whereupon Cupid turned and hurried out.
'He'd better get out!' burst forth Soldier Sam after opening the envelope. There’s not even Rams Tickets in here. I have half a mind to complain to Cupid. A Valentines Gift should be more considerable that just a card.
It was Sarina’s chance. Sitting on Soldier Sam’s desk she told him her plan.
'Once we call Cupid out on this secret, It's the best kind of work scenario for you and me,' Sarina said. 'You the head of a Highlights script department, and me a Senior Rams Executive.
“We're on the gravy train for life--no more writing--no more pounding the keys. We might even--we might even--if things go good you and me could be a permanent team, Soldier Sam.
Soldier Sam hesitated a long time. When he put a fresh sheet in the typewriter Sarina feared her new plan would not come to fruition.
“Cupid’s Secret, 'I can write it from memory,' Soldier Sam said. 'This was a letter Cupid Typed himself on Super Bowl Sunday, on the Rams Big Day.
Cupid sealed it and gave it to me to mail, Soldier Sam continued “and I wondered why he should be so secret about a letter.'
Soldier Sam had been typing as he talked, and now he handed Sarina a note.
To: Super Bowl Headquarters
Dear Super Bowl HQ Executive:
I shot my arrow at the NFL MVP. We should have cracked down on him sooner. So why not shut up.
'Get it?' Soldier Sam said. 'On Super Bowl Sunday, Cupid shot his Arrow and knocked off the NFL MVP. And no one ever found out about it'
Ever since the Super Bowl, Solider Sam had kept the original note, envelope and all. Soldier Sam had sent only a copy to the Rams Mascot, tracing Cupid’s signature.
'We're set, Soldier Sam!' said Sarina. 'I always thought there was something suspicious about that Super Bowl Sunday.
Sarina was so elated she opened a drawer and brought forth a flask full of Bourbon.. Then, with an afterthought, she demanded:
'Is it in a safe place?' Sarina wanted to make sure.
'You bet it is. He'd never guess where.' replied Soldier Sam!
'We've got him, Soldier Sam!'
A party, my big day, an enduring spectacle in a glittering vision before Sarina’s eye.
Sarina folded the note, put it in her pocket, took another drink and reached for her jacket with the pocket square, what she always wore for interviews.
'You going to see him now?' Solider Sam registered some alarm. 'Hey, wait till I get off of the Rams Stadium Campus “I don't want to get hit with one of his arrows indiscriminately. I mean, I could end up with a girl I don’t like'
'Don't worry! Listen I'll meet you inside Burger King--soon.. Sarina reassured him “You can just go there, Order a Whopper with Cheese and Onion Rings. Then if I‘m not there right away, you can burn some time on Orange Soda Refills.'
As Sarina walked to Cupids office she decided to mention no facts or names within the walls of the studio..
Back in the brief period when she had headed the Touchdown Playbook Scenario Department, Sarina had conceived a plan to put an audio antenna bug in every writer's office so their loyalty to the Rams Executives could be checked several times a day.
Sarina’s idea had been squashed. But later, when she had been put back on Concession Stand Duty, she often wondered if her plan was secretly followed. Perhaps some indiscreet remark of her own was responsible for the doghouse where he had been interred since the Super Bowl.
So it was with the idea of concealed audio antenna bugs in mind, receivers which could be turned on with the touch of a button, that Sarina entered Cupid’s office.
'Cupid--' Sarina chose her words carefully, 'do you remember the night of Super Bowl Sunday?'
Somewhat surprised, Cupid leaned back in his swivel chair.
“What”!! where did that come from, Sarina? Cupid was going to stonewall her.
'Try and think.“ Sarina went on.. “ It's something very important to you.'
Sarina’s expression as she watched Cupid was patient.
'Super Bowl Sunday.' Cupid mused. 'No. How could I remember? You think I keep a diary? I don't even know where I was then.'
'You were at the Super Bowl, Cupid. Don’t try to play me.' Sarina replied.
'Probably. If you know, tell me.' Cupid didn’t like where this was going.
'You'll remember.' Sarina was going to wait this one out.
'Let's see. I came out to LA around that time. Cupid was trying to come up with an alibi.
“ Was I making some Contracts for some of the Rams Players? That's it. I was swinging plans for off season Trades, right here in LA.“ Cupid thought that would get him out of this mess.
'You weren't always on location in LA. You were at the Super Bowl.' Sarina was laying out her Case.
'What is this?' Cupid demanded. 'The third degree?'
'No--but I've got some information about your doings on Super Bowl Sunday.' Sarina wasn’t going to give up now.
Cupid face said it all; for a moment it looked as if he were going to throw Sarina out of the room--then suddenly he finished his lunch from the Rams Cafeteria, licked his lips and stared at his desk.
'Oh, I guess I remember being at the Super Bowl' Cupid said after a minute: 'But I don't see what business it is of yours.'
'It's the business of every diligent worker in the Rams Organisation.'
'Since when have you been diligent?' Cupid smirked.
'All my life,' said Sarina. 'And, even if I haven't, I never did anything like that at the Super Bowl. .'
You have some nerve, Sarina” said Cupid contemptuously. '“You showing up here in my office with a Halo! Anyhow, what's the evidence? You'd think you had a written confession. It's all forgotten long ago.'
'Not in the memory of the Rams Organisation,' said Sarina. 'And as for a written confession--I've got it.'
'I doubt you,” countered Cupid And I doubt if it would stand in any Love Court. You've been taken in.'
'I've seen it,' said Sarina with growing confidence. 'And it's enough to land you in Love Court.'
'Well, by God, if there's any publicity I'll run you out of town.' Cupid was starting to get angry.
'I don't want any publicity.' .continued Cupid “ I still have some matchmaking to do before Valentine’s Day. I have half a mind to use my Arrows on you and Solider Sam”
'Then I think you'd better come along with me. Without talking to anybody.' decided Sarina.
'Where are we going?', Cupid wanted to know what he was getting into.
'I know a Restaurant where we can talk.' Sarina offered.
Burger King was in fact deserted, save for the Staff and Soldier Sam who sat at a table, finishing his Orange Soda with sudden alarm. Seeing Soldier Sam, Cupid’s expression changed to one of infinite reproach.
'This is a hell of a Valentines Say, Cupid said, 'My Boss is expecting me to do some serious Matchmaking. I want to know what you think you have. You say you've got something in my writing.'
Sarina took out the letter. 'This is just a copy, so don't try and snatch it.'
Sarina knew the technique of such scenes as this.
'Dear Super Bowl Headquarters: We shot our Arrows at the NFL MVP. We should have cracked down on him sooner. So why not shut up. Yours, Cupid.'
Sairna paused. 'You wrote this on Super Bowl Sunday
Silence. Cupid turned to Soldier Sam
'Did you do this, Soldier Sam? Did I dictate that to you?' Cupid wanted control of this situation now.
'No,' Soldier Sam responded in a confident voice. 'You wrote it yourself. I opened the letter.'
'I see. Well, what do you want with me then? Cupid wanted this situation to be over.
'Plenty,' said Sarina, and found herself pleased with her firm stance.
'What exactly?' Cupid inquired.
Sarina launched into the description of a Love Life suitable to a woman like her. A Glowing Relatioinship. It expanded rapidly in beauty and power during the time it took Soldier Sam to run to the Fountain for another Orange Soda.
But one demand Sarina returned to again and again.
Sarina wanted to be quite in Love by Valentine’s Day.
'Why so soon?' demanded Cupid. 'Can't it wait?'
There were sudden tears in Sarinas eyes--real tears.
'This is Valentines Say ,' Sarina said. 'It's my Valentine’s Day wish. To be in Love. I've had a hell of a time. I've waited so long.'
Cupid got to his feet suddenly.
'Nope,' Cupid responded. 'I won't make you the perfect relationship. I couldn't do it in fairness to the Rams Organisation. Your productivity would fall off the Map, I'd rather stand trial in Love Court.'
Sarina felt her dreams sink into a dark hole. 'What? You won't?'
'Not a chance. I'd rather have my day in Love Court. Cupid was standing firm on this point.
Cupid turned away, his face set, and started toward the door.
'All right!' Sarina called after him. 'It's your last chance.'
Suddenly Sarina was amazed to see Soldier Sam spring up and run after Cupid, with the intention of Tackling him to the ground, just like he had seen so many Rams Players do over and over.
'Don't worry!' Soldier Sam was getting emotional. 'I'll tear it up, Cupid” promised Soldier Sam. It was just a Trick to get you to Shoot your Arrow at Me and Sarina!!'
Soldier Sams voice trailed off rather abruptly. Cupid was shaking with laughter.
'What's the joke?' Soldier Sam demanded, considering getting even more physical with Cupid again. 'Do you think I haven't got it?'
'Oh, you've got it all right,' Cupid responded. 'You've got it--but it isn't what you think it is.'
He came back to the table, sat down and addressed Sarina.
'Do you know what actually happened on Super Bowl Sunday? It was the date I first met Soldier Sam. He wanted me to do it. To use the NFL MVP as Target Practise for You in the Future .
That's what happened, Sarina. admitted Cupid. “Soldier Sam was so insistent. I thought he was nuts. Now you are saying you want to have a Love Target by Valentines Day. It doesn’t take Sherlock Holmes to figure out what the solution is here.
Well that explains the note to Super Bowl HQ,' said Sarina sternly but also with a growing feeling of unbridled excitement 'So You admit you shot your Arrow at the NFL MVP, don‘t you? As Target Practice?'
Cupid nodded. “The Love Court just wanted more work so everything would so smoothly when it matters most. We tried to get the NFL MVP so we would all be prepared for the Main Event coming up this week on Valentines Day
Cupid stood up and headed for the Burger King Exit.
'Like Love Court is SO ready to put the Smackdown on You, Sarina. Now that you have made your wish clear to me. I’m Cupid. That’s my Job.”
“Get ready for Valentines Day, Sarina!“ Cupid was so happy he could be of Service to Sarina.
When Cupid had gone, Soldier Sam and Sarina sat in silence for a moment. Presently Sarina took out the note again and looked it over. “Just Target Practise, Huh. “
“Well finish your Orange Soda, Soldier Sam and let’s get back to Rams Stadium. We have a lot of Preparations to make“, promised Sarina.
“A Love Kite, A Bodega Celebration and A Yankees Game"
"Sarina, Sarina! I saw it in the air, a Love Kite flying with wings. Solider Sam said excitedly. “ I heard a Voice call out of the sky, and when I looked up, there it was, a Love Kite flying in the wind, in the heavens with with Strength and Resolve, Painted in Yankees Pinstripes!”
The Love Kite looked proudly at Sarina, in a glorious fashion.
"What have you done?" asked Sarina.
"I have flown in the Bronx Sky," replied the Love Kite. I have been a Symbol of all that is Great About You!”
"Is it not beautiful, Sarina?" asked Soldier Sam "Yes, too beautiful." "It is the only one in the world!" smiled Soldier Sam. "And I am proud to represent it with belief."
"The only one in the world? Sarina asked. "Who else knows of this Splendor?"
This fantastic adventure would see Sarina and Soldier Sam escort the Love Kite to the Bronx for dinner
When they arrived in the Bronx, the Roses surrounding Yankees Stadium were refreshing. Sarina, Soldier Sam and the Love Kite arrived at the Bodega next to the Stadium and could not believe their eyes!!
But first, Let's catch up on the events earlier that day. It started out in a Land far away from the Bronx.
Sarina addressed this letter to the Bodega Owner, and put it in her pocket.
As Sarina was about to start, the Love Kite came up to Sarina and said:
“Aw, Sarina, you said I could play the Bronx Scout while you was gone.”
“Play it, of course,” said Sarina. “Solider Sam will play with you. What kind of a game is it?”
“I’m the Bronx Scout,” said the Love Kite “and I have to fly to the Bronx to tell everyone about the Yankees Game. I’m tired of just playing Love Kite myself. I want to be the Bronx Scout.”
“All right,” said Sarina. “It sounds harmless to me. I guess Soldier Sam will help you with your Scout Operations.”
“What am I to do?” asks Soldier Sam, looking at the Love Kite suspiciously.
“You are have to man the ground and keep me flying,” says the Bronx Scout. “Get ready to fly me!”
“You’d better keep the Love Kite interested,” said Sarina, “till we get the scheme going. Loosen up.”
“How far is it to the Bronx, Love Kite?” Soldier Sam asked the Scout, in a curious voice.
“Quite far” said the Bronx Scout. “And you have to really move yourself to get there on time. Get Ready!”
The Bronx Scout jumped into the air and Soldier Sam steadied the flight.
“For God Sake, Sarina” said Solider Sam, “hurry back as soon as you can. I wish we hadn’t made the Liquor Ransom so high.
Sarina walked over to the nearest town and sat around the post-office and store, talking with all the patrons. One of the folks says people have been saying the Bronx is all upset on account of the Love Kite having been lost or stolen.
That was all Sarina wanted to know. She bought some supplies for the trip, posted the letter surreptitiously and caught up with Soldier Sam and the Love Kite. The postmaster said the mail-carrier would come by soon to take the mail on to the Bronx.
When Sarina got back to the spot, Soldier Sam and the Love Kite were not to be found. Sarina explored the vicinity and concluded they had disappeared.
So Sarina sat down on a Picnic Bench, and opened a bottle of Bourbon to await developments.
Soon Sarina head a rustle, and Soldier Sam ran out into the little glade in front of the picnic bench Behind him was the Love Kite, flying high with a broad grin on his face. Soldier Sam stopped, took off his hat and wiped his face with a bandanna. The Love Kite hovered in the air behind him.
“Sarina,” said Soldier Sam, “I suppose you’ll think I’m a renegade, but I couldn’t help it. I’m a grown person with tough proclivities and habits of self-defense, but there is a time when all systems of predominance fail.
“We have to send the Love Kite home. The Liquor Deal is all off.,” Soldier Sam decided
“What’s the trouble, Soldier Sam?” Sarina asked him.
“I was rode,” says Soldier Sam “for hours with the Love Kite not barring an inch. I tell you, Sarina, a human can only stand so much. I took the Love Kite as high as can dragged it down the mountain. On the way it won’t shut up about my Love for Liquor and for You of course, Sarina!”
“But the Love Kite is gone”—continued Soldier Sam—“gone to the Bronx I showed it the road to the Bronx and kicked it down there.. I’m sorry we lost the Liquor Ransom; but it was either that or my well being.
“Soldier Sam,” said Sarina, “We both know you have problems, but you haven’t gone completely crazy, yet anyway?
“No,” says Soldier Sam “nothing except chronic stress and accidents. Why?”
“Then you might turn around,” said Sarina, “and have a look behind you.”
Soldier Sam turned and saw the Love Kite, and could not contain his shock. For a minute, Sarina was a bit concerned about him.
Sarina told Soldier Sam her scheme was to put the whole job through immediately and get the Liquor Ransom and be off with it if the Bodega Owner fell in with our proposition.
So Solider Sam braced up enough to give the Love Kite a wary smile and a promise to play Bronx Scout games with him as soon as he felt a little better.
Sarina had a scheme for collecting that Liquor Ransom without danger of being caught by counterplots that ought to commend itself to professional kidnappers. The tree under which the Bodega Owner’s response was to be left—and the money later on—was close to Sarina’s childhood playground, a Bronx Historical Site, now named in her honor.
If a gang of New York’s Finest should be watching for any one to come for the Liquor they would be able to see a long way off crossing the fields or in the road. But no, sirree! But when it would all go down, Sarina had plans to be up in that tree as well hidden as a tree toad, waiting for the messenger to arrive.
The suddenly, a messenger in the sky flew over and slipped a folded piece of paper into the Love Kite and turned back headed toward the Bronx.
Sarina considered what had just happened, concluded the thing was square and instructed the Love Kite to send the note to the ground.
Sarina opened the note, got near to Soldier Sam and read him the substance of the thing. It was written with a pen in hand, and the sum and substance of it was this:
Sarina and Soldier Sam,
I received your letter by post, in regard to the Liquor Ransom you ask for the return of my Love Kite. I think you are a little high in your demands, and I hereby make you a counter-proposition, which I am inclined to believe you will accept. You bring the Love Kite back to the Bodega and how about you pay ME quite a greater sum of Liquor, and I agree to take the Love Kite off your hands, so it can get back to it’s Bronx Scouting. You had better come at night, for the neighbours believe the Bronx Scout is lost, and I couldn’t be responsible for what they would do to anybody they saw bringing him back.
Your Bodega Shop Owner
“Great pirates of Penzance!” said Sarina “of all the impudent—”
Sarina glanced at Soldier Sam, and hesitated. He had the best look in his eyes she ever saw on the face of a simple talking brute.
“Sarina,” said Soldier Sam, “what’s a bottle of liquor that size, after all?
We were just demanding the Drop Site because we didn’t want to go through the trouble of going to the Bodega. We’ve got the resources to do that, right?
“Tell you the truth, Soldier Sam” said Sarina “this Love Kite has somewhat got in my head too. We’ll take it back to the Bronx, drop the Liquor off to the Bodega Owner and make our get-away.”
Sarina and Soldier Sam took to Love Kite back to the Bronx that night. We made a convincing argument that the Bodega Shop Owner rescently acquired a new high-tech infra-red scanning device, an operational capability long desired by the Bronx Scout.
“A Love Kite, A Bodega Celebration and A Yankees Game”
It was just about dinner time when Sarina and Soldier Sam knocked at the Bodega front door. Just at the moment when Sarina should have been abstracting the Bag of Liquor from the box under the tree at her Bronx Playground, according to the original proposition, Soldier Sam was all ready, holding an even bigger bag of Liquor.
When the Love Kite found out Sarina and Solider Sam were going to leave him in the Bronx it didn’t know what to think.
“How long will the Bodega Owner be able to hold the Love Kite, Sarina?” asked Solider Sam.
It would serve to be a formidable encounter that night for Soldier Sam.
Bronx Peoples were cool, everybody knew that. They were tough, for sure but their affection for a night could be bought with enough Liquor.
And such a night it would be for Soldier Sam. This meant even more Liquor for him, didn't it?
The door to the Bodega opened and Soldier Sam braced himself.
Soldier Sam stood up straight and readied himself. Representing the Strength of America outside the Bronx, or almost representing it, he must not let the even greater strength of the Bronx stare him down.
Soldier Sam was not without an inside view of the Bronx-in his early youth he had once been a grateful resident, it was a great experience. And with encouragement from Sarina he assured himself that this Bronx Experience would be so Grand, if he could just hold it together.
The door opened, and the Bodega Owner stood calmly in the doorway.
'All right, Soldier Sam,' he said “What do you got in the bag?
Nothing to be scared of. Memories of the Bronx continued to flood over Soldier Sam as he walked in. And instantaneously, as the juice of confidence flowed through his system, he had his chance.
“The bag is full of Liquor, as you requested, Sir” Soldier Sam was going to try to get the delivery right for what he would say next.
“The Bag also contains a Box just for Sarina. It contains a representation of My Heart. The materials only cost One Dollar, and I made it myself!!
Soldier Sam continued, “I have long been awaiting the opportunity when I could present it to her on a day when Her Bronx Friends would be able to see it.”
The Bodega Owner, seemed to understand--if not exactly to approve. Soldier Sam was prepared to hammer in his point again that night.
Everyone in the Bodega exchanged glances, but no one interrupted.
'There you are,' went on Soldier Sam, triumphantly. '”Here is your Love Kite, Sir, what you have wanted to get back to the Bronx so urgently.
Soldier Sam paused, trying to think of everything.
There was an unquiet pause. The Bodega Owner came to his rescue.
'Not a bad idea,' he suggested.
'It's an appalling idea,' broke out the Bodega Owners Wife. 'It's--'
The Bodega Owner’s face tightened slowly.
'Just a minute, ,' she said. The Shop Owner’s Wife turned to all the others in the Grand Hall. All of Sarina’s Friends.
At his nod the Bodega Owner’s Wife offered that Soldier Sam and Sarina could walk around the store.
As Sarina entered, followed shortly by a big ringing bell at the back of the Bodega, Soldier Sam thought once more of the Places he had frequented in the Bronx, especially Yankee Stadium.
Soldier Sam wished that he could fit into the Bronx this night. He wished it more than anything in the world.
'There you are!' Sarina cried gratefully. 'Oh, Soldier Sam--Thank God! I am so happy to be with my Bronx Friends, I haven’t seen them in so long--and now we show up with tons of Liquor. “And a Love Kite!!”
'So what else did you say you have in the sack besides Liquor” asked the Bodega Owner. “What?'
The seconds were long before the Bodega Owner had picked up the sack and looked inside, he thought the Liquor was great, but their was also a Tool Box decorated with Yankees Insignia with, not Tools, but a Symbol of how much Soldier Sam Loved Sarina.
Soldier Sam could have easily named every type of Liquor in the bag. There was Bourbon, Scotch, Whiskey, anything else you could imagine-- that could be conveniently parceled out to Sarina’s Friends--pints, half-pints, quarts--the evidence of countless trips to the Liquor Store.
But the description of what was in the Yankees Tool Box would have to wait until Sarina opened it.
'I'll take it,' Sarina said rising.
This is the most incredible thing from the Dollar Store I have ever witnessed”, exclaimed Sarina. “Whoa, What a Find!!”
“Pretty Bold, Soldier Sam,' said the Bodega Owner’s Wife. 'Solider Sam with such amazing things in that sack! Well, I never….”
“Were going to make Soldier Sam carve a ship in every one of those bottles--before he can eat dinner!!” shouted Sarina’s Friends.
Everyone in the Bodega Hall had long been very much excited on account of Sarina returning to the Bronx with a Love Kite and Bag full of Fun.
Because it had been such a great year, the Bodega Owner was going to keep a Grand Party for Sarina.
All the Bronx Faithful remembered everything that had been told them about the Bodega Kitchen.
Scores of Taco Chefs and helpful delivery volunteers were going to be kept very busy that night.
The fires always glowed to roast the Meat Chops that turned on the spits. The cake bowls and the soup pots were never empty. Spices and herbs from far countries, strawberries when the ground was covered with snow, ices of all the rainbow colors, and Cake Frosting-- all these were to be found in the Bodega Kitchen.
There were dishes of gold and silver upon which to serve the fine foods, and a hothouse of rare flowers with which to deck the table, and linen as fine and beautiful in pattern as snowflakes to cover it.
Oh, a Sarina Party in the Bodega would be very wonderful indeed, All of Sarina friends were excited to be there.
The excitement about Sarina’s party was really building at a Fever’s Pitch that night.
There would be an arrival of homemade pie in one hand and a pound cake in the other. The Shop Owner was poking around in a cabinet, searching for Taco Hot Sauce as Hot as Sarina!!
The Chefs in the kitchen were tapping the pots with a spoon and preparing the Condiment Platters. Mountains of Cheese, Lettuce, Tomato, Sour Cream, anything else the Guests would want.
The Shop Owner’s Wife stretched a new, white tablecloth over the dining table. She put Great Displays of Flowers and colorful leaves from the finest fields in the Bronx, and she set the table with real china and real silverware. Then she looked up, smiling. "Help me carry in the food," she said.
By this time, all the recruits went racing into the kitchen. "I'll get it! I'll get it!" they screamed. The rest of Sarina’s Friends piled in behind them, for the Feast was so bountiful there was a need for everyone to grab a pan or a dish. Into the dining room came the Tacos!!!!.
Everyone placed the pans and dishes on the sideboard and looked up to watch the Shop Owner carry in the biggest, MOST ULTIMATE TACO anyone had ever seen for Sarina and Soldier Sam to share with many hands under the platter, just in case. Together they lowered the Taco to its place at the head of the table.
It was the tradition of all of Sarina’s Friends to think of something for which we were most thankful before they would dive into the feast and knew the Bodega Owner wouldn't let anyone eat until we had done it.
Everyone ran to the table yelling something like "I'm thankful for the Clinton High School Governors " or "I'm thankful for the Bronx Zoo" and of course "I'm thankful for Yankee Stadium!" All eyes were on those enormous Tacos as everyone took seats at the table.
Yes, everything was perfect. But there was one thing that made this Sarina Party Extra Special. Every other dinner, the Shop Owner’s Wife would signal the start of dinner, but not on this Sarina Day.
This was the one time when the Bodega Shop Owner was the Star. It was an honor that he had eagerly anticipated for many years in advance, as he discussed the Beauty of Everything About Sarina.
"Simply Beautiful" the Shop Owner’s Wife was really happy too. "What a Wonderful Sarina Party!"
But the Shop Owner’s Wife had a Surprise of her own. She stood up and highlighted the chandelier directly above Sarina and Solider Sam.
Everyone looked upward. There, balanced on the top of the chandelier, was the Love Kite, with the Best Yankees Tickets for the Big Game that night. It was like a Gift from God to Soldier Sam and Sarina!
“A Love Kite, A Bodega Celebration and A Yankees Game”
-A Short Story Part 3
The Bodega Celebration had just ended, and only Sarina and Solider Sam remained at the table, looking thankfully at the Yankees Tickets that now they were so excited about.
When the plates had been removed and taken to the kitchen and placed carefully until the next Sarina Party, Sarina and Soldier Sam couldn’t wait to rise from their chairs and arrive at Yankees Stadium.
They seemed lost in Excitement, until Sarina finally thought of the Love Kite hanging from the chandelier.
"Come on now, Soldier Sam," Sarina said, "let's grab that Love Kite and take it with us to the Big Game at Yankee Stadium.
"All right," replied Soldier Sam, quickly unwrapping the draperies of the Confetti and Ticker Tape Streamers from about him,
"Let's do it now." So he held up one end of the Love Kite, and Sarina took hold of the other end of it with a beautiful laugh.
"Here, we both must carry it equally, because I have a fine wish to make, and want to get the biggest wish if possible." suggested Sarina.
"So have I a nice wish to make," replied Soldier Sam.
And so they argued for a few minutes, until the Shop Owner entered the room and told them that if they couldn’t agree how to transport the Love Kite to the Stadium, he would take it there for them.
So Soldier Sam lost no time in making sure Sarina would be given full control of the Love Kite.
“I have one more surprise for you two,” added the Shop Owner.
“He continued.”I have reached an exclusive agreement with the Yankees to, for tonight only, let your Love Kite Fly High Above Yankees Stadium, providing the play-by-pay audio for all of the Bronx.”
"Hurrah!" exclaimed Sarina, observing Soldier Sam’s expression of shock.
"I've got the Love Kite Control now" decided Sarina. It will perform a more Grand Duty than has been seen in all of baseball, since the beginning of time. Except My Childhood Debut on the Bronx Playgrounds, of Course!”
“Your wish will most certainly come true Sarina, if I have anything to do about it, it will.”
And then Sarina and Soldier Sam decided to make the short trek across the street right away, so they would be sure to have the capacity to launch the Love Kite from their Seats as soon as possible.
When Sarina and Soldier Sam entered the Ballpark, it was just growing dusk, and Sarina launched the Love Kite high into the air.
To Sarina’s great surprise the Love Kite Started booming audio almost instantly.
"I thought we already transported you across the State today said Soldier Sam.
"You did," replied the Love Kite, "and I still have a lot to say to you two.”
"Yes," said Sarina, "you made for a splendid day, and you ought to be pleased to think you made us all so happy. Your entire effort today is commendable."
"And you didn’t mind carrying me to Yankees Stadium, did you?.” asked the Love Kite.
"Not at all. We didn’t at all." Sarina reassured the Love Kite.
"And what did you wish at dinner tonight?" asked the Love Kite.
"You mustn't ask me that," replied Sarina, "because, you know, if I tell you the wish I made it might not come true."
"But I have inside information on the both of you. We have spent a lot of time together," persisted the Love Kite, "and I think I ought to know something about it."
"You your argument is not without force," replied Sarina.
The Love Kite was puzzled at such a reply, and not understanding it, said:
"I am only the spirit of this game tonight, but still I remember how you fell in Love with Sarina, Soldier Sam' Now, come along!"
"Where?" asked Sarina.
"To the Concession Stand of Course, I know you two have had enough to eat, but no one has ever had enough to drink with the Yankees Game hasn’t even started yet!"
It was now almost time for the first pitch, and Sarina didn't like the idea of going to such a place. What an effort! When there will be vendors in our Aisle in just a moments time.”
"I can't go there right now, My Dear Love Kite," Sarina said, "because I have lots of Twitter to Check and of course Tweet that I am here for the Big Game. Wait until after the game, and I will gladly go with you anywhere you want."
"Come along," replied the Love Kite with a provoked air, "and let your Twitter go until tomorrow when you will have plenty of memories to look back on from today, for sure."
Thereupon the Love Kite began the introductions of the baseball players and played some 70s R&B Classics from his Perch above them in the Moonlit Bronx Night.
It was fast shaping up to be a wonderful experience, certainly so for Solider Sam, still trying to get his vendor orders for the game straight, distracting himself from Sarina’s conversation with the Love Kite which of course the entire Stadium could hear.
So the Love Kite kindly and considerately slackened his pace with Sarina, letting Sarina and Solider Sam start to get Hyped for the Big Game.
The moon was now quite bright and the Stadium was silvered by its light. The air was crisp.
"This,” the Love Kite announced" is Yankee Stadium. And these are your New York Yankees!”
The full capacity crowd started their noise.
Soldier Sam was now listening and, sure enough, there were still wishes to make.
“Sarina and I sure have been Lucky Tonight” Soldier Sam considered. But he made no comments to the Love Kite, for his Love for Sarina did not need to be broadcast to the World.
Well, Sometimes it did, of course.
This turned Soldier Sam’s attention to thinking about what wishes Sarina was making that night.
The Love Kite shouted loudly that the Game had begun, an announcement that seemed to cut the air. As he did so, the crowds of Yankees Fans popped out of their seats with a great cheer and calls of “Let’s Go Yankees, Lets Go Yankees!”
Soldier Sam’s eyes tuned to Sarina, beside himself with a Beauty Greater than all other Beauties on the Planet combined.
"What shall we do with all this Beer, Sarina?" asked Soldier Sam, scarcely able to contain himself, considering the fun he and Sarina had already had that day. And the night was just beginning!!
"I cannot think of anything more wonderful than this, Sarina,” said Soldier Sam "It almost makes my ship boil when I think of the way we have amused ourselves today,
We’re sitting ducks targets for the Love Kite now. I hope he goes easy on us.”
Often when I was busy today flying him around back to the Bronx to again assume his post as the Bronx Scout it would fetch me one on the side of the head that would give me a headache for a week
Here the Bronx Faithful broke into a wild chorus of approval.
Sarina could hear pitches whistling past her ears, but could not see them to dodge. Fortunately none struck her, and when the crowd felt that they had had fun at Soldier Sam’s expense they turned their attention back to the game.
"Now, then," said the Love Kite, "Soldier Sam once…”
"What shall we do to our Love Kite for that?" asked Soldier Sam.
"Make him eat dirt when he want’s to be in the air on his Bronx Scout Missions” answered Sarina.
Sometimes the whole Love Kite dynamic would throw Sarina into such a fit of laughter it was plain to see Her Beauty.
But Soldier Sam stuck his wish into the ground, and took defensive positions on it to take a needed rest, for he was greatly exhausted.
"Thank you," said Soldier Sam gratefully.
There was then a great whistling from the crowd and the Love Kite grew silent if only for a moment before the big 7th Inning Stretch Raffle.
"Hurrah!" shouted Sarina. "The Love Kite has sent me a nice ACV to ride around the beach in! Wasn't it good of him?"
"Didn't you wish for a bicycle today, when you got the chance to wish?, Soldier Sam asked.
"What makes you think so?" asked Sarina with a laugh. “I wished many things for the future, Soldier Sam. “We can work them out together.”
"And what did you wish for the future Solider Sam?"asked Sarina.
“My wish just came true today, Sarina.” answered Solider Sam “Because of You.”
“Buckle Up for a Fantastic Ride Surfing Saturn’s Rings!”
Sarina and Soldier Sam had a plan to Surf on Saturn’s Rings on her Birthday with an incredible Starship. Saturn's Moon Titan was the best option within the solar system. Sarina commanded one of the last Starships leaving Earth. But Sarina and Soldier Sam end up nowhere near Titan. In fact, they are light-years away from the targeted solar system.
Sarina didn’t know how she got there, but going anywhere from here will require everything this Starship has got. It’s an extended voyage in search of a distant planet. Sarina and Soldier Sam have survived because of an advanced tractor beam contained on the Starship. Some wings of the massive Starship are essentially battle zones.
Soldier Sam and I were having the time of our lives at the Starship controls. We just didn’t want to screw it up.” Sarina would later explain after the journey.
Sarina put into words later in the Space Mission summaries—“ it was like 'Okay, let me go and try it. It might change my life.”
But although they shared a workspace, it wasn't until Sarina and Soldier Sam ended up at the Starship controls that they got speaking about the future.
"Everything Soldier Sam talks about is about Starships," says Sarina, laughing as she was interviewed after the journey.
Mission Command sealed off an entire team and opened the airlock, leaving them all in space. Sarina was trained for moments like this, and when you discover the 6th Air Wing is planning to engage its targets, to take supplies with them, and to make a triumphant sprint to Saturn’s Rings, saving the Solar System is all in the hands of Sarina and Soldier Sam.
Sarina and Soldier Sam will be the first to see Planet Saturn and Surf its Rings.. Despite having lived your entire life on board and training for this very purpose, the thundering excitement you feel nearly give you a heart attack the moment you break the atmosphere.
Sarina accelerates though space, and for a long hour all members of the crew simply sit and stare out the windows, speechless and awestruck. Monitor readings and everything else seem fine.
Finally––with a broken transmission communication line back to Earth and no way of knowing what you are facing––Sarina took Soldier Sam’s hand and opened the airlock.
"For me, that was where I was like “Yeah, Soldier Sam might be the guy,'" Sarina says now.
But in the aftermath of the gunbattle action Sarina and Soldier Sam were wanting to continue getting to know one another.
"I think these little conversations, they kept us always a little more lovely about the other one”, Sarina shared after that incredible adventure.
"When you're on the takeoff field, and you have a Spaceship like this, it's a fantastic time for an incredible trip on the Starship-- after work, what you're going to do when it's nice weather, you're going to go out and fly” Soldier Sam would later explain.
Sarina and Soldier Sam were in the Starship and ready to go, both seated at the controls.
Sarina was excited about arriving at Saturn on her Birthday but there are some crew members who would rather stay within the confines of the Starship than to settle a harsh world. From their perspective, abandoning a Starship that provides everything that they need is not in their best interests.
Home is not some faraway planet for the crew. Home is making the mechanics of this Starship work to function, plain and simple. Sarina and Soldier Sam will have to convince them that the entire future of the universe is in their hands before mutiny becomes an option.
On a Starship like this, multiple shifts have lived without ever setting foot on the ground. Saturn is almost a legend, with some believing it was nothing more than a myth. However, Scouts have returned claiming that Saturn still has its Rings.
The few crew members who know what Saturn has to offer are excited to return, while Soldier Sam is harboring some concern that it might not be technically possible to “Surf” Saturn’s Rings.
Starship command realizes it needs a way to parcel out the power or run the same risk that had led to much destruction in the past.
“Soldier Sam and I were so eager to get to Saturn and see what all the stories are about” Sarina told the Press over due course of the interviews.
But some of their competitors have a different plan and intend to abandon the group on the planet's surface and take the Starship up into orbit. With its vast supplies and advanced technology, the Starship was poised to allow Sarina’s battlegroup to easily dominate those undermining the effort to Surf Saturn’s Rings.
Sarina knew full well what the plan was and if word got out, it may immediately lead to conflict.
Soldier Sam was confident in Sarina’s abilities to make a successful mission out of it. “There's ordinary, and then there's you, Sarina” Soldier Sam admired Sarina. “You're really something special.”
Soldier Sam admired how Sarina deals with difficult situations. “I wish I was as poised and level-headed as you” Soldier Sam added.
It was going to be a difficult hike through the Universe for Sarina, Soldier Sam and the crew aboard the Starship.
Sarina was getting worked up, but she stayed in position until Soldier Sam joined her to take the helm of the Starship Command Video Communications Control Board. Sarina had piloted the Starship for a considerable time, so the post-flight check and shutdown had been her responsibility.
Do you know what happened to me recently? asked Sarina. “ I never considered before that first training day I would go into Saturn’s Orbit.. It was unbelievable. First they showed me a huge and very shiny Rocket Trainer. Then I got inside the rocket. Then, I pressed a button and I heard a loud noise. Pretty much instantly, the training simulator was far away in another Galaxy light years from Saturn. It was very quick. Wow!”
“This is a long way to go for an Intergalactic Training Exercise, isn’t it Sarina?” Soldier Sam agreed with her.
“And you should have seen the post-flight check and shutdown they made me do after that!” Sarina was still upset about it.
“Yeah, Continuing education is a big pain, even for someone as talented as you, Sarina” agreed Soldier Sam. “I don’t like group projects. Sometimes it gets frustrating working with other people—to their schedule and to their standards.”
Neither Sarina or Soldier Sam got the training assignment they expected. That’s how it works sometimes, but at least they were together on this Surfing Saturn’s Rings Expedition.
Soldier Sam would always consider to himself, “Sarina is just as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside. And that is very much a lot!”
Parts of Training were worth it. The best memory Sarina and Soldier Sam had of training was the project to communicate with all 100 Billion planets in the universe.
Sarina and Soldier Sam remembered the Training exercise like it was yesterday.
Sarina ceremoniously blasted into place the final intergalactic connection with a Diamond Torch.
The eyes of 100 television cameras watched her and the network transmitted throughout the universe 100 pictures of what she was doing.
Sarina straightened and nodded to Solider Sam, and moved to a position beside the switch that would complete the intergalactic contact when he threw it.
It was the switch that would connect, all at once, all of the monster computing machines of all the populated planets in the universe -- 100 billion planets -- into the supercircuit that would connect them all into one Super Calculator, one digital machine that would combine all the knowledge of all the galaxies.
Sarina spoke briefly to the watching and listening trillions. Then after a moment's silence she said, "Now, Solider Sam!"
Soldier Sam threw the switch. There was a mighty hum, the surge of power from 100 billion planets. Lights flashed and quieted along the miles-long control panel.
Sarina stepped back and drew a deep breath. "The honor of asking the first question is yours, Soldier Sam."
"Thank you," said Soldier Sam. "It will be a question which no single high tech machine has been able to answer."
Soldier Sam turned to face the machine. "Is there a woman so Beautiful in the Universe of Galaxies she could redefine the definition of Beautiful on all the 100 Billion Planets?"
The mighty voice answered without hesitation, without the clicking of a single relay.
"Yes NOW there is, Sarina!”
Much time had passed since that successful training exercise but it had prepared them well for the Saturn Mission. Sarina was back on the controls as the Starship accelerated through the universe in search of the Ultimate destination, Saturn’s Rings!!
Sarina was curious, “Don’t you think somebody should be here to meet us somewhere in this universe so we have a competent wingman? It’s not like we don’t have any adversaries out here. Don’t they understand that back at Mission Control?”
“The briefing did not tell us where to go once we arrived,” Soldier Sam said. “You would think there would be a message waiting.
Sarina rapped on the controls. “Maybe figuring out where we’re supposed to be is a part of the training schedule.”
“That would be a suspect curriculum.” responded Soldier Sam. “ Have I mentioned how much I dislike group projects?”
“And what would be a good one?” responded Sarina.
Soldier Sam hadn’t meant to start an argument with the Command System, but the response he always got from Leadership was Tough.
Still, Soldier Sam had his opinions. “Something focused on the Titanic Business, maybe?” suggested Soldier Sam.
Sarina held up her hand as if expecting something from Soldier Sam. “Don’t get me started again. I don’t need us to spend the entire time we’re here talking about transportation disasters.” Sarina responded. But Sarina was more helpful to Soldier Sam than she might think.
“Hello, Earth to Soldier Sam” Sarina continued. She got more of the same every time Soldier Sam opened his mouth to speak.
Your perspective is pretty much spot on and on time. Soldier Sam could never stop the compliments he had been dishing out to Sarina for the last several .years.
“I’m a pilot engineer, Sarina reminded Soldier Sam. “Also I didn’t bring up the Titanic this time. You did.”
Soldier Sam was still being critical of the system, “Some Disasters are caused by human error and, especially bad design. We can prevent those things.”
Soldier Sam was right as far as it went, but there were other factors: career motives, for example. Or small problems that caused unpredicted consequences and multiplied difficult failures too big to engineer against.
But Sarina didn’t want to give Soldier Sam any more ammunition, about seeming distracted from the Mission to Surf Saturn’s Rings. So she decided to redirect the conversation.
. “I don’t think much of their protocols if they’re going to allow clueless recruits wander around. Anyways, let’s start to focus on our mission.” Sarina suggested. “We are, after all, at the controls of a massive Starship speeding through space.”
” I’m not clueless about our mission to Surf Saturn’s Rings at all, Sarina,” Soldier Sam responded. “I’m all in. “ Succeeding at this mission will set out our course for the future. It will be great for both of us!”
Soon Sarina and Soldier Sam were soaring over planets and shooting through Space.
Mid-air, Sarina asked Soldier Sam if he would like to see a magic trick and, tentatively, Soldier Sam agreed. He wasn't scared of heights or flying, but this was an experience like none he had before, and he was still suspect of Sarina’s intentions.
Sarina momentarily descended the Starship, before ascending it again, creating a kind of 'zero gravity' feeling.
"If you want you can hold on to me," Soldier Sam remembered Sarina saying.
"That was a monster moment for me," Soldier Sam would later recall.
Soldier Sam still had butterflies, but now it was for a different reason.
Sarina had invited Soldier Sam to share a bottle of Bourbon, against his greater instincts.
"It was too late, because I was already starting to like Soldier Sam," Sarina says now. "For me, there was no going back.”
Soldier Sam had considered the situation at the end of that battle “It’s probably just a scheduling error. Let’s take some advice from the crew and see if we can find Ops.”
“Right. I agree. Let’s make that communication to someone with more perspective than us. Being at the controls of a Starship like this does distract us from the big picture.. you know, what is happening between other planets” Sarina had a clearer view than Soldier Sam did
“Your talents and potential seem virtually limitless, Sarina.” Soldier Sam declared. “I’m lucky to have a Starship partner like you.
Sarina went back to working the controls, made a move inside and then called Mission Control. "We will get back to you" was the answer. They needed time to consider the options.
"We only have enough fuel for one more run," Solider Sam reminded Sarina. "Yeah, we will really need to conserve it." They sat down in their seats and waited for Mission Control. No reply.
Finally there was some crackling from the radio.
Soldier Sam was grateful for the outside help. “We’ve been stuck up together a long time, Sarina. That would stress anyone out.”
“I don’t know why I try,” said Sarina.. “Sarina understood Soldier Sam’s situation, dealing with all of his limitations. Sarina decided to issue Solider Sam a compliment for once. “Soldier Sam, If you were a box of crayons, you'd be the giant name-brand one with the built-in sharpener.”
“Station engineering often involves working with a lot of people in close quarters, so I just have a problem doing that. It’s nothing intentional” responded Soldier Sam. “I just prefer to deal with you.”
“Sure it’s a good career choice for you, Solider Sam?” asked Sarina.
“What else am I supposed to do?” responded Soldier Sam. “It’s not like I care about anything except for you. You're a great example to myself and all the others, Sarina.”
As the latest barrage of gunfire drew to a close, Sarina explained later it was at that point she remembered her motives to walk Soldier Sam back to the engine room.
It was Sarina who suggested she and Soldier Sam go on their first big date and she recalled as such in the ensuing report.
Sarina found Soldier Sam in the engine room one day -- she'd become familiar with the engine he was working on, and always found him in or around the mechanics station when she stopped to chat.
After a fierce gun battle, Sarina and Soldier Sam tackled the task of eating burgers together. “Those burgers were so delicious” Soldier Sam mentioned in the post flight interview
“Most jobs aren’t as big as this one. Plenty of contracts on outposts where Station Ops is the only function,” Sarina said. “And the nearest support squadron might be light-minutes away. Or hours, sometimes, depending on the orbits.”
“You’ve pretty on the Mark, Sarina.” Soldier Sam found that date with the burgers really hit close to home.
Solider Sam studied Sarina’s face to look for some clues..
“I’m pretty sure that it didn’t suggest I was being anything else but honest” Sarina was being straight with Solider Sam.
But who could ever know for sure what Soldier Sam was doing? He never had a plan for anything when he woke up in the morning. But it always turned into some kind of power grab.
Sarina remembered recalling up a reserve of boldness when she asked Soldier Sam if he wanted to go take a break from shooting space objects and enjoy some time at the cinema outside the engine room for an hour or two and he agreed.
Soon, the two were heading out on various dates in different parts of the Starship.
"It was just a very exciting time for both of us," said Soldier Sam later. "Sarina having moved to another part of the galaxy, not really knowing anyone, and still trying to find her place. But also for me, because up to that point, all I had really had in my mind were Starship missions.
"I think right from the beginning, both of us had this feeling like, I have found the greatest partner," says Sarina, who remembers telling the rest of the crew she met someone special.
“You’re going to request a drone service depot at Saturn?” asked Soldier Sam.
“Maybe,” Sarina responded. “Maybe before we go Surfing on the Rings. This wasn’t the training rotation I asked for, but I guess we will make do with what is available to us there.”
“Takes all kinds of people to screw something like this,” said Solider Sam. “No one else other than you would be able to pilot this Starship under these conditions.”
“You should be proud of your efforts and success, Sarina.” Soldier Sam added.
Sarina wasn’t the first person in the world to consider Soldier Sam as he was. But she was more tolerant than the rest.
“But I just don’t like pointless disasters. The ones where nobody could do anything. Those are just terrible. Sarina was starting to talk. “ I like the ones where things happen slowly enough for people to respond. To mitigate. To avert the worst, or some of the worst.
“Or the ones where something terrible went wrong because somebody was in a hurry, not paying attention. Taking shortcuts.” said Soldier Sam.
”Like isn’t the right word, anyway. I don’t like disasters, I assess and react to them. You learn from the mistakes, and then hopefully you make different mistakes.” Sarina said accurately. That was one of the many reasons she was in charge of this mission.
“You are making a difference in the world and for me” Soldier Sam was grateful for Sarina.
“Well, I try to just focus on the interesting, useful disasters. And sometimes only those in an exclusive area.” There were some things Soldier Sam just didn’t care about. Pretty much anything that wasn’t named Sarina, anyways.
Lots of disasters are useful too.” Soldier Sam added. “ What’s amazing about some incidents is not so much the terrible parts everyone talks about. What’s amazing about many operations the press characterizes as disasters is all the times they all get completed without a hitch. You just never hear about that stuff.” Soldier Sam had figured that out.
All this time, Sarina had been taking photos of her and Soldier Sam, just hanging out at the Starship Cinema outings. She figured anyone who sees them would probably guess Soldier Sam was important to her, but she didn't want to spill the news just yet.
Sarina and Soldier Sam enjoyed many an evening dinner together, with Sarina encouraging Soldier Sam to slow the gas pedal away from his reliance on bourbon and bacon cheeseburgers teaching Soldier Sam recipes she'd grown up with.
Taking a journey to Surf Saturn’s Rings was an easy adjustment for Soldier Sam, he affirmed in the post flight interviews.
"We didn't have a lot of arguments. We were just happy to be there for each other and with each other," Soldier Sam would say later.
"We were really starting to make it as Starship Partners, and we were so sure of what we wanted down the line," Sarina recalled the groundbreaking news in a broadcast interview afterwards..
The Docking Pad at their next pit stop was deserted. Sarina hustled a few steps to catch up with what she was seeing on the Dashboard Monitor. “Does this seem right to you, Soldier Sam?”
“You will figure out where we should be. If anyone can figure it out the current position of our Starship in relation to Saturn’s Rings, it would be you, Sarina” On that point, Soldier Sam was sure.
Sarina was considering the course ahead of the Starship consulting her handheld Action Tracker Device. She looked distracted but not concerned. “There will be plenty of disasters for you to Love, Soldier Sam. You don’t have to rush it.”
“It’s not—” Solider Sam started to defend himself.
“You don’t have to explain yourself to me.” Sarina showed understanding that Soldier Sam was just pretty much fucked up, that’s all. “Anyway, you really don’t like when people just sit around talking about people”
“As long as I don’t have to be involved, I guess other people are fine. Someone’s got to do some jobs” Soldier Sam responded.
“OK,” Sarina said.
“Sarina!” Soldier Sam exclaimed. “You are just what the universe needs. Your kindness is like a spark of light and someone's reason to smile.”
Soldier Sam turned his attention to their surroundings and lowered his voice. “But there are hundreds of people on this Starship in addition to us. Where the fuck is everybody? What are they doing? See, that’s my point about people sometimes”
"We didn't regret not having anyone with us," Sarina would later state. "We were just enjoying each other’s company."
After all the Adventures Sarina and Soldier Sam had, Sarina affirmed the plan she and Soldier Sam had developed-- continue to have fun, work together as a team, and put their mission first.
"We have always trusted our gut, " explained Sarina after the events. "We always say if everything falls down, the most important thing, we still have it -- and that's us."
A pulse ran through the deck. It didn’t feel like an impact. It felt as if Ops was using an attitude jet to adjust the station’s trim.
Sarina was surprised the Starship had encountered some resistance in this airspace. Things had been quiet for a while, so she grabbed one of the Side Guns and got some of the crew to see to that.
But there was no response. Something wasn’t working right.
Soldier Sam opened the battery compartment and took out a dozen large batteries. "I think we can tape these together and make one big battery that will start powering the guns," said Soldier Sam. "Hand me that Duct Tape from the Tool Kit."
"Sounds like a good idea to me," said Sarina. Soldier Sam lined up the batteries in three rows of four and taped them together in a bundle. He took a piece of tape and connected a wire to the batteries on each end. He hooked one up to the starter. He took the other wire and ran it back up into the front.
Soldier Sam told Sarina to ready the Starship for Action.
"If I touch the wire to the metal on the dashboard, the starter should work and we can blast-those fuckers off." Soldier Sam hoped that he was right.
"Are you ready?" Soldier Sam asked Sarina without waiting for an answer. "Here goes!" As he touched the wire to the dashboard, they could hear the roar of the rocket guns.
Before they knew it, they were zooming back through space towards Saturn’s Rings. “Yes!!” it was clear they both wanted that to happen with the artillery systems.
The Starship blasted forward towards the Landing Pad. Then Sarina saw Saturn’s Rings. She turned the controls to Titan Station.
"Mission control to Sarina," came over the headsets. "Sarina here." "You will need to prepare for landing," said the voice on the radio. "Roger that, we'll be ready," said Sarina.
“The curves of the Rings loomed over our Starship” Sarina had observed and it was one of the first things she wanted to talk about when the mission was all over with. We came up on the inside to dock, our Starship matching velocity to slide between the cables that kept the station in trim.
“It was a very special moment Soldier Sam and I shared,” Sarina would recall further down the line.
"Here we go, Soldier Sam!! Hold on, it looks like it might be a rough landing." The Starship came in very rough. So rough that both Sarina’s and Soldier Sam’s airbags deployed. Finally, they came to rest.
"Soldier Sam, are you O.K.?" asked Sarina. "Yes, I'm O.K.” responded Soldier Sam. “ But that airbag hit me in the face like a rock-hard punch. I think my face would be broken if I didn't have this helmet on.
From the moment Sarina and Soldier Sam docked, Soldier Sam couldn’t shut down his concerns that everything could go wrong. Sarina was the first one out of the Starship. She dropped off the ladder above the deck and landed lightly in the partial gravity.
Pushing out a few steps from the Starship Sarina looked up at the whir of space above her. From here Sarina had a new perspective of the Starship, with its towering hub, the web of cables, and some of the shuttle’s hull all seemingly “above” her, because with spin gravity everything is different.
After Soldier Sam stepped out of the Starship next, both of them turned their attention to the Rings in the Sky above them.
“Soldier Sam and I could not have imagined a more incredible sight. There we saw the Giant Rings, in all of their Glory.” Sarina would later report to the media.
And the Rings were the brightest and colourful thing Soldier Sam had ever seen. The scene was so beautiful because the Sun’s rays reflected all of the magnificent colours of the Rings. There were also millions of shining stars and other planets.
The view of the Rings inspired Soldier Sam. “Sarina, Everything would be better if our galaxy was like you!”
I hope all your wishes come true, Soldier Sam— except for the illegal ones. Sarina laughed.
Even Jokes were more delightful to Soldier Sam when Sarina tells them.
Sarina and Soldier Sam were amazed, “Finally we are on Saturn!” Sarina saw lots of craters and all different shaped stars.
Let's take a look around and see if those Dune Buggies are still in the Trunk." suggested Sarina.
"Good idea," said Soldier Sam.
Sarina and Soldier Sam put on their Space Walk Suits.
Soldier Sam found lots of rocks and saw lots of dust. Sarina decided to get on the Dune Buggy and drive to the other side of the planet to explore it. While she was exploring she saw a dust storm approaching so Sarina quickly ran to the Dune Buggy and drove very fast back to the Starship.
But this Birthday Mission to Surf Saturn’s Rings was too important to Sarina and Soldier Sam to stay on the ground.
“We just couldn’t just stop on the planet without setting coordinates to Surf the Rings. There was no time to take any chances. That much was sure.” Sarina recalled the monumental decision.
Sarina and Soldier Sam climbed into the Starship and prepared to start the engines
Soldier Sam called out to Sarina, "Navigator ready?" Sarina called back in the headset, "Yes, navigator ready."
"Mission control ready?" Soldier Sam asked into the headset. "Mission control ready. We will begin countdown in T minus ten seconds, nine seconds, eight seconds" . . . Sarina’s Heart began to race . . . "two seconds, one . . . BLASTOFF!"
Sarina and Soldier Sam clung on tightly as they had never felt a power like this before. They soon zoomed out towards the Rings!
Sarina turned to Soldier Sam excitedly, “We’re going on a Ring Hunt, we’re going to Surf some Rings, we’re not scared! Bring It On!!”
As the Starship took off for the Rings, Sarina and Soldier Sam were thrown back into their seats. The Starship zoomed up into the sky so fast everything out the window was just a blur. It seemed like just a couple of seconds had gone by when everything got really smooth and quiet.
Sarina and Soldier Sam were Surfing Saturn’s Rings on Sarina’s Birthday!