Minor acts of defiance and/or just minor acts:
1. People were getting worried. Danny was over 20 minutes late. Peering over the fence of the Lido Deck, Alex could see him crossing the street with what appeared to be Aldi bags dangling from the prongs of a shuffle tang. As he approached, the crew could see these were not plastic grocery bags but rather white silk sacks, hand-stitched with the Aldi logo. Danny removed a wooden replica of a Tang container, masterfully painted to mimic the OG 50s packaging. He began scooping out piles of his homemade orange powder and sprinkled it over everyone's drinks. "Sorry I'm late, but I couldn't bear the thought of showing up empty handed to our first game of the season. By the way, f kombucha, Tang is the future."
2. Laura met Ashley whilst lounging on hammocks at Lollapalooza, both too drained by the youth around them to venture back to any shows quite yet. Laura overheard her lamentation on the number of tube-top-and-glitter-thong outfits flouncing about in the most perfect Tiffany Blum-Deckler voice and was immediately captivated. "Dude, I'd know that Valley-girl drawl any day," Laura said, introducing herself. Ashley offered Laura some smuggled crackers, who in return offered her an air-conditioned apartment for the night. When they got back that evening, Laura opened the front door, revealing an array of papier-mâché animal masks. "My friend is going through a Schiap phase," Laura commented, making up two plates of spaghetti. Ashley graciously took the noodles and plopped down between two flamingo headdresses, nodding in approval. "My kind of people."
3. Craig: "Well you know me. Give me a full Adidas track suit and a hint of tiki and I'm on board."
Becca: "But do you think it's too much like..."
Craig: "Like the firebird red from Royal Tenenbaums? I thought that, but no, not with the right accessories. It should work."
He pulled down a pair of giant plastic sunglasses and posed in front of the teal tinsel. He was right, it worked.
4. Ellen had always declined the invitation to complete Vanity Fair's Proust Questionnaire. Not for fear of exposing her true self to the readers, nor for a lack of original answer, but rather because she had never admired anyone or anything before (and she would rather watch SYTYCD reruns with Becca every day for the rest of her life than leave something unfinished). Upon catching a glimpse of Missy Robbins' temperature controlled pasta storage room, she called up VF to fulfill her public service of telling the world intimate details about herself. "Which living person do you admire most?" "The architect of Missy's pasta closet, who, as of last night, is also the architect of my pasta closet."
5. Nick and Kathleen shared a knowing glance as they walked the sacred ground, recalling the rumors they heard over the years. Rumors of legends past who walked these same concrete paths, expertly nudged biscuits to unfathomable victories, and ever-so-slightly raised their tangs in victory. Finally, they stood in the hallowed halls of the St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club. Kathleen scanned the competition and let out a soft gasp as she made eye contact with a bearded man dressed in a surprisingly heavy jumpsuit for the balmy Florida weather. "NICK," she whisper-shrieked, "that's Jonathan Schnapp!" "I double-dog dare you to challenge him," Nick said with a grin. He hadn't even finished his sentence before Kathleen had introduced herself, passed Jon a shot (of Tang) with a cupcake (to chase), and planted the seed to open a Chicago branch of the v hip Royal Palms Shuffle Club minutes from their new flat.
6. Having tired of the same old archaeological paths he hiked all summer, Alex took the internet. He typed in "Dali - Cool Shit," forgetting the Cypriot Dali is not top of Google's mind. Rather than local breweries and picturesque sunsets, he was offered a myriad of tours through St. Petersburg's Salvador Dali Museum. As Alex scrolled through images of melting clocks and cheeky lobsters, he was struck with how little he really knew about the painter. He called up the crew and asked them to meet him in Florida for a highly education expedition to the museum. The excuses flooded in. "Idk, hurricanes." "It's hot." "I was going to brush my dog." There was only one way to drag these kids to the pinnacle of heat during Chicago's peak season: "we can shuffle every day."