And so LUPO prepares to cast off on its twenty-fifth cruise over the ocean of cyberspace under me, Jerome Betts, its second temporary skipper, while the usual hand on the helm practices the bagpipes or ponders pelmets and picture-rails.
Below in the galley, Mae Scanlan mutinies, Rosemary Court martials the egg-whites, Rob Stuart cries stinking fruit, Chris O’ Carroll marvels at the versatility of his string-bag, Melissa Balmain arranges expensive flowers and Brian Allgar interviews a chicken.
In the crew’s quarters,Christopher Robin tells Martin Parker of his need for more adult excitements, Lynn Roberts is hungover, possibly after a reunion with Kathy Gee, while Joan Butler considers giving up, D.A. Prince checks an address book, Geoff Lander reviews telephonic progress, Gillian Ewing recalls a school visit, and Pat D’Amico is in the lift.
On the bridge, David J. Kelly surveys the field, Susan de Sola and Ed Shacklee broadcast news of cosmic and global significance as Jerome Betts croaks of academic doom, Jean L.Kreiling tells of a cold car-borne coming and David Hedges has warnings for us all.
Down on deck, new recruits Damian Balassone, Daniel Galef, and S. Subramanian have just clambered aboard, so the siren sounds, the Jolly Roget flutters to the masthead and Cap’n Parker’s right little tight little lightship is on its way to Cyberia via the Cyllies.
While Jerome has been working his Guest-Editorial fingers to the bone I have been sitting in my new local pub conducting exhaustive research into the village where I have been living since last August. It is the sort of pub with an encouragingly large shelf of reference books and one of its walls now boasts (or says it boasts) a framed ode by me to its excellent macaroni cheese. The locals insist that it is far better than the snippet from Rupert Brooke which adorns a wall in the rival pub. Much though I am tempted by the prospect of continued lionisation and free beer I shall be back on board for the June Issue. In the meantime my huge thanks go to Jerome for keeping the lightship afloat so calmly and capably. Martin Parker.