Captains of Industry

by Larry Strattner

     Cigarettes glowed in the plush, dim room overlooking the Hudson River. Both smoked. Always had. The habit had arguably given Renee the sexiest female voice in creation.

     She and Ashley watched the sun set behind New Jersey across the river. They were on their second Cosmo. Renee had shaken the drinks until splinters of ice floated in them, poured them into glasses taken from the Zero freezer. She always kept eight martini glasses in the Zero. She was not a proponent of the first drink being important and those following about getting drunk. Every drink was important to Renee.

     They smoked 70mm Gitanes Brunes, filtered. Straights were too much for either of them these days. Beneath loose clothing and braless their breasts moved languorously as they sipped drinks and flicked ashes. Both looked better than is anyone's right.

     The sun sank into Newark and the indirect lighting flicked on. They had been discussing sex and the social scene. In the soft light Renee said, “I have actually slept with a number of Captains of Industry and would rate them, overall, deficient in skills.”

     “I heard Tom Jones has a huge dick,” offered Ashley.

     “Perhaps. Anyway, he is a singer not an industrialist. Lonnie the bartender at Bull and Bear told me some of what you see in Tom's tight pants is prosthetic. To be entertaining one must keep an appearance of readiness.”

     “I guess.”

     “Guessing is for the inexperienced. I know. There is no guessing.”

     “Have you done the Captain of General Motors?”

     “Heaven's no. Have you seen him in person? What a frightful man. I wouldn't have sex with him with your pussy.”

     “Very funny. You could do worse. I've had guys yelling like bull riders at the rodeo.”

     “All rock stars and pro skateboarders yell my dear. You need to get with someone older who will slow it down; make you yell. You're not an indentured servant.”


     “Never mind. Just work on getting out of the eighteen to twenty five group and avoid Industrialists. You'll be fine.”

     “Why avoid Industrialists? You never said.”

     “It's simple dear. They are results oriented and the results they focus on are their own. They are impatient for those results having been conditioned by bonuses. When they are finished you are lying there wondering what happened. Their huge ego, required to succeed, lets them feel only triumph.  They work long hours and are out of shape. If you do enough of them one is bound to die in the saddle. Talk about embarrassing. Doubly so if the press publishes a picture and your friends see the meatball you were banging. They are best left for girls with large tits, round glasses and small brains.”

     Renee and Ashley laughed and sipped their Cosmos. Cigarette smoke wafted to the ceiling and was whisked into a vent maintaining a crisp  intimacy.

     “So who have you been doing lately? Someone from the club scene? I saw your picture in the paper; down at Cielo.”

     “One needs to keep up appearances. But no, I am not boffing any of those vacuous boys. I am in fact, partially against my advice, doing a Captain. A Tugboat Captain. He is slightly ill spoken and smells of diesel fuel but is an accomplished pearl diver. I met him at Connelly's Bar in Queens. And remember your mention of Tom Jones?”


     “Yes. Rather than the sailor choose the navigator, my dear. The weather may get a bit rough but he will see you home to port without fail.”

     “Sounds like a plan. Where in Queens is Connelly's?”