Section 2 - Midway
The Midway is west of the Fair and southwest of Park Center. "Here in front of the [pharmacy] in the southwestern corner of the town square, various contests have been set up [--] a [strong-man contest], a contest to see who can burst the most [balloons] using [a styrofoam dart-plane], and so on."
The pharmacy is a facade in Midway. It fronts south. It is scenery. Understand "pharmacy" or "window" or "windows" or "glass" or "front" or "shade" or "shampoo" or "razors" or "analgesics" or "burn" or "creams" or "candy" or "toothpaste" or "homeopathic" or "remedies" as the pharmacy. The description is "There's not much to see, as a shade has been pulled down behind the glass front. I can tell you what's back there, though, if you care: the usual assortment of shampoo and razors and analgesics and burn creams; candy, and also toothpaste; and a costly selection of homeopathic remedies in matching brown bottles."
The blank church wall is a facade in Midway. It fronts west. It is scenery. The description is "The blank wall separates off the church property that lies west of here."
The closure notice is "The wall is solid here, though the church can be entered from the church forecourt. ".
Instead of going south in Midway:
say "The pharmacy, like many of the other shops in the area, is closed so that the employees can enjoy Serial Comma Day. [run paragraph on]";
carry out the listing exits activity.
Rule for listing exits while looking in Midway:
do nothing instead.
The strong-man hammering contest is scenery in the Midway. Understand "strongman" or "bell" or "bells" or "hammer" as the contest. The description is "It's one of those contests where you have to hammer something so that something else flies up and rings a bell. I don't have time for that kind of silly macho display."
The balloons are scenery in the Midway. The description is "All stapled in place and ready to be attacked." Instead of attacking the balloons: say "[one of]Better to leave that nonsense to the little ones.[or]Come on, we'll never get away if you insist on lollygagging![or]We have better things to do, remember?[stopping]".
The styrofoam dart-plane is scenery in the Midway. The description is "Ridiculous little styrofoam gliders with dart-noses. No use to us, anyway."
The word-balance is fixed in place in the Midway. Understand "balance" or "steel" or "scales" or "pair of" or "beam" or "fabulous" as the word-balance. The printed name is "word-balance". "[if the barker is visible]I assume you've noticed, though, [otherwise]No longer so useful is [end if]the [word-balance], which comes up as high as our hip. [balance contents]". The description is "The beam is [if the word-balance is tilting]tilting[otherwise]balanced[end if]. [balance contents]".
Instead of touching, pushing, pulling, or turning the word-balance:
try pushing the right pan.
Instead of inserting something into the word-balance:
say "You'd have to be specific about which pan you mean."
Instead of putting something on the word-balance:
say "You'd have to be specific about which pan you mean."
Understand "put [word-balance] out of alignment" or "unbalance [word-balance]" or "win [tube]" or "try hand" or "try my/our hand" or "try hand at [word-balance]" or "try my/our hand at [word-balance]" as a mistake ("[one of]That does seem like the general idea.[or]Could you be a little clearer about the strategy?[or]I don't see how to carry out that clever little plan.[stopping]").
A ranking rule for the word-balance: increase description-rank of the word-balance by 50.
Every turn when a fluid thing (called target) is in a pan:
unless the target is contained:
move the target to the location;
say "[The target] runs rapidly out through the slots of the pan."
if the word-balance is tilting and the barker is visible
[follow the considerate player's holdall rule;]
move the tube to the player;
move the barker to the repository;
say "There is a [if the ear is in a pan]disgusted gasp[otherwise]cheer[end if] from the spectators. [The word-balance] tilts slowly but inexorably.
[The barker] looks astonished and displeased, except for a fraction of a second when he just noticeably winks. With exaggerated bad grace hands us [a gel]. 'There's your prize. And now this contest is over.'
He stalks away";
[if the apple is in a pan
move the apple to the repository;
say ", taking [the apple] with him";
record "winning the gel" as achieved;
if the barker is the current interlocutor, change the current interlocutor to nothing;
To say balance contents:
if the right pan does not contain something
if the left pan does not contain something, say "Both pans are empty. ";
otherwise say "The right pan is empty and the left contains [a list of things in the left pan]. ";
otherwise if the left pan does not contain something;
say "The left pan is empty and the right contains [a list of things in the right pan]. ";
say "On the right pan [is-are a list of things in the right pan] and on the left [a list of things in the left pan]. ";
A pan is a kind of container. Understand "scale" or "pan" or "pans" as a pan. The right pan and the left pan are pans. The left pan and the right pan are part of the word-balance. The description of a pan is "Sturdy but slotted."
Instead of putting something on a pan, try inserting the noun into the second noun.
An apple is a vegetable. The apple is edible.
In the right pan is an apple. In the left pan is a pear. The pear is edible.
The description of an apple is "Red-cheeked and rosy." The scent-description of an apple is "apple juice". The flavor-description of an apple is "The skin tastes slightly waxy: I suspect it's been gussied up to look nice."
The description of the pear is "Handsome and green."
The flavor-description of the pear is "The flesh is not quite ripe and tastes wooden."
Instead of smelling the pear:
say "It doesn't smell like much of anything, probably because it's not completely ripe yet."
The pear is a vegetable.
Report waving the letter-remover at the apple creating ale:
say "There's a smell of fermenting apple, then cider, then something more malty. In the apple's place there is now a glass of nutbrown ale." instead.
Understand "put [something preferably held] on/onto [a pan]" as inserting it into.
Instead of taking something which is in a pan in the presence of the barker:
say barker-refusal instead.
Instead of touching or pushing or pulling or turning a pan in the presence of the barker: say barker-refusal instead.
Instead of touching or pushing or pulling or turning something which is in a pan in the presence of the barker: say barker-refusal instead.
Instead of inserting something into a pan in the presence of the barker: say barker-refusal instead.
To say barker-refusal:
say "[one of]'None of that!' says [the barker]. 'You must make one side go down and the other come up, but you may not add or subtract anything from the load, you may not apply pressure to the beam itself, and you may not lean on, push, pull, or support the individual pans!'
A little boy in the crowd snickers rudely. 'Got ya!'[or]The barker gives us a warning look. In case you forgot, we may not increase or decrease the contents of the pan by hand or lean on the beam.[or]It is against the rules of the contest to remove something from the pans; and whatever we do, we've got to do without touching.[stopping]";
The barker is a man in the Midway. "Beside the word-balance is a barker in [a blue suit], the same regulation blue used by the Bureau of Orthography." The barker wears a blue suit. The description of the barker is "He is dapper in his suit, as though he might belong to an especially vivid barber-shop quartet." The description of the suit is "Carefully tailored in bright blue linen, with fine white pinstripes."
Instead of telling someone about something:
say "[The noun] stares at us coldly. [one of]I wish you wouldn't babble at folks: it just draws attention.[or]I know you didn't grow up around here, but people in this vicinity tend not to be so free with their words.[stopping]".
Instead of asking someone about something:
say "[The noun] thinks for a moment, then apparently decides not to answer."
Definition: the word-balance is tilting if the total heft of the things in the left pan is not the total heft of the things in the right pan.
Every turn when the barker is visible and the word-balance is not tilting:
add barker-advertisement to the planned conversation of the barker.
Check someone who is not the current interlocutor discussing an NPC-directed quip:
set the current interlocutor to the actor.
barker-advertisement is an NPC-directed quip.
The response is "[one of]'Step up and try your hand at the fabulous word-balance!' calls the barker appealingly.[or]'Put the beam out of alignment and win a fabulous prize!' says the barker, holding up a [tube].[or]'One [tube] of restoration gel goes to the first person who can unbalance the word-balance!' cries the barker, glance sweeping the crowd.[at random]".
The barker is carrying a tube. The description of the tube is "It claims to be full of restoration gel, but said gel has mostly gone. If only it had been a larger container to start with." Understand "gel" or "prize" or "fabulous prize" or "label" or "restoration gel" as the tube. The scent-description of the tube is "mint". The tube is essential.
Instead of searching the tube:
try examining the tube.
Instead of opening or closing the tube: say "It comes without a cap."
Instead of squeezing the tube:
say "[You] squeeze vigorously, but nothing comes out."
Instead of tasting or eating the tube:
say "It is not for internal consumption."
Instead of waving the letter-remover at the tube when the tube is carried by the barker:
say "The barker spots us gesticulating and smoothly, almost without thinking about it, swaps the tube into the other hand so that [you] miss."
Instead of examining the tube when the tube is carried by the barker:
say "[You] can't get a good look at the tube from this position, but it definitely appears to be authentic restoration gel [--] valuable stuff, I recall you saying. [one of](Or were you just trying to impress me?)[or][stopping]".
Understand "rub [tube] on/onto/over/into/to [something]" as a mistake ("[if the barker carries the gel]You don't have the gel at the moment[otherwise]There isn't enough gel remaining in the little tube for use[end if].").
Understand "put [tube] on/onto/over/to [something]" as a mistake ("[if the barker carries the gel]You don't have the gel at the moment[otherwise]There isn't enough gel remaining in the little tube for use[end if].")
Understand "rub [tube] on/onto/over/into/to [tube]" as a mistake ("The gel doesn't restore the contents of things: it changes back items that have been linguistically manipulated.")
Understand "put [tube] on/onto/over/to [tube]" as a mistake ("The gel doesn't restore the contents of things: it changes back items that have been linguistically manipulated.")
[Some spectators are a person in the Midway. They are scenery. The description is "They wander and hover and point and gawk and then move on." Understand "crowd" or "players" or "people" as the spectators. ]
[The Postcard Stalls are north of the Park Center, east of the Food Corner, and west of Outdoor Cafe. "It is astonishing how exactly alike all postcard vendors are. It is the usual thing: white wire racks with pictures of the harbor, the city walls, the ancient fortifications."
Rule for listing exits when looking in Postcard Stalls: do nothing.
[Northwest of the Park Center is the Food Corner.
The description of the Food Corner is "In this corner of the park, a sausage stand has been set up. This is partly for the benefit of the people enjoying the park and partly for the patrons of the cinema to the north, which has no food counter of its own."
The sausage stand is scenery in Food Corner. "An ingenious invention able to keep several dozen Italian sausages, bratwurst, and Kosher hot dogs simultaneously at the ideal heat for serving."
The sausage-seller is a man in Food Corner. The description of the sausage-seller is "He looks suspicious [--] I mean, he looks as though he suspects us of something. It's true that I passed him earlier a few times when I came up here to stash my things before our operation. I even contemplated buying a Kosher hot dog from him, and changed my mind at the last minute because I was afraid of missing our appointment.
But since I was a tall blond male at the time, I don't think he can remember the incident."
Understand "sausage" or "seller" or "man" as the sausage-seller.]