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Abernethy 31 Hugh Abernethy, Jr. Hangover Politics Celeste is in the blue chair on the pink slate patio. Miami Herald over her brown knees. She stares at coconut palms and indigo Havana Bay. Ben comes out with espresso. Hair uncombed. 3 day stubble. Last night tequila bloodshot eyes. Well, do you think he can hold out? Celeste has a bad habit. She starts conversations in the middle only Ben's forgetting before he passed out at 3 a.m. they were getting heated over Batista. His head is pounding like Gene Kruppa in a rage. Throat raw. Who? Batista. Is he shaky or what? Ben shrugs. He's stupid and lazy. Should have disposed of Fidel 32 the minnesota review in '53 when he had the chance. You don't like Castro. Celeste is baiting him but he's limp as a fish on a dry dock. Ben gulps the espresso and hands the other to Celeste. She smiles like a mulatto Venus on a blue coral pedestal. Too bad she's Danish but Ben can dream. Fidel's an infidel. Celeste makes a face. That's a lousy joke. Best I can do with a tequila sinus headache. Don't you think Castro cares about the farmers and blue collar types? Sure. Batista worries about not enough caviar and champagne at his next party for the ambassador from Liechtenstein or wherever. Celeste spits a little black river of espresso on the pink slate. You'd make a good stand-up satirist. Ben stares at his Keds Abernethy 33 discouraged that Celeste only laughs when he really means business. He heads for the kitchen and another fix, calling back: Do you want a second cup? And: I don't care about Castro or Batista or the working man. I don't want Cuba to be ruined for our winter vacations. ...


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