It was time for another almost-day-off, and Laetitia was ready for it. The previous night there had been a party at Uncle Milt’s, attended by various members of Laetitia’s quirky extended family. Being of mostly northern European descent, attendees were likely to show up in lederhosen or some other garb reflecting their mood and ancestry. Kilt-wearers always prompted speculation as to whether or not they were wearing underwear, an issue that remained unresolved except on those rare occasions when one of them got falling-down-drunk and revealed the answer.
At the party, the younger set had congregated downstairs around Milt’s collection of classic pinball machines. They were from the era of devices rigged with a pendulum and ring mechanism that stopped the game and displayed “Tilt” if the player moved the machine too violently in trying to coax the ball to the desired spot. Tilt has many slang meanings, but in the parlance of Laetitia’s clan it is used to describe one so tipsy that he or she can barely stay upright. Someone might say, “Cousin Eddie just went tilt.”
Upstairs Laetitia performed Christie Mystery, with her cousins Luciano and Bryn, accompanied by her cousin Alicia on piano. Then they performed Kopi Luwak, which she wrote after her grandmother’s trip Indonesia, where she sampled the civet-processed coffee. After the older set sang some bawdy college-inspired ballads, the final number of the evening was The Diary of Samuel Pepys.
Laetitia’s limerick of the day was about the party.
I love all those parties at Milt’s
When male cousins show up in kilts
And you may get a chance
To see who wears no pants
If he drinks so much booze that he tilts.