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Choc-Mobile


Harvey manned the Experience Chocolate History ride, which was basically a bumper car the size of an ultra-compact, that could fit a family of four (up to maybe five if the family was okay with sitting super close). Bars came down in the laps of the (usually) happy campers setting off to learn about Chocolate History.

"Welcome to the Experience Chocolate History ride," Harvey was required to say prior to launching a family into the tunnel. "Please keep all appendages in the Choc-Mobile and make sure that your iPhones and other devices are set to take pictures without flash.

By this point the families would have been given sample chocolate bars or candies, and if Harvey was having a lucky day, the kids wouldn't yet be fighting over the chocolate bars or candies or whatever.

If Harvey was having an exceptionally lucky day, the father in the Choc-Mobile in front of him wouldn't make a joke about his brown rectangle hat. Though it was made out of chocolate molds, there were no two ways about the fact that the hat resembled a pile of crap. And it sat on his head all day.

If Harvey was not having an exceptionally lucky day, the father in the Choc-Mobile in front of him would likely say something like, "Jesus, son, why do you have to wear a pile of crap on your head like that? Don't they at least let you get away with your dignity in this place?"

And look, it wasn't not on Harvey's mind that the chocolate hats were, at best, pretty lame and, at worst, yes, did look like a pile of crap. But it's not as though he needed every New Yorker family patriarch to make mention of his required headgear. It was part of the uniform. He was required to wear it. It wasn't as though he selected, every morning, the best looking of his collection of chocolate crap hats. He had one. He wore it every day. That was that.

On Tuesday, the Experience Chocolate History ride came to a clanging halt at around 11AM. The ride stopped entirely, though the lightly playing pop music didn't stop.

"Harvey to Helen," Harvey whispered into the micro-mic pinned to the collar of his chocolate-crap-brown polo shirt. "Helen, come in."

Helen worked the middle section of the ride, blowing bubbles at the families in the Choc-Mobiles from out of sight behind a chocolate bush made of styrofoam and felt.

"Harvey to Helen, do you see what the problem is?" Harvey asked.

Helen didn't respond. But from inside the tunnel came a sudden yelp. Then sloshing footsteps. Someone was running along the River of Cocoa toward the front of the ride. It had to be Brenda. Harvey thought that he recognized the tenor and sploshing of the feet, plus families would definitely have been informed that they should stay put in their Choc-Mobilies (especially after the incident with the Nigelson family the previous year).

Basically, it wasn't a lucky day.