This one’s edgy. Roy Kesey has written a story about passengers in an airport forced to wait what turns out to be days while a lot of strange stuff goes on. The writing style, short, quick, action-paced sentences get us through the story with a quick look around at who’s doing what, who’s coping, who’s going off the deep end.
Clearning a linear timeline meant to focus us totally on what is happening here and now. There is nothing from any of the character’s pasts that have impact on the events except in the normal way that anyone, at X time in their life, is so because of what came before.
As children play, people fight, set their territories with taped lines and in game play, separate into teams by nationality. The ridiculous becomes expected: the constant assurances by the airport personnel that the fog holding them there is about to disperse and the flight will leave any moment. This, despite days, raiding of all the restaurants and stands, soldiers outside, etc. Eventually there is a rebellion and people are killed,some have escaped but likely not made it safely out. I went back to an earlier passage which give us a micro version of the situation.
Lunch is worrisome: restaurant prices have trebled and there is no ham to be found. Afterwards, children remove toys from bags. The boys have plastic soldiers, the girls have Barbie dolls, and they all play together at war. The dolls wear stiletto heels, are ten times the size of the soldiers, leave death and destruction in their wakes. (p. 198)
The writing style is boom, boom, boom; not necessarily quick, but something is always happening–or so it seems. Even the descriptions are presented in this factual manner and it takes away any sense of emotional drama and replaces it with two things: anticipation and realization that this story is not just of these particular characters–and that is why they are nameless. It is a peek inside the mind and heart of every man put into a trying situation.