I’m still knocking around ideas for turning the Duke Riley phenomenon into a kids book. Here’s the latest set-up:
A teenage Duke Riley has just built his first ever submarine — from plastic lard containers thrown away from a potato chip factory.
After a couple of swimming pool tests he convinces a grown-up (wacky ex-hippie Capt. Larry)
to take him to the middle of New York Harbor in his houseboat and dump the sub overboard.
After just a few moments, Duke gives the emergency signal, but a passing cruse ship has created a powerful wake that is rocking the tiny houseboat violently.
Finally,Capt. Larry is able to start hauling on the rope that will bring the sub back to the surface.
Duke popped out of the hatch and almost tumbled out as it rocked back and forth. He lept for the houseboat and collapsed on the deck damp but not drowned.
“Capt. Larry! You won’t believe it!”
“Whoah, dude, was it leaking or what?”
“Yeah, a little bit, but that wasn’t the problem.”
“What was it then?”
“Another sub! A real sub! A military sub!”
“You mean like the Navy?”
“Yeah, but not our navy. It looked more like a Karenina Class Russian Prowler, a nuclear sub loaded with electronic eavesdropping equipment, radar, sonar and even the new phazar!”
“Yeah, Capt. Larry, this is serious! We’ve got to warn somebody!”
“This seems like a bad time to tell you that we’re sinking.”