Sunday, January 22, 2012

L Sprague de Camp's "Nothing in the Rules" (novelette, humor): What if mermaids were allowed in women's swimming competitions?

While a light story, I got a feeling it's dragging a bit near end.

Story summary.

Item: Merfolk exist. Particularly near Cyprus.

Item: Since they live in the ocean, their hairs get wet. So they need to sit on rocks for a while to dry them! Won't it be wonderful if they had human bathing caps, so their hair remains dry?

That's how, Miss Delfoiros, the mermaid charged with procuring 10,000 bathing caps for merfolk, ended up in the New York City. In exchange for helping her get the caps, Herbert Laird, a swimming coach, will secure her participation in a forthcoming women's swimming competition; he wants to put Louis Connaught, his arch rival competitor coach, down in his place.

Fun ensues. Later, a (female) sea lion will also get added to the melee!

Collected in.

  1. "The Best of L Sprague de Camp".

Fact sheet.

First published: Unknown, July 1939.
Rating: B.
Related: Stories of L Sprague de Camp.