I picked up your book, the Sex Adventurer’s Travel Guide to the Kuiper Belt, on sale at a used book bulletin on frugalspacefarers.com. I now recognize that this was my first mistake. However, although I was aware that the book might be out of date, it didn’t occur to me that it could possibly be so wildly inaccurate so as to get me into serious trouble.
I spent a large amount of money on the flight here and on four-star hotel accommodations, eager to take advantage of the “cornucopia of sexual delights” that your book assured me was “there for the taking” on Ceres for any human male with good credit. I also purchased a large amount of gifts based on your recommendation that Cerian women would come flocking to me if I brought a lime green feather boa with me and carried it around on display. I’m not sure what Cerian is for “snigger” but I’m pretty sure I now recognize the local phrase for “What an idiot”.
Quite frankly: I find it hard to believe that you have ever been in the Kuiper Belt, as you claim in your introduction, nor that you ever set foot on Ceres. Your advice to be effusive and outgoing to good looking young women meant I was undone before I even started. Eventually I discovered that what is considered a common way to let a woman know she is hot in New York City apparently translates to “help, help, my genitals are on fire” to the average Ceresian. This would have been a useful thing to mention in your guide.
When I attempted to compliment a young woman with more subtlety by telling her she smelled of jasmine, I used the translation app in your book, which told me the correct transcription was [symbol][symbol][symbol], which I am now aware means “a rotting three-legged beast found only in the outer reaches of the stone swamp”. This, not surprisingly, was not taken as a flirtatious and friendly opening.
Apparently, it is not actually possible to tell the female of the species by the fronds on her forehead as you claim in Chapter three. I say this with some confidence because the two Cerians who I then found myself in an encounter with most definitely had male parts. That was when I discovered that your “useful phrases” did not include “You are not my type,” “I’ve made a terrible mistake,” or even “Stop that right now.” This is clearly an unforgiveable gap in your translation app but as a result of my later encounters, I can at least confirm that “I’ll call the authorities” is [symbol][symbol][symbol].
In chapter 7, you continue to describe the women of Ceres as “easy to please” and the text surely gives the impression that it is easy to find passion and excitement in the Cerian resorts. The reality appears to be that they are, in fact, more than happy to report unfortunate travelers who are so bold as to ask about sexual encounters.
I have to admit that you did cover Sadomasochism and Bondage in Chapter Nine so I was not completely unaware of the possibilities. But quite frankly, although I enjoy a little bit of ridicule, this is above and beyond what I expected.
Sargassian Prison is cold, damp, wet and the food tastes like processed silicon. Some of the guards appear to be female but they are neither “there for the taking” nor “easy to please”, I can assure you.
The imprisonment is not as bad as one might think (although I would hardly recommend it as a holiday resort). At least I have free wifi. And of course, I have your book, which I am now rereading with something akin to amusement.
As you can imagine, there is not a lot to do when locked up for charges that all seem to use the terms vulgar and salacious in their descriptions (as handily translated by your app). They say that I will be released in a week but only if I depart the planet immediately and with no refund of the funds I invested into this trip.
So while I am stuck here, I have done some research and contrary to my belief that you are just stupid, I have discovered that you are, in fact, [symbol][symbol], of Cerian descent. Apparently, you are so out of touch with your own culture that you do not realize how completely wrong your advice is.
I have posted to various travel and sex adventure message boards recommending that your book be AVOIDED at all costs. And for that matter, that Ceres and probably the entire Kuiper Belt best be avoided too. I will continue to tell everyone online what I think of you and your people until I am finally free.
I hope you are happy.
George Egglesmith III
This story originally appeared in Daily Science Fiction.