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Cinderella Search

Introduction: Torch said: "Gorgeous little summery song about our hero 'forgives rejections in cigarette city' as he survives constant disappointments whilst he has a drink and a ciggie to hand. He is pretty much always four parts pissed... 'five dimensions down and reeling... three dimensions down, dissolving...' and so 'fumbles all the lines'. However there is always a 'light at the end of the bottle'.

"I assume the 'alcoholic alphabet' is the letters at the end of a bottle written in the glass? Not too sure about the 'horizontal conversations' bit, but after that magical guitar solo, things look up for our rogue as a lady shows an interest in him, the 'Samaritan of the heartbroken' and in the 'marquee of promises' which has to be the Marquee Club, Fish's favourite drinking den, he 'touches the dream to end the Cinderella Search'. Presumably the next bit is him in expectation of a bit of carnal knowledge: 'work extension...?' Suppose this is because his hunts are almost a trade now and this time he's 'on the job' a little longer than usual, on overtime so to speak.

"But!! 'The footman memorized the number but the prince still holds both the slippers, and would you leave a palace for a bedsit in Canterbury Tales?' In imagery from the fairy story, he the lowly footman has remembered the size of the slipper that will fit Cinders, but the Prince still has the thing that will win her over, and she would never reject riches for his life of poetic debauchery!

"'Raped and still forlorn' our hero bitterly consoles himself by insisting it was maybe just 'infatuation or the thrill of the chase', although he was a little in love with her perhaps... 'was that love in your eye I saw, or the reflection of mine?' But she never 'gave him the time' to find out (bitch!) and so it's 'welcome back to the circus!', that is, back to bar room sharking for wenches. He cheerfully reminds us he 'always uses the cue sheets but never the nets!', perhaps meaning he always needs a prompt when he is about to act, but never worries if he fails, as he always survives without a safety net."

'Horizontal Conversation'
Wayne Bloschichak said: "In the US, 'horizontal conversation' means having sex."

Famous, intimate London venue and drinking den, (as Andy 'Tosh' McIntosh pointed out) in Wardour Street, then moved to Charing Cross Road, now sadly defunct and replaced by some stainless-steel-and-pine bar full of tossers. The Marquee residencies helped launch the career of many British bands, including Dire Straits, Queen and, indeed, Marillion. The video for Incommunicado was shot there, and the cover features the frontage.

'Canterbury tales'
The Canterbury Tales were written by Geoffrey Chaucer. Brewer's: "Chaucer represented that he was in the company with a party of pilgrims going to pay their devotions at the shrine of Thomas Beckett. The party assembled at the Tabbard Inn, Southwark, London, and there agreed to tell one tale each, both in going and returning. He who told the best tale was to be rewarded with a supper on the return journey. The work is incomplete, and we have none of the tales told on the way home."

'Cue sheets'
In a theatre or circus (as is more relevant here), a cue sheet is provided to stage hands and technicians to enable them to know when various changes should take place - everything from playing a sound effect, changing the lighting, having a costume change ready for an actor at the side of the stage, moving scenery etc - by giving them the cue that will take place on stage - normally this will be a line of dialogue or a stage action.

Additionally, the word 'sheet' in nautical parlance means a rope, and this may tie into the connected image of the circus net. An article by the United States Institute for Theater Technology here debunks the idea that theatre rigging does actually derive from nautical practice, but it acknowledges that this is widely believed, and so it is entirely possible that the listener is supposed to make that link.

Songs with a link have explanations.

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  1. 'horizontal conversations' could refer to post-sex pillow talk


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