iBall.com CEO Chad Derwent sat alone in his office in Silicon Valley. Outside his open door, rows of empty, silent cubicles stretched from one end of the office floor to the other.
Frank stepped out of the dark, moonless night of the Nevada desert and into the bright light of the bar, restaurant and motel that was the Little A’Le’Inn. Along one wall ran a counter with stools and the backsides of a couple of locals. Behind the counter he saw a waitress, cash register, and a modest assembly of liquor bottles that apparently constituted the bar. That took care of the predictable part of the room. And then there was the rest.
Despite the odd spelling, there couldn’t be much doubt over the meaning of the café’s name. Hung on pegboards, sitting on shelves, and hanging from the ceiling was an impressively random collection of just about anything you might (or might not) imagine could be presented with an extraterrestrial theme.