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A rigamorale is a story that is unnecessarily long and complicated, usually to set up a joke that could have been told in a few sentences.

The success of this story depends on the storyteller. If you have one who can make pointless details fascinating, that is who you want.

The Cruise Ship

a sample rigamorale collected at a Scout campfire

Once there was a man who had been homeless his whole life. No matter what he did, he couldn't seem to catch a break. Nevertheless, he had a good attitude, and he had learned many survival skills along the way.

One day, he encountered a man in deep distress looking around the park where he usually spent his days. When he asked what was wrong, the man informed him that his young daughter was missing, that he had turned around and she was gone, and he couldn't find her.

The homeless man said he would help, well as he knew the area, and after a short search, located the girl in a line for a food truck. The father, grateful, said, "I am a very rich man. I can get you anything you want."

After a moment, the homeless man said, "I have never gotten to go anywhere. I would love to go on an around-the-world cruise." The rich man bought him the tickets immediately and took him to the dock.

Needless to say, the staff of the cruise ship was appalled to see this grungy man walking up the dock. They verified that his ticket was valid, but asked him to keep to himself and only walk the cruise ship at night.

The homeless man cheerfully agreed, and on the very first night discovered the pool. He went to the diving board, and much to the astonishment of the night staff, did a perfectly executed flip and twist of a dive, the sort of which an Olympic diver could not do better.

"That was amazing!" they said, and called more of the staff to see. Once again, the homeless man executed a perfect dive, and again from the taller platform.

Soon the word of this diving prodigy spread throughout the ship. The staff built a taller and taller platform to show him off, one that was as tall as the smokestacks on this already tall ship. The homeless man climbed up, and up, until you could barely see him at the top. Then he dived, doing flip after flip, and cut into the water.

But the force of his dive was so great that he punched through the floor of the pool, through the deck below, and all the way through the bottom of the ship.

Well, the hole wasn't all that big, and the watertight seals worked. The ship limped back to port, the crew mourning the loss of such a talent, and pulled in to be repaired.

To their astonishment, they discovered the man still alive at the bottom of the ship! They asked him how he could have possibly survived, and he replied,

"I'm used to living through hard ships."

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