Alice sat with her sister on the riverbank, bored out of her mind. She didn’t feel like braiding flowers again, and she wasn’t terribly interested in the book her sister was reading, either.
That’s when the White Rabbit muttered something about being late, looked at his pocketwatch, and hopped towards a hole in the riverbank.
Alice waited for the snap of the rabbit-trap.
It came, and the rabbit screamed in agony.
“Have you found a recipe for rabbit yet?” asked Alice.
“I think so,” said her sister, shutting the cookbook. “You club it, I’ll skin it.”
Alice kept the pocketwatch.
Daventry had a problem: crime.
Gotham had Batman.
Metropolis had Superman.
Daventry had nobody… until The Question arrived.
Dressed in question marks, The Question of Daventry roamed the streets at night, fighting crime.
Criminals changed their schedules to the daytime. Then they agreed on a rotating-shift plan to cover all hours of the day to keep The Question constantly exhausted.
Eventually, the criminals got word to The Riddler, and The Question of Daventry was sued over the costume. Then lawyers arrived from Hub City about the name.
I think that explains the guy in the chicken suit with the flyswatter.
Contrary to popular belief, the Tree Of Knowledge was no tree at all, but a cornfield.
The snake was no snake, but a massive scarecrow placed to drive all living creatures from the cornfield, including the pair of humans God had recently created.
Eve tempted Adam with the corn, but he did not find the husk-covered vegetable to be all that appetizing.
Only when Eve shucked it, boiled it in a nearby hot spring, and smothered it with salt and butter did Adam finally take a bite.
Upon their banishment from Paradise and discovering their nakedness, Adam created a corn-bib.
A long time ago, I remember my father showing me the place mat at the Chinese restaurant, printed with the stylized depictions of various animals, and saying that the Chinese Zodiac was how the Chinese government was run.
“Since they’re Communists,” he said, “the people run the country. When your year in the Zodiac comes up, you take office.”
“Sort of like jury duty?” I asked.
“In a way,” he said.
I looked at the animals… roosters, dragons, sheep, monkeys…
“Monkeys ruling China?” I asked. “What about the worl-”
That’s when our order arrived.
I never did get an answer.
A frog-footman bows, croaks “Harlequin,” and hands me a letter.
I thank him and open it.
Wonderful. There’s another damned croquet match at the palace.
I crumple up the note from the Red Queen inviting me to stay away from the party and toss it in the footman’s green face.
He ribbits and coughs.
“You’re looking for a tip?” I ask him.
He extends a flipper. “Sir?”
I smack him in the face with a pie and slam the door.
By leaving me out, that royal bitch proves once and for all that she’s not playing with a full deck.
You’d be surprised at the number of people who don’t come back to pick up their prints.
We used to call them ourselves, but now we let the computer call them.
Still, some folks just don’t care. So unclaimed prints and negatives get kept for a year before they’re tossed in the dumpster.
We really ought to shred or recycle them, but we don’t.
Every day you see someone who looks like a registered pervert go dumpster diving and pull out a box or two.
It’s disgusting, but I guess it’s better than them doing things to the actual kids.
The closer to the front, the quicker you handle support calls.
Even though it’s important to get grunts’ systems back up and running so they can fight, the real issue is purely self-preservation.
Sure, you can remote or tell the grunt to reboot. Or they’ll pull out a spare and send the damaged unit back, but some situations demand hands-on solutions.
This was one of them. And as I was racing to the front, my jeep hit a landmine. Blew everything to bits around me.
And into me. Doctors are still picking bits and pieces out of my bloody gut.
Shubblurbpop’s slave-vessel landed, quickly blackholing its shattered jumpcore before disgorging its human cargo for processing.
“Ship’s a wreck, Your Slimeness” said the spaceport administrator. “Where’s the rest of your fleet?”
“Lost it,” said Shubblurbpop. “Bad maps.”
“Good luck explaining it,” said the administrator.
Heading back home, the oozeway was busier than usual, but Shubblurbpop arrived before Mudfall.
“Announcing Shubblurbpop!” shouted the palace pages.
“Um… I wrecked the fleet, Dad,” said Shubblurbpop.
His father writhed pseudopods in annoyance, but Queen Pipblipshububble soothed his rage and welcomed her son home.
“Did you bring Chinese?” asked the Queen.
All was forgiven.
That smell you’re smelling is the Sweet Smell of Success.
Today, a cold front is lowering the Success Dew Point, so it’s precipitating success out of the air. Normally, it’s less than two or three parts per billion, much less than what a human nose can sense.
Of course, at that concentration, it still drives the dogs wild, almost mad with ambition.
You can train a dug-sniffing dog or a bomb-sniffing dog. There’s even cancer-sniffing dogs in the works. But nobody trains success-sniffing dogs.
So, please, sit still, Mr. Trump. Rover’s a friendly boy.
Just no sudden moves, okay?
“Meow!” said Frisky, turning circles by his bowl in the kitchen.
“For the last time, it is not time for dinner!” I said.
“Meow!” said Nardo.
“Mew!” exclaimed Piper.
“Look what you’ve done,” I told Frisky. “Now you’ve got the other two all riled up.”
It’s the same thing every year when Daylight Savings Time ends.
I don’t know whether it’s their little furry bellies rumbling or the sun going down earlier every evening, but there’s no telling a cat when his or her dinner is going to be.
The clock be damned, the cats tell you that it’s suppertime.