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Noshing on my favorite keyboard

Fluttered on July 4, 2010.

Earlier this week, I was sitting on a log noshing on my favorite keyboard when out of the blue a flea-bitten riddly zebra schronked its way by. Curious as to what it was up to, I stood up, stretched, and then bagged another dog and passed the burrito. Then, I followed it.

The zebra took me on a journey across the planet, through nearly every country that ever existed, present, past, and future. (I particularly liked my stay in Oceania—those daily two-minutes’ hates sure do get the blood flowing! But Ravna didn’t appreciate it when I told them she should be the one to get her face gnawed off by rats… no, not at all!)

Coming back to the United States—and still finding it having yet to be conquered by that bearded copy machine salesman from that silly, silly Kevin Costner movie—I settled in for a long winter’s nap… until I remembered that it was not only not winter, but actually the middle of the summer. To be precise, it was July 3: One mere day before yet another chance to set off 368,000 firecrackers in my back yard while frantically waving tiny American flags around and belching out the national anthem until I was hoarse as a horse (of course).

July 4 rolled around and reared its jingoistic, tacky, red-white-and-blue head, and so I went out to purchase my 368,000 firecrackers before darkness fell and the vampires came out. Upon discovering that the Spend-O-Mart on Crunkner Boulevard had been shuttered ever since they built that huge new one on the other side of town, I called up my old friend and Spend-O-Mart manager, Borb McBorbley, and demanded to know—at flunce!—when it would reopen.

Borb hung up on me the first four times I called, and upon calling the fifth time, he started shrieking profanities into the phone and even threatened to call the authorities if I called him a sixth time. Upon calling the sixth time, he just hung up, so I called him a seventh time and made fun of him relentlessly for being a big chicken. I egged him on harder than a whole carton of Fendippitous Eggmen. “Go ahead, whine to mommy, you big pantywaist! You whiny little unga-bungler, you! Nyah, nyah, nyaahhh!” I hooted into the phone. He hung up; I continued. I redialed, and continued anew. He hung up again. I redialed. I redialed again and there was no answer. I declared victory and promptly ate my phone’s headset in triumphant celebration.

Despairing that I wouldn’t be able to buy 368,000 firecrackers by nightfall, I suddenly remembered that Borb worked for the other Spend-O-Mart in town: The eeenormous new one they built over on Alpha Ralpha Boulevard out by the old treacle mines. Of course I had known this; I even mentioned it above: It had merely slipped out of my sieve of a mind while I had been occupied thinking up insults for poor widdle Borb McBorbley.

Remembering it once again, I got into my car and drove immediately out to the store. Borb was there to greet me as I sauntered through the front door. Upon my entrance, he welcomed me as only Borb knew how: By bugging his eyes out, working his mouth like a fish gulping for air, and backing away slowly, finally turning and breaking into a sprint when he was a safe distance away from yours truly. Naturally, I returned the greeting: Eyes wide, nostrils aflame, and teeth clenched, I sprinted after him as fast as I could.

“Borb! My old buddy, my old pal! Come say hello to your old buddy Pnårp!” I hollered after him. To drive home my sincerity, I began frothing at the mouth and waving my hands over my head.

Borb continued his greeting: “Aaaaiiiieeee!!”

I pursued him into the stock room and between rows of boxes, moving faster than a John Updike at a Goonhogo convention. Somehow, he gave me the slip back there, probably by cowardly diving into one of the boxes and hiding until I got bored and went to chase after something else shinier or puffier.

44¼ minutes later (they were very small minutes), I got bored and went to chase after something else shinier and puffier. Borb had, alas, escaped my grasp. This time. But next time… next time, Borb McBorbley, you shall be mine…

That episode of nuttery dispensed with, I sauntered back into the consumery section of the store, fetched a shopping pickup truck, and began browsing for fireworks. Naturally, yours truly doesn’t think small, so he picked out the biggest, most bangy fireworks he could find—and not only the biggest, but 368,000 of them! Woo-hoo-hey!! This was gonna be a big, big bang-fest tonight!

Upon arriving home, I called Mr. Wilson and notified him that it would be a wise course of action to move his house a few hundred feet down the street. He started to sputter something in protest but I would hear none of it. “And if this is too short a notice, Wilson,” I continued, “Well… your house gave his life for the most noblest of causes. He will be remembered.” I hung up.

I went out into my back yard and began preparing the massive heap of incendiaries that I planned to light off in a mere three hours’ time. Hopefully, these hours would be longer than those 44¼ minutes had been, because I had a lot of pilin’ to do!

The pile grew higher and higher as I tossed box upon box of fireworks onto it. Toss, toss, toss. Having completed my tossing spree, but not content with a bang-bang pile composed of a mere 368,000 fireworks, I then encircled it with sacks of old gunpowder, stacked six tanks of propane on top of the heap, and, as a final touch, doused the entire mass with thirty-six gallons (and these were big—very big!—gallons) of the most volatile unleaded gasoline I could find. And if only I hadn’t misplaced those jugs of napalm I had acquired last month, my soon-to-be fireworks display would have been even more spectacular!

But, it was good enough. I stood back and admired my bang-bang pile. Mr. Wilson suddenly scurried up to me from next door and started shrieking and babbling incoherently. I couldn’t make out anything he was saying, but I think he had lost his cat. Or maybe his armadillo… I dunno. I didn’t care. Poor old Wilson’s always nattering about something.

With a gleam in my eye and a sinister sneer breaking out across my Pnårpy face, I lit a match, and…

Damn! There was still one thing left to do before I lit the fuse: Disrobing, I slathered myself from head to toe in Merkt’s® port wine cheese spread, and then decorated myself with over 375 slices of Wilson® pepperoni (no relation). Lastly, I took six tiny American flags, all manufactured in China, and planted them in various holes in my body. Poor Mr. Wilson just stared. Oh, how he stared.

And then, I tossed the match—