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Great Dane or greatest Dane?

Deigned on May 23, 2021.

I.

Last Wednesday’s comparison of time to a Great Dane led me to the inevitable question: Scooby Doo may have been a Great Dane, but was he the greatest Dane? Only time would tell. And a flobcumber flambé might help.

And as luck would have it, I had several bunches of flobcumbers brooding in my crisper, waiting to be turned into a delicious, crispy dinner. If there is one thing that makes flobcumbers unpalatable, it’s being left too long to brood in the dark drawers of a refrigerator with nothing but each other for company. Another couple days in there and they would be downright piqued with me.

As my more resilient readers may remember, my first experience with flobcumber dishes turned out poorly. That time I was forced to burn my house down to right the horrors I had wrought upon the world. If Fate were on my side this time, my flambé would turn out differently: Only the flobcumbers would end up ablaze this fine Saturday.

I took the ungrulious little beasties out of my crisper and started chopping.


II.

Yesterthursday’s pusillanimous grumnuttery had expanded by Tothursday, becoming positively magnanimous by Friday as it slowly enveloped the whole day in a diaphanous pink film. However, not unlike the squirrel-shaving party my neighbor was throwing in three weeks, I had little time to think about the implications of this. (It was, I could say—and very nearly did say—“neither here nor there now”—but I’ve so overused that hackneyed cliché that I fear my less stalwart readers would conk me over my head with an inflatable rat for being so repetitive and blandiose.) A toupée was rolling gently down the street, and I had to stop it, so out I went.

Unruly lapis lazuli and some kind of boomoid flother followed the pilose tumbleweed. Another flother followed the other. An adjunct to a turbo-encabulator, employed whenever a barescent skor motion is required, was required now: Alas I had plenty of junk but no adjunct (to anything). My across-the-way neighbor was excitably execrable this week, chasing down the moles, voles, and dholes plaguing his lawn and dispatching them with a tire thumper. He made hooting noises as he smacked each one—smack, smack, smack! hoot, hoot, hoot!—back down into their mole holes (and vole holes and dhole holes). His vocalizations were reminiscent of my latest closet-bound hooting spree, but I made no mention of the similarity as I passed by. No need to further excite a man with a tire thumper by making untoward comparisons to my own ensconced hooting. I just thumbed-up and intoned merrily, “Keep those mo-o-oles down in the ho-o-ole!”

The toupée tumbled into a storm drain. It had escaped. I shrugged. My doofiform body was now needed elsewhere. Returning home, I noshed upon paisley snails and went about larcenously rotating a donut rather than a pie, then amused myself by teasing my paper shredder for a while.


III.

Hooting with myself while ensconced in my closet no longer amused me as it was once wont to do, so I stopped doing that this week (the hooting). In fact, I now found my closets so bland and tedious I nailed their doors shut and then bricked them up to show I really meant it. I plastered over the brickwork (with plaster), painted over the plaster (with paint), and finally papered over the paint (with wallpaper). Lastly life-size posters of Alyssa Milano, Hudson Leick, and Chloë Moretz were carefully tacked up over the wallpaper. “That’ll show you closets,” I said smugly.

A large, graceful poit-tree grows at the corner of Bouillabaisse Boulevard and Frummwich Drive. Sixty feet tall, two across, it has to be at least a hundred years old if it’s a day (and I’m pretty sure it’s older’n a day since it was there on Friday). Every spring, red, pink, and purple poitflowers burst forth from its branches, tentacle-like pistils and stamens ready to coil themselves around unsuspecting bees, butterflies, and the occasional small human child. The r’lyehian flowers are followed by the poit-tree’s pointy poitleaves and then, in late June, its slightly less pointy poitnuts. I watched through the window as three gray squirrels scampered through the poitbranches, chittering and chasing each other round and round—two engaged in their annual squirrelly mating dance, the third bent on murdering the other male in a fit of jealous, squeaking rage.

I chuckled. “Get it while you can, squirrels.” For poitnuts are not only considered highly delicious by such rodents, but are also highly explosive. As the nuts ripen, they begin emitting their sweet, nutty aroma and attract squirrels from miles around. The squirrels, vile little bushy-tailed tree-rats that they are, are powerless to resist noshing heartily upon the poitnuts. And then…

I marked the date on my calendar when I should collect squirrel pelts this year, then returned to the magnanimous grumnuttery I had abandoned Tuesday.


III III.

Th ’smorning I remembered my bedroom closet has a small window in it. This vital fact is the sole reason I’m wearing clothes at the moment. My bedroom is on the fourth storey of my palatial abode and the window is only about 12" wide, two obstacles which would have slowed or perhaps even stopped a lesser man from gaining entry (or a girthier one), but I am the Grand Pnårpissimo—highly resourceful and, when in a high-enough dudgeon, highly determined. The convoluted, glass-shattering, and ladder-launching details of exactly how I accomplished reentry into my closet I shall spare my readers. (However, I will be recounting it in colorful detail to the neighborhood squirrel population on June 35th at 4 p.m., shortly before the poitnuts begin ripening, so if you’d really like to know, please join me—and the squirrels—then. And for those of you in Burkina Faso, my ladder should be reentering the atmosphere somewhere over Séguénéga or Ouahigouya—but my pocket scientists tell me it should burn up in the atmosphere, so don’t fret none.)

Donning my most fedorous hat and darkest shades, I went gallivanting around town at 3 a.m., the ideal time to peek into neighbors’ trash cans and dryer vents without being accused of being a prowler or a pervert (or a pervert prowler).


IV.

Why does “diaeresis” not have a diaeresis? And why the diaeresis of identical diacritics into either diaeresis or umlaut? These questions plagued me all morning on Saturday. Time flew away from me, into the future, one second at a time. And then it was dinner time, and I had some flobcumbers to frobnicate.

Time flew into the future, but it didn’t get away from me now: I rode it like an expert horseman, every second of the way, frobbing my flobcumbers into an exquisitely fine, gourmet meal.

The green, verrucose vegetables lay in their pan in a pool of high-proof rum, ready for the final step. So far, I was mostly satisfied: Now, a proper flobcumber flambé called for seventeen other vegetables, from onions to garlic to raggots to celtuce and even to frobnule sprouts. Then there was the fermented moose meat and cured horsebutt, among other things. All I had in my fridge was nine pounds of flobcumbers and one purple carrot. But the substitution of a few different locally-sourced fruits and nuts in place of the proper vegetables and meat would more than compensate, and if it didn’t… I had more than enough rum to make any deficiencies irrelevant.

I lit the match, claw-like hand poised over the pan of rum-soaked flobcumbers. The vegetables stared sullenly up at me. Just one more step. The match moved closer. Off in the distance, a dog barked, something went thump! and my neighbor emitted a sudden shrill hoot. “By Jupiter’s foreskin!” I cursed mightily—


V.

Fate was not on my side. My kitchen looked like a bomb went off. Flobcumbers were strewn everywhere, broken into green and black smoking chunks. My over-sink window was coated in a thin, green, mucous film, and greenish water pooled on the countertop and puddled on the floor. My ceiling dripped the same viscous glop, except for one spot that remained clean—the 18" hole made when the flobcumber pan launched itself on a trajectory similar to my ladder’s. I scanned the kitchen from one side to the other with my beady eyes. Some say the world is nothing more than a speck floating in the blue eyes of Macumber the giant. My kitchen now looked as if Macumber had suffered a sudden and severe sneezing fit.

Somewhere, Fate was just laughing. At least my refrigerator was no longer encumbered by nine cumbrous pounds of morose flobcumbers, and those poitnuts I was saving since last season were finally used up.

I spent Saturday evening hungry, reading my unabridged dictionary. And that’s how I learned that “diuresis” and “diaeresis” are two very, very different things.

I still didn’t know if Scooby Doo was the greatest Dane.

Poit, poit, poit!!

Poit, poit, poit!!