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Carpathian Carpentry Gnomes? In my kitchen?

Hammered on February 6, 2022.

As a writer I aspire to verisimilitude, even if I am terrible at it. This is why I simply resort to making shrill hooting noises at my blog every week, which my army of garden gnomes, golden cockroaches, leathery naugas, and geese translate into strings of letters and symbols resembling words. (The geese like to honk along with me, too.) Most of the time these curious strings of letters and symbols just look like a meth-fiend monkey took a baseball bat to a typewriter, but sometimes—sometimes—they actually come together into actual words, and the words stick together into a semblance of sentences, and even rarer, the sentences heap together into piles of paragraphs. If I keep the hooting and tooting up long enough, the paragraphs assemble together into a burblage of a blog entry.

Other times, it all just comes out like this.

The Fröbelian Firestarting Gnomes departed on Tuesday. They departed abruptly, in a puff of greasy smoke and mirthful alabaster. The smell of burnt beard hair filled my kitchen for days. Fortunately their departure ushered in the arrival of a drove of Carpathian Carpentry Gnomes, who went about restoring my wainscoting, linoleum, and ceiling tiles with little ado and much whirring efficiency. By Thursday, my kitchen was as good as new. I asked their foreman (I think his name was Borburðgar) to seal the skeezle-wumpus cabinet shut, but he refused. I protested, whinged, and complained. Borburðgar however was adamant: Bolting a skeezle-wumpus in its lair was so dangerous that even the most daring Carpathian Carpentry Gnome would be unwilling to try. He was cagey as to the details, but intimated that the chaos ensuing from a panicky skeezle-wumpus trying to escape a sealed cabinet would make that crater full of glowing Volvos back in ’10 look like a walk in the goatburping park. He ended my simpering protestations with this grumpy monologue:

I’ve packed the brownies of the space monsters, I leak the Plague from my backbones, opiates are the mass of my religion, I pick the god damn terror of the God damn False Prophets out of my backbone! I do it for fun! I ran ’em out of Heaven and sold it to Hell for a profit! Who’ll come and get me, whose candle will I fart out? I’m radioactive, I pay no taxes! I have a triple gut, I was sired by the Wolf Man, give me all your Slack! Yes, I’m a rip-snorter, I cram coca leaves right into my nether parts before they’re picked off the tree! Pardon my language.

It was eloquent, salient, and quite sapient. It cut right to the heart of the matter. It explained everything from why a skeezle-wumpus can’t be safely bolted into a cabinet to why, try as I might, I am simply not able to bottle my farts anymore. Borburðgar paused, stroked his hoary beard, then tooted with utter finality. I flinched and backed away slowly. At that I left Borburðgar and his carpentry gnomes to their own devices. They left without saying another word. And that’s when the Westphalian Schmongeling Gnomes returned.


I was once asked why my palatial abode was painted bright blaze orange and wrapped in strings of old traffic lights and railroad semaphores. I didn’t have a satisfactory answer. Out of embarrassment I tore that house down, threw it away, and hid in a hole in the ground for sixteen long hours. Not even my dear sister Pollyanna Louisa Årp (we call her Plårp, naturally) could get me to come out of my hole. Mamårp, Papårp, my dear brother Grårp, and lastly my red-haired second cousin, 1⅛ times removed (the one with the great hoo-hahs and round little wah-wah) tried to coax me out of that hole. None could. I was immovable. I squatted there, arms folded, and only hooted petulantly at each of their exhortations. Plårp threw her sandals at me. I wouldn’t budge. Grårp threw a hammer at me. I dodged and hooted. Then my redheaded cuz dumped a bucket of red-hot angry genocide wasps in the hole and I flew out of there like a baseball bat out of Hell’s Kitchen.

But today wasn’t 1982. Today I wasn’t sulking in a hole in the ground after a classmate had made fun of the fort I assembled from couch cushions, a can of spray paint, and old Christmas lights. Today was 2022. And today I was far from sulking in a hole; dare I say it, I was downright melimilously melubilous. ‘Noli lacrimare,’ inquit Volubilis, I intoned as I sat steeped in my melimilous melubilosity. It was perhaps the most amusing-sounding sequence of words in the Latin language. I was sure that Cæcilius would disapprove of my barbarous pronunciation, but Cecilia Bååth-Holmberg (båa-åa-åa-åaåaå!) would just laugh heartily. Just like my cousin when she threw those genocide wasps at me.

The snow had stopped falling. Sitting, steeping, and sipping another pepperoni cocktail, I donned my new homburg—a fine replacement for my burnt-umber fez and my burned-beyond-recognition bowler hat—and went sledding around town on my own bare haunches. People stared—but they dared not stop and stare anymore: They know better!

Returning home at dusk, I brushed blithely past the sector effectors lying around my living room. I was fairly certain these little buggers were behind all my recent troubles—everything from the flickering lights to the automatically-closing doors to the earthquakes in my home. But what was I to about them? If only I hadn’t sent all my gorillas away back in ’10, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

But enough about the things that haunt me, dog my every step, and ape my every twitch. Right now another glass of pepperoni juice and another hearty stick o’ pepperoni was my my solitary, monomaniacal goal. Darkness having enveloped my town once again like a burly gorilla intent on squeezing the life out of it, I would ignore the world until the light returned. I would sit and I would nosh. I would sit, sip, and nosh. Then I would roll over on my belly in a greasy, euphoric coma and drift blithely into a pepperonial sleep-stupor. The day would end—another would begin.

My ceiling clock tolled out the hours, minutes, and other round little slices of the day. Eleven o’clock arrived and departed—a ruddy, hazy hour if there ever was one. Pepperonily I dreamed. ’Twas a wonderful, oleaginous dream. Meat spun and caraway seeds danced lithely as I slithered blithely between them in a pepperony frenzy. Midnight arrived and with it the day ended—another indeed began. Gyrating crimson discs of delicious, motley meat gave way to behatted gnomes, their hats red and pointy—conical sticks of pepperoni they were! Those too eventually faded, the number π (a very, very red number) swam up into view, then the machine elves devoured it all, each red-haired and well-oiled. Finally I awoke to a hypnopompic visage of my lubricous and lubricious Mlårp with her two big, curvy feefees and her ten little tsee-tsees and—

Pepperoni, pepperoni! O, my lubricous and lubricious meat sticks, where are you?! I threw my bedsheets aside, leapt frog-like from the bed, and dashed downstairs for another.

[Feetnote: One more thing must be said, so here goes. Norba dorba dorba borba Borbra! Guffle a-bupple! Smuthabupple! Wupple, wupple! And, well—morple my blorples! Poop and hoop! And foofeer-erah my goo! My eggluescent goo! Glick Glick van der Glick Glack Gluck—and a-plick plack pluck! Pluck, pluck, πluck! Frubbidy wuffle! Wuffle, guffle! Quack! Honk! Quack, honk! Quack, quack! Quack… quack!! Briefcase!! Gatorade!!!]