The professor & his Cousin

“Smiles!” I said, sorta in a hushed voice. (Hushed for a professor, that is.) “You absolutely cannot do that!”

Smiles Riot—my cousin—looked at me, then looked back at the cake in front of him, then looked at the fork in his hand.

We were at a New Years Eve (not Even) Party, I fear. And Smiles had come with this professor.

I shouldn’t have brought him.

But I did.

Rats and a Heifer.

“But why,” Smiles began, “can’t I?”

“Because,” I said (maybe a bit flustered), “you can’t just stick your fork—your personal fork—into the cake! You can cut yourself a piece. Then, you can stick your fork in your slice of the cake.”

Smiles frowned. “But the cake looks as if it would taste better whole. I’m scared that once it’s cut, it just won’t taste as well.”

I think I blinked a few times at that.

“Preposterous notion!” Dr. Zauberer said, stepping over.

His long legs, I think, spanned the distance of 20 feet with one leap. No, I must be wrong.

“What’s a preposterous notion?” I asked.

“What your dear cousin said.” Dr. Zauberer put his hand on his chin and began to rub vigorously. “Though, I can’t help but say it is a riveting notion, too. I mean, I’ve never tried a cake before it was cut.” He turned to Smiles. “Are you sure it tastes better?”

“I’m only sure about a few things—one of which is not if the oxygen will last.”

Dr. Zauberer made the most befuddled face ever. “Weird. You’re very weird. But still, I’d like to try this notion.”

Dr. Zauberer was about to stick his fork into the cake, when Daddy Salami caught his arm.

“Hold on, Turtle-Gut. Ya ain’t allowed to do that! This cake here is birthday cake, and must be cut by the birthday babe. Hehaha.”

“The birthday babe?” Dr. Zauberer asked. “Excuse me?”

Schwarz Tauptinker,” this professor said. “It’s his birthday. This party is actually a surprise birthday party for him.”

“Weird. Weird again,” Dr. Zauberer said as his hand went back up to his chin. “I was invited to this party, yet I was totally unaware that it was a birthday party.” He swung his head in my direction. “Now whose fault is that?”

“Yours, ya dummy,” Salami answered. “I’m sure there was a birthday cake or something on the card.”

“It was rather clear,” I said. “On the card.”

“But…” Dr. Zauberer stammered. “However did I miss that very important detail?”

“Judging from your appearance,” Salami began—Dr. Zauberer’s pants were untucked, his tie crooked, and his mustache shaved shorter on one side—“I’d say you’re always missing the finer details of life.” Salami left laughing.

Quite a few guests had showed up now. We were in some sort of hall in Austria—Schwarz’s hometown—I think.

“Still, though,” Dr. Zauberer said. “It’s a pity that Mr. Riot’s notion can’t be tested. Hey! I’ve a sudden thought: how come, Mr. Duke, your last name isn’t the same as that of your cousin’s?”

That’s when I glanced at Smiles and noticed that he had snuck away. Who knew what sort of dadblamery he was causing and where.

“Umm…” this professor began.

You see, I’ve found that beginning a sentence with “umm” can be effective—sometimes.

Certainly never do it if you’re speaking with Dr. Zauberer.

“I said: why are your last names different, Duke old boy?”

“Well,” I began, “he must be a cousin on the different side of some family distantly related. You know, sometimes I don’t think we are related.”

Dr. Zauberer yawned. “I’m bored. That was a boring answer, and this a boring surprise birthday party.”

“A surprise birthday party?!” a voice rang out.

Yes, it was Schwarz Tauptinker.

“Chickit!” he said. “Whose birthday is it?” His eyes scanned the room.

“Weird,” Dr. Zauberer said. “This tops the weird cake. Just tops it. You mean to say, Schwarz, you don’t know whose birthday it is today?”

Schwarz thought a minute, a fork in his hand. “Nah. Don’t. Chickit.” Then he drove his fork down into the cake. “Just sampling,” he said.

Dr. Zauberer’s mouth dropped open.

And suddenly Smiles was there again, staring at me. He looked angry.

“You let him do something you wouldn’t let me do…” His eyes teared up, but he remained stoic—like a statue with real eyes. Or something like that. What I mean to say is that his eyes looked real while his—oh, never mind.

“Well welly,” Salami said, strutting forward. “Look who stole from the cake!”

And with one fluid motion Salami shoved Schwarz’s head down into the rest of the cake.

Then I felt a whack on the head.

Smiles was attacking me with a newspaper.

Dr. Zauberer—who had been standing there in shock—finally shouted out: “But why did you push his head in the cake, Salami! He’s the birthday babe!”

Salami stopped shoving Schwarz’s head into the cake. “True. I made a mistake, curs. Sorry. He pulled Schwarz to his feet. Sorry ‘bout that, kid.”

Schwarz looked shocked. “This is how you repay me? I invite you all to my birthday party, and this is how you repay me?”

What a wonder: Schwarz had invited us to his own surprise birthday party.


133 Responses to “The professor & his Cousin”

  1. 1 erinkenobi2893 January 28, 2015 at 13:55

    Oh dear. I think poor Schwarz is a little muddled. :-P Also, Dr. Zauberer missing the finer things in life–sheer brilliance. X-D

    • 2 Professor VJ Duke January 28, 2015 at 14:43

      Thanks, Erin! Dr. Z is cool, though, isn’t he?

      • 3 erinkenobi2893 January 28, 2015 at 20:57

        He sounds half-baked to me. Tony Stark beats him out in the first quarter–and the crowd goes wild. :-P

      • 4 Professor VJ Duke January 29, 2015 at 00:00

        Oh, I don’t know about that. As long as his suit stays fine, I suppose.

      • 5 erinkenobi2893 January 29, 2015 at 19:48

        Even when he’s not wearing the suit. I bet Tony beats Dr. Whatsisname on grounds of pure gumption alone! :-P

      • 6 Professor VJ Duke January 29, 2015 at 22:05

        I bet you’re right. He does have gumption.

      • 7 erinkenobi2893 January 30, 2015 at 13:23


  2. 8 Catherine January 8, 2015 at 04:36

    Oh dear. I must confess I am very confused. And I agree with the professor about the forks…no one should stick their personal fork into the cake until they cut it!

    • 9 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 13:14

      Yes! There you are. These parties are so mind boggling, you know.

  3. 10 The Lite Rider January 7, 2015 at 20:40

    Great observation by DA — don’t need Holmes to figure that out, loved it. Best of all, Schwarz not seeming to know it was his BD?! Of course he had to keep it a secret, as it was supposed to be a sruprise…. And then sampling that cake right in front of everyone. But why did DS shove Schwarz’s head in?!

    • 11 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 22:06

      I know! What was up with DS? You know what I think, I think he really wanted to shove someone’s head in there. See, he was disappointed he didn’t do it with Dr. Z or Smiles. Wouldn’t that be like him?

      • 12 The Lite Rider January 7, 2015 at 22:07

        Oh, yes! He would have LOVED to slam Dr. Z’s face into that cake, except…..he wouldn’t because it was Schwarz’s?

      • 13 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 22:12

        I know. Maybe he really forgot that it was Schwarz’s party? It’s possible, you know.

  4. 14 Susan P January 7, 2015 at 15:37

    I guess I’m too late for the party. This is what happens when a body is required to be out and about. I hope the party went well.

    • 15 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 21:53

      But you were probably on a cool adventure! Well, do you think I was as splendid as an angel?

      • 16 Susan P January 7, 2015 at 22:00

        Well, are you talking about the fallen angels or the ones who did not?

      • 17 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 22:12

        *laughs* Hey! Is that an insult sorta?

      • 18 Susan P January 7, 2015 at 22:59

        No insults, Professor. Just a question for information. :D Here, have a slice of King Cake.

      • 19 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 13:02

        What’s king cake? *Looks very interested*

      • 20 Susan P January 8, 2015 at 14:38

        It’s that stuff I wrote about when I put up my Epiphany post.

      • 21 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 22:07

        Right! I remember the sudden. I’ll take a few of those!

      • 22 Susan P January 8, 2015 at 22:32

        That’s an awful lot. You’d have to toast some of the them the next morning for breakfast.

      • 23 Professor VJ Duke January 9, 2015 at 12:42

        I definitely will. And maybe freeze some for the summer.

      • 24 Susan P January 9, 2015 at 23:40

        I don’t know if they would last that long. But, you can try.

      • 25 Professor VJ Duke January 10, 2015 at 00:10

        Well, I’ll try. Maybe I’ll let my Jap Hornets have some.

      • 26 Susan P January 10, 2015 at 11:54

        There you go, then.

      • 27 Professor VJ Duke January 10, 2015 at 21:08

        I love that saying, you know.

      • 28 Susan P January 10, 2015 at 21:18

        Do you, then? Why is that?

      • 29 Professor VJ Duke January 11, 2015 at 19:42

        Because ever since you’ve begun it, I always say it. It’s just wonderful.

      • 30 Susan P January 11, 2015 at 21:13

        Do I get an achievement sticker?

      • 31 Professor VJ Duke January 12, 2015 at 20:02

        I should give you one, but I fear I don’t have stickers.

      • 32 Susan P January 12, 2015 at 21:18

        Oh no. How about a popsicle?

      • 33 Professor VJ Duke January 13, 2015 at 12:49

        Cherry or lemon?

      • 34 Susan P January 13, 2015 at 13:05

        A mix of both.

      • 35 Professor VJ Duke January 13, 2015 at 22:17

        That actually sounds very, very good.

      • 36 Susan P January 14, 2015 at 00:01

        That’s the spirit! And indeed it is!

  5. 37 Jackie January 7, 2015 at 10:05

    Did someone say almond cake? I love almonds and I love cake – together they must be very tasty. Dadblamit! Now I want almond cake! :-/

    • 38 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 12:38

      I’m with you! Almonds are so, so tasty. Do you suppose one can make them sweet? Sugar them or something.

      • 39 Jackie January 7, 2015 at 12:42

        Two words – glazed almonds.

      • 40 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 21:42

        Wow. That made me hungry–the sudden.

  6. 41 Simply Skeptical January 7, 2015 at 00:15

    Whoo… Where’s the rhyme and reason in this event anyway? Silly me. Forgot where I was for a moment. Birthday Babe Schwarz is really more clever than he gets credit for. (Laughing)

    • 42 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 12:20

      Hey! There’s rhyme and reason all the time. Now that reminds me of The Phantom Tollbooth.

  7. 43 Julie Harris January 6, 2015 at 22:23

    Wow! You have the craziest parties in the Punchy Lands!! Can I have a piece of cake??

    • 44 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 23:13

      You sure can! Do you like almond egg cake?

  8. 45 InfiniteZip January 6, 2015 at 18:31

    Happy birthday, I love cake, can I have some too? There’s not someone hiding in the cake is there????

    • 46 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 23:12

      nah, I don’t think so…is almond egg cake okay?

      • 47 InfiniteZip January 7, 2015 at 10:06

        I dunno, never tried egg cake..but I loooove almonds.

      • 48 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 12:38

        Even if the almonds have Japanese beetles in them?

      • 49 InfiniteZip January 7, 2015 at 14:04

        Of course, crunchier nuts….

      • 50 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 21:48

        They might break your teeth then.

      • 51 InfiniteZip January 8, 2015 at 10:13

        No,my teeth are wooden like George Washington .😁

      • 52 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 13:20

        *laughing* Do they hurt? Are they stronger?

      • 53 InfiniteZip January 8, 2015 at 17:10

        No, they are square, toothpicks break on them though….

      • 54 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 22:16

        That makes sense. Do they chew through meat okay?

      • 55 InfiniteZip January 10, 2015 at 01:18

        They eat beetles, almost a reverse carnivorous thing, beetles eat wood, wood eats beetles😀

      • 56 Professor VJ Duke January 10, 2015 at 21:06

        *laughing lots* That’s so cool! You should write about it.

  9. 57 Lady Cheetah7 January 6, 2015 at 17:49

    Now that was weird. Invites people to a party and doesn’t remember It Is his birthday. Must be the Austrian water.
    Something about you being called “Duke old boy” is quite fitting. I might try that…

    • 58 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 23:12

      But why is that fitting?

      • 59 Lady Cheetah7 January 11, 2015 at 02:20

        Dunno. Just sounds right. Quite fitting for an old soul such as yourself.

      • 60 Professor VJ Duke January 11, 2015 at 19:45

        I’m old anyway you cut it.

  10. 61 Debbie January 6, 2015 at 16:20

    Gee, things in the PL are so different from here! For one, a “surprise” party is usually just that, a surprise; and the one hosting it is never the honoree.

    For another, not even kindergarten kids take their forks and dig into uncut cakes! (What kind of cake are we talking about, by the way? I love birthday cake and won’t have mine until next fall!)

    As for you getting smacked with a newspaper (hope it wasn’t the Sunday edition!) and the poor birthday “babe” getting his head shoved down into his cake, well, that’s just dadblamery, don’t you think?

    • 62 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 23:09

      Right on! It’s a surprise in a different sense of the word, for sure.

      I’ll have mine in a few months! I think it was an almond egg cake. Have you ever heard of that?

      *laughs* I do think! But…you must admit, Schwarz kinda deserved it!

  11. 63 Louis from VA January 6, 2015 at 16:05

    XD My goodness, you’ve given me the hugest grin, Professor! What a party… And a very interesting thought on the part of Smiles. I may very well have to try eating my next birthday cake like that.
    Daddy Salami… *shakes head*

    • 64 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 23:06

      *bows* Many thanks! I appreciate it. *laughs* Wouldn’t that be awesome? Though, I’m sure anyone who shares the cake with you wouldn’t be the happiest. I must try it to.

      Yes, what’s up with him?

      • 65 Louis from VA January 7, 2015 at 03:12

        :D Yes! Perhaps not… we’ll cut around it.
        I had the impression Daddy Salami was like that all the time. :D

      • 66 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 12:33

        Cutting around would work, for sure. I think it might be hard, though. *shivers* I hate cutting cakes, to be honest.

        He certainly is! A strange weird odd chap.

      • 67 Louis from VA January 11, 2015 at 02:42

        You hate it? Why?

      • 68 Professor VJ Duke January 11, 2015 at 19:48

        I always mess it up somehow. Cut crooked.

  12. 69 Hazy January 6, 2015 at 15:42

    Was it a cake with cherries? Or maybe Schwarz doesn’t like cherries.

    I see Smiles is quick with a newspaper. I don’t think I’ve ever hit anyone with a newspaper. Did it hurt?

    Oh, and happy surprise birthday Schwarz sir!

    • 70 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 23:05

      It was an almond egg cake! What make you of that?

      Well, it didn’t hurt too badly, but he was really hitting!

      *laughs* He’s a card, huh?

      • 71 Hazy January 8, 2015 at 14:07

        I feel like I replied already… but it could be deja vu. Or not. The hazy mind is getting more hazy! *worried laugh*

        I like almond nuts, but not sure how I feel about almond egg cake. Did you have a slice?

        Aww, he must have really wanted to stick a fork in that cake to hit you that hard. Lucky it wasn’t a magazine!

      • 72 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 21:58

        *laughs* Don’t be too worried! Embrace it!!!

        Yes, me neither. Well, to be honest, the egg part scared me off a bit.

        Yes, he was complaining about it for ages. I guess I should have let him do it!

      • 73 Hazy January 13, 2015 at 13:27

        *laughs* I shall! Off to the hazy side.

        You didn’t have a bite then? Even an itty bitty one?

        Does Smiles keep a grudge? Maybe he’ll forget about it.

      • 74 Professor VJ Duke January 13, 2015 at 22:21

        *laughs* Very good!

        No, I didn’t. *sad face* Oh well. Rats and a few.

        Nah, he forgot already!

  13. 75 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 6, 2015 at 15:05

    I also agree with Smiles. I think from now on I will only eat the cake I am allowed to stick my fork in before anyone else. I do like a good birthday party. I think Schwarz is allowed to choose his guest list…seems fair, strange how he knew to make a list but didn’t know it was his birthday. *laughs* I think your presence made me laugh the most, however. You’re such an instigator, Duketh. I enjoy how you think.

    • 76 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 23:03

      Wait now! How did I instigate things? But you’re probably right. I do stir things up. *smiles proudly* But no one ever notices. I get away with murder! Schwarz needs a mentor, wouldn’t you say?

      • 77 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 7, 2015 at 03:50

        “I’m only sure about a few things—one of which is not if the oxygen will last.” ….this is a prime example of how you stir the pot, as they say. *laugjs* Huh?! Then you ramble about and confuse everyone. Tis a joy to watch. Yes, but I’m not sure you’re the one for the job.

      • 78 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 12:35

        Okay, I admit I maybe do it on purpose. But you would, too, wouldn’t you? I think you might. For the job? What job? *raises a professorish eyebrow*

      • 79 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 7, 2015 at 21:15

        I probably do enjoy a bit of instigation, as well. *smiles* The job of mentoring your buddy, Schwarz. Duh! You don’t even pay attention to our conversation. *slaps you over the head with a broom*

      • 80 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 22:10

        I do too! I don’t mentor Schwarz. I just…whip him about the head. Now I’ve got a lump on my poor professorish head. That was rather mean. You and Smiles are trying to kill me!

      • 81 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 8, 2015 at 05:24

        Oh, forget it. How mean of you, Duketh. Smiles is kind to you, it seems. *pushes you out the door with a broom* I’ll show you mean… *hands you a mirror* Yes, we are…he asked me to help him.

      • 82 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 13:18

        *shocked face* You’ll show me mean…then you show me me! Aww…. *dies* That is truly horrid to look at. *breaks the mirror* I knew it!

      • 83 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 8, 2015 at 20:07

        Had you, you know. You’re not horrid to look at, you just see yourself too often. You’re bored with what you see. Happens to the best of us. Don’t die!! Don’t break the mirror…*whispers as the mirror almost hits the floor* He was very convincing. .

      • 84 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 22:20

        Oh, I never look in the mirror. My face is too scary! It inspired fear in Achilles, you know. Who was convincing?

      • 85 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 9, 2015 at 05:34

        Hector…where did you put Duke? You want to battle this, huh? Your buddy, Smiles, you see. But no, you haven’t, as you’ve forgotten our conversation for the second day in a row. Nice to meet you, new guy. Welcome to the PL. *walks back to her side of the tracks*

      • 86 Professor VJ Duke January 9, 2015 at 12:59

        I watched Hector maybe die, you know!

        I didn’t forget. My memory is one of the best in the word. Do you believe that? *follows back across the track and gets run over by a train*

      • 87 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 9, 2015 at 15:57

        Yes, but he’s always around it seems.

        Ha. Maybe I believe you about your memory. I do believe it, of course. Explains a lot, actually. Now you’re dead. Crud. Why!!!

      • 88 Professor VJ Duke January 10, 2015 at 00:02

        He is. I draw on him all the time.

        I am, yes. You made me follow you back!

      • 89 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 10, 2015 at 15:39

        How rude.

        I didn’t make you do anything. Twas your choice, Sir. However, it was kind of you to do so…

      • 90 Professor VJ Duke January 10, 2015 at 21:11

        Yes, sometimes. Mostly every other hour. Promise.

        Yes…and look what kindness gets me!

      • 91 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 11, 2015 at 02:37

        What are you promising?…that you’re rude? You’ve proven it.

        Well, I can’t make you keep your eyes open. I wish you hadn’t died. I don’t want to have to begin searching for another Duke.

      • 92 Professor VJ Duke January 11, 2015 at 19:47

        *nods* I know.

        Where would you begin the search?

      • 93 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 12, 2015 at 02:28

        You shouldn’t agree with me.

        I don’t want to think about needing to, Duke.

      • 94 Professor VJ Duke January 12, 2015 at 20:04

        Time to go hunting the sudden.

      • 95 Audrey Dawn - Oldest Daughter Redheaded Sister January 13, 2015 at 01:21

        Be careful…

  14. 96 FictionFan January 6, 2015 at 14:59

    Sometimes Smiles makes a lot of sense, you know, you know! My Schwarzy’s birthday is on Hogmanay?!? Oh, he’d enjoy living in Scotland so much – it’d be like the whole country was celebrating his birthday (which will be the law anyway, when I’m Queen). I’m having some trouble with the idea of him being a “babe” though…

    Is Smiles a tree? Or has he just been taking lessons from one? I hope the Professor’s head is either completely solid or completely empty so nothing important gets damaged. Were you wearing your wig for protection?

    • 97 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 23:00

      Oh, come on now…that didn’t make an ounce of sense! Hogmanay? What’s that exactly? (What about my birthday?) Yes…well, that was Salami’s term. I’m sure he’s not. In the physical sense, that is.

      *Laughing lots despite himself* I should hold my ears the sudden. I wasn’t actually. But I was wearing my beanie. Tis the season for beanies, I hear. I think it’s mostly empty, wouldn’t you say?

      • 98 FictionFan January 7, 2015 at 02:02

        Did! I bet nobody would have wanted a piece after he’d mauled it, so he’d have got it all to himself – very smart! How can you possibly not know what Hogmanay is? Do you just tune me out when I go on about Scotland?!? (Ah, yes – on your birthday, I shall declare a public holiday and make it the law that everyone dresses in green and says ‘Begorrah’ all the time. And you shall be presented with a golden shillelagh inscribed with a shamrock enclosing your name… ) I hope he’s not! *shivers*

        A beanie to a party! But surely it would muss up your hairdo, and then PorterGirl would cry! I don’t know – I am constantly surprised by the range of obscurities that the Professor knows…

      • 99 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 12:24

        That’s true–but look how selfish it is! Not that you’d mind, O hoarder of BUS’s cakes! Just making sure. You should be proud to know that I remember hearing something about Hogmanay. What a thing to spell. No! I don’t do that. (*laughing* That sounds great. I’ve always wanted a shillelagh. I’m not sure what Begorrah means. I think Godzilla fought one of those once.) He’s not! Promise. Salami’s just rude. He might call you that, see.

        Nah, my hair is messed up all the time anyway. A beanie keeps the head warm, though. Better than a baseball cap, which I wore last night, you should know. Which reminds me, pull for the Pats. Top of the AFC again! Obscurities…like, for instance, a capo.

      • 100 FictionFan January 7, 2015 at 17:25

        I’m only selfish about cakes though…and chocolate! But I’d happily let you borrow my books. I’m so glad – the Scots invented the New Year, you know. (*laughs* Did he win? Hmm…I wonder what age the Professor will be? *weighs up all available evidence…*) Ooh, I quite like that idea! Though obviously it would make Schwarzy wildly jealous…

        *doesn’t mention kisscurls* Your orange one? OK – Go Pats!! (That should jinx them!) Hmm… I may regret this, but…what’s a capo?

      • 101 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 21:59

        Well, if you A Horse and His Boy, I’ll take it, madam! Invented? Yeah goodness right! (I’m not even sure! *laughs* You phrased the question just as the bald king would do from The King and I. Make a guess. I’ll tell you if you get it right.) Yes…it probably would. And…

        It’s not fair that you can write thoughts! No! I got a new Pats one. *smiles proudly* A capo is just a thingy that you put on a guitar to bar a specific fret. Helps to change keys.

      • 102 FictionFan January 8, 2015 at 02:41

        I do, but I can’t lend you it yet, I fear, since it’s on my re-read list. *laughs* Don’t you believe me then? (The bald king?!? I’m not sure I altogether like that comparison! Ah, but I might inadvertently offend you then…oh, dadblameit, I’ll take the risk! I reckon there’s a good possibility – mind, I could be out by a year or two…or twelve – that the Professor and FF might be about to be more or less the same age for a while…) And…??

        Ooh, what colour is that? Oh, one of those thingies! Well, I never knew what that was called – see how much you teach me?

      • 103 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 13:09

        Oh, that’s a good reason. I should reread it myself. Umm…nah, I don’t! (Yes, you know: Yul Brynner. He’s cool, so it’s a compliment. *nods* That’s about right. This year, I’ll be as old as you.) And…well…another person might be a bit upset, you know.

        It’s blue! *smiles bigly* They’re so useful.

      • 104 FictionFan January 8, 2015 at 16:07

        You could make a spreadsheet! With all the new books down one side and all the re-reads down the other – it’s such fun! (Bald and dead. I feel so flattered! Hey! Do I win a prize? It’s a great age, you know, you know – just before your body starts to decay and your hair turns grey and your mind begins to fail. I may have to be eternally 20 this year though – I can’t bear the thought of being as old as the Professor!) Awwww! That’s so sweet! Unless you mean Mr R…

        Have you started work on these demonstration videos for musical numpties yet?

      • 105 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 22:13

        Well…I could get you to make one! Take it back!!! That’s far too dangerous. *shudders at what he almost did*

        (I suppose you could win a prize…but it’s not fair, is it? Well, my body is already falling apart. I used to be such an athlete. About five years ago or so. The professor is like Aragorn. I appear younger than I really am.) No, I didn’t mean him.

        Numpties! *laughing lots* These words are so hilarious. A video?

      • 106 FictionFan January 9, 2015 at 02:37

        Oh, no, no, no! Been down that road – nothing more frustrating than keeping a TBR for someone who never reads ANY of them! *shudders too*

        (Why isn’t it? Ooh, I like Aragorn – a lot. *chuckles* Does that surprise you at all? FF is like Galadriel – eternally untouched by time.) Then…awwww! *blushes*

      • 107 Professor VJ Duke January 9, 2015 at 12:51

        Good grief. *maybe holds ears*

        (Because! You know why. Yeah, Aragorn was really cool. Hector is cooler, though. *laughing* Does that mean you walk around at night haunting hobbits?)

      • 108 FictionFan January 9, 2015 at 18:16

        (I do not! True – Aragorn didn’t wear a skirt. Only if I have a bagel with Colby-jack cheese for supper…)

      • 109 Professor VJ Duke January 10, 2015 at 00:07

        You’ve seen the professor, so it’s not fair! *laughs* I suppose you’d like him to wear lipstick, too? I’ll make sure to pack that with the chocolate I’m sending you.

      • 110 FictionFan January 10, 2015 at 17:28

        Well, truth to be told, I reckon the Professor looks older than his years – my guess was based more on things the Professor doesn’t know about (like TV shows etc) rather than looks. I bet you could make a good guess at FF’s age based on stuff I’ve said too – but DON’T!!!

        Ah, you forget that in Scotland skirts are considered quite manly! Mmm…I shall look forward to that!

      • 111 Professor VJ Duke January 10, 2015 at 21:17

        I look older? *laughing* I know! There was this chap and he guessed I was like 15 years older than I was. That was really funny. I think. The professor probably does have a good guess! But it really doesn’t matter.

        What an odd sense of “manliness”.

      • 112 FictionFan January 11, 2015 at 17:59

        *laughing* Well, I think 15 years is pushing it a bit – but I’d have thought maybe 3 or 4. But although I joke about it, I agree age doesn’t matter much, except for the physical side of ageing. I’ve enjoyed being most ages so far – each stage brings it’s own problems – and pleasures.

      • 113 Professor VJ Duke January 11, 2015 at 19:53

        Yes, I did laugh at first, then I wondered why I was laughing. Very true! Most ages…one must wonder what ages you hated being.

      • 114 FictionFan January 12, 2015 at 13:39

        If someone said I looked 15 years older than I am, I would sob and sob and sob till I’d washed away all the wrinkles! Well, not so much ages as stages – some bits of life are less fun than others, you know, you know. But then other bits are more fun than others too. *worries if she’s turning into Shnoddy*

      • 115 Professor VJ Duke January 12, 2015 at 20:10

        *laughing* I know you would! Well, Shnod is Scottish…

  15. 116 L. Marie January 6, 2015 at 14:32

    Wow. Um, happy birthday to Schwarz, though he didn’t seem sure at first that it was his birthday.
    You were just attacked with a newspaper. What happened after that? I hope someone else’s head (Smiles’s) was pushed into the cake.

    • 117 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 22:58

      *laughs* Your “wow” just made me laugh. That’s a perfect reply to this story! I know; it makes one wonder, doesn’t it?

      Smiles did deserve it. I held him down till he calmed down. Then I took him to Crackjaw.

  16. 118 PorterGirl January 6, 2015 at 12:48

    Wow, PL parties are the wildest things ever! There is always a fight or something. I really should go to more PL parties.

    Now, I for one liked Smiles’ technique of cake eating. But I would wonder about how clean his fork was, that is a concern. Good to see Dr Z dressed up for the occasion!

    A very happy birthday to the marvellous Schwarz. Throwing himself a surprise birthday party is certainly a cunning plan!

    • 119 Professor VJ Duke January 6, 2015 at 22:57

      You should! And you should bring your stick if you do.

      That’s a great concern. He does wash it…I make him do it constantly. He needs constant supervision, you know.

      It is! We should do this for me, you know.

      • 120 PorterGirl January 7, 2015 at 08:39

        I shall bring two sticks! And a big hat.

        That must be hard work. If you get tired of looking after him you must send him to me. The country air will do him good.

        Yes! We must, we must. I am good at throwing parties, they don’t often have much violence, though. Would you mind that? I will make extra muffins to make up for it.

      • 121 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 12:37

        Nice! And you can teach me how to use one. Looking forward to that.

        I think you’re right. He’d probably get on with Terry as well. But he might be confused since you drive on the wrong side of the road.

        I prefer no violence, you know! I think it’s safe to say the professor is violenced out!

      • 122 PorterGirl January 7, 2015 at 12:56

        I look forward to it also *big grin*

        He and Terry would be great friends. The first time my Nashville friend came to stay he was permanently terrified whenever we went out in the car! Maybe we will travel by rollerskate instead.

        Excellent, a muffin party will do nicely then. I can always arrange some jolly wrestling if you feel you are missing the violence.

      • 123 Professor VJ Duke January 7, 2015 at 21:46


        *laughs* Yeah…I don’t think I could drive! Do you have trouble doing it the other way?

        Yes, we can get Vin Diesel to wrestle.

      • 124 PorterGirl January 8, 2015 at 08:50

        I do get confused driving on the other side. And your traffic lights are bizarre, too. But I can manage it if I concentrate hard.

        Wrestling with Vin Diesel would certainly be an interesting event.

      • 125 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 13:20

        *laughs* The lights? Don’t tell me they’re different over there. I’ll just never drive outside of the US. That’s all.

        It would be. Of course, I wouldn’t volunteer.

      • 126 PorterGirl January 8, 2015 at 14:18

        Possibly a wise move.

        I wouldn’t, either. We need MM to wrestle him, I think. Or my friend Vicky is quite vicious. She might do it.

      • 127 Professor VJ Duke January 8, 2015 at 21:59

        Vicki vs Vin Diesel vs. MM! That would be a fight worth remember. I’d watch it. And maybe even make a few bets.

      • 128 PorterGirl January 9, 2015 at 08:44

        That would be the greatest fight ever. We should set up a pay per view – it would be immense! My bet would be on Vicky, but only after she had teamed up with MM to defeat Vin Diesel.

      • 129 Professor VJ Duke January 9, 2015 at 13:00

        I’d bet the same as you, and we could slip the profits. Of course, we’d feed Vin, Vicky, and MM. But they didn’t go through the trouble of setting it up.

      • 130 PorterGirl January 9, 2015 at 13:13

        Sounds like a good plan, Professor. Do you know, I think one day you and I will rule the world.

      • 131 Professor VJ Duke January 9, 2015 at 23:55

        Cool! That would be awesome. I think I’d be nice.

      • 132 PorterGirl January 12, 2015 at 08:35

        I would too. Muffins for all!

      • 133 Professor VJ Duke January 12, 2015 at 20:04

        That sounds perfect.

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Depends on the day, see.

Punchy Argot:

1. Dadblameit.
2. Humdinger
3. Chickit
4. Chicky-woot-woot
5. Malediction
6. Rapscallion
7. Gardoobled
8. Congratulilolations
9. Togoggin
10. Gargonic
11. Two and Five Gurgles
12. Rats and a Heifer
13. Two nods, a wink, and an astroid
14. A bit, bits, and little bits
15. Huff-Hum and a Roar
16. So many thanks, I can't begin to thank you
17. Ri-do-diculous


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