Tarzan's Tripes Forever, and Other Feghoots

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A Tall Ship Tale #63: The Ship Who Sung

Category: alt.callahans, Puns, Rated G

Bill Wright provided technical assistance for this episode of Paul DeAnguera’s epic tale.


Following his escape from a 12th century Kambujan prison, Captain Quid lost no time in getting the H.M.S. Legume underway. The First Mate stopped by Professor Peabody’s workshop in a corner of the hold. “The Captain wants to go back to the 19th century,” he reported.

Peabody looked up from the partially-disassembled weigh-back machine. “I’m sorry, but that isn’t possible just now,” he apologized. “you’ve caught me in the middle of modifying the chronomotor.”

“Oh. What are you doing to it?”

“I’m adding a fifth dial to indicate kalpas. Why don’t you visit China instead? You’ll find the Sung dynasty in power now, I believe.” So it was that the frigate sailed up the Yellow River to the Sung capital, Kaifeng. The officers disembarked to explore the walled city. “This is quite a civilized land compared to Europe right now,” the Professor pointed out. “For example, this magistrate we are passing won his position not by right of birth, but by competing for it in a civil service examination.”

Owen Anatu glanced at the stringy-bearded, silk-robed gentleman. “What about that fellow being drawn along in the caged wagon behind him?” he said. But Peabody was at a loss, so they approached the magistrate for an explanation.

“We’re getting more of these fellows every year, and frankly I don’t know what to do with them,” he complained. “They come here from the north and play at dalliance with our daughters. Pretty soon they’re plying them with chocolates filled with aphrodisiacs. Dishonor comes next!”

The Captain frowned. “What crime will you charge this man with?” he asked.

“The Manchurian candy date!”

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