Liverish Pun 02

In response to a “whiskered old chestnut” I posted to alt.callahans some time ago, John Barnstead posted the following.

Alan, Alan, Alan… Despite the fact that this is old enough to enthuse Methuselah, you’ve entirely garbled the story. I can see that an infusion of vacation-renewed blood is required here. Here is the WAY THINGS REALLY WERE:

Everyone knows that Pernicious the Musquodoboit Harbour farm cat loves to have fairy tales read to him before he goes to sleep each night. This task, until recently the exclusive province of his amanuensis and general factotum Barnstead, has now had to be assumed by the various ladies and gentlemen who have so kindly been looking after him during my absence. I’m sure they have discovered the common thread among Pernicious’s favourites: they general have avian actors and involve dairy products at crucial turns in their plots.

Now as it happens, the number one hit of Pernicious’s purr-pet-rating (one to ten paw prints) is the old fairy tale of the ten princes who were cursed by an evil fairy godmother and turned into large, regal white birds. Their sister had to pick nettles and cut off her finger, polishing the bone to form a crochet hook to make shirts which, when cast over her brothers, would return them to their princely forms. As it happens, the sister whiled away the time while crocheting in the company of a close friend, one ‘Little Miss Muffet’ from a neighbouring tale. The two would sit on their tuffets and eat curds, and unfortunately the tenth nettle-shirt accidently got soaked in the bottom of the bowl — Pernicious always hums “Wish I was a Kellogg’s ™ Cornflake, Floating in a Bowl Taking Movies” at this point in the story… Fortunately for both the tenth prince and his sister, the shirt still performed its magical function, but in after years he would tease her about the fine white fuzz which had remained on his well-muscled chest following his restoration to princely duties; “That’s `Whey Down upon the Swan’,” he ribbed her…

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