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December 15, 2004


The Crack Young Staff

Man, we have never been to such a wonderful fete. We tend not to get invited to such things. We collectively wonder why.


Can someone drive me home?

Mr. Peperium

Ok, everyone, gather round the tree. It's time to distribute the gifts. We've put a lot of thought into these, so please don't show it if you're dissapointed. You can always exchange with one another after you leave.

Stephenesque, you get a cosy little writer's cottage on Soames Sound in Soamesville, Maine where Frederic Church spent many summers. It's called "Windswept" (after the hairdo) and it's an 18 bedroom nook (enough for mall of us to visit) in the Oyster Bay style on a rocky point about 45 minutes by water from where Fairfield Porter painted.

Outer Life: You like fast cars. Well, we're giving you a fast boat. If you can get the ribbon off (need scissors? No, you've got it. Now the paper...) you can see it's a jet-propelled Hinckley 40' Picnic Boat.
Just promise us you won't do doughnuts in front of Stephenesque's writer's cottage. That sort of thing makes literary composition difficult.

Elder Outer Life: Same boat, only 50' long. Same rules, too.

Misspent gets a nice, beautiful and devout Catholic fiancee. So nice, so beautiful and so devout you'll gladly give up all of your qualms about Catholicism and convert. So nice and beautiful that he might even come in from the garden, too.

Otto-Da-Fe: Here's your own private club with a large bowl of black balls.

The Jackal: Walmart Stock

Irish Elk: A new job, Ambassador to Ireland. And a new pet for your kids, a Irish Wolfhound.

Blimpish: A New York apartment and frequent flyer mileage.

Mr. Soames: A fortnight visit with Miss Jane Austen at her brother's home in Kent. (See the "Jane AustenLand" episode of "Red Dwarf" for details on how to get there.)

The Crack Young Staff needs room, so we're giving them a mansion. This should be run along the lines of Hugh Heffner's pad, except that instaed of Bunnies running around, Hatemongers will employ a squad of Cold Fish. We currently have a bid on the Crane estate, since it's in Ipswich, by Singing Beach. Hatemonger's is in Boston so that would be an easy commute. There the Crack Young Staff can throw parties to which they will invite every professor, every dean...in short, every deserving recipient of their Cruise-missile wit. And the best part? It will be such a swanky address that no one will be brave enough to refuse.

Mr. Beck: Mr. Panero's apartment (sorry, the mansion was already taken).

Mr. Panero: A bachelor suite in the Waldorf Towers.

Ms. Steeves: Your own Irish bar where your friends are always welcomed.

Mr. Kimball: We were going to give you a new pair of clogs, but we figured that particular joke had probably ran its course. Then we wondered what we could give you that would do the most good to the most people. Bingo! You've been appointed the sole judge for the next Whitney Bienniel.

Cardinal and wife, you've already received your present, which was your post as judge for the Weblog Awards (by the way, we're still waiting for the verdict. Hurry up...we've got to know where we're sending this bronze plaque, framed certificate, terra cotta statuette of Bacchus and check for $100,000.00).

If we've left anyone out, don't worry. When you're makin' it up there's always plenty more under the tree.


No. I'm trading with Blimpish.

Mrs. Peperium

Mr. P., you forgot HateMongers...tell them quickly. They're going to love, I mean hate it.

Mr. Peperium

Hatemonger's gift has been added to the list above, just before Mr. Beck. I just hate it when I offend someone without meaning to.

Mrs. Peperium

Speaking of Mr. Beck, I hope people have been pummeling him with the rolls.
Stephenesque, just go down the hallway to your left and take a nap in the Weapons Room. When you wake up you can put on one the the suits of amour to win your car keys back from Outer Life.


That's my gift? Judging this mess? Well, in that case -- What do I hear for first place in the first annual WebGrog Awards? It's for sale now and will be awarded to the highest bidder. . .if. . .the price is right.

I'll give you all an hour or so to consider and cough up.

By the way, Mrs. P, you'd better grab a mop and get busy. This place is beginning to look and smell a bit like an Irish Pub. Look here, three empty fifths of Bushmills. And who broke this window?


I'm wandering down the street. See ya!


While he's wandering down the street, he ain't getting my gift - for which, much thanks. When I get set up in my new NY apartment, you're all going to come along to the house-warming I hope?

Mrs. Peperium

So Misspent did come in after all. Don't worry Cardinal Maid Marion and her Merry Girls will be here to clean up. I have a feeling Elder Outer Life is going to like their dresses.
Blimpish, you have a lot of drinking to do. Did you bring your camera?


That is sooooo not my mess.

Elder Outer Life

Thank you, Mr. P, for the boat. I've put your name in for the Diogenes Club and, if you'll go downstairs and check your cellar, you'll find a case of Chateau Margaux 1995.

Okay, now that he's gone, Mrs. P, may I offer you a tour of my new boat? While on board don't forget the first rule of seamanship: It's one hand for the boat, the other for me....


Alas, they seized the camera at customs.

But I can soon catch up on the drinking. Where does Mr. P keep the Jim Beam?

Mrs. Peperium

Elder Outer Life, I am well aquainted with your boat thank you. However the buxom blonde from the Crack Young Staff may enjoy seeing how your boat moves.
Mr.P., the estate agent just rang up. The Crack Young Staff can take posession of The Crane Estate on Monday. Also Wilbur phoned and has agreed to become the father of Esther Wiblerforce-Packard's 7 children. It seems it was you allowing him to take her name that sealed the deal. Good negoiating. Wilbur Wilberforce-Packard...sounds nice.

Mr. Peperium

Blimpish--you'll find the Beam in the cut glass decanter on the Renaissance sideboard next to my collection of African fertility fetishes.

True, Beam is not the kind of spirit one regularly distinguishes with cut glass decanters, but I like the brownish spectrum it throws on the wall when the winter sunlight passes through. No, wait, that brownish spectrum is due to something entirely different...

Where's that mop?


The WebGrog Award is coming.

Let me just find my glasses and get some of this cleaned off my shirt.


Not so much as a single offer to buy the WebGrog award!

Well, I can't say that I'm surprised. Why should anyone even care about the WebGrog award when Mr. and Mrs. P are giving away apartments in New York just for showing up at their open house? What am I talking about, Blimpish didn't even bother to show up until after he'd been given an apartment.

Too bad Misspent has gone home. Not that he's won anything, but who's going to take his mother home? One more Cosmopolitan and I guess she can float home. How about you, Elder Outer Life, can you give Misspent's mum a lift? No? Well, I 'spose she can sleep where she is --so long as Hobbes doesn't mind her head in his cat food.

Well, let's get on with it. It really shouldn't be that difficult to select the winner, after all, the only serious entry I can recall was Mrs. Vanderholt's. Let's face it, her Apple Toad er...Toddy is seasonal, festive, and an actual recipe. Of course, it is also sickeningly sweet, hard to digest, and instant death if you're a diabetic. In fact, the more I think about it. . .Here, Mitsy, give me that trophy back.

Let's get real. The only person who's come up with anything you'd even remotely want near your lips is Monty. He actually suggested something we want to drink, we do drink, and we love to drink: The Soiled Kilt. Recipe:

One pint Guinness.
One jigger scotch.
Repeat until:
a) You no longer have any idea where you are.
b) You are invited by a representative of the local constabulary to go home.
or c) You can't remember why you're shouting and arguing.

And wouldn't you know it, Monty is about the only one who didn't show up today. He's no doubt down at his local, The Soiled Kilt, enjoying a heaping helping of the now fabled drink he named for that emporium of good taste. Unless, of course, he has already received his evening's directions homeward from a helpful constable.

And so, my friends, I give you Monty and his Soiled Kilt, winner of the 2004 WebGrog Awards. CHEERS!

Now, Mrs. P, set 'em up and let's get down to some serious drinking.

Mrs. Peperium

Good job Cardinal. Congratulations Monty. Maybe next time you'll show up. Thank you everyone for coming. There's still plenty of food and drink. I must say Elder Outer Life is as debonair as I hoped he would be. Alot like Taki but not Greek, or a drug user,or anti-american or well, anyway he's chasing Maid Marion around the billards room with a feather duster as I type... Unfortunately no duels happened today. So Mr. P's pistols will have to wait until our next party.
Merry Christmas Everyone. Cardinal, break out the good liqour. I'm parched.


Oh, Mrs. P, FYI:

Outer Life broke the window.
Blimpish took Mr. P's Almond Joy Xmas tie.
Stephenesque backed over the tricycle.
And Misspent threw up on Hobbes.
(Marupa said she'll wash Hobbes tomorrow.)

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