Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCLIII

Some nights Mogey and Smush would have a good old hoedown out back in the barn. On these nights - and only on these nights - the two pals would unleash their considerable musical talents for the benefit of those assembled.

"Evening, ladies and gentlemen!" Smush would shout. "M'name's Smush, on lead guitar and vocals." If ever they'd had a crowd, this would've been the occasion for their first cheer of delirious fanaticism, but unfortunately, the only hoedown guests they ever got were an elderly fieldmouse couple. The Sneakersons, as the fieldmice were called, liked to dance, but they LOVED to rock.

"I'd like to introduce the rest of my band here," Smush would continue. "Behind me, on drums, is Mittens Burnsworth!"

"Rock and roll!" the Sneakersons would squeak. "Drum solo! Drum solo!"

Mittens, a tabby cat from a rough neighborhood, would then launch into a bone-jarring drum solo that all but knocked the Sneakersons off their feet.

"And off to my left is Byron "The Belly" Nogenard on upright bass!" Smush would shout.

"We love you, Byron!" the Sneakersons would scream in their tiny voices. "Give us a belly-shaker!"

Then Byron, a Berkshire white pot-bellied pig, would twang the strings of the bass until his belly shook and the air wavered with vibration.

"And last but not least," Smush would call excitedly, "my best friend in the world: Mogey on tuba!"

"Get that guy out of here!" the Sneakersons would chitter as Mogey prepared for a face-melting tuba solo. "He couldn't rock if he sat in rocking chair!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCLII

Mogey "The Massacre" and "Beastly" Smush were two of the most celebrated rasslers in all of County Eclair. On Wednesday nights they could be found without fail, taking on all comers in the ring outside town hall.

One fateful Wednesday, a hooded figure emerged from the record crowd of eleven onlookers plus four babies who were not, by a strict definition, looking on, though they were in attendance. The hooded figure threw off his robe and sprang into the ring, revealing himself to be "Slick Rapscallion", the most feared rassler ever to walk the streets of Oinkington, the next county over.

"Oy!" Slick Rapscallion bellowed. "Are you the yellow-bellied cowards they call Mogey The Massacre and Beastly Smush?"

"I didn't know it was possible to bellow the word 'oy,'" Beastly Smush responded. "Did you know that, Mogey?"

"I can't say as I did," Mogey The Massacre replied. "But I did know it was possible to scream 'Massacre Monkeybars!'"

The crowd went wild as Mogey The Massacre performed his signature move, negotiating a set of invisible monkeybars and belly flopping onto Slick Rapscallion's unsuspecting head, effectively knocking him unconscious.

"WHO'S THE MASTER...ACRE?" Mogey shouted to the audience. He pulled off the belt wrapped around his middle and held it aloft in celebration.

"What're you doing Mogey?" Smush whispered out of the corner of his mouth.

"Showing off my championship belt!" Mogey answered.

"But it's only a grubby bit of rope," Smush whispered. "And your trousers have fallen down!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCLI

One morning Mogey and Smush decided it was high time they traveled to the moon. All day they planned: drawing up diagrams, solving mathematical theorems, and collecting supplies for the journey. Finally, as night fell, they set out.

But most unfortunately indeed, it wasn't twenty minutes before their expedition hit it's first snag.

"Uh, Smush?" Mogey called down. "I think this is as far as it goes."

"Are you sure?" Smush replied. "Reach out a try to touch it, then!"

Mogey clung to the topmost branches of the tallest pine tree in their backyard and stretched his fingers toward the full moon hanging above.

"I can't quite reach it!" Mogey said, as Smush looked on from a few branches below, thoughtfully munching a doughnut. "Maybe this moon travel is more difficult than we thought."
- Show quoted text -

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCL

Mogey and Smush charged up to the battlements of Drayblatt Castle with claymores in their hands and malice in their eyes. They roared with the power and fury of recently uncaged Molibian jungle cats. The sight of Drayblatt soldiers filled the eye slits of their iron helmets.

"Say, Smush," Mogey yelled as they leaped onto the castle walls. "We seem to be all alone!" Sure enough, they glanced about to find they were they only soldiers who had charged. Just then, the familiar boing of the army's largest catapult echoed across the battlefield and they turned to see an enormous projectile flying their way.

"Gadzooks!" Smush cried.

"They've launched a rock at us!" Mogey shrieked, pointing up at the incoming missile.

"No Mogey," Smush replied. "That's no rock. It's something far, far worse. The stuff of legends. Our army has saved the gizzard from every Christmas goose in the country and bound them together into a ball so frightening there can be only one word for it."

"It can't be!" Mogey yelled.

"That's right, Mogey. It's a gizzard bomb. And it's headed right for us."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLIX

One day when the sun was a deep, mysterious blue and the sea was shining golden as a new penny, Mogey and Smush were ambling along the beach. As they ambled (and they were expert amblers) they came upon an old corked bottle that had washed up on the sand.

"Let's open it!" Smush exclaimed. "There might be a message inside!"

"I don't know," Mogey replied hesitantly. "I don't like those messages in a bottle. They can sometimes be cursed...."

"Cursed Shmursed," Smush answered.

"...by Davey Jones..." Mogey continued.

"Davey Jones, Shavey Gnomes," Smush retorted once more. "I'm opening it." He uncorked the bottle and sure enough, a crinkled old piece of parchment was curled inside. Smush shook it out and put on his spectacles.

"All it says is 'Yowch!'" he explained. "I wonder what that-- Yowch!" Smush yelled as a hermit crab the size of an extremely large hermit crab scuttled out of the bottle and nipped his thumb. "Wait... there's a post script," Smush noticed, nursing his thumb as the crab assassin scuttled away. "'Yours Truly, Davey Jones.'"

"What'd I tell you?" Mogey repeated. "Cursed...by Davey Jones."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLVIII

One day Mogey and Smush were out in the forest playing "Woodland Critters" with their friends from around the countryside.

"Hi-Didely-Ai, boys!" called PJ Jamese, the leader of their gang. "Circle up and look sharp!" The rabblerousers - Mogey and Smush included - immediately stopped rousing rabble and formed a rough semicircle about him.

"First order of business!" PJ went on. "The last few rounds of Woodland Critters have been much too disorganized. Folks are changing species left and right out there. From now on, you have to choose a name that will tell everyone what kind of critter you are, and stick with it 'til the end! My name will be Eagle-eye Johnny."

"I'll be Roman van Wolf!" cried Benson Bock, another rambunctious youngster.

"And I want to be called Gorilla Jones!" called one of their friends named Kevin Vincent O'Malley.

"And you, Mogey and Smush?" PJ Jamese asked. "What will your Woodland Critters nicknames be?"

"Bitsy Hoggins," said Mogey.

"And Sloth Worthington, at your service," Smush added.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLVII

One day Mogey and Smush were playing with building blocks when Teacher came around to see what they had constructed.

"What is this you've built, Smush?" Teacher asked.

"The Cathedral of Notre Dame," studious Smush replied proudly as he presented the flying buttresses and elegant spires he'd made out of crude wooden blocks.

"Why, how lovely," Teacher exclaimed, beaming at him. "And you, Mogey? What is this construction you've created? The Leaning Tower of Pisa? The Arc de Triomphe?"

"Nope," Mogey said. "That there's a scale model of a loaf o' salami."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLVI

One stupendous spring afternoon, Mogey and Smush were catapulting meatballs off the top of the village bell tower, or as they liked to call it, Le Minaret de Mischief. Mogey had just lobbed a particularly saucy meatball onto a crowd of schoolchildren when he turned to Smush with a look of dismay.

"Smush?" he asked. "Isn't there more to life than this?"

Smush gazed down on the chaos that had erupted below: it wasn't the meatballs that were wreaking havoc so much as the flock of seagulls that had come to feast on the remnants. In fact, two seagulls were lifting a rather plump boy named Fergus Glomp - who refused to let go of the meatball he'd been struck by - into the air above the churchyard.

"You may be right, Mogey," Smush replied. "Go ahead and get those stuffed peppers out of the cooler."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLV

One day Mogey and Smush were heading down to the docks when they stopped into a little shop for a couple of fish sandwiches. They peeled open the newspaper wrapping as they walked along the foggy riverbank. Mogey had gotten a golden piece of fried scrod in a fresh-baked bun, but Smush opened his sandwich to reveal what appeared to be a whole mackerel on rye.

"What in the blue blazes?" Smush asked his sandwich, who didn't respond. "This is not what I ordered!" So he turned on his heel and marched back to the shop all afluster.

"Be nice, Smush!" Mogey called, scurrying after him.

"What does this look like?" Smush demanded, slamming his sandwich onto the counter.

"Mackerel on rye," the toothless, moustachioed sandwich maker replied.

"Am I crazy, sir? Is this not Pugleport Village?" Smush lectured. "Never did I think I'd see the day when a Pugleport mackerel on rye was not served with sun-dried tomato aioli!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLIV

One morning after the spring's first rain, Mogey and Smush were strolling out of the house when the door fell off it's hinges. That's right, it crashed right out of the door frame and onto the front stoop.

"Holy cow!" Smush shouted. "Mogey, get me a screwdriver from my toolbox! And hurry!"

"But you haven't even got a toolbox, Smush," Mogey answered hesitantly. "Let alone a screwdriver."

"Well of course I don't!" Smush retorted. "It was obvious that I meant 'get me a ginger snap from the cookie jar!' Land sakes, Mogey, do I have to spell everything out for you?"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLIII

One day Mogey and Smush were skipping along through the Hottoes Desert when they came across a lamp. As anyone in their places would have, they rubbed the lamp, and sure enough a genie emerged.

He didn't bear the appearance of your traditional genie, however. He was rather scrawny and wore a thin, muley moustache.

"Hullo I suppose," the genie said lacksadaisically as Mogey and Smush boogied down with joy. "I'm here to, you know, grant you each a wish."

"Hooray!" Mogey yelled. "I wish for a million gold doubloons!"

"Can't do that," the genie muttered. "Do I look like I could lift even a HUNDRED gold doubloons?"

"Alright," Mogey replied "How about a stack of bank notes worth a million Deutsche Marks?"

"Where would I find Deutsche Marks in a desert?" the genie asked. "I don't fly or anything, you know."

"I lifetime supply of chocolates?" Mogey suggested.

"Can't do it," the genie replied.

"The love of a beautiful lady?"


"A machine to do my every bidding?"


"Ok then, how about some parachute pants?" Mogey demanded in exasperation.

"That I can do!" the genie replied, happily tearing away his own baggy trousers to reveal a second pair beneath. "Congratulations, you've been genied!"

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLII

One morning Mogey opened his eyes and had no idea where he was. The whole world had gone topsy turvy: up was down, east was west, the land was above the sky. The sun was setting below the horizon, dogs walked on their tails, and cherries were on the bottom of ice cream sundaes.

"Smush!" Mogey cried in a blind panic. "Where am I???"

"You're in bed with the covers over your face, Mogey," Smush replied. "And your blanket is upside down."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXLI

One day Mogey and Smush were ambling down the path into town when they saw Old Man Guttleberry making his way up into the foothills. On his right foot he had an old roller skate and his left leg was a wooden peg with a wagon wheel at the end. A team of oxen pulled him along and he held the reins tight in his gnarled, crinkly hands.

"You know what I heard about Old Man Guttleberry?" Smush whispered, casting a sidelong glance at the man on wheels. "I heard ain't got no teeth, but he bought a pair of wooden ones from a man down in Muskratport."

"Wooden teeth?" Mogey asked.

"Aye," Smush said, cringing a bit.

"Can you imagine such a thing?" Mogey asked as Smush shook his head. "Why it would be...glorious! You could sharpen them to points and look like a badger - or paint them blue and be the hit of every party...."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXL

"C'mon Smush, you won't do it! You're too chicken!" yelled Brawny Bullykins, the toughest guy in the schoolyard.

"Don't do, it Smush," Mogey cautioned. "Your tongue will never be the same!"

"It's only a pump handle," Smush replied confidently. "And Smush never refuses a dare."

The crowd of boys erupted into cheers as Smush strode across the icy, windswept schoolyard toward the cruel-looking iron water pump. They fell deathly silent as Smush bent toward the pump handle. Mogey cringed in horror, and even Brawny Bullykins looked frightened, as Smush extended his tongue toward the cold black metal.

For several moments there was utter confusion as the audience struggled to comprehend what they had just witnessed. And then the crowd went bonkers.

"You did it, Smush my boy, you did it!" Mogey cried, slapping him on the back as Brawny Bullykins walked back to the schoolhouse hanging his head. The other boys rushed in, lifting Smush, their hero, high into the air. Not only had he NOT left a chunk of his tongue on the pump handle, Smush had used his awesomeness to melt the pump into a twisted pile of molten metal.

For once, Smush had used his powers for good instead mischief.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXIX

One hot summer evening Mogey and Smush were eating spareribs. The long dining table was strewn with corn cobs and bones they'd gnawed clean of succulent meat, but Mogey and Smush were still eating away, because no one can ever have enough spareribs.

"Mogey!" Smush cried, collapsing into peals of meat-drunk laughter. "Take this napkin.You should see your face: it looks like you've bathed in barbecue sauce!"

"Naw Smush," Mogey replied, refusing the napkin. "I don't like to use a napkin when I'm eating ribs. I just wipe my face with the back of my hand." Mogey then proceeded to demonstrate this feat, only his hands were so doused that his face ended up saucier than ever.

"Ho ho!" Smush guffawed, laughing even harder. "You've gotten more sauce on your face than before, Mogey!"

"Yes, but does any of the ORIGINAL sauce remain? I think not," Mogey said, licking his fingers. "Mission accomplished."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXVIII

"Smush," Mogey asked one spring day as the two pals strode down the lane to fetch a fresh bouquet of flowers for their landlady, "what is your favorite weapon?"

"Oh I'd have to say my double-edged tempered-steel authentic samurai sword," Smush replied. "What about yourself?"

"Ah Smush," Mogey said, "you have so much to learn. Don't you know that the Pen is mightier than the Sword?"

"Not only have I never seen a pen that could slice a mighty oak tree in half and yet have the precision to julienne onions the way my sword can, you're also completely illiterate," Smush retorted.

"But you misunderstand me Smush," Mogey rejoined. "The Pen I was referring to was not a writing utensil. It was my twenty-pound billy club, Penaglios the Mighty. And there is so greater weapon in all the land than Penaglios the Mighty."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXVII

One night Mogey and Smush decided they'd had enough of the rogue cow who had been terrorizing the neighborhood. The rogue cow had smashed up petunias, uprooted potatoes, and stolen vast quantities of red rope licorice, but so far no one had been able to catch the beast.

"There we are, Mogey," Smush said as he put the finishing touches on the trap they'd constructed. The trap was a sure-fire cow-catcher consisting of an enormous cardboard box propped up by a kayak paddle.

"It looks stupendous, goodly Smush," Mogey responded. "Just one thing: with what shall we bait it?"

"That's an easy one," Smush answered. "A bacon double cheeseburger."

Mogey looked aghast. "Surely a cow - even a rogue cow - wouldn't eat beef?" he demanded.

"No no," Smush replied assuredly, "but it's a well known fact that a rogue cow will go to great lengths to rescue one of his fallen comrades. Especially if that comrade has been doused in bacon and jarlsberg."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXVI

"Say, Smush," Mogey said one day as they were collecting eggs from the henhouse one morning, "have you ever heard tell of the Blarney Stone?"

"You mean that rock everyone kisses?" Smush asked as a chubby hen named Squawkins tried to peck his hand.

"That's the one," Mogey answered. "If they had such a stone here in North Sotherby what do you think visitors would do to it?"

"They sure wouldn't kiss it," Smush replied knowlegably. "The smell from the skunk cabbage plantation doesn't put anyone in the mood for kissing. I'd guess people would probably give the rock a high five."

"Yes, or perhaps a hug if the rock was looking particularly nice that day," Mogey added.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXV

One evening in the height of mud season, Mogey and Smush were feeling particularly philanthropic.

"I'm feeling philanthropic today, Mogey," Smush said. "What can we do to help out this wonderful township that's given us so much?"

"I've got just the thing!" Mogey replied happily. "Let's build some toys for the local children!"

Smush agreed that this was a stupendous idea, so bringing with them 4 mincemeat pies, a gallon of sodypop, and a sack of peppermint candy, the two of the settled in for an all-nighter in their workshop. Toy after toy they built in a frenzy of chisels and paint, and when the sawdust settled they had made a toy for every child in the village.

"Whew! That was some night," Mogey exclaimed, plucking an escaped piece of peppermint candy from his beard. "What was the best toy you made, Smush?"

"I'd have to say these here springboots," Smush answered, holding up a pair of children's boots with stiff metal springs strapped to the bottoms. "Some lucky tot will get to see his house from 50 feet up in the air with these babies on his feet. What was your favorite?"

"Far and away this Genghis Khan action figure," Mogey said. "Check it out, if you move the lever on his back...PAH! These hidden six-inch razor-sharp eye-pokers shoot out of his sleeves!"

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXIV

Once Mogey and Smush started a small carpet steaming business. In the two months they were open they had only three customers, none of whom came off very pleased with Smogey Steaming. Mogey and Smush could not, for the life of them, understand why. For every job, they showed up on time and dressed in their smart white suits with Smogey Steaming stitched in purple thread under the breast pocket. They would carry in the beautiful steam machine of gleaming steel and check twice to make sure their price was agreeable.

Then they would go to work steaming carpet. Smogey Steaming's steam machine could steam carpets faster than any machine East of the Cantupchuck River, but their exceptional work didn't end there. Mogey would carefully shine the fancy metal plate cover while Smush prepared a garnish of radish roses, and they would lay the freshly steamed slice of carpet on a bed of mushroom gnocchi.

"Voila!" Smush would say.

"Ta-da!" Mogey would chime in.

Yet for some reason, every time they lifted the plate cover to reveal the delicious looking plate of steamed carpet, the customers looked at them in disgust and began cussing a blue streak until Mogey and Smush left the house without pay. Thus ended the unfortunate history of Smogey Steaming, a Mogey and Smush production.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXIII

One bitterly cold winter's eve Mogey and Smush were huddled around the warmth of the parlor woodstove. After a bit Mogey stirred the coals and unearthed two baked potatoes he'd buried hours earlier.

"What are you doing with those?" Smush asked as Mogey slipped one of the potatoes into his nightshirt.

"Keeping warm!" Mogey replied. "I'm not about to get into that ice cold bed without a couple of baked taters by my side."

"Sheesh!" Smush huffed in exasperation. "Do I have to show you everything? You want to be a tough guy don't you?"

"Sure I do," Mogey answered.

"Well tough guys don't put baked potatoes in their nightshirts," Smush said. "Tough guys use a cinderbox."

Smush took out their old popcorn popper (a small wire cage on a stick) and showed Mogey how to load her up with hot coals.

"There you are sir Mogesley," Smush said, giving the cinderbox a vigorous shake, "see how warm that keeps you tonight."

Next morning a very charred and displeased looking Mogey met Smush at the breakfast table.

"Well," Smush asked, "how'd you like the cinderbox, eh?"

"Not only was I freezing," Mogey replied, wiping soot from his brow, "my bed caught on fire in the wee hours of the morning. Now I'm burned AND cold!"

"Then you're finally a tough guy," Smush said, looking quite pleased with himself.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXII

One afternoon Mogey and Smush were meandering down the banks of the Gray Veenbiscots River when they encountered an individual typical of those parts. He was a short fellow, standing only as high as Mogey and Smush's elbows, and he wore a ragged navy blue bunny suit.

"Ahoy!" called Mogey as the bunny suited man skipped by. "What is your moniker, sir?"

"Me?" bunny suit responded jovially. "Why I'm called Timp Mimp!"

"And what brings you to wear this outrageous costume?" Smush asked.

"Why I'm a nose bugler!" Timp Minp replied. "Watch this!" Timp Mimp used one of his bunny suit paws to clamp his nose shut and at the same time began to emit a noise most unpleasant. "Trululu lululeelu," he hummed.

"Great crispy ducks!" Smush cried in anguish.

"I know," Mogey said, his eyes widening in wonder. "Isn't that the loveliest music you've ever heard?"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXXI

One bright and shining day at the county fair, a strange man approached Mogey and Smush's mixed nut stand.

"What are ye peddling?" the man croaked through a gnarled gingery beard.

"Mixed nuts!" Smush replied cheerfully.

"I see," the man replied, "and how be they prepared?"

"Now see here," Mogey answered, putting his hands on his hips and getting defensive as he often did about his cooking. "We serve our mixed nuts two ways. You can have 'em hot and salted in a paper cone, or you can have 'em cold and crumbly and rolled up inside a rubbery old pancake."

"Mmm," the man said. "Do you have cheese and bacon bits to top them off if I get the hot ones?"

"You know what?" Mogey responded, raising his voice. "Why don't you just got out of here! What kind of two-bit mixed nut stand do you think we're running ? Cheese and bacon bits...of COURSE we have cheese and bacon bits!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXX

"Say, Smush," Mogey said one day as he came home from a long day of hang gliding, "I was posed a most interesting question today. Maybe you should have a go at it: how much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?"

"No idea," Smush replied. "But I'll tell you this much: if I could chuck wood I'd chuck a big armful in the direction of your head."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXIX

One day Mogey and Smush were ambling through the deep dark Oondale Forest when they encountered a pine cone monster.

"Avast!" cried the pine cone monster, tumbling out into the narrow path. His skin was gnarly and prickly all over and he scarcely came up to Mogey and Smush's waist but he brandished his pine cone fists in a feisty manner. "Dare you tread the path of my ancestors?" he demanded.

"Aw look at you, little fella," Mogey said, patting the pine cone monster on his coney head. "What's your name?"

"My name is too frightening to be heard by the human ear," the pine cone monster replied. "It was created by a demon in a torture chamber on a moonless night during the most evil year of all time!"

"Well, what is it?" Smush asked.

"Lester," the creature replied. "But most of my friends call me Piney."

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXVIII

One day Mogey and Smush were racing from the pumphouse to the barley field. Smush, who was much faster than Mogey, had a monstrous lead within seconds, so he came back to participate in one of his favorite activities: talking some jive.

"What's the matter, Moge-poke?" he taunted his struggling pal. "Should we make it the sheepfold instead of the barley field?"

"Just you wait," Mogey replied breathlessly. "This is going to be a classic example of the cactus and the hair."

"It's the TORTOISE and the hare, you numbskull!" Smush rejoined, running backwards right next to Mogey.

"Oh yes?" Mogey replied. "You think so? Well what say you to this? Smagown!" he yelled as he pulled a particularly prickly looking cactus from his shirt sleeve. Mogey tossed the cactus, snarling it in Smush's beloved mane of golden curls, and took off for the barley field faster than a goose on Christmas.

Friday, November 6, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXVII

Smush was shivering as he traipsed in from the cold October rain, shaking icy water off his galoshes and rain cap.

"Make us a pot of tea, will you Mogey?" Smush asked, his teeth chattering. Mogey, feeling sorry for his friend, dashed off to the kitchen.

"Here you are, Smush," Mogey said, returning with a mug and spoon which Smush accepted gratefully. "I've gotten a lot better at decoding your abbreviations lately," Mogey went on, as Smush lifted the spoon for a taste.

"This is ice cold, Mogey!" Smush shouted. "Is this...ice cream?"

"Of course," Mogey replied proudly. "You can't put one by old Mogey. I know how you've been abbreviating everything: pass the 's' and 'p', can you take out the 'g', Holy 'M!' So I was right on your wavelength when you asked for some 't.' And there you have it, a fresh pot of Triple Fudge Swirl!"

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXVI

One day Dumple the Wise came to town. He sat on a spindly rocking chair under a chestnut tree at the top of Egginin Hill, and folks from far an wide came to get his advice. Dumple the Wise sat completely still, but anytime a stiff breeze came along, he would rock his chair to avoid the falling chestnuts.

Mogey and Smush waited in line for seven and a half long hours with only a set of fiddlesticks and half a pack of chewing gum to pass the time. Finally they stood before Dumple the Wise having earned the privilege of asking him one question.

"What is it you would like to know?" asked Dumple the Wise serenely as he dodged falling chestnuts.

"What sort of corn is best?" Mogey cried, before Smush could stop him.

"Popped," Dumple the Wise said after a moment's thought. "Next!"

"I can't believe you blew it, Mogey!" Smush hissed in fury as they walked away from the wise man. "We went over our question a thousand times! You were supposed to ask what sort of corn is TASTIEST!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXV

One autumn day so crisp that rice puffs were falling from the sky, Mogey and Smush were walking to polka band practice when they cane acriss famed wolf-jockey Smergen Montool. Smergen was riding his newest wolf, a vicious and bloodthirsty beast named Bojangles.

"Smergen Montool!" Mogey shouted gleefully. "We are huge fans!"

"Good evening, chaps," Smergen replied, cantering Bojangles toward them. "Always nice to meet wolf racing fans. Say, I don't suppose you'd like to come to our next race? I'm riding Bojangles here in the Buntrum Country Open Tuesday next."

"Would we!" Mogey cried as Smergen handed him a pair of tickets. "A billion thanks! We'll be cheering for you!"

Smergen Montool waved goodbye and we and galloped off down the street atop Bojangles. When he had disappeared, Smush snatched the tickets from Mogey, tore them to pieces, and ground them under the heel of his boot.

"What'd you do that for?" Mogey demanded.

"Have you ever been to a wolf race, Mogey?" Smush asked haughtily. "They don't even serve meat pies. All they have to eat are watercress sandwiches. Ugh."

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXIV

One evening, superheroes Mogey and Smush were preparing to go gallivanting about Audah City, fighting crime while at the same time keeping a sharp eye out for potentially delicious abandoned victuals.

It had been months since the two vigilante crimefighters had gone gallivanting, and Smush was excited to try out a brand new costume. He burst out of his room with a flourish and Mogey paused midway through tying his baby bib to look at his pal.

"What in the world is that?" Mogey asked.

"It's my new cape!" Smush replied proudly.

"It's a blanket..." Mogey said confusedly.

"Patchwork capes are going to be all the rage in the superhero community pretty soon," Smush answered, sweeping the cape around his shoulders. "And all criminals will fear Sergeant Quilt, iron fist of justice and costume trendsetter."

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXIII

One day Smush came home from a long day's work in the cinnamon mine to find Mogey, who was working the night shift, waiting for him at the end of the drive.

"Good morrow, Mogey," Smush said. "What's the scuttlebutt?"

"I've gotten you a present, Smush," Mogey replied. "And I wanted it to be a surprise. I know you're always saying how exhausting it is to walk up the front garden steps after a long day's work in the cinnamon mine, and I've it made so's you'll never have to walk up those stairs again."

"What?" Smush exclaimed. "How? Did you make a lift? Have you hired a large man to carry us up the stairs? Did you make the path curve round the back?"

"Better than any of those!" Mogey answered. "But I don't want to spoil it. Now when you get to the place where the stairs used to be I want you to close your eyes and jump. Oh, and don't mind the giant trampoline box over by the compost heap."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXII

The sealskin canoe bumped gently into great chunks of ice as Mogey and Smush threaded their way through the flows in search of the rarest of all creatures.

"What is it we're looking for again, Smush?" Mogey asked.

"We want an old wooden shipwreck," Smush replied, "and it would help if it looks mysterious."

"Why is that again?"

"Because we're searching for the rarest of all creatures," Smush said solemnly. "The famed Artic Ark Tick."

"I see one!" Mogey shouted almost immediately, pointing off the starboard side. "I see a shipwreck!"

"Mogey," Smush rejoined, looking in the direction his pal was pointing. "Not only is that no place to find an Artic Ark Tick, not only is it not a wrecked ship, it's quite literally a bed and breakfast. You may be the worst seafaring artic explorer of the last decade."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXXI

"Mogey! Mogey! Come quickly!" Smush shouted, rushing into the house all afluster. "You'll never believe what I've taught Brownie to do!"

Mogey leapt from his chair and followed Smush hurriedly out to the barn. Brownie, their prize dairy cow was standing in her stall as always, munching from her feedbox. But instead of her normal diet of oats and hay, the feedbox was full of eggs and a half-pound bag of sugar.

"Milk her, Mogey!" Smush said, almost shaking with excitement. So Mogey sat down on the short stool and milked Brownie into the clean metal pail. The milk made a swishing sound against the side of the pail, and Mogey wondered what in the world Smush was on about.

"Now give it a try!" Smush urged. Mogey took a sip from the fresh pail of milk. Then another. Then he took several enormous gulps.

"Great gooses!" Mogey cried when at last he stopped drinking. "This is the most delicious egg nog I've ever tasted!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXX

One day Mogey and Smush were in school. The little brick schoolhouse was muggy and hot, and Professor Beardlock would thrash them with a willow switch if they so much as wiped their brows.

"I can't stand it any longer, Smush," Mogey whispered sharply. "I'll die of hunger if I don't have that piece of german chocolate cake in the lunch pail."

"No Mogey!" Smush replied under his breath. "We've got to finish our multiplication tables or Professor Beardlock is going to take out the willow switch! Now what does seven times four equal?"

"Molebreath!" Mogey answered loudly. "Now let me at that german chocolate cake!" He erupted from his chair and made a mad dash for the lunch pail, and that cake was gone before you could say higgeldy piggeldy.

Mogey's backside received eight lashes from the willow switch that day, but Thor himself couldn't have whipped the delicious taste of german chocolate cake out of his mouth.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXIX

One day Mogey and Smush were focused intently on a pivotal game of checkers. The atmosphere was so tense that Mogey could only manage to choke down half of a plump roast goose with chestnut stuffing. Neither competitor dared move his back row for fear of a game-changing catastrophe, until finally Smush had no other choice.

"Ha!" Mogey shouted, moving one of his pieces into Smush's back row. "Prince me!"

"What are you talking about?" Smush asked. "Don't you mean 'king me?'"

"I mean exactly what I said," Mogey replied. "Now put a bottle cap on my prince's head and give him a tiny bazooka. Everyone should be given a bazooka on the day he becomes a prince."

"But we don't have any tiny bazookas! We only have that one," Smush said, gesturing to the massive firearm leaning in the corner of their breakfast nook.

"Oh well," Mogey rejoined with a wide grin. "I guess my prince is going to blow your checker army away!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXVIII

One day Smush was taking a break from organizing his dust bunny collection and he went outside to find Mogey digging away. Mogey had dug himself so deep that ground level was above his ears and he was tossing little shovelfuls of earth up and over the edge.

"Salutations, Mogey!" Smush called down. "What are you digging, my friend?"

"A tunnel," Mogey replied.

"Where to?" Smush asked.

"Oh just straight down," Mogey said. "I wanted to see how deep the ground goes."

"Mmm," Smush answered, feeling a bit perplexed. "Wouldn't that be more of a hole than a tunnel?" Mogey stared up at Smush as he wiped fresh dirt from his brow.

"You say potato, I say potahto," Mogey replied.

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXVII

"Hey Mogey," Smush said one morning at the breakfast table. "Have you taken care of that spider web near the barn yet?"

"No," Mogey replied. "It's very bad luck to kill a spider."

"Come with me, Mogey," Smush said, rising from the table. He led his pal out to the front porch and up the path beside the house, where they stopped before the barn. A massive spider web more than four fathoms wide stretched clear to the woodshed, and in it were stuck several birds of varying sizes, a beach ball, and their dog, Pogo.

"There is literally a dog stuck in this spider web, Mogey," Smush exclaimed. "A full sized dog. How long before a baby gets stuck in there? Or worse, one of our pigs?"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXVI

One misty day Mogey and Smush had to meet with a quite nefarious individual at the tip top of Mount Moop.

"Bring the map, Mogey," Smush said. "It's awful foggy out and I have the feeling we might get lost."

Sure enough, the intrepid travelers got spun around in the blindingly thick haze, and before long they found themselves caught on Mount Moop's most dangerous feature: Bonebreak Ledge.

"Can I see that map, Mogey?" Smush asked over the howl of the wind. Mogey handed him the rolled sheet of parchment.

"What is this?" Smush demanded, staring at the map in shock. "This is a child's coloring map of the South Pole! Why would you bring this?"

"You said we might get lost," Mogey replied.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXV

Mogey and Smush loved to play tic-tac-toe, but they had a slight variation on the traditional game.

"X's win it," Mogey exclaimed as Smush began removing his left shoe and stocking fearfully. Mogey grabbed the hammer from its place on the tic-tac-toe board and took a few practice swings, grinning mischievously as Smush winced in anticipation.

"Alrighty," Mogey said, "here we go. Tiiiiic...taaaac...TOE!" he shouted, bringing the hammer down on Smush's big toe. Smush screamed in pain and hopped about, clutching his foot.

"That was too hard!" Smush roared. "Keep it up and I'm changing the game to tic-tac-forehead!"

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXIV

"You know what I was thinking, Smush?" Mogey said one dewey morning. "It's high time we rebel."

"Rebel?" Smush asked. "But we live in the lap of luxury here. Duke and Duchess Googapan let us do as we please over the entire north wing of their estate. They give us three square meals a day on silver platters, plus a fourth meal on a plate made of fresh waffles. We never lift a finger except to play paper football on game night. Best of all, the butler powders our wigs each morning and fluffs our slippers so they slide on easily, even when our toes are particularly sausagey. Why in the world would we want to rebel?"

"Because they're not the boss of us!" Mogey shouted, stomping his foot.

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXIII

One day Mogey and Smush were down at the Countywide Cracklin' Cornbread Bakeoff. Dozens of contestants entered every year, but to make sure no baker stayed on top for too long, everyone had to share the secret ingredient that made his or her cornbread crackle.

"What was your secret ingredient?" the judge asked Mrs. Butterthumb, the contest's winner three years earlier.

"Rice krispies," Mrs. Butterthumb admitted abashedly.

"Oh ho!" the judge cried. "Very interesting, Mrs. Butterthumb, very interesting indeed. And the lovely Miss Wiggybean? What was your secret ingredient?"

"Pork cracklins," Miss Wiggybean said, covering her face with a flowered apron.

"Ahhh, a true classic," said the judge as we walked toward Mogey and Smush's steaming pan of yellow bread. "And what was your secret ingredient, gentlemen?" he asked.

"Bubble wrap!" Smush cried proudly.

"And a litttttttle pinch of allspice," Mogey added.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXII

"Hey Mogey," Smush said one frosty day as they harvested the last of the cabbages, "what's your hat made of?"

"This hat?" Mogey answered with gusto. "This hat is knitted from the finest Bandrigian wool harvested secretly in the dead of night from Lord Plumper's personal flock of bounding sheep. What're your trousers made of?"

"My shirt is made from the hide of the dreaded Portuguese anger deer," Smush explained. "It's a creature so murderous, that to catch it the hunter had to replace his salt lick with a bearmeat lick. The hide of the anger deer had to be boiled in lye for a fortnight before it could be touched by human hands, but it's as soft as silk, and as tough as a dwarf noggin. What's your vest made of?"

"Pleather," Mogey replied.

"Well I can't compete with that," Smush said in awe.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCXI

One day Smush was mixing up some egg nog when Mogey walked in from a long half hour's work in the peacock fields. Smush thought it would be the height of hilarity to flick his noggy whisk in Mogey's direction, splattering him with a fine spray of nogdroplets. Mogey paused in mid step. Cautiously, he wiped a finger across his cheek and put it to his mouth.

"Smush," Mogey said, turning intensely toward his friend as his eyes narrowed, "you've just made my list."

"What list is that?" Smush asked, suddenly nervous.

"A list I keep nailed to my wall..." Mogey began, his face etched with emotion, "of people who make delicious egg nog."

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCX

There was but one time Mogey and Smush got involved in local politics. In the village of Gumpottom Hollow there a biannual election was held for town meat clerk, an important position in a hamlet whose principal export was ham. Ham hamlets like Gumpottom Hollow were common once upon a time.

Well, Mogey and Smush liked meat, and they liked clerkery, so they decided to run for co-meat clerk positions on a duel ballot. The election turned ugly, however, when local butcher and crowd favorite Matthias Cleaves entered the race, blowing away Mogey and Smush in a landslide.

It always remained a mystery to Mogey and Smush how they had lost with such a well-run campaign. They'd come up short even though they exhibited these three characteristics of all successful election strategies:

1) Trustworthiness: Mogey and Smush had stolen fewer pies and babies off of back porches than anyone in the community (except perhaps notable pie-hater Ron Boingee, who was allergic to babies).

2) Attractiveness: It goes without saying that between Mogey's distinguished paunch and Smush's distinguished paunch, they were two of the best looking fellows in the district.

3) A Catchy Campaign Slogan: After much deliberation Mogey and Smush had stumbled upon a slogan that was both excellent and irrefutable: "Mogey and Smush: a smell you can taste!"

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCIX

When the ointment factory went under, Mogey and Smush needed new jobs. It wasn't that the factory had closed - an earthquake caused it to sink into an underground cavern, and Mogey and Smush required at least four hours of direct sunlight per day in order to work. So they found themselves applying for positions with a traveling circus.

"Which one of you is Mogey?" the mustachioed circus manager asked. Mogey raised his hand. "It says here you're an acrobat AND a lion tamer?"

"And I also muck one heck of a stall," Mogey replied.

"Interesting," the circus manager said, his belly shaking like a bowl full of whale blubber. "And you must be Smush?" he asked Smush. "Next to your name it just says 'Mogey's Manager.' Would you care to elaborate?"

"I would not," Smush answered.

"Well apart from the fourteen quid sixpenny a week salary, is there anything ye'll need on the job?" the circus manager said.

"Only one thing," Mogey rejoined. "When I do my trademark quintuple axle gainer backflop extraordinaire, I need to land in a very very specific item."

"What item is that?"

"I need to land in a hogshead barrel full to the brim with coconut cream pie filling," Mogey stated. "Coconut cream pie filling I say, or I walk away from this job right now."

Friday, October 9, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCVIII

"You know what's funny?" Mogey observed one afternoon as he and Smush picked goose feathers up off their front lawn. "Neither of us has a last name."

"That's curious," Smush said. "What last name would you like, if you could have one?"

"I think Mogey de la Meatasausa has a nice ring to it," Mogey replied. "What about you? If you could have any last name in the world what would it be."

"Man," Smush answered.


"Yes sir," Smush went on. "I'd be Smush Man, Attorney at Law. And all would fear my wrath."

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCVII

One day Mogey and Smush were making prunes when Smush decided it was time for a test of intellect.

"Welcome to Quiz Central with your host, the magnificent Smush!" Smush cried, as he always did before a test of intellect. "Alright Mogey," he went on. "What...is the greatest shape ever?"

"Well I've always been partial to a nice oval..." Mogey began.

"Bzz!" Smush bzzed loudly. "Incorrect. The answer we were looking for was rhombus. A rhombus is the greatest shape ever."

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCVI

One day Mogey and Smush were at the open air market looking for a new drain cover. Their pet mulechicken, Rufus, had eaten the cover from the kitchen sink, then sprained his ankle stepping into the open drain, so Mogey and Smush knew they needed a new one soon lest Rufus sprain a more vital joint before his upcoming chariot race.

"What do you think, Mogey?" Smush asked glancing about the stands. "What type of drain cover should we get? Copper? Brass? Aluminium?"

"Plaid," Mogey stated assuredly, "and woolen." And he immediately began haggling with a Mongolian drain cover salesman for his best plaid woolen drain cover.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCV

One day Mogey and Smush were having a bit of a pasta cookout. What a pasta cookout consisted of, exactly, was Mogey and Smush cooking pasta out of doors. They'd build a roaring ironwood fire and set their largest pasta pot in the center of the blaze. Then they'd dance around the flames singing songs to the pasta king in hopes that their water would boil extra quickly.

"What sauce did you say we were putting on this pasta, Mogey?" Smush asked.

"I wanted to try out something new this time," Mogey replied. "I saw this here can of cranberry sauce on the shelf down at Flinty's general store and I said to myself, that sounds like the most delicious pasta sauce I've ever heard of!"

"Cranberry sauce?" Smush scoffed. "You've got it all wrong, Mogey. That stuff's not pasta sauce at all - it's more like the jelly you eat with a roast turkey."

"I think it shall taste delightful," Mogey insisted. "What goes better than pasta and cranberries? And they've already made our sauce for us!"


"CRANBERRY SAUCE!" Mogey shouted. "And I say fiddlesticks to your turkey traditions. Cranberry sauce I have purchased, and on cranberry sauce we shall feast!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCIV

Brigadier General Mogey and Lieutenant Commander Smush each headed up several battalions of soldiers. Lieutenant Commander Smush was a naval officer charged with leading an entire fleet of warships and several hundred men. Brigadier General Mogey commanded a similarly sized land army, and working together they formed a force so mighty it could wipe out entire militaries in one fell swoop.

The two officers did not always agree, however. One misty, chilly afternoon, just as Brigadier General Mogey and Lieutenant Commander Smush were poised to execute a classic pincer attack on the evil armies of Chugladoon, the unthinkable happened. Mogey turned on his comrade, attacking Smush's naval fleet when they least expected it. The sailors fell like leaves being plucked by an extremely bored monkey and Lieutenant Commander Smush was left trying to make a final stand with a vastly depleted force.

"Hey no fair!" Lieutenant Commander Smush yelled, using one of his ships to splash Brigadier General Mogey with creek water. "I thought we were going to attack the evil armies of Chugladoon," he said, pointing at the hastily built sand castle on the creek bank.

"I'm bored of always attacking Chugladoon," Mogey replied. "And I don't want to rebuild the sandcastle again so soon. Your boats are closer - and anyways, they're way easier to sink."

"Not if they can fly!" Smush cried, lifting one of his ships from the water and tossing it onto Mogey's finest platoon of archers.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCIII

Mogey and Smush had decided that it was high time they got a guard animal of some kind, but they just couldn't seem to agree on what sort of creature would be best. Smush had his heart set on a german shepherd, but Mogey insisted that another kind of beast altogether would keep the house far more secure.

"I tell you, guard bees are the pinnacle of home defense!" Mogey declared. "Everyone hates bees...even burglars!"

"What in the world are you talking about?" Smush asked. "Who ever heard of guard bees? How would we train them?"

"Bees respond very well to simple commands," Mogey insisted. "They're much more intelligent than any old german shepherd. For example, I told a bee to get away the other day, and it did."

"But wouldn't they sting us?"

"That's the price you pay for keeping your precious toilet lid collection safe," Mogey said. "You want a cute pet, get a german shepherd. You want round-the-clock home protection, you get guard bees."

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Abbreviate Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCII

"Hey Smush," Mogey said in mid-yawn one morning at the breakfast table. "You know how we've been eating a lot of waffles lately?"

"Well how could we not after the jail gave us two tubs of 'expired' waffle batter?" Smush replied. "It was only a few weeks old after all - and they'd kept it in the root cellar the entire time."

"Right," Mogey answered. "Well I've thought of a completely new topping that's going to revolutionize the waffle industry. It's better than syrup, better than jam, better than clotted cream even! And you'll never guess what it is."

"Is it cinnamon and sugar?" Smush suggested.


"You're sure? It's definitely not cinnamon and sugar?"

"Absolutely not," Mogey insisted. "Those are the last two ingredients I want near my waffles."

"Alrighty Mogerty Moges," Smush said. "What is it?"

"Cinnamon and sugar!" Mogey proclaimed.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CCI

Difficult as this is to believe, there was a time when neither Mogey nor Smush had ever visited Barnabyshire. Realizing what a mistake this was, the two pals packed their bags and set out for Barnabyshire on a wintry Wednesday morning around eleven.

Over the course of the long journey Mogey and Smush questioned everyone they passed as to the ins and outs of Barnabyshire: what to do, what to eat, the best lodgings. There was disagreement over the warmest boarding house, and various characters informed them of many different social engagements, but every last traveler they met told Mogey and Smush that they absolutely MUST have a Barnabyshire Pie.

When a bedraggled Mogey and Smush finally crossed the moat into the village they were almost delirious with exhaustion. Only one thought kept them conscious: a fresh Barnabyshire Pie. They stumbled into the pub and flopped down in the seats nearest the door.

"A Barnabyshire Pie!" they cried in unison.

"Are ye certain?" asked a portly barkeep, sauntering over to the table.

"Yes!" Smush answered. "We've been dreaming of Barnabyshire Pie for the entire three quarters of a mile journey from our home!"

"Alright," the barkeep replied, reaching behind the bar. He pulled out two tins full to the brim of molasses and duck feathers, which he proceeded to toss into Mogey and Smush's faces before the weary travelers could raise a hand to stop him. "Welcome to Barnabyshire, ye goofies!" the barkeep cried.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CC

Episode One
One partly cloudy summer day Mogey and Smush were oiling their cannon. A cannon must be kept well-oiled or it will rust, and a rusty cannon sometimes launches cannonballs on a substandard trajectory.

"Smush," Mogey said, "I've been wondering something for quite a while now. Why do we have this cannon in our front garden?"

"Why I can't believe you would even ask such a dunderhead question," Smush replied. "The reasoning behind the cannon is twofold. Fold One: home defense. Remember the time that traveling salesman rode his donkey cart up the path there? Well what if instead of a salesman it had been a pirate? And what if instead of a donkey cart it had been a fully-rigged Spanish Galleon? You wouldn't be wondering about our cannon then."

"Mmm," Mogey answered, "quite."

"And there's still another fold to go," Smush went on. "Fold Two: doesn't it look nice sitting here besides my posies?"

Episode Two
The penalty for stealing a chicken in Dundeendoubleborough County was six hours in the stocks, so as you might imagine, Mogey and Smush spent a great many days in front of city hall with their hands locked into the county's most heavy-duty pillory. One such day was a gloomy, dim one in late fall.

"Why do we always seem to end up here on Tuesdays?" Smush asked as a small child hurled spoiled cabbage at his head.

"I know the very reason," Mogey replied, as an overripe tomato sailed toward him. "It's because Farmer Lumphilden feeds his hens double on Sunday nights."

"Ahh, of course" Smush said, grimacing as Sister Laurel-Ann, the village nun, gave him a fearsome noogie. "So they look particularly fat and scrumptious Monday afternoon, which is when we get caught."

"Heavens no," Mogey answered while a surly dwarf tugged on his eyebrows. "I think it's because we're so envious of the chickens' extra dinner that we want to take them down a peg or two. And everyone knows eating a chicken is the only way to teach it a lesson."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCIX

One summer afternoon that would have been absolutely perfect for treasure hunting Mogey and Smush were out treasure hunting. They looked high and low over hill and under dale in search of a hidden treasure trove they knew must be out there.

"Smush!" Mogey called. "Come quickly! I've found it! I've finally found it!" Smush heard his voice float over a bluff and immediately scrambled up to see what treasure he'd uncovered. He found Mogey crouched in a bramble at the very top.

"Look Smush," Mogey said with quiet awe as he pointed down into the valley. "Have you ever seen a treasure so magnificent?"

"I don't believe I have, Moginator," Smush replied, giving his friend a hearty pat on the back. "I don't believe I have. It would appear they have an entire ham hock in that picnic basket, and raisin buns besides!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCVIII

One day Mogey went down to the workshop to find Smush hard at work building something.

"What in the world are you making, Smush?" Mogey asked.

"A rowboat," Smush replied.

"Great goblin gobs Smush!" Mogey cried. "How could you? Haven't you ever read any science fiction? Those things are going to enslave the human race someday!"

"No Mogey," Smush answered with a great sigh. "I said a rowBOAT."

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCVII

One day in the crunchety cold depths of winter, Mogey and Smush went out to the silo for a sack of flour to make their morning doughnuts. The silo's old iron door squealed in protest as they cranked it open and they hurriedly closed it against the cold. Inside the lanternlight danced upon flour sacks piled taller than a two story building. Smush hefted a sack over his shoulder and turned to leave but then paused, sniffing the air.

"There's a sack missing," he said with certainty, staring up at the mountain of burlap.

"What are you talking about, Smush?" Mogey retorted, hugging himself in the bitter air.

"Don't you play dumb with me, Mogey," Smush said, wagging his finger. "I know your penchant for raw flour. I'll bet a brace of Turkish hens I know where I'll find that missing sack."

And with that Smush marched back to the house and up the stairs to Mogey's room, not even bothering to remove his snowy boots.

"Ah ha!" Smush cried, pulling a half-empty flour sack from beneath Mogey's bed.

"I 'ave no idea how 'at got der," Mogey answered, charging breathlessly into the room and attempting to speak around a huge mouthful of flour.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCVI

One damp spring day as Mogey and Smush were out harrowing the oat fields, Mogey stubbed his toe on an extremely sharp possum who happened to gallop past.

"Yowch!" Mogey shouted, falling to the ground. "My toe! I've been hit!"

"Let me have a look at that," Smush said, reigning in Sanford O'Wells and Patches, their prize winning ox team. Smush walked over and examined Mogey's toe. "Looks like a nice deep cut you've got there, Mogester," Smush opined. Then, without warning he gave Mogey's other foot a swift kick.

"Yowch! Again!" Mogey cried. "What did you do that for?"

Instead of answering, Smush pulled out his riding crop and gave Mogey a few well-placed smacks to the upper extremities.

"Stop it, Smush!" Mogey yelled, getting to his feet and lurching forward. "What's gotten into you?"

"Ah, but how's that stubbed toe feeling?" Smush asked.

"Much worse!" Mogey shouted. "And now my upper extremities are sore as well!"

Monday, September 21, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCV

One evening Mogey and Smush were ambling down to the village square for a theatre in the round performance of The Devil's Lasagna, one of the most popular plays of the season. It was to be a particularly exciting show, as Her Majesty's own theatre troupe, The Tubbylarg Players, had made its way out to their little hamlet.

Mogey and Smush were about halfway down the old country road, when a short man with a meticulously waxed moustache sauntered up behind them.

"Say fellows," the man said, "I'm awfully chilly. Could either of you spare your coat for a moment or two?"

"My goodness!" Mogey cried. "But you're Limas Bamberchin, star of The Tubbylarg Players!"

"Um...sure I am," the man replied.

"Well then take both our coats!" Smush said, heaping his atop the man's shoulders where it was followed swiftly by Mogey's jacket. " You can give them back to us at the theatre! And here, take this money in case you need to buy a shank of lamb to warm up on your way to the theatre!"

The man took the coats and the money and, thanking them, sauntered off again.

"Say Mogey," Smush murmured after a bit, "I'd always heard that Limas Bamberchin was rather a tall man. And clean-shaven. How'd you know that was him?"

"Me?" Mogey demanded. "I thought you knew him! Do you mean to tell me we've just given away our best jackets AND our lamb shank money in one fell swoop?"

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCIV

One cold winter morning when the snow was waist high, Mogey and Smush's house sprung a leak. Melted snow came streaming in through a chicken-sized hole in the roof, and so the two pals road into town to get Handyman Bull Babcock.

When they returned, Handyman Bull Babcock headed upstairs to take a gander at the leak while Mogey and Smush built and roaring fire and brewed a pot of tea in an attempt to warm up. Shortly thereafter, Bull came down scratching his head.

"So can you fix it?" Smush asked.

"You know, it's the strangest thing," Bull replied. "But your roof don't seem to be made of nothin' but cardboard, hay, and chewin' gum."

"Well of course," Mogey answered. "Our manor is one of the finest in the district. What did you think the roof would be made out of?"

"Wood?" Handyman Bull Babcock said. "Tar paper? Tin?"

"We prefer a cardboard, hay, and gum roof," Smush retorted. "Or a C.H. Gum as they're called. It's much more pleasing to the eye and nostrils. Now can you fix the thing or not?"

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCIII

One morning Mogey got the letter. He'd finally been called up to the Pickledun Football Club after their star forward, Lars Tubbles, had sprained his stomach by swallowing a particularly spicy chicken wing. Mogey knew he was ready for the big leagues: he was playing the best soccer of his life, and had just led Pickledun's farm team, The Stallmuckers, to a club record 1-game winning streak.

"How are you feeling?" Smush asked as they walked toward the stadium in the morning fog.

"I've never felt better," Mogey replied. "It feels like a hat-trick day to me."

"Have you ever done one of those before?" Smush said.

"A hat-trick? Not yet," Mogey answered. "But I think today's the day."

By the second half Pickledun was already losing 34-nil, but the fans still mustered a rousing cheer when Mogey entered the game for the first time. He'd scarcely been in for a minute when a perfect pass was lobbed in his direction by defender Johnson Buhrt. All Mogey had to do was tap it by the goaltender but instead he stopped running, removed a top hat from his shorts, and began to spin it on his finger. The crowd began to boo, even as Mogey flipped the hat from one finger to another, finally spinning it on his nose and popping it onto his head. Things were hurled on the field as Mogey stood by in confusion and disappointment. Smush, however, understood and cheered wildly.

"Great hat-trick, Mogey!" he cried. "One of the best of all time."

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCII

One crisp autumn afternoon Mogey and Smush set about making a berry pear-y pie. Mogey got out the old stepladder and reached up to the tippety top of their kitchen shelves where sat a dusty copy of Mrs. Delectable's Extraordinarily Wild Dessert Cookbook.

"It says here," Mogey said, opening to the page on berry pear-y pies, "that one of the principle ingedients in pie is dough."

"Uh oh," Smush replied. "That could be trouble."

"But why?" Mogey asked.

"Well there's only been one deer at the salt-lick all this week," Smush answered. "And he was a buck! It might take nigh on a fortnight to get a doe."

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXCI

One day Mogey and Smush ran out of jam. They looked high and low in the pantry, the larder, and the root cellar. It was a serious problem they had on their hands considering they were making toast with jam, which is very difficult to make if there's no jam about.

"A jam hunt it is!" Smush announced, and they struck out down the lane.

After they'd ransacked the pantries of their neighbors Mister Maisers, Missus Caisers, and John-Fred Whipplebun, it became clear to Mogey and Smush that the entire county was plum out of jam, and certainly out of plum jam, which was their favorite flavor.

"What has happened?" Smush cried desperately. "Is our poor county stricken by jam thieves?"

"Now don't be mad, Smush," Mogey said slowly after a moment. "But I've just remembered where the jam is. I brought the jar to bed with me last night for a bit of a bedtime snack. It's just on my bedside table.

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CXC

"I've got a trivia question for you, Smush," said Mogey one morning as they walked to the mill in a fog thicker than marshmallow fluff. "What creature has the hardest pinch in the animal kingdom?"

"Hmm," Smush replied thoughtfully. "That would be the Arctic Sweaty Lobster, wouldn't it?"

"Not quite," Mogey answered with a mischievous grin.

"Oh," Smush said. "Is it the Anger-toothed Scorpion of Dirtery Dell?"

"Nope," Mogey replied, barely containing his mirth.

"Well what is it?" Smush demanded.

"It's that guy!" Mogey cried, pointing to a particularly crotchety gnome who waddled by, pinched Smush's leg so hard that he fell to the ground in a heap, and waddled away.

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXIX

One day Mogey and Smush were weeding the rutabagas when a creakity cart rolled up the the path. The cart was stacked precariously in back with dozens of covered cages, and at the reins was a dapper man with slicked back hair and a handsome purple suit.

"Good morrow, fine gents," the man said, hopping spryly from his perch. "The name's Badgerman Bleak, it's a pleasure to make your acquaintance I'm sure."

"Mogey," Mogey replied in a daze, shaking Badgerman Bleak's outstretched hand.

"Smush," said Smush as he did the same.

"Do you really think we're fine gents?" Mogey asked.

"I do indeed," Badgerman Bleak replied. "So fine in fact, that I can't believe your magnificent estate doesn't have something every magnificent estate needs. Something, in fact, that I'd be able to provide you for the low low price of twenty-nine ninety-nine." He made a sweeping gesture to the cages in the rear of the cart.

"What's that?" Smush asked with a goofy grin. "A badger? Teehee."

With surprising quickness for how handsome he was, Badgerman Bleak slapped Smush across the face.

"How dare you?" Badgerman Bleak bellowed. "Badgerman's a family name! The only things I sell are windchimes. And lobster pots." And with that, Badgerman Bleak rode off into the sunset, though it was only ten in the morning.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXVIII

One day Mogey and Smush were trekking across the mighty Chokedust Desert when they came upon a small shed. They were tired and sandy and sitting in the shade of the tiny building was the coolest thing they'd felt since daybreak.

"Fill your canteens, boys?"

The crackly voice made Mogey and Smush both jump. A supremely wrinkly old man with the most distinguished ear-hair they had ever seen had opened a window in the shed above them and stuck his head out.

"Fill your canteens?" the man repeated. Mogey and Smush looked at once another: their canteens had gotten frighteningly low.

"How much?" Smush asked.

"15 copper pennypieces," the man said with a wink.

"We'll take it!" Mogey exclaimed. 15 copper pennypieces was a bargain this far from civilization. The man collected their canteens and disappeared back into the shed, reemerging presently with the newly filled vessels. Mogey grabbed eagerly at his and took an experimental draught.

With the cry of a wounded boar, Mogey spat out the liquid as if it had burned him.

"What is this stuff?" he demanded.

"Water," the man replied with a concerned look.

"Water?" Smush countered. "Who do you think we are? Mogey and Smush don't drink any beverage that doesn't include the words 'tropical' and 'punch' in its name!"

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXVII

One day Mogey awoke with a loose tooth. How it came loose he had no idea, though he suspected his propensity to eat rock candy in his sleep may have had something to do with it. It was a well-known fact in those times that a loose tooth would turn evil and try to corrupt the other teeth with sweets and exotic spices, so Mogey knew the tooth would have to be removed. Since he couldn't grit his teeth, he did his best to grit his eyes and vowed to do what had to be done.

Smush walked outside a bit later to find Mogey crouched about ten feet behind Silvio, their prize Great Pink pig, a length of twine leading from his mouth to somewhere near Silvio's hind legs.

"What in the world are you doing Mogey?" Smush demanded.

"Give Silvio a slap, will you Smush?" Mogey asked nervously. "I'm trying to yank this tooth out."

Smush needed no other encouragement: he gave Silvio a firm smack on the flank and the enormous hog squealed and galloped away. The string, however, remained where it was with nary a yank on Mogey's loose tooth.

"Oh no!" Mogey cried. "I've forgotten to tie the twine to the pig! And the barnyard gate is wide open!"

He and Smush broke into a hollering sprint after their prize piggy, but Silvio had a head start and the smell of freedom in his large pink nostrils.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXVI

One evening Mogey and Smush were readying themselves to head into town for a meeting of the village council. It was a warm summer night, so Smush began tacking Hoofnugget, their old cart horse.

"Aw man," Mogey sighed. "We're taking Hoofnugget? But I wanted to roll into town in style."

"In style you say?" Smush rejoined. "I know just the thing."

And so it was that Mogey and Smush rode into the village of Grouchport (much to the consternation of its townspeople) on a pair of wheeled surfboards towed by an entire flock of brightly-plumed chickenbirds.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXV

One day Mogey and Smush went to the seashore. It was a lovely day: the sun was shining, the waters were calm, even the hermit crabs didn't seem quite so bloodthirsty.

Smush went for a solitary stroll down the beach to clear his mind and his throat. As he traveled a fair distance away from Mogey and the other beachgoers, a large seal unexpectedly emerged from the water and began to bark playfully and hop about him.

"What are you doing, fella?" Smush asked with a grin. The seal held up a flipper for a handshake, which Smush administered gladly. The seal dropped a worn ball at Smush's feet, and they began an old-fashioned game of fetch. Doobles, as Smush named the seal, was a bit ungainly on land, but if Smush threw the ball into the ocean Doobles would put on display of aquatic grace that baffled the mind and pleased the eye.

"Sheesh," Mogey said as he came sauntering up after a while. "That has got to be the fattest dog I've ever seen."

Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXIV

One foggy morning Mogey and Smush were selecting sailors to join them for a 3-year fishing voyage aboard their ship, the Marmalade. The prospective crew members were a motley bunch, and our heroes put them in a line and strode hither and thither, weighing the pros and cons of each man.

"Where do you hail from, sailor?" Smush asked a moustached man wearing a grubby linen shirt and cutoff jean shorts.

"The haunted woods a' Beansbury, cap'n," the man replied, spitting respectfully to the side so as not to hit Smush. "I cut me sailin' teeth on a freshwater musseler, an' was the ship's boy on the whalin' ship Seamurder IV, the only survivor when she sank off Dangerdeath Rock. For the last six years I been fishing cod in the dragon-infested waters a' poison bay."

"What about you?" Mogey demanded of a barrel-chested fellow wearing only suspenders and parachute pants.

"Can't say as I've been fishing before," he replied. "But I do like a good fish chowder with my supper now and again. One thing though, will there be many early mornings? I'm more of a night owl myself."

Mogey and Smush turned their backs and talked in muted tones.

"Well it comes down to Beansbury and Suspenders-man," Smush said. "Which one do you think?"

"I have my doubts about Beansbury," Mogey replied. "Who knows if he'd be tough enough to survive a 3-year voyage? I say Suspenders is the way to go."

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXIII

One day Mogey and Smush were hulling strawberries out back. Smush, who had been uncharacteristically pensive for the preceding hour or so, finally spoke up.

"I've been thinking, Mogey," he said.

"What have you been thinking?" Mogey replied.

"I've been thinking I might like to run for mayor of this here township," Smush stated.

"You?" Mogey asked, chuckling. "Mayor of Turgusburgington? You don't know the first thing about being mayor!"

"How dast you?" Smush demanded. "What don't I know about being mayor?"

"Well," Mogey answered thoughtfully, "do you know how to spell the name of the town, for instance?"

"But of course I do!" Smush said. "The historic village of Turgusburgington, spelled T-E-G-S-B-U-G-then there's one of those little symbols that looks sort of like an eight with a tail-T-U-N. Turgusburgington."

"I've doubted you before," Mogey responded after a moment, "but this was the last time. You'll make the greatest mayor this little town has ever seen!"

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXII

Quite early one morning Mogey and Smush struck out for the county fair so they would be first in line to arm wrestle "Musclebound" Bjorn, the rumored part man - part orangutan who would be taking all comers.

"What the heck were you doing last night, Mogey?" Smush demanded as they cut across the front garden.

"I'm sure I don't know what you mean," Mogey replied.

"This grass is soaking wet!" Smush cried. "Did you have some sort of late night pool party out here?"

"That's just morning dew," Mogey explained.

"You're morning dew!" Smush retorted and he stomped back toward the house in search of some dry towels.

Monday, August 31, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXXI

One evening Mogey found Smush sitting on the porch, enjoying a corncob pipe in his stocking feet.

"Smush?" Mogey said. "There's something I've been meaning to talk with you about. I think it's high time we got a pet of some kind."

"A pet?" Smush replied. "We have literally an entire barnyard full of animals in the back garden. Look there! There's a herd of our goats inside munching our best sofa cushions!"

"Well I was thinking we'd get something a bit more exotic, like this rare Persion Stagoose, perhaps," Mogey insisted, holding up a newspaper clipping of what looked like a goose with magnificent set of antlers.

"I'm fairly sure we've got one of those too, Mogers. Yes I spotted a stagoose in the hayloft not two days ago. Wait here just a moment and I'll go find it," Smush said, grabbing a set of antlers from the wall and bustling out back in search Manwel, their plumpest goose.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXX

One day Mogey and Smush decided it was time to clean their most valuable possession: an oriental carpet they'd bought from a traveling circus for twenty pieces of silver.

"Are you sure you've got it, Mogey?" Smush called out as they carried the rug around the hall corner.

"I'm fine!" Mogey answered. "Look at my arms, I'm mega-Mogey over here!" Just then, the carpet caught on one of the banister attachments and they heard an awful tearing sound.

"Quick Mogey, there's no time to waste! Get me my sewing kit before it loses too much thread!" Smush yelled. Mogey sprinted upstairs and returned presently with the old cigar box that held Smush's extensive sewing supplies.

Smush carefully selected a needle and thread, licked his thumb and forefinger, and twisted the end of the thread into a point. He poked the dark string expertly through the eye of the needle. Then he used it to poke Mogey, hard, in the arm.

"Yowch!" Mogey squealed.

"It's not half what you deserve!" Smush muttered. "Now lift the other end of this rug and try not to drop it - we've got to bring the thing all the way out to the paddock so the goats can lick it clean."

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXIX

One morning Mogey and Smush were both readying themselves for job interviews. Mogey was applying for an apprenticeship in the copper mine and Smush wanted to become the assistant stall mucker at the village stables, so they both wore their Sunday best.

"Mogey?" Smush asked hesitantly as they stood in front of the hall looking glass making sure they looked presentable. "Do you ever use anything in your hair?"

"Smush..." Mogey replied with a fatherly smile. "Smushity Smush Smushin. Are you thinking of sprucing up that mane of yours?"

"I think it might be time."

"You've come to the right Mogey," Mogey said. "Some people like to put bear grease in their hair. Others prefer moustache wax. Well I'm going to let you in on a little family secret that's been passed down through my family for fourteen generations. The very best thing to slick your hair back..." Mogey paused dramatically, "is honey butter. Plus it makes you smell very nice for the ladyfolk."

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXVIII

"Hey Smush," Mogey said one day as the two of them were stewing peaches, "there's something I've always wanted to ask you. How'd you get that bump on your nose?"

"Listen close, Mogey," Smush uttered through gritted teeth. "I'll tell you this one time: I got this bump in my nose from headbutting every man, woman, and child who asks me how I got the bump in my nose. Don't ever forget that. Now add some more cinnamon...I want these peaches spicy!"

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXVII

One moonless night Mogey and Smush were walking home as an icey wind rubbed the elm tree branches together. Mogey and Smush's lantern was low on oil, and so they'd turned it down to the point where it cast a spooky, flickering glow on the surrounding forest.

"Hello strangers..." a voice whispered, causing Mogey and Smush both to jump halfway out of their skin. "Don't be afraid," the voice said, as a dark figure materialized out of the gloom.

"Who are you?" Mogey asked shakily.

"My name is Samson O'Ween," the figure replied, doffing a collapsed top hat. "I'm here to guide you home...ha ha ha ha...."

"Why did you just laugh like that?" Smush asked.

"Because I'm not really here to guide you home," Samson O'Ween answered. "Oh yes, and Samson's my nickname...my real first name is Hal!"

Mogey and Smush needed to hear no more. They turned and ran for the hills with all their might.

Monday, August 24, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXVI

One morning that was ghostly with fog, Smush was rowing the dory along as Mogey stood poised at the bow, harpoon in hand.

"Thar she blows!" Mogey shouted. "Smush, row your arms off, me hearty! I've got one in my sights."

"What did you see?" Smush asked calmly.

"The spout of a Chubby Whale! The most valuable prize in the business!" Mogey yelled. "Row, sir! Row with all your might!"

"I very much doubt that," Smush answered.

"You doubt my eye for whale spouts?" Mogey exclaimed. "What makes you so wise in these matters?"

"Well," Smush said, "we ARE in Beauregard Pond. And I did just see young Bulkie McGunther swim by wearing a snorkle."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXV

The day of the flood started out like any other. Mogey and Smush sat down for their morning cake (the smallest of the four cakes they would eat that day) and enjoyed a leisurely breakfast before heading out to tend the bulk candy aisle they were building in the back garden.

When they returned for a midmorning snack, Smush realized in horror that the meat sauce he was cooking was about to burn.

"Good grief!" he cried on seeing the pot bubbling furiously. "My bolognese!"

"Be careful Smush!" Mogey urged as his friend rushed to take the pot off the stove. "Remember the words of that old crone in front of the cigar shop!"

But Smush did not remember: in his hurry to remove the eighteen gallon saucepot from the heat, his hand slipped and the pot crashed to the floor, flooding the kitchen and staining their carpet deep crimson.

"Then the old crone was right," Mogey said heavily. "The great flood has come to pass."

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXIV

"Smush?" Mogey asked one day as he was deboning a salmon. "Why does pepper make you sneeze?"

"What are you trying to say?" Smush fired back. "Last time I checked, it makes lots of people sneeze!"

"Indeed," Mogey said, "but why?"

"What do I look like - the pepper commissioner?" Smush demanded. "Am I some sort of pepper sorcerer? I can't help you with every little pepper question you dream up!"

It was just about this time that Mogey remembered an incident, years earlier, when a rogue peppercorn had found it's way into Smush's nostril and caused him to sneeze so hard that a nearby ptarmigan was bowled over and sprained its ankle quite badly.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXIII

One autumn afternoon Mogey and Smush were at lumberjack class when their teacher, Jacques Fromage, began to explain the importance of tightly coiled rope.

"You want to coil it nice and neat, see?" Jacques said. "This way your toes won't escape...Mogey! Smush! Have you been paying attention?"

"Yes sir, Mr. Fromage," Mogey and Smush chorused as they snapped away from an intense game of handslaps.

"Mmmoh really?" Jacques replied. "Well then why don't you come up here and show me how to coil a double goosenecked safety line for an oak strut buttress?"

Mogey and Smush walked to the front of the class and began heaping ropes into a pile and knotting them at random as Jacques shook his head disappointedly. Their failure culminated in Mogey dangling upside down with his ankle caught in a hanging rope while Smush unsheathed his machete and chopped the rope to pieces.

"Let me tell you a little secret about the lumberjack game," Jacques said, leaning in close to Mogey and Smush. "If you want to get anyplace you gotta be smart, you gotta be strong, and you gotta be goodlookin'. I'll be honest, I'm not so sure it's the proper profession for you fellahs."

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXII

One day Mogey and Smush were down at the market selling home-grown potatoes when Mogey got into an altercation.

"Look, I don't care what your nickname is!" Mogey exclaimed. "I don't like the way you're looking at my taters."

"You don't understand," the man said. "You don't know who I am? I'm Barney 'The Nose' Banderbus, 498 and 0." It was plain to see why they called him "The Nose": Banderbus had one of the most exceptionally bulbous and hairy schnozzes Mogey and Smush had ever seen.

"So you fancy yourself a boxer?" Mogey taunted, dancing about. "Well, The Nose, you KNOWS nothing! You oggle my tators once more and you'll be 498 and 1 before you can say 'petal!'"

"Did you say 'pedal?'" The Nose inquired.

"No, peTal'" Mogey corrected him. "As in a flower petal."

"You know, you're quite a potato salesman," The Nose said thoughtfully. "I'll take a dozen pounds of your finest!"

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXXI

Historians and witch doctors alike have long wondered the principal manner in which Mogey and Smush made their living. There were many ways the two pals earned enough to afford their daily pie, one of which was the famed tight-rope walking academy they ran out back.

"But Mikolecevic," Mogey protested, "how can you leave us now? We've taught you everything you know." He and Smush were both crestfallen as they sat across from their prized pupil, Mikolecevic Jones, on a fine spring day at the academy's training facility.

"I'm sorry Master Mogey, Master Smush," Mikolecevic replied sadly.

"Go if you must," Smush said, "but promise me one thing: promise you haven't gone over to the dark side of rope walking."

"You know me too well, Master Smush," Mikolecevic admitted, his countenance downcast. "It is true that I have succumbed to the temptation of loose-rope walking. There is nothing you can do to save me now. Farewell."

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXX

One evening Mogey came bustling up to Smush with (as the Seafolk of Timbuktu say) his undies in a bunch.

"Smush," Mogey stated. "This is unacceptable. You and I don't have a secret handshake. Heck, we don't even have a well-known handshake, doggone it!"

Smush had never heard his friend cuss so horribly.

"Ok, Mogey," he said, "ok. What were you thinking of?"

"Here's what I got in mind..." Mogey began. "We pound our fists together and then do a little spin on our boot heels. Then we each pull a pickerel tale out of our breast pocket and we slap those together three times. After that, you run down to the jam stand and I'll sprint to the peanut fields and we'll meet back in the middle to smash together a perfect peanut butter and jelly sangwich. Then we'd wrap it up with a double wink."

"Smashing!" Smush replied. "Only one thing though, what's a double wink?"

"It's when you wink both eyes at once," Mogey answered quietly. "Only a few creatures in the entire animal kingdom can do it, but don't worry, I know the secret."

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXIX

"Moge-ster!" Smush called up the stairs as Mogey was slipping on his shiny shoes for a night of merriment. "How do you feel about Polka Dots?"

"Polka dots?" Mogey exclaimed. "Is there anything uglier? I want nothing to do with polka dots!"

Mogey heard what sounded like a loud sob, followed by the downstairs door slamming. And then Smush stomped into his room looking positively livid.

"Why would you say that?" Smush demanded. "You knew we were going to the polka hall tonight!"


"So when I asked you that, I was standing downstairs with the lovely and glamorous Polka Dots: Dorothy Halebard and Dorothy Speizlebab!" Smush shouted. "And now you've made them run away crying! One thing's for sure: I will NOT go stag to a polka hall."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXVIII

One horrid winter day Mogey and Smush were both suffering from the fever. Anytime Mogey would cough, Smush would sneeze, and anytime Smush's throat hurt, Mogey's belly ached. The fever was so intense that it began to bring on hallucinations: at one point Mogey walked in to find Smush deep in conversation with someone named Queen Leopolda who wasn't there at all. Finally, Smush could take it no more. He began crawling to the kitchen.

"Smush," Mogey groaned, "where are you going?"

"I'm going to end this misery," Smush replied. When he reached the kitchen he heaved out a large bowl, an egg whisk, some molasses, a large packet of horse radish, a pound of uncooked macaroni, three eggs, and a prickly pear. He churned these ingredients together into a chunky sort of stew.

"Mogey!" he called. "Come here will you?" Mogey crawled slowly into the kitchen. "Drink this." And drink it he did.

"Ugh!" Mogey grimaced. "This is awful! Will it really make me feel better?"

"Nope!" Smush replied. "But I'm feeling better already."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXVII

"Keep your eyes closed, Smush," Mogey said as he led his friend along. "You wouldn't want to spoil your birthday present!"

"I'm trying," Smush muttered, "but it's too hot to keep them shut much longer - my eyeballs are sweating something awful."

"Almost there," Mogey assured him. He led Smush to the top of Bulbous Hill and stationed him in front of the water slide he'd spent the last few weeks putting together. "Now hold still, Smush!"

Mogey got a running start and barrelled into his unsuspecting pal, shoving him down the slide with the speed of a marmot who has the scent of almond butter in his nostrils. Smush slid alllllll the way down Bulbous Hill, finally landing with a splash in Knuckleburt Creek.

"How was it, Smush? How was it?" Mogey cried, racing down to meet him.

"Pretty fun," Smush said, wincing. "Although we may want to cut a few of the branches off those logs you used...and maybe sand the bark down a bit...."

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXVI

"Oh Mogey?" Smush said one mediocre summer morning. "How's about we head down to Nickelroy's spice shop for some exotic spices from around the world?"

"An excellent idea," Mogey rejoined. "I've been thinking our cooking's been a bit bland lately. Exotic spices from around the world might be just the thing."

So Mogey and Smush hopped into their pig-drawn carriage and let their two steeds, Oinks McMaren and Pinkbreath, carry them into town. Nickelroy's spice shop smelled spicy as ever when they walked through the door.

"Good day, Nickelroy," Smush greeted the proprietor. "What have you got for us in the vein of exotic spices from around the world?"

"How funny you should ask," Nickelroy replied hefting a jar filled with the tiny white and black grains of some spice. "I've just gotten this amazing new one in today. It's called Altsay Epperpay...give it a try." Mogey and Smush both stuck a finger into the spice jar and touched it to their tongues.

"My goodness!" Mogey announced. "This is the most exotic spice from around the world I've ever tasted. Hang salt and pepper, altsay epperpay is my new favorite!"

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXV

One day when the wind whipped hard enough to pull a dodo bird's beak off center, Mogey and Smush were canoeing down the might Upachuck River.

"Can't we get over to the side and wait this storm out?" Mogey yelled over the gale.

"No can do, Moge-man!" Smush called back. "Not if we want to make it to this square dance on time anyhow!"

"I-I'm not feeling so good, Smush," Mogey said.

"Just hang on!" Smush shouted. "You'll feel much better with a bit of fresh air in your face! And that's Big Jimmy Falls up ahead, so you'll be getting plenty of fresh air in just a moment!"

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXIV

It was a sweaty, exhausted Mogey and Smush who reached the top of a grassy hill after a mighty three-quarters of an hour's travel. As they crested the knoll, a monstrous hole in the earth came into view.

"By Golly," Smush whispered in awe, "this must be Chunk Crater. Eons ago, a great meteor called the Sky Diaper plummeted to earth here, causing the hole we see today."

Just then, a line of several dozen exceptionally dirty dwarves came walking by. Each of them had a shovel slung over his shoulder and they were all singing out lustily.

"Another day of digging
for our little band here
We dug this entire hole
A meteor didn't land here!"

"What amazingly good timing," Mogey exclaimed as the dwarves filed past. "I guess this isn't Chunk Crater after all, eh Smush?"

"Crazy dwarves..." Smush muttered. "Who are you going to believe: your best friend, or a bunch of dwarves with a song and a shovel?"

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXIII

One day Mogey was in the midst of telling Smush a story about the time he'd evaded capture by the Mighty Yungaman of Dunspee Lake.

"...so the Yungaman comes flying out of the water, but I stop and stand stock-still because he supposedly doesn't have good peripheral vision, see? So I'm sitting on pins and needles at this point..."

"You know I sat on pins and needles once?" Smush interrupted.

"I hadn't heard that," Mogey answered. "What happened?"

"I had a large amount of pins and needles sticking out of my bottom for nye on four days," Smush replied. "That's what happened."

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXII

One golden morning, Mogey and Smush were packing their lunch pails with various foodstuffs. Smush had crammed his pail with cold chicken, half of a bean burrito, a small packet of hot n' sassy beef jerky, two potatoes, part of a summer sausage, and a hefty slice of peach cobbler. Mogey had packed a similar smorgasbord and was just wrapping up a sardine sandwich to top it all off.

"Smush, you really must weigh in on this debate," Mogey said. "Would you call what I'm wrapping this sandwich in aluminum foil, aluminium foil, or tin foil?"

"Mogey," Smush replied with a sigh, "you're wrapping that sandwich in paper. Now get a move on, we're going to be late to the breakfast buffet."

Monday, August 3, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLXI

One day Mogey and Smush were lost. They had unfurled their tattered old Map of All the Land and were both hunched over it trying to discern the best way to travel from Amesbury, where they were, to Bernoch-by-the-Lake, where they were going.

"Why don't we just cut through this big dark area here?" Mogey asked, pointing at a black blob on the map.

"Heavens no!" Smush replied. "We can't go through Murderwood! There's turtles in there big enough to ride!"

"So?" Mogey said. "What's wrong with that?"

"I haven't told you what rides the turtles yet," Smush answered. "Upon the back of each turtle...is a chipmunk!"

"That still doesn't seem very dangerous...."

"But I haven't told you what the chipmunks have in their hands yet," Smush said. "Each turtle-riding chipmunk...is armed with not one, but two chestnut pistols that fire almond darts. No, we shall not take the shortcut through Murderwood...not on my watch."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLX

One day Mogey and Smush were cruising on through the open air market when they came across a most curious peddler. His stall was full of tiny cages containing moths, grasshoppers, and all manner of other creepy-crawlies.

"What've you got for us, peddler?" Mogey said.

"A fine selection I have today, chaps," the peddler replied. "I think two clever shoppers such as yourselves will find this particular item most interesting." He gestured to a cage hanging from the stall's top post. "It's a Lithuanian Horn Bug."

"What's it do?" Mogey asked as he examined the creature.

"If you rub its horn on your knees every morning, it'll give you the ability to climb ladders at breakneck pace!"

"That doesn't seem very useful," Smush said. "In fact, the term 'breakneck pace' suggests--"

"We'll take it!" Mogey cried. "With this little guy on my side I'll be eating twice the coconuts in half the time."

Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLIX

One day Mogey returned home from a hard afternoon's work churning butter and pulling weeds in the prune fields, only to find Smush reclined in the barcalounger fashioning miniature paper gliders and launching them at the cat.

"What do you think you're doing?" Mogey demanded.

"Trying to hit Whiskerberg with a glider," Smush replied. "What's it look like?"

"I thought you said you couldn't churn butter and weed the prune fields today because you had to catch up on some paperwork!" Mogey cried.

"So hitting Whiskerberg with a paper glider isn't paperwork?" Smush answered. "He's devilish tricky. I've been sitting in this barcalounger all day and haven't hit him once."

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLVIII

One day when Mogey and Smush had just returned home from the market, Smush took out a strange parcel that Mogey had purchased and gave it a sniff.

"Uck!" Smush groaned, unwrapping the packaging to reveal several bars of soap. "Mogey, what flavor is this soap supposed to be?"

"Dirt," Mogey replied simply. "You see, when I was just a little Mogey, my mummy told me that when I was all grown up I could bathe in dirt if I wanted, but while I lived under her roof I had to use real soap. Well now that I'm all grown up I'm going to give it a shot!"

"'While you lived under her roof?'" Smush repeated. "I thought you told me that you and your mum lived in a giant pumpkin when you were growing up."

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLVII

One day Mogey walked outside to find Smush hard at work pounding a heavy piece of timber into the dirt at the end of the lane.

"What's the good word there, Smush?" he asked.

"Grapefruit," Smush replied. "I'm putting up a flagpole so we can hoist the new flag of Feedbag Hollows for all to see!" Smush reached into a burlap sack and pulled out an old tablecloth, upon which he'd drawn two stick figures and a meat pie. "See?" he continued. "There's you and me, and there's The Great Meatiness, our beloved First Pie."

"Great job, Smush," Mogey said. "I just have one question: what is Feedbag Hollows?"

"It's the name of our house, you dolt," Smush answered. "Folks've been calling it that for decades."

"Oh," Mogey said. "I always just assumed it was known as The Big Doughnut, or as the Spaniards call it: Casa de Mogey y Smush."

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLVI

"Say Smush," Mogey said one cloudy afternoonm, "I've just thought up the most splendid business proposition."

"What's that Mogey?" Smush murmured, scarcely looking up from his pape.

"I'll tell you...but you must promise not to tell anyone else..." Mogey told him.

"Sure thing, Mogerty Moges," Smush replied.

"Alright then. My idea is...a camel hospital...."

"Well I see where you wouldn't have much competition..." Smush responded. "But I can't imagine as you'd have many customers for a camel hospital here in East Westley."

"Ahhh," Mogey said cleverly, "that's why I 'd have it down in Binghamton-by-the-Sea. I heard tell there's a camel or two down there."

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLV

One day Mogey and Smush were hopping from stump to stump through a recently timbered forest when they came across a man who seemed to be trying to insert a plank into the trunk of one of the few remaining trees.

"Pleasant morning, sir," Smush said to the man. "I hope you'll forgive our intrusion, but what in the world are you doing?"

"You poor, miserable creature..." the man replied, shaking his head. "This here's what folks are calling a diving board. It's the hottest thing on the paths right now."

"But you haven't got any water here," Mogey said.

"That's true," he answered with a sigh. "My pony got awful thirsty hauling that plank up here, too. Ah well...Geronimoooo!"

With that, the man took a bounding leap off the makeshift diving board and experienced an extraordinarily hard landing, followed by an extraordinarily soft one. First he landed shoulder first on a stump (hard) but as luck would have it, he bounced off the stump and into Mogey's generous quantity of backfat (soft). In the end it averaged out to be quite a tolerable landing, really.

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLIV

One day Mogey and Smush were ambling on down to Doc Mulligan's Candy Shop. When they rounded the corner, the two pals were greeted by the sight of a raucous mob milling about in front of Doc Mulligan's. They were carrying pitchforks, whips, porcupines, and all other sorts of hastily grabbed implements of violence.

"What's going on here?" Mogey asked one of the mobmen as the sidled slowly on up.

"We done heard that someone in this town eats twopenny licorice whips!" the man shouted. "And we won't stand fer no one in our fair city eating that sort a' sissy candy!"

A roar went up from the crowd as the man yelled these words. Mogey and Smush backed slowly away down an alley, deciding that perhaps today was not the best day to purchase their weekly supply of twopenny licorice whips.

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLIII

"Smush," Mogey said, one fine autumn day as they were enjoying some lunch of the picnic table, "would you say this glass of lemonade in my hand is half full or half empty?"

"Mogey," Smush replied, "you're holding a jar of huckleberry preserves."

Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLII

One day Mogey and Smush were outside by the woodshed smoking some meat for the long winter ahead, when along came a wagon down the little cart path near the house. The wagon had bells and whistles hanging from every post and plank, and it was making an awful racket.

"Come join me! Come join me!" the driver shouted. He was a sprightly man dressed in a jester's cap and cutoffs and he danced about on the wagontop, paying no heed at all to his team of oxen. "Mogey and Smush, won't you come join me?"

"Who is that?" Mogey whispered.

"His name is Methuselah," Smush whispered back. "But he goes by Ted. Just pray to the god of smoked meat that he doesn't stop here."

But the god of smoked meat must have been working on another project, because stop Ted did.

"Mogey and Smush, Smush and Mogey," he sang. "Come join me and we will eat heaps of perogies!"

"Where are you going?" Mogey asked.

"To Greenishbrown Valley! Where beneath every hickory tree lies a pepperoni sandwich!"

"No, thank you," Smush said. "We need to stay here and smoke meat." Without a word, Methuselah Ted started his team once more and returned to his dancing as the jingling wagon pulled out of sight down the cart path.

"Sheesh," Mogey exclaimed. "That guy was crazy."

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Abbreviated Adventures of Mogey & Smush Volume CLI

One sunny day Mogey and Smush were out in the goat pasture doing some cloud gazing.

"That one looks like an elephant!" Smush said, gleefully pointing up at the sky.

"Aye you're right there," Mogey replied. "Say, look at that one. Doesn't that look an awful lot like an asteroid that's headed right for us?"

"You're wrong, Mogey," Smush whispered in terror. "That doesn't look like an asteroid that's headed right for us, it is and asteroid that's headed right for us!"

But Smush was wrong as well. It wasn't an asteroid or a cloud descending upon them, but the enormous bottom of a particularly fat goose, who landed with a thud right next to the two friends.

"Hullo fellahs," the moosey goosey said, and he waddled off in search of a caramel apple.