Any comments questions about this site, please contact Bob Zolnerzak at





(A study in sanity, or whatever)

     Zygmund Zyzzogeton II coiled himself onto the bar stool, rapped his tail on the bar to get the attention of the waitress, and ordered a tall, cool tankard of vorch.1
     She slithered over to him (the waitress, not the tankard of vorch, which is nevertheless, perfectly capable of slithering) and laid her lovely purple body supine on the bar.
     "Do you like me?" she asked, coiling her ear-tentacles teasingly around his brain, which was palpitating in the tip of his finger. He searched the quivering mass of protoplasm before him to see if she had two, big, round, soft, fleshy eyes like his lost sweetheart, Aphrodisia.2 His hearts skipped beats when he thought of her. Why, WHY had she left him?
     Alka-Seltzer, the waitress, had eyes which looked like rotten grapes. He uncoiled himself from his stool and moved halfway down the bar. She followed him.
     "What's your name?" she asked in such a quiet tone that Zygmund couldn't figure which of her mouths had posed the question; therefore, he answered her several heads in general.
     "Zygmund," he said with a sigh.
     "Zygmund!" she brayed.3 "Tell me about yourself, Zygmund."
     "My mother, whose name was Aphothecary, married a man whose name she hadn't bothered to ask. When she found that his name was Aaron Aachen, she shot him on the spot."
     "Which spot?"
     "He didn't have spots, like I have; he was striped."
     "How does it come about that you are spotted and your father was striped?"
     "I didn't say that my father was striped; my mother's husband was."
     "Why did she shoot him?"
     "Your mother."
     "SHOOT who, I mean."
     "Your father, Mr. Aachen."
     "He wasn't my father."
     "Who was?"
     "Zygmund Zyzzogeton I," Zygmund Zyzzogeton II said.
     "Zyzzogeton. Mother always wanted the last word."4
     "What does it mean?"
     "It means: 'A genus of large South American leaf hoppers (family Cicadillidae) who have the pronotum tuberculate, and the front tibiae grooved.'"5
     "Why, how appropriate, YOUR front tibiae are grooved, too."6
     "Do you like them?" he blushed.
     "Very." She slithered up close to him, trying to stare him down. This was a bit difficult, since he had four eyes and she only had three. It seemed he was always one jump ahead of her.
     Her rotten-grape eyes suddenly revolted him, and he pushed her away.
"I want to be alone," he murmured.

1.     Vorch is a very intoxicating drink made from chopped chicken liver and brain-squeezings from the long-billed curlew.
2.     X-rated definition.
3.     She, like many people, is accustomed to making an ass of herself.
4.     It is, you know. The last word, I mean. Zyzzogeton.
5.      Webster's Unabridged Dictionary, 1947.
6.      An anything with grooved tibiae was quite rare at that time.

     He felt the old longing for his adored, now gone, Aphrodisia. He yearned to fondle her two, big, round, soft, fleshy eyes. He fell to the lowest depths of misery. He hated everybody. Everything was so complicated.
     He wished for the uncluttered life of Apteryx7 and Archaeopteryx,8 his twin brothers, who simply floated in their jar of formaldehyde, playing bridge. Mama Apothecary had been badly frightened by a gnarly bird which pfeffed a little9 at her, causing her to give birth to the twins eight months ahead of time.10 What with medical science the way it was, they survived, but they had hardly any intelligence at all. That's why they played bridge.11
     Zygmund sighed again and spilled a little vorch on his dewlap.12 He closed his eyes. For an instant he thought of his very first love, Avocado. She had been a real peach, a prize plum, a cool tomato, but---nutty as a fruitcake. She ran off with a myrmecologist,13 had octuplets, and wasn't good for much after that.
     He felt a familiar tentacle on his back, and he turned.
     "Zygmund, you old son of---"
     "Amoeba, it's---"
     "Zygmund, what are you---"
     "Nothing much, and how is that beautiful---"
     "Oh, she was a---"
     "That's too bad, I always thought she was sort of---"
     "Well, not really. Only at night when---"
     "You didn't."
     "Not quite."14
     "Are you here alone, Amoeba?"
     "No, I have come with a most ravishing dish of mashed potatoes."
     "Don't just sit there, Amoeba, introduce me to that most ravishing dish of mashed potatoes."
     "Zygmund, I'd like you to meet---," Amoeba stood on all fives and took a deep breath, "Lepidotemachoselachogaleokranioleipsanodriumupotrummatosiphioparaomeli-
kiglopelsiolagoosiraioealetraganopterugonovich." He panted for breath a moment.
     "She's a direct descendant from," he took a deep breath, "Lepidotemachoselachogaleokranioleipsanodrimupotrummatosiphioparaomeli-
kiglopelsiolagoosiraioealetraganopterugon."15 He panted for breath several moments.
     Zymund grinned sheepishly and said to Amoeba, "I AM sorry, but I'm afraid I didn't catch that name." Amoeba turned aquamarine, vomited nectar and ambrosia and, blubbing, vanished into the fifth dimension.16

 7. A New Zealand bird with undeveloped wings.
 8. Don't you know what ANYTHING is?
 9. This isn't mine. In Finnegan's Wake James Joyce used Pfeffalittlegnarlybird. I couldn't resist.
10. Amazing!
11. Any similarity between this game and any existing game is purely.
12. It was just one of those days when NOTHING went right.
13. Antsy, no?
14. The above conversation may seem abbreviated, but you must remember---
15. Honest, there WAS an Indian chief in early America by the name of Lepidotema---
16. The first is length, the second is height, the third depth, Einstein said the fourth was time. The fifth is analogous to vorch (nothing to do with a very intoxication drink made from chopped chicken livers and brain-squeezings from the long-billed curlew).

      "I seem to have disturbed him," Zygmund said, turning to the most ravishing dish of mashed potatoes. "I think you and I could be very good friends." He was aware of someone staring at the backs of his necks; he turned. There stood a very surprised Brontosaurus, by the name of Allegro, necking with an Anchovy-Deluxe Pizza.
     "What are YOU staring at?" Zygmund was quite angry.
     The Brontosaurus, cowed, turned away. 17
     "Humph," humphed Zygmund. "He should stare, and him necking with an Anchovy-Deluxe Pizza." He proceeded to kiss the most ravishing dish of mashed potatoes passionately. It didn't complain.18
      A pygmy by the name of Aphasia elbowed his way through the crowd crowded around the crowded bar, bellowing, "Monsieur Zyzzogeton, Monsieur Zyzzogeton, 19 there is a passenger pigeon message 20 for you in the Manager's Office."
     Zygmund was away only a moment (the call happened to be for Zygmunt Zyzzogeton, and not for Zygmund Zyzzogeton). Imagine his dismay when he returned to find that someone had been indiscreet enough as to eat his most ravishing dish of mashed potatoes. He was utterly dejected. First Avocado, then Aphrodisia, then Lepido---etc. There was only one way out.
     "Alka-Seltzer," he called feebly, "Get me a glass of water."
     "Water!" She was immediately suspicious. "Have you a permit?"
     "Yes," he lied.
     Alka-Seltzer groped beneath the counter for water. "Here it is, but don't let the authorities catch you taking such a deadly poison out of here. I'd be fired."
     "I won't." He hopped off his stool and walked into the street. Turning down a dark alley, he furtively looked around and then gulped the water down. The poison took effect immediately, and with a metallic clink he disappeared into the sixth dimension. 21

17. It's quite difficult to cow a Brontosaurus; Zygmund had piles of talent.
18. Have YOU ever heard a most ravishing dish of mashed potatoes complain? Of COURSE not.
19. I neglected to mention, Zygmund is French.
20. Don't quibble over details. So what if passenger PIGEONS are extinct? Chalk it up to poetic license.
21. Hell.