Well, I didn't finish it by Christmas. I tried to finish it the NEXT Christmas, but that didn't happen either. That was like 8 years ago. One of these days, maybe I will actually finish it.
If you have been a regular reader of this lazy blog in the past, you may recognize a part that has been previously published. One section involves my late friend Wayne and one of his creations. You'll know when you get there.
Book 1,225: A Christmas Thingy
As the sun rose over the glistening snow covered hill, Lewis opened his
eyes. He rolled over in his warm bed and looked at the clock. It was
6:30! Christmas Morning! Instantly, he leaped out of bed with a
childlike sense of excitement!
Unfortunately, he also had childlike reflexes at the time and promptly
fell and hit his head on the dresser.
"Ow," said Lewis, not wanting to wake the rice pudding.
His wife, George, heard the commotion and woke up.
"Dear," she said, "what the heck are you doing?"
Lewis jumped up and hopped into his electric bunny slippers and went
running around the room looking for his favorite pair of pants.
"George! Get up!" he exclaimed as the water pik came loose from it's
wire cage and began attacking the cat with all the viciousness of fruit
salad. "It's Christmas morning! We have to go open our presents!"
"Oh good heavens," rounded George, "you're right!" George sprang from
the bed and threw her robe on, hardly noticing that Elwood the moose was
now naked and cold in the corner.
Lewis and George raced each other down the stairs. Realizing he was
losing, he flung himself over the banister and crash landed into the entry
hall weasel with a sickening "Meow" sound.
Unfazed, he ran into the living room.
George hurried after him. She turned the corner from the hallway into
the living room and saw Lewis standing in the entrance with a look of
utter disbelief on his face.
"But Lewis, that's where we get milk from," explained Hiney Perusgate.
"Lewis? What's wrong?" George asked as she got to the living room. She
turned to see what he was staring at and saw.... nothing. Absolutely
Well, not actually nothing. That is, there was something. I mean if
there was nothing then you wouldn't have anything to stare at and nobody
would be interested in it anyway. Plus, it's hard to describe in print.
George and Lewis stared at their living room. Sure there was furniture,
the old red chair that Lewis had made out of recycled aluminum, the sofa
that didn't quite sound right, the TV with fifty two knobs that all made
George Clooney look yellow, and the floor lamp that wouldn't stop doing
But it wasn't what was in the living room that bothered them, it was
what WASN'T in the living room that bothered them.
There was no Christmas tree, no presents, no candles that smelled like
the back of a pick-up truck, no candy canes, no inflatable Santas that
doubled as a microwave oven. Not a bit of tinsel, not a single
nutcracker, no garland, hippos, wreaths, lights, stockings, trash
compactor salesmen, or shiny objects made of fine pewter.
No sounds of jingle bells, crackling fires, gargling pigeons, barking
dogs, or Metallica's Warm & Fuzzy Christmas favorites.
No egg nog, turkey, pumpkin pie, sugar plums, beef jerky, candy, or
minced cow spleens.
There was not a bit of Christmas in the house.
George and Lewis turned to look at each other in that oh-so-dramatic way
that let's the audience know they are thinking the obvious but are going
to say it out loud anyway, for lack of better writing.
Moments later, the phone rang the doorbell. Lewis went to the door and
"Hey! Are you Lewis?" asked the phone.
"Yes," answered Lewis with painful amusement.
"You have a phone call." The telephone took off it's.. er.. head/receiver
thingy and handed it to Lewis. Lewis put the phone to his ear.
"LEWIS! It's me... Larry! Dude, we got problems. There ain't no
Christmas over here!"
"Yeah, I know, no Christmas over here either," concurred Lewis.
"No Christmas anywhere. Christmas didn't come! Look, I'll be right over.
It's up to us to find out what happened to Christmas."
Lewis sighed. "Why do we have to find Christmas?"
"Because," responded Larry, "we're the main characters. We could let the
rocking chair do it, but supporting characters tend to get killed or
maimed or inducted into the Showtune Hall of Fame or some other
"Well, I can't argue with logic like that," said Lewis, "we'll just have
to find Christmas."
With that, Lewis handed the phone back it's head. "Thanks for the call."
"Don't mention it," responded the cheerful telephone in a voice so
squeaky that the women reading this story right now are swooning. "It's
my job." The telephone turned and ran away to parts unknown, never to be
heard from again.
Lewis closed the door and walked back to the living room where George
was currently reupholstering the cat.
"SIT STILL!" shouted George as she looked up and saw Lewis. "Oh! Who was
that at the door, Hon?"
"Just a mysterious wandering telephone. I talked to Larry. He's coming
over. Apparently Christmas hasn't shown up anywhere. We're gonna go look
"Oh, well, okay. But before you go, can you clean out the garage? You've
been promising to do it for months."
"But dear," whined Lewis, "it's Christmas!"
"No it isn't..."
"Oh... yeah... sorry."
*insert peppy music segue here. Just play something for a second. We'll
Lewis was busy repacking his pants collection and stacking it neatly in
the corner next to his car (which had magically reappeared moments before)
when Larry came walking up the driveway.
"Hey... what the heck are you doing?" asked Larry while he straightened
his Shanghai Ferns baseball cap between his freshly polished horns.
Larry might be a cow, but he's a stylin' cow.
"George wants me to clean out the garage before we go find Christmas,"
said Lewis as he dropped another large empty box onto the ground in
exactly the same spot he had picked it up.
"Hmmmmm.... okay. Well, while you're finishing up, let's discuss what we
know about the situation."
"Well, I wanted to hang all the gardening tools from that wall over
there, but then I realized that I couldn't because then I couldn't use
the bathroom. But if I managed to squeeze in my mom's hideous old purse
collection over there by the stack of random parts that fell off of
cars, I figure...."
"NO, you pinhead! I meant Christmas! What do we know about Christmas!"
"Ummm... it's not here?" queried Lewis.
"Yesss," said Larry with growing impatience, "but what else?"
Lewis scratched the back of his head for a moment and looked confused, a
not entirely uncommon state of mind for Lewis. "Nothing I guess. We need
some clues. Where do we start looking?"
Larry looked ponderous for a moment then said, "I think I have an
idea... I gotta make a few phone calls."
Larry went into the living room and sat down on the couch.
"Ppppbbblllttt!" went the sofa as the bovine sat down.
"I see you still haven't gotten this sofa tuned. It still doesn't sound
quite right," said Larry.
"Yeah.... I think one of the cushions is flat. I've been meaning to get
that fixed," replied a most periwinkle Lewis.
Larry picked up the phone and dialed.
"Who are you calling?" asked Lewis.
"The big man himself."
"Noooo.... Santa. He's the head cheese of Christmas. Maybe he knows
what's up." Larry made a face like a bemused sheep. "Hello? Santa?"
*in order for the reader to not be left in the dark and so nosy people
like my sister, who absolutely MUST know whatever the person on the
other end of the phone is saying, we will now include the character of
Santa. Please note that Santa is NOT in Lewis' living room, although it
would appear that he is talking to Larry, he is actually in the North
Pole, far away from Larry. Don't get lost. I'm not going to explain this
"Larry? Is that you? Ho Ho Ho!" exclaimed a right jolly ol' Santa.
*the part of Santa is being played today by Cuba Gooding Jr.*
"Yeah, Santa, it's Larry. Hey boss, what's up with this Christmas thing?
It isn't here!"
"You know, I was wondering that myself. I was all set to deliver gifts
last night, but I never got the signal from Christmas! I can't go until
I get the signal. Ever since I got confused and accidentally delivered
toys to half the good little children in Indochina in the middle of
April, Christmas and I have had this signal thing going. Ho Ho Ho!"
"Really... what's the signal?"
"Richard Simmons goes streaking past my window. Ho Ho Ho!"
"Ugh! Okay, so anyway, you don't know what's going on either huh? No
clues, no nothing? C'mon Santa you know if I've been bad or good but you
don't know where Christmas is?"
"Hey, I'm not omnipotent. And the only reason I know what everybody is
doing is because I'm connected to numerous spy satellites and mail order
catalogs! Ho Ho Ho! Christmas is different. I can't watch Christmas...
Christmas is kind of my boss. I don't want to get fired! I'll lose my
pension if I don't work at least 453 more years! I don't have any other
skills... I make toys. That's all... well I guess I'm pretty good at
eating cookies... Oh and I can drink anybody under the table! And then
there’s my budding soft porn career that..."
"Okay! Whoa! Look at the time. Thanks for your help Santa... Lewis and
I have to go find Christmas. See ya!" Larry hung up the phone and let
out a long deep breath. "Man. Did you catch all that Lewis?"
Lewis was squinting at the screen. "Hold on, I've only read to the part
where Santa's talking about his pension..." Lewis mumbled aloud to
himself and then look startled. "Geez! Santa's kind of disgusting! And
even worse, we still don't know where Christmas is." Lewis looked
downtrodden for a moment and then brightened, thanks to the 75 watt bulb
now hovering over his head. "Hey... I wonder if the Grinch is up to his
"You might have something there," said Larry, "Let's call him."
Larry picked up the phone and dialed. Moments later, the Grinch answered.
"Hello?" answered the Grinch.
"Hey, Grinch. Larry. Listen, you didn't steal Christmas again did you.
It hasn't shown up yet and frankly, we're worried.."
"Oh hey Larry... no, I don't do that stuff anymore, remember? I changed.
I found the joy of Christmas... made my heart grow insanely big."
"Yeah, say how's that heart thing working out?"
"Well, it crushed one of my kidneys and is currently forcing my stomach
to poke out of my right hip. I've got six broken ribs that are still
mending and the extra weight has given me a double hernia. The doctors
have had to remove 16 vital organs to make room for this thing. I'll
tell ya, if I wasn't so full of Christmas joy all the time, I'd be in
"Ouch... bummer Grinch. So if it wasn't you, what happened to
"Don't know man... but if I wasn't bedridden, I'd help you look. Since I
have no other hobbies than enjoying Christmas... and tying antlers onto
smaller creatures... I'm kinda bummed out since Christmas didn't show.
Plus, I'm running out of morphine and those ribs are killing me."
"Well, okay. Thanks for your help. Hope you feel better soon Grinch."
"Thanks, Larry. Oh, and could you start calling me by my first name?
'Grinch' has such a negative connotation."
"Okay," responded Larry, "what is your first name?"
"Ooooookay... Melvin... I'll talk to you later."
Larry again hung up the phone and looked at Lewis. Lewis shook his head
and looked at the floor. “How are we going to find Christmas... we don't
even have any leads."
"Well, we gotta start somewhere. I guess we should start checking out
all the places Christmas hangs out during the rest of the year. I think
we should start looking at...."
"The what?!!?!" exclaimed Lewis.
"You heard me... the Great Whale Tree of Skagawa, Iowa. Seems that
Christmas likes to go there every year for the annual Whale Ripening
festival." explained Larry.
"Well that doesn't make any sense," said Lewis as he slowly spun around
on one foot while scratching a framed photo of Peter Graves. "I mean,
what the hell is a whale tree? Whales come from the ocean and certain
convienance stores in the south... not from trees."
"Lewis, this tree is what makes new breeds of whales. Every year the
Great Whale Tree lets forth it's bountiful harvest of whales which are
then trucked out to the ocean."
"Whales do not grow on trees... they are not vegetation... SHEEP are
vegetation, not whales," said Mr. Know-It-All Lewis.
"Sheep are not vegetation Lewis... we've been over this before. Sheep
are animals that... Oh for crying out loud! Why am I having this stupid
argument with you anyway! C'mon!"
Larry grabbed Lewis by the arm and flung him into the passenger seat of
Larry's Magnudarian Roadster, which conveniently had been parked in
Lewis' living room. He started the engine and drove off, only stopping
by the kitchen on the way out for a six pack of beer and a salt lick.
And so our heroes trekked across countless deserts (3 of them) and
innumerable mountain ranges (12) and an endless string of coffee shops
(they really are endless... damn coffee shops) until they reached the
outskirts of the meteor crater where Skagawa was located. Carefully, so
as not to disturb the finely tuned road gravel, they drove into downtown
Skagawa which consisted of a restaurant and a Military school.
"... and over there is the restaurant and the Military School,"
explained Larry as he began and ended his detailed tour of scenic
*A note to the readers: there weren't no Christmas 'round Skagawa
"USUALLY," continued Larry, in large enough print that the author
realized Larry wasn't happy about being interrupted, "this place is
packed with people. Strange. The people to land ratio is generally 16
people square foot. I wonder where everybody is." Larry parked the car
next to the restaurant and the two intrepid detectives removed
themselves from their vehicle. They moseyed over to the Great Whale Tree
where they saw a young man standing motionless near, but not directly
under the tree.
"Lewis, that's one of the military students. They keep watch over the
tree so that nobody steals it and uses it for evil." Larry walked up to
the guard and extended a hoof in greeting. "Hi! I'm Larry and this is
"Hi... my name is 'Wayne'" responded the guard.
Hello, 'Wayne'," said Lewis, "Have you seen Christmas? It doesn't seem
to have shown up this year."
"Wayne" simply stared at them and then began chasing his hair. "Damn
Germans!" he exclaimed suddenly, "Damn Germans and their chocolate! Der
Chocolate is Verboten!" At this point, "Wayne" managed to catch his hair
and began chewing it vigorously, all the time staring at Lewis.
"Um, yes, I see... but we're looking for Christmas and any help you co-"
"DER CHOCOLATE IS VERBOTEN!!!!!!!!" yelled "Wayne".
Larry grabbed Lewis by the arm and dragged him back to the car as he
yelled to "Wayne", "Thanks! We appreciate your help!"
Larry once again flung Lewis into the Roadster and then immersed himself
in the driver's seat.
"Larry, that guy was nuts! He had no useful information! We've wasted
our time and we have no further information on the whereabouts of
Christmas!" moistened Lewis.
"On the contrary," designated Larry, "He gave us a very big clue.
Obviously, Christmas is involved with the German's somehow. That also
explains where all the people went and why he was a raving loony. The
German's have been here and have enslaved everyone by getting them
addicted to their fine chocolates! Then, with no one left to resist,
the Germans will simply take over the world and force everyone to watch
David Hasselhoff television programs!"
"Egads," exclaimed a most horrified Lewis, "a fate worse than death! Can
their chocolate be that good?"
"Oh yes... absolutely divine. No finer chocolate has ever been produced.
But, it's highly addictive and people will do nearly anything to get it.
I can only hope that they don't intend on using Christmas as their means
of distributing their fiendish sweets to the world. No one will be
safe... every stocking will be filled with doom!"
Larry and Lewis decided it would be best if they drove to Germany to see
if they could find out anything. Little did they know that Germany was
already on it's way to meet them!
As they drove, Larry and Lewis sang Christmas Carols in order to try and
get filled with the holiday spirit, possibly helping them to home in on
the source, being Christmas. Unfortunately, the only thing that was
filled was the car with bad singing.
"...me and Grandpa, we belieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeive!" sang (screeched)
Lewis. "So, what happens when we get to Germany?"
"Well, I figure that we'll go find us a candy maker and pump him for
information. Most German chocolate makers are part of a secret guild of
confectioners. Chances are, one of them will be weak and we'll be able
to learn something. Maybe we'll even learn where they've taken
After that they drove in silence for a while, mostly because I got bored
of writing dialogue. So instead, I decided to make them hum the drum
part of Bach's Stairway to Heaven Concerto in A minor. That managed to
take up a good bit of time, as I'm sure you can imagine.
It was when they stopped to get gas and pocket fisherman when something
terrible happened. Lewis had just finished using the little boys room
and Larry was finishing up in the little cows room when a huge land mass
burst through the front door of the Phillip's 666 food mart.
"Alright!" it announced, "Where are da heroes? De ones dey call Lewis
Lewis, in usual fashion, stuffed himself into a bag of circus peanuts in
order to hide. Larry, who chose the absolutely wrong moment to exit the
restroom, came face to face with Germany.
"YOU! You are the do-gooder cow that all the villains hate! You will
come with me now!"
"Why where are we going? And why do you think I'll go with you?"
responded Larry with defiance in his voice and lint in his belly button.
"Because we have much to discuss! We must go to the Waffle HAAAUUUS!
There, we will eat waffles and discuss many important things that I
think will be of great importance in your quest to find the German
Larry, thinking it was probably a trap but realizing there was little
else he could do, particularly since his intended destination had sought
him out and met him at this gas station, agreed. Forgetting all about
Lewis, Larry and Germany left the food mart and drove off on Germany's
Meanwhile, Lewis, now realizing that Germany was gone and that he could
no longer stand to be in close proximity with circus peanuts, withdrew
himself from the bag. He instantly noticed that Larry was nowhere to be
found. He walked up to the cashiers booth and asked, "Did you see what
happened to the cow I came in here with?"
The gas station attendant, whose name was Peanut, responded, "Yep... he
left with that foreign fella... said they wuz goin' to the Waffle House
or some such nonsense."
"Hmmm... It's not like Larry to leave with foreign land masses without
telling me... well, there was that time with Australia... and
Pittsburgh... oh and Pakistan... but usually..."
At this point, a flash of light appeared before Lewis and a short man
dressed like an elf appeared.
"Hey, who are you and why are you dressed like an elf?" asked Lewis.
"I'm Gerzandermaus and I am an elf you dimwit. Listen, Santa thought you
guys might need some help so he sent me to help you find Christmas."
"Cool! What special skills do you have?"
"Well, I've read 342 issues of Detective Comics and I once found a
needle in a haystack, although I wasn't really looking for it. And, I’ve
got a bottle of 12 year old Scotch for the celebration later."
"Sounds like you're more than qualified!" exclaimed a very enthusiastic
Peanut looked up from his Ladies Home Journal of Medicine and said,
"Look, you boys gonna buy somethin'? cuz if'n ya ain't, I'm a gonna haff
ta ask ya ta leave."
Lewis bought a package of Fruit Flavored Gorilla Spit and Gerzandermaus
purchased the holiday issue of Playelf. The new partners traveled out to
the parking lot and stood next to Larry's car.
"Can you drive this thing?" asked Gerzandermaus.
"Oh yeah, no prob... it's just like my car at home except that it has an
engine." The two got into the car and began driving.
"... so Germany and Larry are on their way to the Waffle House." said
Lewis as he recounted the story up to this sentence.
"Hmmm... I see. This is probably not good. I say that because I'm trying
to create some drama and tension so that the readers don't become bored
and go watch "It's A Wonderful Life" for the 987th time this year."
"Well, I think you did a good job."
It was about that time, that the duo came upon the Waffle House.
As Lewis and Gerzandermaus pulled into a parking spot, they could see Larry and Germany having an animated conversation with the cartoon character that happened to be their waitress. From what they could tell, Larry seemed not in the least reluctant to be there talking to Germany. Lewis, being polite, held the door open for Gerzandermaus and in they went.
"Hello!" exclaimed a very cheerful looking woman on roller skates. "I'm Elizabeth-a-ding-dong and I'm the hostess here at Waffle House. Table for two?"
"Oh, actually we're meeting some friends here... the cow and the land mass back in the corner booth," responded Lewis in perfect monotone.
"Well, alright then... if you will follow me, I'll take you over there."
She turned, picked up two menus, and rolled down the aisle towards the back booth. Gerzandermaus and Lewis followed.
"Lewis, this girl is gorgeous! Think she might go for a short guy that makes toys for a living?"
"Gerzandermaus! We've got a job to do!"
After what seemed like seconds, because it was, Elizabeth-a-ding-dong stopped next to the booth where Larry and Germany were seated. "Here is your table! Can I get your drink orders?"
"Cranberry-mashed potato spritzer," ordered Lewis.
"You got Vodka?" asked Gerzandermaus.
"Would you like regular or diet?"
"Diet... and a slice of artificial turf please."
"It'll be right up."
The waitress, who was the hostess just a second ago, turned and walked away, leaving the four of them to do something without her.
"Alright!" yelled Gerzandermaus as he grabbed Germany's lapels (which were near Bonn), "What's tha big idea of kidnapping the cow!?!"
"I did not kidnap da cow! I came to help him!"
"He's right," said Larry, "Germany has been telling me all about the German's and their evil plot to enslave everybody with their highly addictive chocolate products! As Lewis and I suspected, they intend to get everyone addicted to their candy and then take over the world."
"So why is Germany telling us this?" asked Lewis in his usual state of bewilderment.
"I wanted to tell you how to stop them! I have a bad rep from all da other bad things dat have gone on because of the people who live in me. But I'm a nice guy! I like long walks on the beach, poetry, cute little puppies, and I'm pals with France! We play tricks on Spain!"
"Uh-huh," said Lewis. "So, what does this have to do with Christmas?
"Apparently, the Evil Candy Makers want to force Christmas to endorse their chocolate, eventually making it tradition that no one can stop even if they wanted to, like eggnog or Kathie Lee Gifford! It would be fairly easy since Christmas has sold out and gone all commercial on us. Why, ever since George Lucas gave Christmas the part of the Lumpy the hyperactive wookie in that weird ass Star Wars Holiday Special, all Christmas thinks about is image." explained Larry
"But image is nothing. Haven't we learned anything from Sprite commercials?" said Lewis philosophically. They others at the table pondered this for a moment and then said something else.
"Fortunately," continued Larry, "They haven't found Christmas yet. This of course brings us back to out original problem, being, where the heck IS Christmas?"
*to be continued... maybe*